Tokyo, the capital of Japan, is a city full of surprises. From the historical districts to the futuristic skyscrapers, there’s always something new to discover. Whether you want to experience the culture, indulge in delicious food, or shop until you drop, Tokyo has it all. Here are 10 amazing things to do in Tokyo that will leave you in awe.
1. Explore the Historic Asakusa District
If you’re looking for a taste of traditional Japan, then the Asakusa district is the place to be. It’s one of the oldest neighborhoods in Tokyo and is home to the famous Senso-ji Temple, Japan’s oldest temple dedicated to the Bodhisattva Kannon. The temple is a sight to behold, with its stunning architecture and intricate details.
Visit Senso-ji Temple
As you walk towards the temple, the colorful lanterns and the smell of incense will transport you to a different world. Take your time to explore the temple complex, where you’ll find unique artifacts and beautiful gardens. Don’t forget to try your luck at Omikuji, a Japanese fortune-telling paper.
Legend has it that the Senso-ji Temple was built in the 7th century when two fishermen found a statue of the Bodhisattva Kannon in the nearby Sumida River. They brought the statue to their village, but it kept returning to the river. The villagers then decided to build a temple to honor the Bodhisattva Kannon, and the statue has been enshrined there ever since.
Another interesting fact about the temple is that it was destroyed during World War II but was later rebuilt with the help of the local community.
Stroll Along Nakamise Shopping Street
The Nakamise shopping street is a bustling marketplace that leads up to the Senso-ji temple. Here you’ll find all sorts of souvenirs, from traditional sweets to handmade crafts. The street is lined with food vendors, so be sure to try some delicious Japanese street food like Takoyaki and Taiyaki.
The street has a long history, dating back to the Edo period when it was a market for the temple’s visitors. The shops on the street have been passed down through generations, and many of them have been in business for over 100 years.
One of the most popular souvenirs from Nakamise shopping street is the Maneki-Neko, a beckoning cat figurine that is believed to bring good luck. You’ll find these figurines in all shapes and sizes, from tiny keychains to life-size statues.
Overall, the Asakusa district is a must-visit for anyone interested in Japanese culture and history. Whether you’re exploring the Senso-ji Temple or strolling along Nakamise shopping street, you’re sure to have a memorable experience.
2. Discover the World of Anime and Manga in Akihabara
Akihabara is a haven for anime and manga lovers. Here you’ll find entire stores dedicated to your favorite anime and manga series, as well as arcades and game centers. You can even experience a maid cafe, where the staff dresses up in cute maid costumes and serves you food and drinks.
Shop at Anime and Manga Stores
When you step into an anime and manga store in Akihabara, you’ll feel like you’ve entered a whole new world. The stores are filled with colorful displays of action figures, posters, manga books, and cosplay outfits. You can find items from popular series like Naruto, One Piece, and Dragon Ball Z, as well as lesser-known titles that are harder to find elsewhere. Some stores even sell rare and limited edition items that you won’t find anywhere else in the world!
One of the most popular stores in Akihabara is Mandarake, which has multiple floors filled with anime and manga merchandise. You can spend hours browsing through the different sections, which include vintage toys, cosplay costumes, and even adult items.
Experience a Maid Cafe
If you’re looking for a unique and memorable experience in Akihabara, you have to visit a maid cafe. These cafes are decorated with a cute and whimsical theme, and the staff will greet you with a warm welcome. They’ll dress up in adorable maid costumes and treat you like a master or mistress.
At a maid cafe, you can order food and drinks, play games with the maids, and even watch them perform a song or dance. Some cafes also offer photo opportunities with the maids, so you can take home a special souvenir of your visit.
One of the most popular maid cafes in Akihabara is @Home Cafe, which has multiple locations throughout the district. The cafe has a menu of cute and delicious food and drinks, and the maids will make you feel like you’re in a fantasy world.
Overall, Akihabara is a must-visit destination for any anime and manga fan. With its abundance of stores, arcades, and maid cafes, you’ll never run out of things to see and do in this vibrant district.
3. Embrace Nature at Ueno Park
If you’re looking for a break from the city’s hustle and bustle, then Ueno Park is the perfect place to relax. The park is located in the heart of Tokyo and covers an area of over 133 acres. It’s home to several museums, a zoo, and beautiful gardens, making it a popular destination for both locals and tourists.
The park was originally established in 1873 as one of the first public parks in Japan. It was named after the Ueno district in which it is located and has since become a significant cultural and historical landmark in Tokyo.
Visit the Ueno Zoo
The Ueno Zoo is one of the oldest zoos in Japan and is home to over 400 species of animals. You’ll find everything from elephants to polar bears. The zoo was first opened in 1882 and has since become a popular attraction for families and animal lovers alike.
