Asagaya Area Guide

Asagaya is locked in an eternal popularity competition with neighboring Koenji. Since time immemorial, Asagaya and Koenji have been vying for the hearts of Tokyoites. For those looking into moving just west of downtown Tokyo, you’ll find that Asagaya provides a comfortable, safe environment chock-full of interesting food and drink along with fun community events.

Details

Highlights
-- Only 10 minutes away from Shinjuku Station.
-- Lively community events such as Asagaya Jazz Street, Asagaya Tanabata Festival, etc.
-- Large covered shopping arcade can make getting to/from the station stress-free, even in the rain.
-- Star Road features many izakayas and bars for those who enjoy grabbing a drink in the evening.
Trainline(s)
Asagaya Station is located on the JR Chuo Line (Rapid) and the JR Chuo-Sobu Line (Local).
Access
From Asagaya Station on the JR Chuo Line (Rapid) and JR Chuo-Sobu Line (Local):
-- 9-min direct to Shinjuku Station
-- 22-min direct to Tokyo Station
-- 21-min to Shibuya Station (1 transfer)

Contents

Right across the street from the south exit of Asagaya Station you’ll find the entrance to the Pal Shopping Center. This stretch of road is home to many different stores (from antique shops to drug stores) and restaurants – very convenient for residents! Photo: Scott Kouchi

Asagaya at a glance


Although there are many similarities between Koenji and Asagaya, there are nuanced differences that differentiate the two areas. Overall, they both are considered suburban, residential neighborhoods close to Tokyo. Livability is generally rated pretty high here as you’ll find plenty of supermarkets, convenience stores, and local shops around both stations as well. Rent tends to follow the old adage of the Chuo Line – the closer to Shinjuku, the higher the rent. As Asagaya is only a 10-minute train ride to Shinjuku, you’ll end up paying a slight premium on rent for this convenience.

Looking down the road south of Asagaya Station. Photo: Scott Kouchi

Transportation

Being just four stops away from Shinjuku puts you relatively close to the largest train hub in Tokyo. In addition, Minami-Asagaya Station is just a 10-minute walk from Asagaya Station, giving you the option to take the Marunouchi subway line as well.

One thing to keep in mind is that the Rapid Service train doesn’t stop at Asagaya on the weekends. Turning the 10-minute train ride to Shinjuku into a 14-minute train ride. All things considered, this is actually quite a minor gripe to have – reflecting how little there is to really complain about the livability of this area. 

A residential street in Asagaya. Photo: Scott Kouchi

Rent

As stated above, rent tends to be a tad on the high end when compared to other Chuo Line stations. However, considering you’ll be closer to Shinjuku (great for commuting to work) the time saved might be worth it.

Studio/1K/1DK ¥73,200/month (About $690 assuming an exchange rate of ¥106/US dollar)

1LDK/2K/2DK ¥121,800 (About $1,150)

2LDK/3K/3DK ¥169,500 (About $1,600)

That being said, it is possible to find cheaper listings (most likely those farther away from the station, or in older buildings, etc.) if affordability is your main concern. For a better idea of currently available properties in the area, check out listings on our listing pages: Asagaya Apartments

For example, rent for 1R apartments around Asagaya Station starts at around ¥48,000 per month.

Apartments for rent in the Asagaya area

Ease of living

Just around the station, you’ll find a Seiyu supermarket as well as an Ito Yokado. There seems to be a decent amount of smaller grocery stores scattered south of the station, including an Acolle (discount supermarket) for those trying to stretch their budgets. To the north, you’ll find a few supermarkets, but the selection is definitely slimmer.

Looking over the road north of Asagaya Station. Photo: Scott Kouchi

While I wouldn’t necessarily say community events are a dealbreaker when deciding where to live in Tokyo, they can give you a sense of the character of an area. For example, every year there is a large jazz festival in Asagaya that takes over the streets and you can hear a wide variety of artists from all over the world in this corner of Tokyo.

Star Road is a section of Asagaya which is home to various izakayas and restaurants. It has a old-town feel which can be a fun change of pace for those who enjoy exploring the spirits Japan has to offer! Photo: Scott Kouchi

Another aspect of locales that I think helps us get an idea of their rhythm is the independent, small businesses that you can find. I’m talking about small cafes, mom-and-pop shops, family-owned businesses, etc. Even if they haven’t been passed down for 10 generations, all these stores have histories that have both influenced and been influenced by their community.

