by Khaty Omar,
Shinjuku is one of the 23 city wards of Tokyo, but the name commonly refers to just the large entertainment, business and shopping area around Shinjuku Station. Since the end of the Second World War, Shinjuku has been a major secondary center of Tokyo (fukutoshin), rivaling to the original city center in Marunouchi and Ginza.
It is a major commercial and administrative centre, housing the northern half of the busiest railway station in the world (Shinjuku Station) and the Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building, the administration centre for the government of Tokyo.
Shinjuku Station is the world’s busiest railway station, handling more than two million passengers every day. It is served by about a dozen railway and subway lines, including the JR Yamanote Line. Shinjuku is also one of Tokyo’s major stops for long-distance highway buses. A large bus terminal, named Busta Shinjuku, is conveniently located on top of the railway station.
West of the station is Shinjuku’s skyscraper district, home to many of Tokyo’s tallest buildings, including several premier hotels and the twin towers of the Metropolitan Government Office, whose observation decks are open to the public for free.
Northeast of the station lies Kabukicho, Japan’s largest and wildest red light district, while department stores, subterranean malls and electronic shops surround Shinjuku Station on all four sides, including the redeveloped Southern Terrace.
Shinjuku is also commonly used to refer to the entire area surrounding Shinjuku Station. The southern half of this area and of the station are in fact part of the Yoyogi and Sendagaya districts of the neighboring Shibuya ward.