Top 5 things to do in Tokyo
1. Urban Adventure – Kanpai Tokyo Shinjuku Drinks and Neon Nights
As we were staying right in Shinjuku at the Ibis, it was an easy walk to the meeting point for this tour. We did this on our first night so it gave us a great insight and orientation of Shinjuku and the myriad of places to eat and drink for the rest of our stay. Our 3 hour walking tour included local hangouts in the Golden Gai area, happy hour at an Izakaya style eatery, and exploring Kabukicho, (Shinjuku’s red-light district which is actually home to heaps of shops, bars and restaurants).
2. Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building – The headquarters for the Tokyo Metropolitan Government
Approx. 15 minutes’ walk from where we were staying, the best part of our visit was the view over Tokyo from the top floor….for free! Nothing to pay for this one. There are two towers to choose from, a North and a South Tower, both have a café and souvenir shop – the views are amazing! Within the building was also a great exhibition for the Olympics and Paralympics that Tokyo is hosting in 2020. There is also a tourist center on the ground floor for information on Tokyo
A short, easy train ride from Shinjuku Station, and you arrive straight into the main pedestrian shopping area in Takashita Street. Over the years this area has grown a reputation for fashion-forward youth, and is a great spot to pick up a quirky bargain. A must-do here is to have a crepe, there are so many flavour combinations, you’ll be in heaven!
4. Shibuya Crossing
Easy to access via train, but we weaved our way from Harajuku, through large main roads and nifty side streets with a mix of highend/main-stream stores and boutique shops. Shibuya Crossing is well known for being one of the busiest pedestrian intersections in the world with up to 1000 people crossing in various directions at each change of the lights. Well worth seeing from up high – we went into the Starbucks on one of the corners and their upstairs seated area has a fantastic view over the crossing. We also discovered another view from the café above the Hello Kitty store.
5. Meiji Shine
Take a break from the hustle and bustle - this area is a welcome relief from the heat, with a large forested area and sheltered walk-ways. Located in Shibuya this is easy to reach and is especially significate to Japanese during the New Year period where around 3 million people will come to visit the shrine. The original shrine was destroyed during WW2 and the current shrine was completed in 1958.