Tokyo is the bustling capital of Japan. It embodies the rich history, culture, and traditions and the awe inspiring progress of Japan and its people throughout the centuries. If you’re only there for a short visit or when you are trying to squeeze in some relaxation in your busy schedule and Tokyo is your only destination, here are a few must see things to do, see and try on your visit:
Tokyo cityscape. | KCP Flickr
Meiji Jingu Shrine, Shibuya
The Meiji Jingu Shrine is one of the most popular temples in Japan. It was built to commemorate Emperor Meiji and Empress Shōken, who both had greatly contributed to the modernization of Japan through the Meiji Restoration. A well-loved feature of Meiji shrine is the huge forest (700,000 sq.m.) that surrounds it. The shrine is a wonderful contrast to the busy and hectic city life of Tokyo.
Shibuya Ward, Shibuya
Shibuya is considered to be the most famous district in Tokyo. It’s said to be the street that never sleeps and the shopping mecca of Japan’s capital. The streets of Shibuya started many of Japan’s fashion and entertainment trends. There are over a dozen major department stores around the area and it’s a good place to ogle at the busy lifestyle of the corporate world.
Asakusa. | KCP Flickr
Tokyo Skytree, Asakusa, and Central Tokyo
The Tokyo Skytree stands at a height of 634 meters (2080 feet). Visitors can admire a 360 degree panoramic view of Tokyo, top view. It’s a classic must see spot for any Tokyo tourist. Tokyo Skytree is a broadcasting tower that also has a restaurant, a shopping mall, and two observation decks that showcase breathtaking sights of the great metropolis.
The East Garden was opened to the public in 1968. It is about 210,000 square meters and features little bridges, grassy knolls, ponds, and flowering trees. Its gorgeous landscape reflects Japanese aesthetics.
Imperial Palace. | KCP Flickr
Most of the Palace’s administrative offices are located here, including the Imperial Tokagakudo Music Hall, the Archives, Mausolea Department Imperial Household Agency, and the Museum of the Imperial Collections.
Senso-ji Temple and Nakamise-dōri, Asakusa
Sensō-ji (金龍山浅草寺 Kinryū-zan Sensō-ji), founded in 645 AD, is Tokyo’s oldest temple. It was formerly associated with the Tendai sect of Buddhism but became independent after World War II. A visit to Sensō-ji is a wonderful way to experience Japan’s unique culture and history.
Nakamise-dōri street has all the signs of old world Japan: strolling down it is a great way to experience the Japanese culture and way of life. It is one of the oldest shopping streets in Japan. A warlord named Tokugawa Ieyasu once ruled over Japan during the Sengoku Period (1493-1590).
Tokyo Things to Do