Tokyo Bucket List

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Top 10 Things to do in Tokyo, Japan


1)   Mount Fuji

Mount Fuji

 

You can’t travel to Tokyo without going through Mount Fuji. Sacred icon in Japan, Mount Fuji is an interesting place at once spiritually (most Japanese aspire to make the pilgrimage at least once in their life), historically (Hokusai painted Thirty-Six Views of Mount Fuji in the XIXth century) and scientifically since it is a stratovolcano.

To get there, you can take a bus from Shinjuku station. It costs about 30€ for a roundtrip.


2) The Tokyo Skytree

Tokyo Skytree


The Tokyo Skytree is one of the tallest tower in a world since it's a 634 ("Mushasi" in Japenese, which is the former name of Sumida)-meter-tall communications and observation tower that rises out of the city's Sumida district of Minato. The Tokyo Skytree opened in 2012 and is today one of the city's most visited tourist attractions. However, you will have to be patient if you want to climb to the top of 350 meters or 450 meters because the tower is a victim of its own success. To not waste too much time, it is advisable to arrive at 8 a.m, or come late to enjoy the night views (the observatory closes at 10 p.m). It costs around 20€ to 30€.

3)   The Rainbow Bridge

Rainbow Bridge


The Rainbow Bridge is a symbol of Tokyo. Perched above the Sumida River, it can be crossed by several ways: via an aerial metro that crosses the bridge from the inside, a quick way to explore the building and discover its points of view. 

But to enjoy these spots more calmly, the best way is the Rainbow walk. Especially since at dusk, the white pillars light up in red, blue and green.

4)   The Tokyo Tower 

Tokyo Tower 


The Japanese Eiffel Tower, with its 332.6 meters, is 7.6 meters higher than the famous Eiffel Tower in Paris. And precisely, this is not a simple coincidence but rather a will of the designers of the Tokyo Tower.
Several activities are to be done : you can take photos, buy souvenirs, visit the aquarium on the first floor or visit the two observatories: the Main Observatory (150 m) and the Special Observatory (250 m).

5)   Shibuya

Shibuya


This crossing is one of the busiest in the world since more than 1.500 people walk across the street at the same time. But Japanese never bump into one another since they pay attention. Shibuya is a sort of Time Square and it is an icon of the megalopolis of the future. It's also a very trendy and young neighborhood that you can not miss.


6)   The arcades (in Shibuya or Shinjuku)

arcades in Shibuya or Shinjuku

Japan is the country of the arcades (more than 4800). Indeed, most video game console publishers are Japanese and started on machines, so they keep a strong attachment to these game rooms. It is a part of their culture, a strong identity that can not be found anywhere else. Thus, you can find in these rooms the famous arcade dance stations.


7)   The Tsukiji Fish Market

Tsukiji Fish Market


The Tsukiki Fish Market, located in the Chuo District, is the largest fish market in the world: it is home to several thousand tons of fish and seafood every day. In other words, it is the ideal place for lovers of the sea and sushi fans. However, keep in mind that the market is primarily a place of work and not a tourist attraction; several rules must therefore be respected. Come at 6am, the best time to see negotiations between restaurants and sellers.


8) The statue of Hachiko

statue of Hachiko


Hachiko was a dog which waited every day for its master at the metro station. This dog was so faithful, that at the death of his master in 1925, he continued to wait for him every day for 10 years! Nowadays, this is the place where people meet. However, given the crowd, this is not the place where we find the most easily our friends!


9)   The Senso-ji Temple

Senso-ji Temple


     The Sensō-ji Temple stands at the end of a long street of traditional japanese shops in
     the Asakusa district. The temple was established in AD 645 and has been rebuilt several times. But it retains its original appearance, and this is its main asset, with the Kaminarimon Gate with its 3.3-meter-high red paper lantern; the Incense Vat, reputed to drive away ailments and the fascinating temple doves, said to be Kannon's sacred messengers.


10)   Ryogoku Kokugikan

Ryogoku Kokugikan


The building was built in 1985 and houses three sumo tournaments (honbasho) in the year, each lasting two weeks: the hatsu (new year) basho in January, the natsu (summer) basho in May, and the aki (autumn) basho in September. You will absolutely have to book if you want to attend the fights of Friday evening and Saturday evening, during which the best sumos clash. The building is also housing to other sporting and cultural events the rest of the year, including boxing, professional wrestling and concerts.