Sightseeing, restaurants and nightlife in Tokyo
I am going with my husband in August. We are thinking Tokyo.
Tokyo, the largest metropolitan area of the world is one of the greatest tourist destinations of all time. From the latest technology, to the ancient heritage of japanese culture, this place is a host to a vast range of must visit attractions. We have selected a few here for you..
The Tokyo National Museum is the largest and oldest museum in Japan, and offers the world's largest display of Japanese artifacts, showcasing its history and culture. Items are shown on a rotating basis with about 3,000 on display at any given time. So every time you visit the museum, you'll always find something new.
Tokyo National Museum at Ueno (Source: CT Snow)
Here is a review:
This is where you go to see antiques from Japan's past -- old kimono, samurai armor, priceless swords, lacquerware, metalwork, pottery, scrolls, screens, ukiyo-e (woodblock prints), calligraphy, ceramics, archaeological finds, and more. Items are shown on a rotating basis with about 3,000 on display at any one time -- so no matter how many times you visit the museum, you'll always see something new. There are also frequent special exhibitions.
Location:Ueno Park, Taito-ku, Tel:03/3822-1111
Prices: Admission ¥600/$8 adults, ¥400/$5 college students, free for seniors and for children. Special exhibits cost more
Hours: Tues-Sun 9:30am-5pm (enter by 4:30pm; Apr-Dec till 8pm Fri during special exhibitions; Apr-Sept till 6pm Sat-Sun and holidays)
The Tokyo Dome City is another must-see attraction of the city. It is centrally located and features an avant-garde Ferris wheel known as the Big O, which has no spokes and no hubs. Another major highlight of this park is the jaw-dropping Thudner Dolphin roller coaster, whose speed is around 130 kmph. The Tower Hacker is another interesting ride, which drops staright from a height of 80 meters. The water ride is also fun to try out. You are surely going to have hoopla over here. Besides these exciting rides, the dodme city also features the world's largest baseball stadium known as the 'Big Egg'.
Tokyo Dome City by Night (Source: ptrktn)
New York Times had this to review:
Located in the center of town, next to the Tokyo Dome stadium, this amusement park features a high-tech Ferris wheel called the Big O (hollow in the middle, with no spokes and no hub); the heart-stopping Thunder Dolphin roller coaster, which passes through the Big O at speeds reaching up to 130kmph (81 mph); the Tower Hacker, which drops straight down from a height of 80 m (262 ft.); and a water ride, simulation theater, game arcade, bowling alley, and other amusements packed into cramped quarters.
(Source: New York Times Travel)
Review by a guest:
The Tokyo Dome is an architectural wonder, seating 55,000 people and being the only done in the world with a membrane top that is held up with air pressure. I didn't get a chance to go inside (and I didn't see any tours to do so), but just seeing it was pretty cool. Tokyo Dome City is like a mini amusement park right around the corner! There are a few rides but my favorite were the 'Big O' (a center-less fares wheel with a great view), and the 'Thunder Dolphin' (a mild roller coaster that goes through the 'Big O's' center), I highly recommend both rides. You can buy an all day pass or individual ride passes at easy to use kisko's. Also on site is LaQua, a mini strip mall where you can eat, take a break from the day, and play in the arcade (which had an ice cream claw machine when I went).
Tokyo Dome City Coaster Through Building (Source: likeablerodent)
Address: 1-3-61 Koraku, Bunkyo, Tokyo 112-8562
Contact no: 03-5800-9999
Getting here: Nearest station is at Korakuen.
Opening timings: Mon-Fri; From 10 a.m. till 9 p.m. Sat-Sun; From 9:30 a.m. till 9 p.m.
Admission fees: Individual rides start from $5 on-wards.
The iconic Tokyo Tower offers Panoramic views of Tokyo skyilne. From the observation deck you can marvel at this beautiful city. The tower is located at the center of the city painted white and orange. After sunset it is illuminated in brilliant orange. There are also museum and several other attractions in the tower. You can also visit Zojoji temple which is nearby the tower.
tokyo-tower (Source: tokyo-tower)
Here is a snippet
With 333 meters, Tokyo Tower is 13 meters taller than its model, the Eiffel Tower of Paris, and the world's tallest self-supporting steel tower. Visitors can ascend to the main observatory at 150 meters and the special observatory at 250 meters to get a bird's eye view of Tokyo. Under good weather conditions, Mount Fuji can be seen in the distance. An wax museum and several more attractions can be found on the ground floors of the tower. Separate entrance fees apply. It is recommended to combine a visit to Tokyo Tower with a visit to Zojoji Temple, one of Tokyo's major temples, just next to the tower.
