Today I will tell you how to take and go to Japan. This is a wonderful country, about which I wrote a lot already in my blog. And now I offer you a simple guide, with which you can organize your trip yourself. If you like to plan your own travels, but are more accustomed to traveling around Europe, this post is for you - here I will explain what to look for on your first trip to the Land of the Rising Sun.
And if you’ve already been to Japan, also scroll through this text to make sure you don’t miss anything. Or vice versa, give me advice!
There are many links to other posts that describe in more detail certain aspects of a trip to Japan. But I tried to build this post as simply as possible to give a general idea of how to go for the first time. If you have friends who have gathered in Japan, feel free to send them to read this post, and if you are not ready yet, but in the future you would like to go, it is better to bookmark it for the future!
My friends here often ask me: "I am going to Japan for the first time. Where to go there? What to see? How about security? Internet? English?" I also collected this post so that in the future they could just give a link! (Yes, friends, this is for you!)
When is it better to go to Japan?
I visited Japan in spring, summer, autumn and winter, and I am happy to say that any season is a good time to visit this country. At the end of July and in August it is hot here, if the heat is not yours, then probably it is better to choose some other time.
The main tourist seasons are the time of cherry blossoms (usually in early April), and the time of red maples (at the end of November). These are approximate numbers for Tokyo and Kyoto. In these two periods in Japan is incredibly beautiful, but because of this there will be many tourists everywhere, and many hotels will be booked in advance.
Summer is a great time to travel if you go to climb Fuji (I did it at the very end of June, a few days before the opening of the official season). And winter will give you the opportunity to see Japan in the snow, it is also a very beautiful sight.
In general, drive when you can.
How long does it take?
The longer the better. But I advise you to spend at least 9-10 days on your first study tour. During this time, you will have time to see well Tokyo and Kyoto, and also make one or two sorties beyond them, maybe even with an overnight stay. (I will give several options below.)
If it does not work out for so long, then in general it doesn't matter either, any time spent in Japan will make you feel that you need to come here for longer.
Where to go in Japan?
Most likely you will arrive at one of the airports. Tokyo, because most international flights arrive there. In addition to the capital of the country, you should definitely visit KyotoIt is this city that has preserved the old Japanese culture best.
If you don’t have too much time, try to spend at least 2-3 days in Kyoto, and you’ll see how it goes in Tokyo. If you have more time, you should travel around the country, and maybe even drive to one of the islands besides the main Honshu (there are four main islands in Japan).
How to move around the country?
Here you can give a definite answer. You will ride the trains. Japan has the most developed railway network in the world. There are numerous metro and electric trains in and around the cities, and for long crossings there are high-speed express trains - shinkansenable to cover 450km between Tokyo and Kyoto in two and a half hours!
Trains run strictly on schedule, and you can get to them wherever you need - the Japanese love of rail transport shows itself on a national scale.
True Shinkansen - expensive. A one-way ticket from Tokyo to Kyoto costs about $ 100! To save money on these transfers, you should pre-order yourself. Jr-passThe pass allows the use of most trains for 7, 14 or 21 days. A seven-day pass costs about $ 250 (depending on the yen's exchange rate), and in general it pays off if you go to Kyoto, and take a short ride over shorter distances. Please note that it can only be ordered before arriving in Japan! (Learn more about how to buy and use the JR-Pass)
If you come to Japan for 10 days, it is better to spend the first two in Tokyo, and then, activating the seven-day JR-Pass, go to Kyoto and further. Then go back to the capital on the evening of the seventh day, when the action passes will end.
And for those moments when the JR-Pass is not activated, or for private metro lines where it is not accepted, I advise you to purchase a card Suica. Suika costs 500 yen, which you can get back by returning it before you leave. Then cash is put on it, and the card is used to pay for trains, and a bunch of other things. Suyki accept more and more points, it is convenient to pay them all over the country.
Unlike the JR-Pass, you can take a suyka on arrival in Japan, at any railway ticket office. Do not forget to put money on it, and it will greatly facilitate your trip.
Is it safe there? I will not get lost?
Safely. Do not get lost. All railway stations have excellent navigation, and there are signs to the main sights. And in the cities where tourists often come, right at the train stations there are information departments, where you will be given a map of the area, and in English they will explain what you can see in the district.
Plus, Google Maps know everything about Japanese streets and trains. You can poke at a point on the map, and Google will tell you how best to get to it by public transport, when the next train, and how much it will cost! (The main thing is to have internet.)
In addition to this, Japan is one of the safest countries in the world, even homeless people are cute and pretty. Nothing bad will happen to you.
Tell us about Tokyo!
Tokyo - a huge, noisy metropolis. How best to watch it? It’s impossible to settle in its center, because Tokyo has at least five different centers! Ask any resident of the city, and he will tell you that in order to study it a little and a week! But for the first time you have enough for three days. I wrote a detailed guide to all parts of Tokyo, which tells you how to see them in two days!
"So for two, or three?" you ask. "Yes!" I will answer you.
The whole secret is that you need to rent a hotel in the area on arrival in Tokyo Ueno - It is convenient to get here by express from Narita Airport. Ueno is a relatively inexpensive and relatively quiet area. On the first day in Tokyo (let's say it's Friday) you can watch its eastern part, moving from Ueno to the south, or going down to Ginzyand climbing north. Your JR-Pass will not be valid yet, so you will move with the help of Suika.
And on the second day (Saturday), you will go to Kamakura - one of the ancient capitals of the Japanese Empire. This is an excellent place in an hour drive from the central areas of Tokyo, here is the seashore, ancient temples and the statue of the Big Buddha. Here you can spend most of the day, and even ride the tram.
