Top 10 Things to Do in Tokyo

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Advisor - Bria Rosenberg
Curated By

Bria Rosenberg

  • Active Travel

  • Adventure Travel

  • Family Travel

  • Japan

  • Tokyo

  • Entertainment

  • Local Culture

  • Local Food

A street view at night
Curator’s statement

Tokyo had been on the top of my travel bucket list for years, and it certainly did not disappoint! From the most delicious foods to the beautiful temples and the city’s vibrant and bustling culture, Tokyo has it all. It was so hard to narrow this list down to just 10 things, but here are my recommendations for the top 10 things to do in Tokyo!

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Where to stay in Tokyo

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Things to do in Tokyo

A street view at night

Tokyo Tower

An iconic landmark in the Tokyo skyline, Tokyo Tower offers breathtaking panoramic views of the city from its observation decks. Whether during the day or illuminated at night, it is a must-see attraction. Think of it as the Eiffel Tower of Japan.

Tsukiji Fish Market

A seafood lover’s paradise! With tons of food stalls and some of the freshest fish you’ll ever eat, this is definitely high on the list of the top 10 things to do in Tokyo. The earlier in the morning you go, the fresher the catch. Sushi for breakfast? Yes, please!

Imperial Palace

Nestled amid lush gardens, the Imperial Palace offers a glimpse into Japan's imperial history. You can admire the traditional architecture, serene landscapes and the iconic Nijubashi Bridge, making it a tranquil escape within the bustling city. It's like stepping into a traditional Japanese fairy tale.

Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden

A verdant oasis in the heart of Tokyo, Shinjuku Gyoen boasts stunning gardens with a blend of traditional Japanese, English and French landscaping styles. A perfect spot to relax, take a stroll or enjoy a picnic amid picturesque scenery. Make sure to stop at one of the teahouses to enjoy traditional tea in their tea garden.

Shibuya Crossing

Witness the chaos of one of the world's busiest pedestrian crossings. Shibuya Crossing epitomizes Tokyo's vibrant energy and is surrounded by tons of fun shops and restaurants. It is also a great place to people-watch from one of the buildings above the intersection.

Omoide Yokocho

Step back in time at Omoide Yokocho, also known as "Memory Lane" or "Piss Alley." This narrow alleyway is lined with traditional izakaya, where you can savor local dishes and experience the nostalgic ambiance of post-war Tokyo.

Sumo at Ryogoku Kokugikan

What’s a trip to Tokyo without witnessing sumo wrestling in person? Catch a sumo tournament at Ryogoku Kokugikan or visit the Sumo Museum to delve into the history and traditions surrounding this unique sport.

Senso-Ji Temple

While Tokyo is full of numerous gorgeous temples and shrines, Senso-Ji is Tokyo's oldest and most famous, exuding a rich cultural heritage. Explore the vibrant Nakamise-dori shopping street leading to the temple, where you can find traditional crafts, souvenirs and delectable treats.

TeamLab Planets

An immersive digital art museum, teamLab Planets offers an otherworldly experience with its interactive installations, projection mapping, and mesmerizing light displays. You become part of the artwork. Perfect for a rainy day when you need something to do indoors!

Ginza Shopping District

For luxury shopping and high-end boutiques, head to the Ginza district. Known for its upscale fashion, electronics stores and art galleries, Ginza offers a glimpse into Tokyo's modern and cosmopolitan side.

Day Trips

  • Yokohama: As Japan's second-largest city, Yokohama is a must-do for anyone visiting the region. It is just a short train ride away from Tokyo. Explore the iconic Red Brick Warehouse, stroll along the picturesque waterfront of Minato Mirai and visit the vibrant Chinatown – the largest in Japan. With its relaxed atmosphere, captivating sights and diverse culinary scene, Yokohama provides a refreshing break from the hustle and bustle of Tokyo making it an ideal destination for a memorable day trip.

  • Mt. Fuji: Visiting Mt. Fuji is an unparalleled journey into Japan's natural wonders. The awe-inspiring beauty of the iconic peak, whether witnessed from afar or climbed to the summit, will leave you in awe. From exploring the surrounding picturesque lakes and forests to witnessing the breathtaking sunrise from the mountaintop, a trip to Mt. Fuji is an absolute must.

Places to eat & drink in Tokyo

A running restaurant photograph..

Kyushu Jangara Ramen: Slurp-worthy ramen awaits you at Kyushu Jangara Ramen! Their savory broth and tender chashu will leave you in ramen heaven. They also have amazing vegan ramen for any non-pork eaters! I’m still dreaming about this ramen.

Jonetsu Horumon Nerima Sakaba: Meat lovers, this one's for you. Grilling your food in front of you, this Japanese BBQ spot has it all, including delectable A5 Wagyu Beef.

Sushi-Ya: Prepare for a sushi feast like no other at Sushi-Ya! This top-notch sushi spot offers a traditional omakase experience where the skilled chef will present you with an exquisite array of fresh and seasonal delights.

Maguro Mart: Similar to Tsukiji, this is another great spot for seafood lovers. Maguro Mart is a seafood market and restaurant all in one, serving up some of the freshest and most delicious tuna dishes you'll ever taste.

Tea Ceremony MAIKOYA Tokyo: Is a trip to Japan really complete without a traditional tea ceremony? Experience the elegance of traditional tea ceremonies dressed in a beautiful kimono. Here, you'll learn about Japanese tea culture and sip matcha in a tranquil and authentic setting.

Kushirokuya: Calling all yakitori enthusiasts! Kushirokuya is your go-to spot for juicy and flavorful grilled skewers. From chicken to veggies, they've got a wide variety to satisfy your yakitori cravings.

Yamashita Honki Udon: Udon lovers, get ready for some serious slurping at Yamashita Honki Udon! Their freshly-made, chewy udon noodles paired with delicious broths will leave you feeling nothing short of satisfied. There are more udon options on their menu than I even knew existed.

Cup Noodle Museum: While it might not be the most elegant ramen, the Cup Noodle Museum is a must eat spot. After learning about the history of instant noodles in the museum, you can customize your own cup noodles at their build your own noodle station or enjoy a variety of different noodles from around the world at their noodle bazaar.

Kozue: Take your taste buds on a journey at Kozue! This high-end restaurant offers an elegant kaiseki dining experience with meticulously crafted dishes using seasonal and premium ingredients. (P.S. It's located in the Part Hyatt hotel, one of my favorite hotels in Tokyo.)

Family Mart: Yes, it's a convenience store, but hear me out... Family Mart is your one-stop shop for tasty and affordable Japanese snacks and meals. Grab some onigiri, bento, funky flavored chips and more. Also, they’re often open 24/7, so you can satisfy your late night cravings.

Need to Know

Google translate is your best friend in Tokyo! There are not a lot of English speakers in Japan, so you need Google translate to get by. There is a feature on the app that lets you take a picture of any Japanese menu or sign and it will translate it into English in real time.

Advisor - Bria Rosenberg

Travel Advisor

Bria Rosenberg

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Looking for more travel inspiration? Check out my guide, Guide to Taipei: A Metropolis in the Jungle.This guide is part of our ongoing series on travel to Japan.