Tokyo, the capital city of Japan, is known for being a leading country in every field. They are active in politics, business, entertainment, hospitality, development, education, technology, fashion, and culture. This city has been ranked third twice in the International financial center development index. Tokyo ranks first in Global Economic Power Index, third in the Global Cities Index. Tokyo is the home for various television networks and Broadcasting systems. Many have the capital city on their travel bucket list and to make the experience of visiting this city absolutely amazing, we have prepared a rundown of things to do in Tokyo.
Things to Do in Tokyo at Night
This city was also ranked first out of sixty cities for the Safe City Index. They also mentioned categories in which Tokyo got a first-place – Best overall experience, Helpfulness of locals, Nightlife, Shopping, Local public transportation, Cleanliness of street. Tokyo was also named “the most livable city “in the world by magazine Monocle.
Tokyo has a lot going on, Konichiwa! For example, this city has 13 million residents, shrines, eateries, fantastic nightlife, shopping hubs, and rich culture. No wonder it is one of the most expensive city but that should not stop you from exploring the city. This city should be experienced at least once.
1. Meiji Shrine
This imperial shrine honors Emperor Meiji and his wife, Empress Shoken. It is surrounded by a forest, which was planted during the construction of the center. Approximately 100,000 trees were planted and were donated by different regions of the country. People can take part in typical Shinto activities, like making offerings in the main hall. People can buy charms and amulet, they can wish on ema (wooden plates on which people write their wishes). It’s a peaceful place which is located in the center of Tokyo, but in the new year, this place welcomes more than 3 million visitors.
2. Sensoji Temple
It’s a Buddhist temple. It is one of the most attractive religious places. It is the oldest temple in Tokyo and is surrounded by small stalls selling all sorts of spiritual stuff. It is also known as Asakusa Kannon Temple. It is dedicated to the Buddhist goddess of Mercy and compassion, KANNON. Various events are organized around the temple area. SANJA MATSURI is one festival that is celebrated here and is also the most significant annual festival done in May. Entry is free, and temple grounds are always open.
3. Imperial Palace
It is a royal resident, built on a site of ancient Edo castle. The palace was destroyed in WWII, but it was rebuilt in the same way. Visitors can visit the palace on the 2nd of January and 23rd of December. But other days of the year visitors need to book an online tour if you don’t have any reserved tour plan you can wander around the garden area. The garden is known as East gardens which are open to the public. It is free to enter, but visitors have to take an entry ticket to come. The garden is worth visiting. It is peaceful, and people say one must go there to find their ZEN. If you cannot enter the palace, you can take a look at the iconic Nijubashi bridge.
4. Edo-Tokyo Museum
Edo is the formal name of Tokyo. One must visit this museum because this museum shows the history of old Tokyo from Edo period. It shows Political climate, Lifestyle, Cultural heritage, Architecture, Commercial situation and more through life-size city displays, artifacts, and models showing the history of Tokyo. Guides are available who speak different languages. The entry fee to this place is 600 yen for regular days, but on special exhibit days, visitors might have to pay more.
Onsen is very popular in Japanese culture. It is a traditional Japanese public bathing house. The best part about visiting here is that there are different types of onsen that you choose for yourself as per your choice or your budget.
6. Shinjuku Gyoen National Park
Once it was a Royal residence, later converted into a botanical garden. This park consists of different styles of gardens. There is a Japanese garden, an English landscape garden, and a French garden. You have to pay an entree fee of 200 yen to get inside, but it is worth it. In spring, it is considered the best place to see cherry blossom. The garden has a variety of cherry trees which blossoms at different times. Autumn is said to be the time to visit as the color changes of all trees. This park also has a restaurant and one call center. Its greenhouse is an eye-catching spot because it has subtropical and tropical flowers.
Tip: Don’t forget to charge your camera. Be specific about the location you want to go to.
Best Shopping Spots in Japan
New, second hand, Vintage items, high-end or a fashion, traditional wear, traditional craft, there is everything in the shopping areas here. You can also find Japanese souvenirs and the gadgets that only exist in Japan.
All your desperate wishes might come true.
Discover the streets here which have the center’s highest concentration of vintage-clothing stores and record stores. It also the quirky shops and big-small restaurants explored mostly by students.
2. Harajuku and Aoyama
Also known as the twin neighborhood, it is a shopping area. This area has everything from sophisticated high fashion to experimental hipster clothes. You can also find vintage stuff there.