Well, and on Sunday your JR-Pass will take effect, you will sit on the Shinkansen and head towards Kyoto. It is important to take seats by the window. on right! You do not want to miss this view:
Back to the capital you will return to the evening of the seventh day (Saturday), when the action of the railway pass will come to an end. And this time you will settle in western Tokyo, in an area called Shibuya.
If you have ever seen a picture of Japan, where crowds run through a huge pedestrian crossing, then this is precisely Shibuya. There is a crazy drive here, and it seems like an endless number of people, but it's worth spending the evening here, and you will be drawn into this crazy Zen. No wonder, this is my favorite district of Tokyo.
The next morning - it's time to go exploring the western part of the city - this is the second half of my guidebook. We will see a trendy area Harajuku, Emperor Meiji Shrine, and located next to him Yohyi Park. Oh, and you noticed that we were here on Sunday? This is not easy! It is on Sundays before the entrance to the park that Japanese rockabilly dances are held!
Well, in the evening you can get to Shinjuku, the area where the Golden Guy is - a little penny with tiny bars! After the evening spent here, you will not mind flying home.
What about Kyoto?
For a thousand years Kyoto was the capital of the Japanese Empire. Built on the model of the Chinese capital (no, not Beijing!), It has a rectangular structure uncharacteristic for Japan. The city is located in a beautiful valley between two mountain ranges, and has preserved many aspects of the cultural heritage of feudal Japan.
About the fact that you can see in Kyoto, I wrote a whole separate post. The main attractions of the city are its religious centers: temples and shrines. There are more than two thousand of them in Kyoto! Fortunately for you, I selected some of the most interesting.
But besides the temples, you should just walk along the old streets of the city. Here you will find Japanese in beautiful traditional clothes (most likely they, like you, tourists), can taste the old local cuisine, and drink real Japanese sake.
I advise you to settle in the area Sanjo Ohashi Bridge and spend about four days in Kyoto. No, you will not walk all this time in the temples. In Kyoto, and besides them, there is something to see. Here are just some of the surrounding attractions (you can spend half a day or a whole day on each):
- The world's best river embankment Camo
- Nara - another ancient capital with a huge wooden temple and hand-made deer
- Fushimi Inari - the sanctuary of the red gate
- Arashiyama - A mountain in the north-west of the city, there is a famous bamboo grove
- Philosopher's Path Sakura blooms especially beautifully in the northeast, and there are many ancient temples.
About other places.
Usually in a 10-day trip you can squeeze one or two places from this section. Choose! There are two directions here.
If you have a few extra days of action JR Paz, and you want to look at some more unique places, feel free to sit down on the Shinkansen in Kyoto and drive further southwest!
The next stop will be Osaka. Honestly, I would have missed it for the first time and drove on to the medieval castle Himeji. Only a couple of years ago we finished restoring it, and now it looks great, especially during the cherry blossom season!
And between Osaka and Himeji there is also Kobe, a city that is famous for its marbled beef.
And if you go further, the train will bring us to Hiroshimawith its atomic memorial. A nearby island Miyajimawhere the unique torii gates stand right in the water. (The ferry to Miyajima is free for JR-Pass owners!)
But it is not necessary to continue to go further from Kyoto! There are other equally interesting places:
Feudal road Nakasendoovernight in the old village Tsumago. You can get here on the way between Tokyo and Kyoto.
Millennial Cemetery on the Mountain Koya-sanovernight in a Buddhist temple. This is the shrine of Shingon Buddhism, a special Japanese school developed by the founder of a local monastery.
To the foot of the mountain Fujiovernight on Lake Kawaguchiko. If you are lucky with the weather, you can see the beautiful mountain at dawn!
As you can see, there is enough choice to fill in the seven-day, 14-day, and even 21-day JR-Pass. And what is beautiful: all these places are easily accessible by train!
What's wrong with the money?
Perhaps it is worth saying a few words about money. The Japanese currency is the yen. The course is constantly changing, but you can estimate that a hundred yen is somewhere a dollar (in fact, recently the yen is cheaper, you can check the exact rate here).
You can often hear that in Japan is expensive. Compared to the rest of Asia, undoubtedly. But if we compare, for example, with Europe, then in Japan only housing and trains are expensive, and that is not much more expensive than European ones. We have already saved on trains with the help of JR-Paz, but you will have to pay for housing if you want to live in the center of everything (I recommended such places). But if you want you can save here. Yes, in Japan there are many high-quality expensive things - restaurants, clothes, etc., but if you wish, you can make your way on a modest budget.
One problem is that credit cards are not accepted everywhere (especially away from cities). Cash will help us out, but exchangers are few, and some ATMs refuse to understand Western cards. Fortunately, ATMs at 7-Eleven are ready to give money to tourists from Europe and America. And so these 7-Eleven in Japan are full. (ATMs are not in everyone, but in many there are.) Also, they say in the post offices there are also friendly ATMs.
Hotels? Ryokans? Apartments?
As I said, housing in Japan is not cheap. But some is more expensive than the rest. Let's take a look in order:
Ryokany: This is a classic Japanese "dock" in the traditional style. It is because of this, to stay in them - the most expensive option. But it's very cool: you can sleep on straw mats tatami (don't worry, you will have a mattress) and wear a traditional bathrobe yukatu. Many ryokans have traditional hot tubs - onseny, and the opportunity to dine like the Japanese ate even in feudal times. In short, ryokan is a complete immersion. But they cost from $ 100 per person per night! In one room, a ryokan can fit up to 4-5 people, although the price for each of these will not fall much, since the payment is made for the number of people.
In Ryokan is best to live in Kyoto. But I advise you to book them in advance, as places in those that are relatively affordable, may be already occupied for several months.