One of the most popular exhibits at the Ueno Zoo is the Giant Panda exhibit. The zoo is one of only a few places in the world where you can see these adorable creatures up close and personal. The exhibit is always crowded, so be sure to arrive early to get a good view.
Admire the Cherry Blossoms in Spring
Ueno Park is one of the best places to see the cherry blossoms in Tokyo. The park is covered in pink and white flowers during the spring season, creating a stunning landscape. The cherry blossom season usually starts in late March and lasts until early April.
During the cherry blossom season, the park is filled with locals and tourists alike, all enjoying the beautiful scenery. Many people come to the park to have a hanami (cherry blossom viewing) party with family and friends. You can bring a picnic blanket and enjoy some traditional Japanese snacks and drinks while admiring the flowers.
Aside from the cherry blossoms, Ueno Park is also home to several other types of trees and flowers. In the fall, the park is covered in vibrant colors as the leaves change, making it another great time to visit.
Whether you’re looking to admire the cherry blossoms, visit the zoo, or simply relax in nature, Ueno Park has something for everyone. It’s a must-visit destination for anyone traveling to Tokyo.
4. Take in the Views from Tokyo Skytree
The Tokyo Skytree is a must-visit destination for anyone traveling to Tokyo. This iconic structure stands tall at a height of 634 meters, making it one of the tallest structures in the world. The Skytree offers a breathtaking view of the city and is a great place to visit during the day or at night when the city is lit up.
Enjoy the Panoramic View of Tokyo
Once you reach the observation deck of the Tokyo Skytree, located at a height of 451 meters, you’ll be able to witness a panoramic view of the city. The view is simply mesmerizing and will leave you spellbound. You’ll be able to see landmarks such as the Tokyo Tower, Mount Fuji, and the Sumida River. The observation deck has both indoor and outdoor sections, so you can choose to experience the view in whichever way you prefer.
While you’re up there, don’t forget to take some amazing pictures to capture the memory of your visit to the Tokyo Skytree. The pictures will be a great way to relive the experience and share it with your friends and family.
Dine at the Skytree’s Restaurants
The Tokyo Skytree is not just about the view, it also has several restaurants that offer delicious food and an amazing view. From traditional Japanese cuisine to international dishes, there’s something for everyone. Some of the restaurants even have Michelin stars, making them a great destination for foodies.
Be sure to make a reservation in advance as the restaurants can get quite busy, especially during peak hours. You can also choose to have a drink at the Skytree’s bar and enjoy the view while sipping on a cocktail.
If you’re looking for a unique dining experience, you can even choose to have your meal in a private room with a view of the city. The private rooms are perfect for special occasions or romantic dinners.
Overall, the Tokyo Skytree is a must-visit destination for anyone traveling to Tokyo. The view is breathtaking, the food is delicious, and the experience is unforgettable. Don’t miss out on the opportunity to witness the beauty of Tokyo from the top of the world!
5. Experience the Bustling Shibuya Crossing
The Shibuya Crossing is one of the busiest intersections in the world, and a must-see when in Tokyo. The crossing is surrounded by towering buildings and flashing lights, creating a futuristic atmosphere.
But did you know that the Shibuya Crossing was not always as busy as it is today? It wasn’t until the 1990s when the area became a popular shopping and entertainment district that the number of pedestrians skyrocketed. Now, the crossing sees over 2 million people every day!
Witness the Famous Scramble Crossing
The Shibuya Crossing is known for its famous scramble crossing, where thousands of people cross the road at the same time in all directions. It’s a thrilling sight to see and a great photo opportunity.
But did you know that the scramble crossing is not the only unique thing about Shibuya? The district is also home to the Hachiko statue, a monument dedicated to a loyal dog who waited for his owner at the Shibuya Station every day, even after his owner had passed away. The statue has become a symbol of loyalty and devotion in Japan.
Shop and Dine in Shibuya’s Trendy Stores
The Shibuya district is also home to several trendy stores and restaurants. You’ll find everything from high-end fashion to quirky boutiques. Be sure to try some of the delicious food at the district’s many eateries.
But did you know that Shibuya is also a hub for Japanese pop culture? The district is home to several anime and manga shops, where fans can find merchandise from their favorite shows and comics. And if you’re a music lover, be sure to check out Tower Records, a famous record store that has been a staple of Shibuya for decades.
In conclusion, Tokyo is a city full of surprises and has something for everyone. Whether you’re a foodie, a history buff, or an anime fan, you’ll find plenty of amazing things to do in this vibrant city. And if you’re looking for a taste of modern Tokyo, be sure to experience the bustling Shibuya Crossing and all that the district has to offer.