The place is filled with posh boutiques and gleaming stores, making the street glow. It is also a high fashion mall surrounded by small stores selling beautiful crafts. There are also places for food, art supplies. Comprehensive shopping options make it suitable for everyone, which is why this place is also known as the shopping district of Tokyo. Ginza is always populated not just for shopping; you can also find the right food places here, especially for sushi.
To find one-of-the-kind things, one should go here. This place used to be a warehouse, but now it is a hut of artisans. Many artistic people establish their shops here. You can find clothes of natural dye; you can get your notebook designed here too. You can choose the ink. Better have a camera to capture the process.
To find the stores, cheap but fashionable clothing, different range of food items, gadget stores, music stores, and homeware come here. You might feel old if you are in your 30’s because this place is focused on youth interest. But it is worth to see this outrageous madness of youth style. Near Shibuya station, you can find Uoiriki Kiasen Sushi restaurant for sushi.
Tip: Shopping in Tokyo can be expensive!
Art Galleries In Tokyo
Tokyo has many art galleries, and each one has its specialty.
1. Ishii gallery
This gallery is filled with artistic photographs. So if you are looking forward to seeing some nice Japanese culture, to feel the atmosphere of Japan through photos visit this gallery. This gallery is best known for black and white, blur photo of Daido Moriyama’s street photography and portraits of women by Nobuyoshi Araki.
2. Wako Works of Art
This gallery features big names like Gerhard Richter, Fiona Tan, Joan Jonas, Wolfgang Tillmans. Leading Japanese artists in this gallery include Shizuka Yokomizu. Her work is very different and exciting to look at. She left letters on doors of random people asking them to pose in front of their windows. She also mentioned a specific time so that she can capture their photos. No names are mentioned to hide people’s identity, and her work shows the intimate side of human behavior, which can be unsettling yet creative.
3. Mizuma Art Gallery
This gallery represents traditional Nihonga paintings. There are painting about Battlefields of 19th-century war where soldiers are riding horses by Akira Yamaguchi, and controversial paintings by Makoto Aida, artwork by this artist depicts many social issues like the objectification of sexuality.
This gallery is not like every other gallery in Tokyo. Pictures here are not just hanging on the wall. Here visitors can see how artists are free to show their work in any way they like. This gallery is known for its creative yet off-beat presentation of work. Visitors can see that artists have pierced walls with a street light. There is a dramatic presentation of works. Ceiling lights are lowered, there are wood carvings of extraterrestrials from different lands.
Japan Food Guide
1. Tsukiji Fish Market
This market offers a new and wide variety of seafood. You will be amazed to see the quality and quantity of food. This market also offers sweet street food snacks. You can also find places around this area to eat – Nakaya is one the most visited site for fresh breakfast.
Vending machine restaurant: these restaurants’ system will amaze you. There is a vending machine through which you buy a ticket, you give that ticket to the server, and your food gets served. The Japanese fast food is enough to fill your tummy up at low price. These restaurants are always busy with customers, and some vending machine restaurant stays open for 24 hours.
2. Street food
In Japanese culture, walking while eating is considered impolite, which is why it will be hard to find food trucks and street food shops without a streetside seating arrangement.
The food that you need to try is Taiyaki (fish-shaped waffle), Takoyaki, Yakitori, Mitarashi Dango. Here are some suggestions from where to eat – Chuka Suba Inoue. – Memory Lane. – Yakitori ton (drink joint). – Narutomi Soba(authentic and high-quality soba meal). – Yoshihashi Sukiyaki (Japanese Sukiyaki, highly exclusive). – Sometaro Okonomiyaki( junk food with Japanese touch).
Do search for food places because eating in Tokyo is a must. They have many places to eat. Search for specific food items because language can be an issue. Research where to find cheap/affordable food places because Tokyo is already very expensive, so you don’t want to pay too much in one place.
Handy Tips For Planning a Week in Tokyo
Learn about transportation in advance. Buy a PASMO card for sightseeing or traveling inside the city. With one ticket you don’t have to pay for every ride or calculate the coast of every trip. Plan everything keeping your budget in mind – stay, food, and shopping.
You can also walk in the city if you are good with maps. Try to stay cheap in everything so that you can explore as much as you can. Give each place a specific time to visit so that you can reach the next location on time. Learn some local words. Keep translator books or apps and a guidebook.
Restaurants on lunchtimes are cheaper than dinner so try to have a nice lunch that can fill you for the whole day in that way you can spend less on dinner. Do not leave a tip in Japanese restaurants; they consider it as rude behavior. Learn about Japanese culture; you don’t want to insult anyone without knowing.
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