Next we have rented apartments on sites like AirBnB. They are quite small (and sometimes even less!), But at a price they can be cheaper than comparable hotels. An apartment may be a good option for Tokyo, especially if you are traveling in a group of 3-4 people, it will be cheaper than taking several hotel rooms.
Ordinary western-style hotels in Japanese cities are quite expensive. Personally, I try to avoid these. But I love to shoot compact business hotels. They are relatively inexpensive, and I like how thoughtful everything is to fit all the comforts in a small space. Such hotels are advantageous to rent in small towns where a double room can cost $ 60-80, or in Tokyo, where they will already be $ 80-120.
In japanese hostels I never stopped, but I know that they are. Although if you really decided to save money, I would recommend you try to stay in capsule hotel. They cost $ 20- $ 30 a night, many have excellent onsens, and indeed this is a wonderful experience of Japanese culture. The only thing is that they are usually either only for men or only for women (the latter are smaller).
Every life - food, Internet, English.
Well, let's talk about a few things that are not included in other departments:
Food: About food, I wrote a whole separate post. There is a bunch of cheap food, but good food costs a lot of money. Let's not forget that the Japanese are perfectionists, and everything good is very good.
the Internet: The presence of the Internet will greatly help you out, and will facilitate the trip. The same guglokarty for example will give you the freedom to be anywhere, without wasting time searching for wifi. Unfortunately in Japan you can’t just go to a mobile store and get a local sim card. Japanese laws require a residence permit to connect the telephone. But right at the airport, sims are sold for tourists - which only give the Internet. Do not miss the chance to buy it there. Previously, this was the only place where SIM cards were sold, but now they can also be found in large electronics stores, such as Bic Camera.
Tongue: Previously, the Japanese knew very little English. But this is gradually changing, more and more Japanese can understand and explain simple things in the universal language of travelers. (This is especially true for railway workers.) If the first person you spoke with did not understand you, try turning to the second, preferably younger. Perhaps you even stumble on a Russian-speaking!
Sockets: Sockets in Japan are similar to North American, with two flat pins. Most of the plugs from the USA, Canada or China can be stuck without adapters (except for plugs where one of the pins is wider than the other). But Russians and other Europeans will definitely need adapters.
Here you go. I hope you are now clear about how to go to Japan, and what to see there. If you have any questions or comments, I will be glad to them in the comments. I will also replenish this post as needed.
What is this city?
Tokyo is the capital of Japan and one of the largest cities in the world. In addition, this is a real ultramodern metropolis. But officially, Tokyo is not a city, but a prefecture or capital district of Japan and the center of this country. This district includes more than 60 administrative units, including villages, rural communities and even entire cities with their own governing bodies.
The territory of Tokyo occupies part of the large island of Honshu, as well as several other islands, such as Ogasawara, Izu and other smaller ones. The area of the district is 2188.67 square kilometers, and the population is more than 13 million people.
How to get there?
Добраться до Токио можно на самолёте. Крупный международный аэропорт Нарита находится в часе езды до центра города. Добраться от этого аэропорта до Токио можно на поезде, на метро, на автобусе или на такси. Продолжительность перелёта, кстати, составляет порядка 9-10 часов.
Климат и природа
Климат Токио муссонный субтропический. Зимой тут очень сухо, осадки практически отсутствуют. А вот остальные сезоны можно назвать влажными. Summer is sweltering and hot, it ends only in October or in November. Spring is warm and mild. The hottest month is August, the temperature at this time reaches 30 degrees. And the coldest month is considered to be January, at which time the thermometer is usually at around 6-9 degrees. It is worth noting that all sorts of typhoons often fall on the territory of Tokyo.
The nature of Tokyo is unique, diverse and incredibly beautiful, and it can be seen even in the photo. Here you can find everything: rivers, lakes, dense forests, beautiful gardens, mountains and much more. There are incredibly many national parks and huge gardens. All this is fascinating and, of course, deserves attention and attracts tourists from all over the world.
What's so interesting?
What does a tourist see in Tokyo? To appreciate all the interesting places in this unique city you need to stay at least a couple of weeks. Here are the most amazing and famous sights:
- Museum studio Ghibli. If you are an anime fan, then you should definitely go to this museum (although everyone will be interested here). But this building does not look like a traditional museum, it resembles an unusual fairy-tale building, in which many heroes of Japanese cartoons by renowned director Hayao Miyazaki who managed to catch the fancy can be seen.
- Tokyo Aquarium is one of the three largest in the world. Here you can dive into the underwater world without special equipment. By the way, every five years a new branch opens in honor of the anniversary.
- Tokyo Tower is a television tower with a height of more than 330 meters. And this is not only the tallest structure in all of Tokyo, but also the tallest tower in all of Japan.
- Ueno Zoo is the oldest and largest zoo in Tokyo, where today you can see more than 400 species of various animals. This is one of the favorite places not only for foreign tourists, but also for local residents.
- In the capital of Japan is a unique museum of Edo-Tokyo. The height of this building is 62 meters, and it contains the most diverse and sometimes outlandish exhibits that allow you to fully immerse yourself in the history of the city from the time of its foundation to the present.
- National Museum of Nature and Science. If you want to see everything at once, then by all means visit this museum, because it contains about 14 thousand different exhibits, divided into categories. You can appreciate not only the nature of the city, but also scientific achievements, unique phenomena.
- Shizyuku Imperial Park is one of the most picturesque and large (by the way, some call it the “green artery”). It is especially interesting and beautiful here in the spring, when cherries and hanami beat everyone into bloom and fragrance.
