08 May, 2017

THINGS TO SEE & DO IN TOKYO, JAPAN

THINGS TO SEE & DO IN TOKYO, JAPAN

This weekend was spent chasing wisteria with sis (can't decide if I like them more than blossoms!) playing with my adorable and energetic nephews and shooting a super fun behind the scenes video for one of my favourite jewellery brands Astrid & Miyu. What did you guys get up to?

I'm back with another travel post, this time sharing one of the best trips Hang and I have been on. We love Japan!! (Should of got the t-shirt...) I'm still mesmerised by the scenery, the people and food and would go back in a heartbeat. There's something really special about that country and I now know why everyone raves about it. It has the buzz and hustle and bustle that's on another level. It's weird and wacky, calm and serene and the Japanese people generosity and kindness made our trip so pleasant. I'm not saying everyone walks around happy and smiley but most of the interactions we had they were genuinely so friendly, even though they didn't speak English.

People aside, I wanted to share with you our experience of Tokyo, we spent 4 days there and honestly never done so much walking on holiday. The first day we did over 22,000 steps, my legs felt like they were going to buckle but it was all worth it. I read so many guides on things to see and do in Tokyo, the list can be endless but I wanted to share with you guys some of our highlights. Enjoy!


SHOP & EAT IN SHIBUYA


It goes without saying a visit to Tokyo is not complete without experiencing Shibuya. That crazy big crossing scramble that everyone talks about to the tall buildings and neon signs. This is the place to look up in amazement, there are shops and restaurants every corner you turn. If you love shopping check out Shibiya 109, it has over 7 floors just for women (there's a separate mens building across the road!) For a calm reprise from the madness, pop into the Wired Tokyo 1999 which is a really cool bar and book shop, a great place to refuel and relax. Also try the sushi at the Standing Sushi Bar, the best we've tried! Order the broiled eel :)

THINGS TO SEE AND DO IN TOKYO, SHIBUYA
STANDING SUSHI BAR SHIBUYATHINGS TO SEE IN TOKYO JAPAN

 

HARAJUKU


Everyone either says avoid or go down the main street in Harajuku, Takeshita Street. Yes it's extremely busy and touristy but that's part of the fun. My advice is to not go on a weekend! There are dessert places, weird and wonderful shops and Daiso, which is a must as everything is 100 Yen! Wonder around the back streets and there are lots of hipster shops and coffee shops. We came across this amazing place 'Alice on Wednesday' complete with a tiny door to enter. Everything inside was Alice in Wonderland theme, very cute and quirky - worth a visit if you like that kind of thing. You can sit on the Red Queen chair, shop for trinkets and admire the fun decor.

HARAJUKU TOKYO JAPANHARAJUKU TOKYO JAPAN
ALICE ON WEDNESDAY HARAJUKU

 

SHINJUKU AT NIGHT


Shinjuku is lively in the day but it's another story at night. Have a stroll around and take it all the bright neon signs, flashing lights, bars and restaurants. It's a completely different world, it's also home of the infamous Robot Restaurant if you fancy going along to see that or pop along Golden Gai for their well known tiny bars. 

SHINJUKU AT NIGHT JAPAN

SHINJUKU AT NIGHT JAPAN
 

MEIJI SHRINE


For a break from the city, head to the historic and majestic Meiji Shrine (Harajuku exit, turn right out of the station and walk over the small bridge.) You'll see the large Tori Gate at the entrance and then enter to the vast tranquil grounds. Even though there was lots of people, it felt very calm and serene. You can use the water purifying ritual, write a wish on the wishing plaques and admire the large wall of old sake barrels. We also saw a Japanese wedding whilst we were there, which was amazing! You can spend hours wondering the ground, bring your comfy shoes and enjoy being in the natural lush surroundings.

TORI GATES, MEIJI SHRINE JAPAN

SAKE BARRELS TOKYO JAPAN MEIJI SHRINEWATER PURIFYING RITUAL MEIJI SHRINE

 

VISIT OLD TOKYO IN ASAKUSA


For a feel of old Japan, head to Asakusa. This was the first place we saw girls dressed up in Geisha costumes and it was a lot of fun. It was extremely crowded walking down the main street, filled with all sorts of market stalls selling Japanese wears, souvenirs and trinkets. At the end of the main street you will see the impressive Sensō-ji Temple, an ancient Buddhist temple, the oldest in Tokyo. 
 

JAPANESE LANTERNS ASAKUSASENSIJO TEMPLE TOKYO


ENJOY THE VIEW AT TOKYO METROPOLITAN GOVERNMENT BUILDING


I love a good skyline and even though we queued up for over an hour for the Tokyo Skytree, it was a nice experience but not amazing. So I would recommend going to the Metropolitan Government Building, they have an observatory floor and it's free! It was very confusing to find the entrance to the building but eventually we got the lift up and enjoyed the views. There is a gift shop and the best part is the restaurant. It's quite small but you can sit down at the bar and enjoy the views, there is a cover charge for the restaurant 500 Yen. We went twice in one day so we could see it at night and it was really nice. I felt like I was in a movie sitting there with that view and you can see Tokyo Tower in the distance. I did want to go to the Bar at the Park Hyatt Hotel but there is also a cover charge of 2000 Yen so why not go here for free and it's less crowded :)

TOKYO METROPOLITAN GOVERNMENT BUILDING
TOKYO METROPOLITAN GOVERNMENT BUILDING

 

JAPANESE GARDENS & PARKS


You are spoilt for beautiful gardens and parks in Tokyo. We were there mid April and caught the end of the Cherry Blossom season but what we saw was so pretty. I loved walking through the parks and seeing people sitting on mats, enjoying the scenery it felt so nice and relaxed. We wanted to go to Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden but it closes at 4pm that one time we went! So bear that in mind and it's also closed on Monday. But we did wonder around Ueno Park, which was massive as well as the smaller Sumida Park, which was super pretty.

SUMIDA PARK TOKYO JAPANCHERRY BLOSSOMS JAPAN

CHERRY BLOSSOMS JAPAN














.

Of course there are loads more things to do in Tokyo, these were just a few of my highlights! I really hope you enjoyed this Tokyo travel post and little video I put together, feel free to 'pin' these images on Pinterest for future reference :) I plan to do a more in-depth post on planning a trip to Japan, let me know if you have any questions. Have you been to Tokyo? I would love to know about your experience and highlights!



What do you think of Tokyo?


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