J-STREET

Nonbei Yokocho: The Story of Shibuya’s Drunk Alley

Aired: Jan. 30, 2020

As the Tokyo 2020 Olympics approach, Tokyo has been undergoing redevelopment with numerous high-rises being built all over the city. In a corner of bustling Shibuya, is a place that retains traces of Japan’s post-war reconstruction era. “Nonbei Yokocho ,” where 30 or so cozy eating joints and waterholes line the streets, is located a one-minute walk from the famous Shibuya crossing. This segment features snapshots of Tokyo’s bygone era that photographer Masahiro Yamaguchi has captured through the years.

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Nonbei Yokocho alley in Shibuya, Tokyo
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Book designer and photographer Masahiro Yamaguchi
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Paper lanterns lighting the drunk alley
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There are many bars that welcome tourists even if they don’t speak Japanese, like Matsugiku