- Kabuki-Dza Theater is the most important Tokyo theater, which is striking in brightness, magnificence and originality. This is the real pride of the Japanese. The actors here are more like fairy characters, so elegant costumes. And the make-up is simply amazing!
- The Sitamati Museum will allow you to see Japan as it always has been.
- Tokyo National Museum of Innovation in Science. Even if you are not interested in science, you should definitely go here, because there are so many interesting and unusual things here! It’s not easy to get around 8 floors, so you should devote at least a day to a visit. You can get answers to any questions, as well as take part in some important processes and make sure that everything ingenious is simple. And by all means take a look at robots.
- Meiji Temple is the most magnificent structure in Tokyo, which is able to demonstrate visually the love of the people of Japan for their country and its history.
- The Happo-en Garden is beautiful from any angle; it’s not for nothing that the name of this marvelous place means “the garden of eight landscapes”.
- The Imperial Palace today is the residence of the imperial family.
- Tsukiji Market Here you can find everything!
What to buy?
What to bring to memory from Tokyo? Here are some interesting things:
- Fan. Japanese faiths are incredibly beautiful and useful, especially in summer.
- Yukata is a light kimono. He, too, certainly worth buying. But if you want to enjoy not only beauty, but also quality, then go to a regular clothing store, and not to the tourist market.
- Tenugui is not only an interesting, but also a multifunctional thing, which is a small cotton towel. This piece of fabric can be used as a tablecloth, panel, towel or even gift wrapping.
- Maneki Neko is a figure of a cat with a raised paw. The Japanese believe that this cute statuette can bring good luck, wealth and happiness. Such figures are made from a variety of materials.
- Dzori or geta - traditional Japanese shoes. A geta is a wooden sabot, and zori is a more convenient, casual, and practical option.
- Furin - the air bell, which the people of Tokyo and all the Japanese hang on the entrance or on the window.
- Vagas - a beautiful traditional Japanese umbrella, which has long been used not only as a protective tool in bad weather, but also as an essential attribute of the tea ceremony.
- Daruma doll fulfills desires. The figurine has no eyes. One eye is drawn while making a wish, another - after its execution.
- Be sure to get a bright paper flashlight!
- Tanuki statuette. Tanuki is a raccoon dog and a fabulous Japanese character who brings good luck.
- Be sure to get real flavored Japanese tea.
- Japan is famous for porcelain, so be sure to buy at least one.
- Sampuru is a box that represents a kind of mock-up of the finished dish. Sampur is made of lacquered wood. This is an interesting and useful thing.
- Copies of masks of the theater No. Looking at such a thing, you will not forget the distinctive and vibrant culture of Japan.
- Norran is a kind of screen that is used in Tokyo and throughout Japan, both for protection against wind, dust and sun, and for decorative purposes.
- Coma - a toy similar to our top.
- The kite will appeal to both children and adults.
Be sure to go around the restaurants of Tokyo, as Japanese cuisine is diverse, amazing and rich. Some dishes have become famous all over the world. So, many people like rolls and sushi today. But there are plenty of other dishes: all kinds of soups, vegetable dishes, pasta, seafood and meat dishes and much more.
The Japanese love the spicy, so do not spare the spices and often eat spicy wasabi sauce and pickled ginger. A special role is played by serving dishes, table setting and food consumption rules. Meal is something sublime and beautiful. By the way, instead of forks, the Japanese use wooden sticks.
Map of Tokyo in Russian with landmarks
I publish Google map, where I noted all the attractions mentioned in the article.
If you are used to paper cards, then for you I picked up some pretty good cards that you can print out in advance and take with you on a trip. You can download tags for offline navigator MAPS.ME with maps. Download the application to your smartphone (if you haven’t already done this), download the file to your phone and open it. All those tags that you see on the map above are automatically imported into your application. To download maps and tags, leave your Email in the form (the form is located under this text, if suddenly you do not see it, try to log in through another browser):
Today, the emperor in Japan has more nominal power than real, but it is very much respected by all Japanese.
If you look at the map, the Imperial Palace is located right in the city center, near Tokyo Station. However, as I have already said in one of the articles, it is not worthwhile to focus on this landmark when choosing housing.
A bit of history: In the 15th century, a castle appeared on the site of the Imperial Palace. And the Imperial Palace, he became only from the end of the 19th century. At the same time, it was originally built of wood, therefore, fires destroyed part of the original buildings and today we see buildings made of modern materials.
Now the Imperial Palace is closed to the public. In addition to two days a year: December 23 (the emperor's birthday) and January 2 (in honor of the New Year holidays).
Only the East Park is open for visiting, and that is not daily. We came on Monday and were able to take pictures only at the closed gate.
During the flowering of cherry blossoms, those who want to admire flowering come here, so if you are planning a trip to Japan in late March and early April, plan a visit to the park on a working day.
The park is open from 10:00 to 15:00, except Mondays and Fridays.
The entrance to the park is free.
To visit the courtyard, you must register in advance on the site http://sankan.kunaicho.go.jp/english/guide/koukyo.html
Tsukiji Fish Market
This is one of the most attractive tourist attractions. Of course, we also could not bypass it.
The fish market is divided into 2 parts.
“Domestic Market” is a place for wholesalers. Here are the trades and deals. The tuna auction on the Tsukiji market is world-famous and is featured in the news every now and then.
For tourists to get to the auction - a special entertainment. The auction takes place early in the morning, but in order to get there it is necessary to occupy a queue from 2-3 o'clock in the morning, since only the first 120 people are allowed.
Here's a cool video on how the auction goes.
“External” market is open to all comers. Here you can see, buy or try various sea reptiles. Well, or just eat the freshest tuna and salmon and find out, finally, that tuna is not cat food in a can.