(Source: Tokyo Tower)
Check out this review
Being a most-often business traveler, there is a lot less that I get to see @ places I visit. But Tokyo tower enabled me to just get in a jiffy what the entire city stands for...the amazing breathtaking view of the city helped me understand how far ahead the city is regards the rest of the world...yet has a tradition and heritage. I took numerous pictures of the different spots seen from the location. Also, a night trip to the tower was mesmerising. Wax museum is an added attraction at the tower.
Address:4-2-8 Shiba-koen, Minato, Tokyo Prefecture 105-0011, Japan
Phone: +81 3-5425-2100
For hours and admission information click here
Sensoji Temple is one of the oldest and most significant temples in Tokyo.It is an ancient Buddhist temple which is located in Asakasu ,Taito ward ,Tokyo. Adjacent to Sensoji Temple is a Shinto shrine, the Asakusa Jinja. Sensoji Temple is also where the matsuri (Shinto festival) is held. The festival takes place over 3–4 days in late spring, and traffic comes to a stand still around this area.you can also spend time at the colourful Nakamise Dori which is a pedestrian lane full of traditional shops.
Here is some more info
Also popularly known as Asakusa Kannon, this is Tokyo's oldest and most popular temple, with a history dating back to A.D. 628. That was when, according to popular lore, two brothers fishing in the nearby Sumida River netted the catch of their lives -- a tiny golden statue of Kannon, the Buddhist goddess of mercy and happiness who is empowered with the ability to release humans from all suffering. Sensoji Temple was erected in her honor, and although the statue is housed here, it's never shown to the public.
(Source: Jonathan Tesch)
Here is a review
Great temple and area to visit
Sensoji is a buddist temple in the heart of Asakusa which is also a really nice are to explore.
There are various buildings to explore in the grounds and also a long, busy street of shops that sells food and souveniers.
Definitely recommended as something to see for a more traditional side of Tokyo.
Hours Daily 6:30am-5pm
Transportation Station: Asakusa (2 min.). Tokyo Shitamachi
Bus: Asakusa Kaminarimon
Prices Free admission
Top priority and highly recommended. Hot springs are not over-rated and yes the feeling of soaking in hot water - not unlike your bath is wicked! You gotta try this out read here in TimeOut about the onsens across the city.
Natural hot springs (onsen) are numerous and highly popular across Japan. Every region of the country has its share of hot springs and resort towns, which come with them.
There are many types of hot springs, distinguished by the minerals dissolved in the water. Different minerals provide different health benefits, and all hot springs are supposed to have a relaxing effect on your body and mind.
Hot spring baths come in many varieties, indoors and outdoors, gender separated and mixed, developed and undeveloped. Many hot spring baths belong to a ryokan, while others are public bath houses. An overnight stay at a hot spring ryokan is a highly recommended experience to any visitor of Japan.
Japanese hot springs (onsen) (Source: Japanese hot springs (onsen))
No other people on earth bathe as enthusiastically, as frequently, and for such duration as Japanese. Their many hot-spring baths -- thought to cure all sorts of ailments as well as simply make you feel good -- range from elegant, Zen-like affairs to rustic outdoor baths with views of the countryside. No matter what the setup, you'll soon warm to the ritual of soaping up, rinsing off, and then soaking in near-scalding waters. Hot-spring spas are located almost everywhere in Japan, from Kyushu to Hokkaido.
Frommer's Favorite Experiences in Japan at Frommer's (Source: Frommer's)
As you may have gathered, there are numerous types of Onsens from choose from - and it all boils down to what kind an experience you want. The ultimate experience, though a bit expensive, would be to spend a night at an an onsen ryokan, a Japanese style inn with hot spring baths.
wild_onsen (Source: wild_onsen)
Read here about the different types of onsens in detail.
Click here to get a list of onsens around Tokyo that you can visit.
Once you make your choice, I can also suggest other things to see around the onsen that you choose to visit.
Japanese cuisine is a delicacy in itself. And in this city you find the different flavors of the same. Some of the best options we have chosen here for you to pamper your taste buds. Do have a look.
Nobu Tokyo, located in Toronomon Towers Office behind Hotel Okura in Akasaka, is a classy establishment which serves Japanese and Fusion cuisine. This one can be considered for a grand meal for two. Great option!