You’ll also find very modern, stylish cafes like Cafe Zaguri in Asagaya. The interior has a beautiful DIY aesthetic that makes for a calm spot to take a break. Photo: Scott Kouchi

There are also quite a few cafes and restaurants in the area that show off that Asagaya-charm. You can take a stroll down Star Road or the Pal Shopping Arcade and enjoy the different shops available here.

Who is this area ideal for?

Anybody looking into a balance between city and suburb in Tokyo would benefit from taking the time to check out what Asagaya has to offer. It’s a very livable area that’s quite close to downtown Tokyo – complete with plenty of conveniences near the station in addition to the old-town charm of Star Road.

You may also be interested in

Akihabara Area Guide

This famous neighborhood is jam-packed with stores displaying anime and video game goods, but you don’t have to be an anime fan to live in Akihabara. Located on the northeastern edge of Chiyoda Ward, Akihabara Station is a transportation hub that offers great access to the rest of Tokyo through a variety of train and subway lines. Those who enjoy a lively Tokyo city life experience will likely feel at home in this neighborhood.

Akabane Area Guide

Akabane is a neighborhood in Kita Ward, towards the northern edge of the 23 wards of Tokyo. Bordered by Saitama Prefecture to the north, the station is traversed by many commuters coming in from Saitama Prefecture. Until recently, Akabane was infamous for its narrow alleys, late-night izakayas, and general seediness. Redevelopment and modernization in the area has transformed most of it to a livable, convenient neighborhood.

Okubo Area Guide

Okubo is a neighborhood just north of Shinjuku Station in Tokyo. It provides residents with very quick direct access to Shinjuku, while also being just far enough away from the excitement of downtown. This balance between convenience and residential livability is a great feature of the neighborhood. In addition, for those who enjoy authentic ethnic cuisine, the international population in Okubo own and operate different restaurants and shops in the area. It’s a unique, charming neighborhood for those seeking something close to Shinjuku!

Kameari Area Guide

Kameari is a residential neighborhood in Katsushika Ward, Tokyo. What it lacks in name recognition it makes up for in charm and convenience. This traditionally working-class area of Tokyo retains much of the old-school look and feel of bygone Tokyo, and new modern shopping malls have injected style and fashion back into the area.

Tokyo Station Area Guide

Contents Location Key Stats Orientation Around the Station Livability Useful Info at a Glance Tokyo Station Apartments Location Tokyo Station is found just east of the Imperial Palace in Chiyoda Ward, Tokyo. There’s almost no comparison to this centrally located,… More

Shin-Okubo Area Guide

Shin-Okubo is renowned as Tokyo’s Koreatown. This popular and trendy area offers an international vibe close to Shinjuku. An added benefit of this diverse environment is the selection of import supermarkets! While the streets around the station tend to be quite lively, even well into the night, it is possible to find calmer parts of the neighborhood.

Toranomon Hills Area Guide

Contents Location Key Stats Orientation Around the Station Livability Useful Info at a Glance Toranomon Hills Apartments Location Toranomon Hills Station can be found in the northern section of central Minato Ward. The Toranomon district is a primarily business district,… More

Jujo Area Guide

Jujo is a neighborhood in Kita Ward, Tokyo. It’s located just north of the major transportation hub of Ikebukuro, making it a convenient area for commuters seeking options for quick and easy transportation into downtown Tokyo. Ease of transportation isn’t the only convenience provided by this neighborhood, nearby Jujo Ginza is a local shopping street with a variety of shops, making picking up daily necessities easy.

Kachidoki Area Guide

Kachidoki is a newer addition to Tokyo’s list of residential neighborhoods. Located in Tokyo Bay, residents enjoy a mix of modern conveniences (shopping malls, high-rise apartment complexes, beautiful waterfront parks) close to Tokyo’s commercial districts. As the area becomes more developed, an increasing number of families are moving to the area because of the calm and family-friendly environment!

Hatagaya Area Guide

Hatagaya is a calm and livable neighborhood located on the Keio New Line just west of downtown Shinjuku. This convenient location makes it a great option for commuters, and the distance away from the crowds of downtown Shinjuku gives the area a more relaxed feeling.