Different sea reptiles and dishes from them
Still different seafood
There are many cafes on the market, I read that there are especially popular ones and there is a line to go there ... for 4.5 hours! In my opinion, all the cafes are identical. At prices too - somewhere more expensive, somewhere a bit cheaper. We chose a cafe cheaper. They ordered a bowl of rice with tuna, salmon and caviar (generously laid) and a plate of sushi (in Japanese "sushi") with shrimps. Tea, water for free. For two of us with my husband this is more than enough. They wanted to try more scallops in a nearby shop, but they didn’t master them anymore. The price of such a dinner is 1800 ¥ (about 1000 rubles).
Such a lunch in the Tokyo market will cost about 1000 rubles.
I photographed the menu in a cafe. Here prices are slightly lower than in other cafes on the market.
Shopping center on the island Odaiba. Photos from the Internet.
Odaiba Island has two names - “Island of the Future” or “Garbage Island”. The fact is that until 1990 there was a city dump on this place. And in the 90th year it was given for the construction of a residential complex, but because of the unprofitability of the project, all the places were distributed to tenants. So, in a short time the island of garbage has turned into a super-modern place.
The main attractions of the island are:
- Fuji Television’s residence with observation deck and observatory.
- TC Diver City Tokyo Plaza with a huge robot at the entrance
- Tokyo Big Sight - Tokyo Exhibition Center
- Toyota Exhibition Center
- Tokyo Joypolis - 3 floors of entertainment
- The Statue of Liberty is a 4-fold reduced replica of an American Lady.
You can get to Odaiba Island by water bus, train (no driver!) Yurikamome, by subway Rinkai Line or on foot along the Rainbow Bridge.
Rainbow Bridge in Tokyo
Rainbow Bridge. Photos from the Internet.
This is a suspension bridge connecting Tokyo with the island of Odaiba. It was built in 1993. In the evening, the bridge lights up with colored lights, hence the name. Curiously, the colors change with the seasons. As you understand, it is better to admire the bridge in the dark :)
Park Ueno, Tokyo
Park Ueno is located in the area of the same name railway station. This is one of the most popular parks in the city (in the city of skyscrapers, parks are generally popular), where Tokyo people in their day-off hurry to take a break from the frantic pace of life.
Initially, the park was created as a personal botanical garden of the emperor (1837), therefore, today there are a lot of trees and shrubs, brought from all over the country.
Ueno Park is another place to admire sakura.
But Ueno Park is not only a park for walking, there are 4 museums, 4 temples and a zoo here.
The entrance to the park is free, to the zoo - 600 ¥.
About excursions in Tokyo, see here.
1. The Museum of Parasites
The Japanese are weird. What are they worth advertising, but, besides it, they still have the world's only Museum of parasites.
It is located in Tokyo, in the Meguro district, and this is not just a “kunstkamera” for those who like to tickle their nerves, this is a real research and development center. It was founded by Doctor of Medical Sciences Satoru Kamegai in 1953. Thanks to the support of the government and private investors, the museum managed to collect an impressive collection - about 45,000 worms and other parasites.
The exposition is located on two floors: below there are various types of parasites, and at the top - the brain, the stomach and other organs of people and animals affected by creeping creatures. The museum’s “pride” is a worm, 8 meters long 80 centimeters, which dwelt in the body of a young Japanese woman. Fortunately, all exhibits are inanimate and stored in flasks with formalin. However, it is recommended to go to the institution long before lunch.
Address: 4-1-1, Shimomeguro, Meguro-ku
Operation mode: Tuesday-Sunday from 10:00 to 17:00
2. Jingubashi Bridge in the Harajuku Quarter
Do not rush to write angry comments, they say, only a child does not know about this place. The Harajuku quarter is a truly incredibly popular fashion-place, a sort of Japanese "Champs Elysees" with hundreds of boutiques and beauty salons. But we could not tell you about the Dzingubashi pedestrian bridge connecting Harajuku with the neighboring area.
Every Sunday at this place is going to harajuko-tusovka, that is, hyper-fashionable and bright young people who adhere to different youth subcultures. There are red-haired gandzirs, puppet chimegaru, sugary fruits and gothic lolita and many, many others. Why this crazy cosplay, sometimes resembling a sabbath? Yes, just to show yourself and look at others. "Dzingubashi" - a place of splash energy of youth, and if you want to recharge her, be sure to visit this bridge. (Girls are willingly photographed with tourists.)
Address: Harajuku, Takeshita street
3. Ukiyo-e Museum
Ukiyo-e is an ancient Japanese art that originated at the end of the 16th century (the Edo period). Ukiyo-e was the painting of the poor, as the main buyers of these engravings were citizens who could not afford these expensive paintings.
“Ukiyo” in Japanese means “floating world”. For Buddhists, this term means “the world of sorrow,” that is, the world of illusions, where man’s lot is suffering. Over time, this transformed into a philosophy of enjoying each, even the most mournful, moment of being. The purpose of Ukiyo-e woodcut engravings is to capture a changing world every second, catch and perpetuate the moment. The ukiyo-e paintings depict scenes from everyday life and classic characters, such as Kabuki theater actors, geisha and sumoists.
Unfortunately, now residents of large cities, such as Tokyo, prefer to decorate their homes with photographs, and the art of ukiyo-e is gradually forgotten. In order to preserve it, the Ukiyo-e Kiosikawa Museum was established, located in the Bunkyo District (Korakuen Metro Station). The exposition of the museum is small, but includes works of great masters - Utamaro, Hokusai, Hiroshige and others. So if you want to feel the transience of time and enjoy the traditional Japanese engraving, go to Koisikawa Ukiyo-e Museum.