The food, beautifully presented and served one dish at a time, is a unique blend of Pacific Rim ingredients (not quite Japanese) with decidedly American/Latin influences. Sushi and sashimi are served, as well as sushi rolls such as California rolls (with avocado) and soft-shell-crab rolls. Other dishes include the roast fish of the day with jalapeno dressing, sake roasted cod with sansho salsa, baby squid with ginger salsa, wagyu steak with a choice of sauce, and sautaed scallops with wasabi pepper sauce.
(Source: Nobu Tokyo)
Puu Nim Tod Soft Shell Crab - i Spicy AUD18 (Source: Alpha)
Frommer's has this to say about the place:
This classy, modern establishment is the place to see and be seen -- and you can count on being seen, since the efficient, black-clad staff yells "Irashaimase!" ("Welcome!") the moment anyone is ushered into the large dining room. The food, beautifully presented and served one dish at a time, is a unique blend of Pacific Rim ingredients (not quite Japanese) with decidedly American/Latin influences
(Source: Nobu Tokyo Review - Frommer's)
Cuisine: Japanese, Fusion.
Address:Toronomon Towers Office, 4-1-28 Toronomon, Tokyo
Price range: Sushi and sashimi (per piece) ¥600-¥1,200/US$8 - 15, set lunches ¥2,300-¥12,000/US$29 - 155
Hours: Mon-Fri 11:30am-2pm; Mon-Sat 6-10pm; Sun and holidays 6-9:30pm (last order)
Cha Cha Hana is tucked away on a nice tree-lined walkway that curves through Shinjuku Sanchome. This place has a very Japanese feel to it. Dishes to try out the sashmi, vegetable course with a delicious white sauce and tsukemono. Definitely a good option for authentic Japanese food.
(Source: Yvonne Esperanza)
Here is a review:
Cha cha hana is a pleasure of an Izakaya in Kabuki-cho. The interior design is gorgeous, the walk to get there is amazing, prices are reasonable and the food is a cut above most of the drab that usually comes your way at an Izakaya.
Cuisine/type: Izakaya, Japanese
Address: 1-1-1 Kabukicho, Tokyo, 160-0021
Tel : 03/5292-2933
Price range: Around 1925 Yen/ $25 (lunch or dinner per person)
Hours: Daily 5pm-11:30pm
Torafugu Tei specializes in Blowfish delicacies. A little more affordable compared to the other restaurants, you can take a pick from various dishes on your menu and see them being cooked live in front of you. Very interesting and amusing.
Fugu (Source: istolethetv)
I found a few reviews of the place:
Torafugu-tei has a few branches in Tokyo i believe (I visited the one in Ginza) and you can try many differant Fugu dishes, some of them are cooked in front of you at your table so it's quite fun. They have an english menu, the staff are very helpful and it's a good place to try the infamous Fugu. Some of it isn't for the squeamish though, as my meal was still twitching when it arrived, although you can't get fresher than that.
(Source: Lonely Planet travel forum)
An actually positive experience. I was well surprised by the affordability of the place, although I may be mixing the up the Shimbashi stores.
The course menu is also quite affordable, the lunch course coming in around $25 at the lowest and climbing higher. Considering our meal came to $10 per person, plus $5 per person for the seating charge, a $25 course meal isn't so bad. However, if you're just in it to eat fugu once and say you've done it, this place is great and affordable. If you'd like to get a little more frisky with the fish though, there are other fugu restaurants where the fish is served more freshly and interaction with the chefs is higher.
I have been a bit skeptic of fugu dishes before, and my experiences have been limited to single bites of rubbery taste blow fish. After this restaurant, I just can admit that fugu is a great gourmet food with perfect texture and taste.
Tasted fugu in forms of sashimi, grilled, steamed and even in shochu drink (fugu fins are flammed with shochu).
Favorite Dish: Sashimi with different sauces is just marvellous. Grilled fish skin is not typical dish, but truly I can recommend it.
Address: Kotobuki Bldg. 7-2-16 Ginza, Chuo-ku, Tokyo
Business Hours : Mon-Sat - 5:00pm-4:00am, Sun - 4:00pm-11:30pm
Rates: 6,000-6,999 yen (USD 77 - 90)
Kanou-ya is an Izakaya restaurant. Before I move on to the restaurant, here's what izakaya is all about:
A long-time favourite in Japan, izakaya cuisine is often interpreted as the Japanese take on tapas. Essentially, izakaya is a casual 'grazing' style of dining often enjoyed whilst drinking. Featuring a variety of small dishes, it can become a whole meal or simply a light snack. Dishes are served gradually so you can relax, unwind and order whatever takes your fancy. Kampai!
