Ikebukuro is located in Toshima Ward about 4km north of Shinjuku. For high-school and university students living in the neighboring prefecture of Saitama, it is also the first major commercial center before Shinjuku and Shibuya. Because of this chain restaurants and cheap eateries are aplenty.
Ikebukuro is also a good area for shopping and discount-hunting, and many of the major department chains (Seibu, Tobu, Marui) have a store near the station. While it may not be able to compete with its bigger siblings Shinjuku and Shibuya for neon lights and cachet, it does nevertheless offer visitors several attractions, including one of the best observation decks in the capital.