Address: 1-2-3 Koishikawa Bunkyo-ku
Operation mode: Tuesday-Sunday from 11:00 to 18:00
4. Cup Ice Museum
The Japanese are very strange. The shopping centers often have an ice cream parlor, but the Cup Ice Museum is located in the Tokyo Mall of Sunshine City.
Cup Ice Museum is a store that sells very extravagant ice cream. For example, with the taste of fish or squid, or the aroma of onions and garlic. But these are probably the most innocuous “specimens”, because on the shelves of Cup Ice Museum you will also find ice cream with a taste of sushi, wasabi, beer, vodka, curry, etc. - only about 400 mixes.
This ice cream costs an average of 350 to 500 yen ($ 3-5), although for some types the price is much higher. For example, a vanilla cup with a taste of red caviar will cost 1,500 yen ($ 15.5). Ice cream is sold in small plastic cups, which would hardly be enough for one person, but sometimes such explosive tastes come across that there are a lot of portions even for a large company.
Address: 3-1-2 Higashi-Ikebukuro, Toshima-ku
Operation mode: from 10:00 to 20:00
5. Yanaka District
The Yanaka district is one of the few places in Tokyo where the spirit of Sitamati is still alive.
Sitamati is a district of the Lower Town, distinguished by a special culture and dialect, which was almost completely destroyed by the earthquake of 1923, as well as by the bombings of World War II. After the war, the image of Tokyo changed dramatically: wooden houses changed ferro-concrete skyscrapers, and narrow streets changed to multi-lane highways.
Yanaka keeps the atmosphere of old Tokyo. Narrow streets, low houses, calm and measured. Perhaps, it’s lively only in the Yanaka-Ginza shopping street, located a few minutes walk from the Nippori or Sendagi metro stations. There you can buy a national “uchiva” fan or wooden “geta” sandals, have a bite to eat with real Japanese street food “onigiri” (round rice cakes with filling) or drink green tea. There are dealers of all stripes on Yanak Ginze - from the butcher to the watchmaker, there is enough space for everyone.
Yanaka is a place with traditions, an island of peace in the middle of a noisy metropolis. Want to get into the spirit of Sitamati? Go to the Yanaka area.
Address: Yanaka, Taito
6. Monorail at Asukayama Park
Парк Асукаяма заложил восьмой сегун династии Токугава – Ёсимунэ Токугава, правивший с 1716 по 1745 годы. Мудрый политик приказал засадить склон Асукаяма сакурой, чтобы подданные могли весной любоваться ее цветением. Так образовался парк, который на сегодняшний день является одним из крупнейших в районе Кита.
Полюбоваться его красотами, можно прокатившись по монорельсовой дороге, открывшейся в Асукаяме летом 2009 года. A comfortable spacious car, equipped with air conditioning, is waiting for passengers at the entrance to the park. A couple of minutes and you are already upstairs - in the spring this is one of the best places for hanami.
Address: 1-1-3, Oji, Kita Ward
7. Raisy Takagi Bonsai Museum
In Tokyo, there are several museums dedicated to the art of bonsai, but the private collection of bonsai master Reiji Takagi is one of the best. It is located in the Meiko Shokai office building, on its top floors. In order to fully experience pacification and unity with nature, it is better to begin acquaintance with the Takagi-san exhibition from the very rooftop. This is where the classical Japanese garden with a pond and dwarf pines of Chio-no-Matza is located, but the main thing is, of course, bonsai trees, there are over 500 species of them.
Walking through the garden, you can go down below. On the ninth and eighth floors is an exhibition of ukie-e. If you have not been to Koisikawa Museum, then stay there longer.
On the sixth floor, various thematic exhibitions are held, which are updated every week. The museum also has a tea room with a library and a video library. There you can learn more about the great bonsai masters and the history of this ancient art. And of course, in the Takagi Museum you can buy souvenirs on the subject of bonsai.
Address: 1-1, Gobancho, Chiyoda-ku
Operation mode: every day from 10:00 to 17:00
8. Narrow house
The area of Japan is 377,944 sq.m. And the population is more than 127 million people. The population density is 334.5 people per 1 sq. M. As you know, the place is sorely lacking. Roads are literally every centimeter, especially in such megalopolises as Tokyo.
Therefore, in the Land of the Rising Sun there are often houses like the one built by the architect Kota Mizuishi. To build a comfortable two-story house overlooking the river with a total area of 52.24 square meters, it took him only 29 km.
At first glance it seems that in this “birdhouse”, nestled on the river, and one will be close, but as you can see from the photo it can easily accommodate the whole family. On the ground floor there is a bathroom and a bedroom, separated from the common space by curtains. On the second floor there is a kitchen, a living room, a library (easily transformed into another bedroom) and a mezzanine that serves as a nursery. At the same time, the second floor is slightly longer than the first one - this was done specifically to save space for parking.
This house is currently privately owned, so you can only admire it with the permission of the owners.
The Meiji Temple, or as it is also called Meiji Jingu, is the tomb of Emperor Meiji and his wife. It is of such interest for tourists, since it is the largest sanctuary, which appeared, by the way, on public initiative. The shrine is located in the district of Shibuya, in one of its parks.
The temple owes its existence to the social movement, which arose after the death of the emperor and his wife at the beginning of the last century. The Second World War burned the temple to ashes, however, it was successfully reconstructed.
The Meiji Building is a unique temple format: the cypress was used in its creation, and the building itself stands in the middle of a garden that can be found only in Japan. The garden is full of trees and shrubs thanks to the residents of Tokyo, who decided to donate the plants to the temple.