Depending on the place, you may be given a tatami mat to sit on and a low table to dine from in the traditional Japanese style :)
Here's a review of the restaurant:
Country-style fare - soba, natto, and tofu dishes, and an intriguing sansai (mountain vegetable) full-course dinner at Y3500, along with sake from Niigata (six different kinds of Kubota!).
Address: Konan 2-16-3, Grand Passage 1F.
Contact No.: 6718-2835
Special Croquette - Izakaya (Source: Marshall Astor - Food Fetishist)
Tokyo is believed to have a great nightlife. From the classy and chic lounges which serves great wine and has ambiance, to the hip pubs where the youth gathers to hit the dance floor, Tokyo has them all. Here we have a few options for you..
Club Harlem is one of the most popular and biggest 'Hip Hop Club' in Shibuya, Tokyo. This is one place where you can have some great time with your friends over a couple of drinks and dance to the popular international music played by the local DJ's. There are many events and parties organized on a regular basis, you can find the schedule here.
Here is a guest review:
This club doesn't look as stylish as some other clubs I've been to in Tokyo but it has definitely got the best hip-hop DJs!!! The music is good and the entrance and drink fees are about the same as the other clubs nearby (around 3000 for entry and between 500 to 1000 yen per drink). Also, sometimes you'll catch a dance showcase or a really great guest DJ. This is just a club in Tokyo, so it's not too special, but if you like hip-hop and don't want to deal with hearing trance all night this place is great to go!
CLUB HARLEM, Tokyo (Source: taromatsumura)
Address: 2-4 Tuburayama-cho Shibuya, Tokyo
Open Hours: Mon - Sun, 22:00 - 05:00
Entry Fee: $12.00 per person
If you want to try some stylish sipping and drinking ,head to Bandol which has vintage wines from France Italy and Spain. Ambiance is good, and so is the service. Worth considering.
Here is some more info
Bandol Bar Tokyo Serves Great Drinks in Elegant Atmosphere
Bandol Bar is an elegant bar located at Minami-Aoyama, Tokyo, Japan. It stocks up on an array of vintage wine collections sourced directly from France, Italy, Spain (among other places.) Bandol is a bar where you can find old favorite drinks, since its cocktail menus are pretty extensive. The odds are great you can find a Bandol Bar drink to satisfy your tastes. It does not only serve wine but unique snacks too.
Bandol Bar is really a must-see bar for all of us. You'll never regret spending your money in this bar.
(Source: Dave Dugdale)
Here is a Review
Has recently reopened as a wine bar. Still serving great food, but with a ton of top wine. Nice people as always.
(Source: Bandol - Tokyo Restaurant - lunchSpark)
Location:2-12-16 Minami-Aoyama, Tokyo.
Telephone: 0081 3 5785 3722
Price: two course menues at ¥3,950 or US$51.13each (minimum 2 persons),However, the wine list has some quite serious French wines, with prices up to some ¥35,000 or US$453.07
Aka Oni is one of Tokyo's most popular sake destinations, with over 100 varieties to choose from.The selection changes to highlight the best seasonal products, the food is good izakaya fare that pairs well with sake.
Here is some more info
Akaoni is a traditional-style sake bar in funky Sangenjaya, with over 100 different lines of the heady rice wine. It serves a mean plate of food too.
Some sake are specially brewed for the bar, or look for their extensive range of the very popular Juyondai says Nakamura.
It's easy to get carried away with the selection, especially once the first few mouthfuls have settled into your bloodstream, but luckily Akaoni has two serving sizes: a larger ochoko 150 ml size, or a half serving. If you're on a discovery quest, best opt for the latter.
(Source: Akaoni | CNNGo.com)
(Source: Martin Cathrae)
Here is a review
They served very well executed, hearty Sake fare - perfect for the impressive list of sake available here. Many sake makers visit this venue to check out the competition and other restaurateurs come to find new brands of sake to sell at their own establishments - these guys are that onto it. And I have it on good authority that it can take you years to get your sake brand onto their list - only when your craft has been honed to the point of perfection will they take agree to serve it! I like.
Address: 2-15-3 Sangenjaya Setagaya-ku, Tokyo
Access: Tokyu Line Sangenjaya Station
Hours/Times:Monday - Saturday, 5:30 p.m.-11:30 p.m.; Sunday, 5-11 p.m.
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