My Tokyo Guide
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Updated: November 29, 2023
Tokyo’s picturesque Odaiba waterfront is a popular shopping and dining site, boasting spectacular views of the cityscape and Tokyo Bay. It is also ideal for runners, with flat courses passing through gardens and along the sea. This man-made island has several running routes, but the Odaiba Running Course is recommended for access, scenery, and facilities.
The running course’s first section passes just in front of Odaiba Marine House and follows the white sand beach of Odaiba Marine Park to No. 3 Battery Daiba Park, with stunning views of Rainbow Bridge. Those wanting to add a few hundred meters more to the route can follow the trail around Battery Park, built on a gun emplacement constructed by the Shogun in 1854 to protect the city from Commodore Perry’s Black Ships. The course returns along the same route through Odaiba Marine Park.
The running course is almost completely flat. The surface varies from boardwalk to sandy pavement, an earthen path, asphalt and brick tiles. (Those wanting a more demanding workout can run on the beach.) There are restrooms along the route. Vending machines offer bottled water and other liquid refreshments, but runners can also quench their thirst at water fountains.
After passing Odaiba Marine House, the route continues southwest along the shore, past Odaiba Marine Park Pier, where boats from other Tokyo waterfront sites pick up and drop off passengers. It passes Rainbow Bridge Observation Deck, with its one-seventh-sized Statue of Liberty replica, made to commemorate ties between France and Japan. The turning point is just beyond the Hilton Tokyo Odaiba Hotel, after which the route returns through Odaiba Marine Park to Odaiba Marine House.
What makes this route so runner friendly is the location and layout. Sea breezes cool off runners, and nearby pine trees offer shade. Park benches are dotted along the course for those needing a breather.
Eating soon after a run is recommended to minimize muscle soreness. After showering and changing at Odaiba Marine House, head to one of the malls just next to the Odaiba Marine Park – Aqua City Odaiba or Decks Tokyo Beach Seaside Mall. Both have a number of restaurants that feature views of the bay, Rainbow Bridge and the Tokyo skyline. Decks has a branch of Bills, an all-day dining spot from Sydney, especially known for its casual but chic Aussie-style brunch.
Near Ariake Station, Izumi Tenku no Yu in Ariake Garden complex features large communal baths, saunas, and hot stone bathing where “bathers” lie on slabs of rock to detox. Spa treatments are available as are relaxation areas and Ariake Kitchen, which serves drinks, snacks, and meals.