Sports competitions are often held in the Meiji outside garden. Also in the garden is a memorial, which houses as many as 80 murals depicting moments of the life of the emperor and his family.
To get to the temple you need to get to the stops Yegi or Harajuku. The temple can also be reached by subway, taking the Tiyeda or Fukutosin lines to the Meiji-Jingu-mae station.
“The energy of the place is just great. We came here to go for a walk with my wife several times. The park around the temple is simply amazing, as is the temple itself. If you are lucky, you will find a luxurious wedding on your way, they are often held there ”.
Shinjuku is one of Tokyo’s busiest areas. Shinjuku was once a tiny town located near the post station. Shinjuku today is a crowd of white-collar workers and millions of night lights. It is in this area that the highest skyscrapers of the Land of the Rising Sun are located, and the local railway station has the largest capacity in the world. So, about 3.5 million people pass through it in a day, with which no other railway station in the world can compare. The train station is the heart of Shinjuku.
Small shops and malls on half the street, outdoor advertising, which has already blocked entire neighborhoods, restaurants where you can taste the most unthinkable dishes - all this is Shinjuku. Separately, it is worth noting the Imperial Park, where you can walk in peace and tranquility. This park is probably the only quiet place in the whole area.
You can get to the area by boarding the train at Ueno Station and arriving at Shinjuku Station. The ride itself will take no more than 20 minutes.
“Excellent neighborhood, my husband and I really liked. It’s noisy, of course, and crowded, but there’s everything there: where to shop, and have a tasty snack, and just walk. If we come to Japan, we will definitely stop in Shinjuku again. ”
Miraikan is the museum of the future, the main showcase of what Japan has achieved in the age of advanced technology. Astronautics, computer science, physics, biology and, of course, robotics. Here you can not only read the signs to the exhibits, but also see them in action: turn, look and even turn on.
The museum has as many as six floors, walking along which you not only look at the advanced developments in the field of robotics, but also find out what is in the monkey's head and how the Internet works. A visit to the museum should take at least half a day. The main exhibit is an ASIMO humanoid robot. Leave it for dessert to spend at least a couple of days under the impression of the museum. The museum is located at 2.3.6, Aomi, Koto-ku, Tokyo, working hours from 10:00 to 17:00.
“Not impressed by the museum. The idea of the museum is not bad, but I expected much more from visiting it. Of course, the most interesting thing is a humanoid robot. ”
The Tokyo Tower is a replica of the Eiffel Tower. It was built in 1958 for video and television broadcasting throughout Tokyo and Kanto. The height of the tower is just over 300 meters. The Tokyo Tower is considered the world's tallest steel structure.
At night, the TV tower is lit by more than a hundred floodlights. Painted tower in white and orange. On the ground floor there is a huge aquarium, which is considered one of the best in Tokyo. This aquarium contains more than 40 thousand fish.
At the third level is the Wax Museum, which, according to the richness of its collection, can compete with the famous Madame Tussauds. On the 3rd tier there is also an exhibition of holography.
“The tower is impressive. The height is over 300 meters, there are several tiers where you can walk, as well as visit various shops and other interesting places. ”
National Theater No
The theater is an essential attribute of Japan, as well as sushi, anime and checkered skirts of Japanese schoolgirls. Theater But - these are masks: funny, funny, sad and just awful. The theater is located in the Melpomene temple, and the performances are accompanied by the accompaniment of drums and, of course, flute. Theater But produces a lasting impression on those who are acquainted with Japanese culture.
Theater But was born in the XIV century. The main idea of the theater is a story about the world of spirits, gods and demons, as well as about the life of monks. Each presentation lasts from 3 to 6 hours.
Tickets for performances range from 2,300 to 4,600 yen. But quite recently, I found a second life: at the end of the last century, a huge building was purchased for the National Japanese Theater. It is located in the Shibuya area.
“The performance unexpectedly made a very strong impression on me. I want to see something else similar in my life. Not comparable with any other theaters and performances, which I was lucky enough to visit. "
The only kabuki theater. It is located in the Chuo area. Kabuki-za Theater is incredibly popular among both the Japanese and visitors. It is located in a building that is considered the fifth incarnation of the theater, since the four previous buildings have burned down.
This theater has 4 floors and almost 2 thousand seats. The office building of the Kabuki-za Tower is located near the theater, and on the first floor of the theater there are shops with souvenirs and tea houses.
The theater is focused on tourists. So, you can use the audio accompaniment and the audio guide will explain to you everything related to the plot, role, costumes and the course of the performance itself.
“Very original performance. I remember for many years. What didn’t like was the audience: noisy and constantly chewing on something. ”
Exhibition Center Toyota Mega Web
Fans of supercars will definitely not remain indifferent from visiting this exhibition center. It has several floors that form a huge complex, where you can not only admire the products of the Japanese car industry, but also visit the amusement park and show-room Toyota.
The exhibition center has not only classic exhibits of the Japanese car industry, but also impressive “cars of the future”. The center provides visitors with the opportunity to even try the car in action. Fans of retro cars will also appreciate the Toyota Mega Web center, because it can be photographed against the backdrop of the cars of the 1950s – 70s.
In the museum center as much as 6 exhibitions. The most impressive and the biggest is the Toyota City Showcase, where you can look at the already existing models of the famous automotive concert, as well as the still unrealized concepts.
“In Siberia, Toyota is the most common brand of cars. I could not miss the opportunity to visit the museum and was not disappointed. For ridiculous money (about 100 rubles), you can arrange a real test drive. In general, I recommend to visit. "
Disneyland and Disney Sea
This Disneyland became the second in the world after the American. The amusement park is located in the Urayasu district and occupies a little less than 50 hectares. Tokyo Disneyland has 7 zones, and there are also shops, restaurants and even hotels. Between the objects of Disneyland, you can move both on foot and use the railway.
