Saraba! Oedo Onsen Monogatari Tokyo | Japan Travel Memories

Farewell, Oedo Onsen Monogatari Tokyo!
Farewell, Oedo Onsen Monogatari Tokyo!

I’m heartbroken. After 18 years, Tokyo’s world-famous Oedo Onsen Monogatari will be closing for good come September 2021.

Last Thursday, or was it Friday, I woke up and was greeted by tragic news upon visiting Facebook.

After 18 years in operation, Tokyo’s famous Oedo Onsen Monogatari will be closing for good in September 2021.

Oedo Onsen Monogatari. My favourite Odaiba attraction since 2004. The one attraction that I MUST visit whenever in Tokyo, no matter how rushed my itinerary is.

Naturally, I assumed it was the fault of the COVID-19 pandemic, but turns out, it’s not. Instead, it’s some sort of land-leasing regulation that makes it commercially pointless for the management to continue operation. (Summary of it is that they wouldn’t be able to operate beyond 2023)

I’m heartbroken. Doubly heartbroken because as my FB friends highlighted, none of us would be able to make one final visit, have one final soak, play one final matsuri game, before this wonderful bathing theme park goes away for good.

I am only left with travel memories and photos. My only consolation is, at least my latest visit wasn’t that long ago too; Dec 2018 to be exact.

I had so many entertaining, relaxing evenings there. This was one Japanese attraction that never failed to delight me. A place I will remember for many more years to come.

The following pics aren’t great by any standard. Most were taken by handphones with single-digit megapixel resolutions …


Oedo Onsen Monogatari Memories and Travel Photos

First Visit in 2004.

My first visit was all the way back in 2004. I was in Tokyo for four days and before setting off, I bought a Japanese travel magazine to research which newer attractions I should check out.

“Oedo” was prominently featured in that magazine. One look at the colorful photos and I decided right away that I must visit.

That the park was located at Odaiba was another major attraction for me. Since my first visit to this man-made island in 2001, I’ve dearly loved the bayside recreational area. In short, Oedo felt the perfect place to relax at after food and shopping.

Japanese Travel Magazine from 2004
The magazine that “introduced” me to Tokyo’s best onsen theme park.
Japanese Santa Claus
Right before buying my ticket in 2004. This moment “marked” the beginning of my love for Oedo.
Erm, me in Yukata. As is well-known, all tickets at Oedo Onsen Monogatari come with a choice of Yukata to wear within the premises.
Oedo Onsen Monogatari in 2004
I was blown away by the “festive village” before the baths! It’s truly like visiting a Japanese matsuri.

Subsequent Visits in 2006, 2007, and 2010

Let’s see. I next visited in February 2006 and December 2007. For the latter, this was the attraction that I was at for a whole three hours on New Year’s Eve, before rushing to Shibuya Station Square and Asakusa Temple to welcome the New Year.

No pictures from those visits, though. I wasn’t too into photography back then. Those taken by my Nokia phones of then were terrible in quality anyway. And so I didn’t even bother.

Tokyo Rainbow Bridge 2006
I did take this picture of the Rainbow Bridge in 2006, though!

Jump forth to February 2010, I had one afternoon in Tokyo before heading up to Sapporo. It was an incredibly rushed afternoon too as that was a work trip and I needed to meet an important client at Tsukiji.

Where did I make a beeline to once done with the meeting? Odaiba of course! I spent the bulk of my only two free hours that afternoon naked and in the soothing waters of Oedo.

April 2015 Visit

This was my most memorable visit. Because I went on the final evening of my holiday and because of a group of friendly Japanese teens that I met at the matsuri area.

Oedo Onsen Monogatari Tokyo (2015)
The entrance foyer. An Anime-themed exhibition was ongoing and these characters were everywhere.
Tokyo Oedo Onsen Monogatari Food Area
The crowded dining area. Atmospheric as always.
Japanese Dagashi
Dagashi i.e. affordable Japanese candies on sale. I didn’t buy any as I earlier bought a whole bag at DECKS.
This young dude was really sporting! After I helped his group with a couple of pictures, he posed with me.

Dec 2018 Visit

This visit was right after my visit to TeamLab Borderless. Perhaps because it was a rainy Monday, Oedo wasn’t as crowded as before.

Armed with my D7500, this was also the visit that I took the most pictures of. Looking back, I’m so glad I did. Who would have known it would be my final visit?

Oedo Onsen Monogatari Odaiba (2018)
As you can see, there weren’t that many visitors that evening. (And it was just 9 pm) I remember feeling a little disappointed because of the sleepy ambience.
The dining area. Can’t really remember what I had that evening, though. I think it was a Matcha dessert, or similar. (I had a heavy Tonkatsu Dinner at DECKS earlier)
Oedo Onsen Monogatari Tokyo Matsuri Games
Traditional matsuri games. (I tried a couple, and won nothing …)
Selfie spot and of course, Mount Fuji. The autumn leaves were because it was autumn foliage viewing season.
Oedo Onsen Monogatari Tokyo Closing
The entrance foyer right before I left. It was just after 10 pm. It was also raining very heavily outside. (Feels a little sad, doesn’t it? This picture now looks like a solemn, we’re closing, farewell, picture to me)

Farewell, Oedo Onsen Monogatari! Thank you for the travel memories and unforgettable evenings! I look forward too to you guys reopening elsewhere in Japan.

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Saraba! Oedo Onsen Monogatari | Japan Travel Memories
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Saraba! Oedo Onsen Monogatari | Japan Travel Memories
My beloved Oedo Onsen Monogatari will be closing for good this September. But it is not because of the COVID-19 Pandemic.

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