Shibamata (柴又) is perhaps most famously known as the hometown of Tora-san, the iconic, unlucky-in-love character whose adventures in the 1969-1995 movie series Otoko wa Tsurai yo (lit. ‘It’s Tough Being a Man’) captured the hearts of many.
True to form, a bronze statue of hometown-man Tora-san awaits just outside Shibamata station. Follow his stare straight to the tourist information centre, where copies of the Katsushika Sightseeing Guide Map are available to help you get situated
Shibamata is all about nostalgia for the simple life. Full of Japanese gardens, parks and temples, Shibamata’s Showa atmosphere encourages people to take it easy and revisit a time when things went a bit slower. Walking through Taishakuten Sando, a street lined with traditional shops, you might be tempted by a dizzying array of Japanese snacks
This was used daily by the people living here back in the days to cross from Tokyo to Chiba just right across the river. To know if the boat was in operation, you just have to look over the opposite shore to check if the flag was raised.
We were there on a weekday so we were not sure if it was in operation as there was no one at the jetty (this ride is now mainly a tourists ride) but we were lucky to see the flag raised and waved to the boatman opposite. However, as we were sitting there as the only 2 passengers and chatting with the boatman who calmly replied saying that there is not many customers today due to the impending TYPHOON. His reply kinda made us a little freaked out as the typhoon did not even cross our minds 😛 I guess, this happens when you grow up in a relatively natural calamity free country 😛