Among the thematic areas we can highlight the “Fantasy Land”, “The City of Toons” and “The Land of the Future”, where you can meet not only Mickey Mouse, but Cinderella, Chip and Dale, and Dumbo. Every evening there are shows and fireworks in the park.
Next to Disneyland is a water park, which travelers like even more than Disneyland itself. The fullness of the water park is not as big as in Disneyland, and the rides are designed more for adults than for children.
“We were both in Disneyland and in the water park. I liked both there and there. There is a system of fast passes, due to which you can pass the queue at popular attractions. What a Disneyland that a water park does not cover in one visit. I want to return more.
Disneyland Tokyo is the first Disneyland built outside the States. It is located not in Tokyo itself, but in the city of Urayasu.
By topic - everything is standard for Disneyland :) In the center - Cinderella Castle, 7 themed areas, restaurants, shops.
Every evening there is a procession of characters. Everything shines with bright lights - beautiful and unusual!
Since I was already in Disneyland in Paris and in Orlando, it was decided to go to another park - Universal Studios in Osaka. I will tell about it in another article.
You can get to Disneyland by bus from Tokyo Station to Tokyo Disney Resort Station.
Entrance to the park: 7400 ¥ - adult, 4800 ¥ - child, 6400 ¥ - teenage.
For current hours of operation and all the details, see the office: https://www.tokyodisneyresort.jp/en/index.html
Tokyo districts: Ginza, Akihabara, Shibuya, Harajuku
Shibuya, the biggest relocation in the world
At the very beginning of the article, I said that the main attractions of Tokyo are culture and different parts of the city. Main areas:
- Ginza is a commercial “luxury” area with louivitons, chanelles and dioors
- Akihabara - cool bright area, anime area
- Sibuya - entertainment district with shops and cafes
- Harajuku - Japanese fast food area
- Shinjuku is a sky district.
I have already written in detail about the areas of Tokyo, so I will not repeat it. The article has a lot of photos, as well as my advice on the choice of housing in a particular area. I recommend to read.
What to see in Tokyo in 3 days
On the third day, you can walk in the Ueno park, go to the zoo, museums.
Take a look in the Roppongi area, go shopping (what to buy in Japan).
Or devote the whole day to a trip to Disneyland.
Of course, this is all conditional, but you can take these plans for the day as a basis and add your sights that you want to see to them. Anyway, during the walk you will find interesting places, go to cafes, take pictures. Either go to the “just see” slot machine hall, or “just one game”. Keep in mind that the “only look” usually takes 2-3 hours :)))
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Have a great time hanging out in Tokyo! I hope my advice will be useful!
14. Marunouchi Railway Station
The hall of the railway station in the Marunouchi district in Tokyo has been recently renovated, and now its beautiful architecture is pleasing to the eye. The advantage of this place is that it will not have to get to it for a long time, because there are bus and train tracks converging here, so you can be here in passing, getting from one place to another.
13. Yasukuni Temple
The peculiarity of this temple is that not gods are worshiped in it, but the souls of those soldiers who died fighting for their Motherland, including during World War II. The supreme deity of the temple is the Emperor of Japan.
12. Tokyo Metropolitan Museum of Art
The museum building was built in 1933. A museum dedicated to the Japanese Art Deco style. Around the museum building is a park with a pond, there is a restaurant.
11. Excursion in the aircraft factory ANA
To look at the maintenance of aircraft ANA, operating at Haneda Airport, you must purchase a ticket for the tour in advance.
10. National Museum of Nature and Science
Another museum located in Ueno Park. Visitors can see many natural historical and scientific exhibits.
Chidorigafuchi is also sometimes called the “imperial palace moat.” Water-filled moats frame the sakura trees, which bloom and smell in the spring.
8. Nezu Museum
The permanent collection of this museum is dedicated to pre-modern Japanese and East Asian art. The exhibition includes paintings, sculptures and various products, some of which are more than 1000 years old.
7. Akasaka Palace
In Japanese, it is called Rikyu, which means "a detached palace" or "Imperial Villa." Located in the Akasaka district, it was once the residence of the Crown Prince, but now serves as the residence of important foreign politicians. Despite the fact that most of us are unlikely to ever spend the night in this building, it is open to the public for several days every year.
6. Tokyo National Museum
One of the last museums of Ueno Park. But if you are going to visit only one, then it should be the Tokyo National Museum, because there you will find one of the greatest collections of historical and artistically significant Japanese antiquities.
5. Meiji Temple
When you get off at Harajuku Station, you have two choices. Going east, you can visit the busiest and trendiest shopping streets in the country. Going west, you will come to the Meiji Temple, which is surrounded by forest, so lush and thick that it drowns out the noise of the surrounding city.
4. Tokyo Hippodrome
Japan has long been known for its car racing, but the Tokyo Racecourse in the Fuchu area is not a venue for racing, horse racing takes place here.
3. Shinjuku Goen National Park
Another green oasis in the stone jungles of Tokyo. Shinjuku Goyen is best visited in the spring when the cherry trees are blooming, and also in the fall when the leaves change color. The entrance ticket costs only 200 yen for adults.
2. Tokyo Tower
Although Skytree is taller and newer, there is some romantic feeling for the orange-white color scheme of the Tokyo Tower, its location in the park, not to mention its playful spirit.
1. JAL Sky Museum
ANA's competitor, Japan Airlines, has its own museum and service center. They are located close to Haneda Airport, so this could be the first or last stop on your itinerary (in case you arrive or depart from this airport.