Kaminari-mon (Thunder gate)
The outer gate of Senso-ji temple. Originally built in 942, but have experienced burn downs and re-buildings. The latest version was donated by Konosuke Matsushita, the founder of Matsushita Electric (Panasonic) in 1960. It is a giant paper lantern that is hanging at the center.
The front approach to Senso-ji temple. Always busy with tourists and souvenir shops. Nakamise is a shopping lane that extends for about 250 meters from Kaminarimon Gate to Hozomon Gate, and is lined with brick and vermilion-lacquered buildings.
The accommodation for monks of Senso-ji temple. Unfortunately not open to the public anymore. Dempoin Temple is at the left side of the Sensoji Temple (from the Kaminari-mon Gate), just beside the approach to the Sensoji Temple. The temple is usually closed to the public, although there is a magnificent garden inside.
The second gate to Senso-ji. The upper part of the building also works as a treasure house. The Hōzōmon (宝蔵門, "Treasure-House Gate") is the inner of two large entrance gates that ultimately leads to the Sensō-ji (the outer being the Kaminarimon) in Asakusa, Tokyo.
Five storied pagoda, on top of which a bone of Buddha offered from the royal temple of Sri Lanka, is kept.
Pagodas first appeared in Japan in the 6th century when Buddhism was introduced from China and India. They can range in height from one to thirteen tiers. On the grounds of the Senso-ji temple in Asakusa you will find an beautiful example of a five storied pagoda which is the most common.
The main Buddhist temple of Asakusa, with the longest history among all the temples and shrines in Tokyo. Its origin dates back to 628, when a fisherman brothers found a figure of goddess at Sumida river, and a temple to store it was built.
A Shinto shrine dedicated to three men who founded Senso-ji... the fisherman brothers and the headman of the village. Holds 'Sanja-matsuri' festival on the third weekend of May every year, which is one of three major festivals in Tokyo, and a must-see if you're in Tokyo.
A nostalgic amusement park popular among local kids. Sakura Hostel is located at its back.
Hanayashiki is an amusement park in Taitō, Tokyo that has operated since 1853. It is operated by Hanayashiki Co. Ltd., a subsidiary of Namco Bandai Holdings. It is claimed to be the oldest amusement park in Japan.
The nearest supermarket from Sakura Hostel.
The tallest building in Asakusa, with 28 floors. Lunch buffet available for 2625 yen at the top.
Founded in 1895. If you are ready to spend more than 6000 yen, you can taste the best Sukiyaki in town.
A street full of kitchenware dealers. How about Japanese plates and dishes as souvenirs ? Kappabashi-dori, also known just as Kappabashi (Japanese: 合羽橋) or Kitchen Town, is a street in Tokyo between Ueno and Asakusa which is almost entirely populated with shops supplying the restaurant trade.
A shopping complex with a 24 hour open supermarket and a sport gym.
The oldest western-styled bar in Japan. Try their special cocktail "DENKI-BRAN (electric brandy)"
Enjoy a 35 min. river cruise down to Hinode-sanbashi (close to JR Hamamatsu-cho stn.) for 760 yen. From Hinode Pier, there is three lines which are Odaiba line, Tokyo Big Sight Pallete Town line, Sumida River line. It is recommended to have cruiseing gracefully. And you can enjoy tea and snacks at cafe or air stream.
A modern landmark, which is the headquarter of Asahi Breweries. The 22 storied golden building is designed in a shape of a mug of beer, and the hall next to it, has a giant 'golden flame' on top. The company runs its own bar 'Asahi Annex', where you can taste the original Asakusa beer.
"Tokyo Sky Tree" will appear in the Narihirabashi/Oshiage area of Sumida Ward, Tokyo in 2012. Boasting a height of 634m, the tower will be one of the world's tallest.
Subways in Tokyo are very convenient and you can go nearly everywhere by them, but at the same time you can easily spent thousands of Yen buying single- tickets.
The same is true for museums and exhibitions since entrance fees usually start around 1,000 yen. Is there a cheaper solution?
Of course there is one! Check out the following websites:
Located roughly 30 minutes north-west of Tokyo on the Tobu Tojo line, Kawagoe city is a trip into Japan's past. A must for those wishing to explore traditional Japan, this historic place was once a bustling castle town but still retains its charm through the surviving streets and wooden buildings. Part of this traditional atmosphere is kept alive by the famous "Bell of Time" that hangs in the town's clock tower. This huge bell rings four times daily, as it has done for 350 years!
Kawagoe is also home to a popular sweetshop street where you can indulge in a selection of traditionally made Japanese sweets and even sample a local beer brewed from sweet potatoes!
Asakusa stn. → Subway Ginza line (5 min.) → Ueno stn. → JR yamanote line (16 min.) → Ikebukuro stn. → Tobu Railway (34 min.) → Kawagoe stn.
|Tokyo Disney Resort||
The twin theme parks: Disneyland and the more recent DisneySea make up Tokyo Disney resort, located roughly one hour from Ikebukuro station. The first Disney resort to be opened outside of the United States, Tokyo Disneyland is popular nationwide due to its fun seasonal shows and attractions. Tokyo DisneySea (opened in 2001) is an independant water themed variation of the main park with an extensive recreation of Venetian canals that leads into the different "ports of call". These themed areas house the park's rides and attractions. Popular attractions include Journey to the Center of the Earth ride and the "Tower of terror".
Asakusa stn. → Subway Ginza line (10 min.) → Kanda stn. → JR Yamanote line (2 min.) → Tokyo stn. → JR Keiyo line (16 min.) → Maihama stn.(Tokyo Disny Resort)
|Shibuya, Omotesando & Harajuku||
From Shibuya’s 109 building, along Omotesando Hills to Harajuku’s Takeshita doori, this extensive area is without doubt the centre of Tokyo’s fashion and pop-culture. Next Shibuya Station you can find one of the most famous pedestrian crossings in the world, while was featured in many movies such as "Lost in Translation."
Many famous luxury brands have established their flagship stores in the glamourous Aoyama and Omotesando districts. If you prefer exquisite Japanese craftsmanship, the Oriental Bazaar is no doubt the No.1 choice. From fine porcelain to unique hand-woven articles, you name it, they've got it.
However, if you are looking for something more alternative, Harajuku is definitely the place to go. Here is where Tokyo's fashion-conscious generation gathers and the Design Festa Gallery can be found. On Sundays you can take a break from shopping to see amateur bands and dancers in nearby Yoyogi park as well.
Asakusa stn. → Subway Ginza line (32min.) → Shibuya stn. → JR Yamanote line (2 min.) → Harajuku stn.
Famous for its numerous discount electronics and computer stores, Akihabara is also the origin of "Otaku" culture - manga, anime and all the related merchandise. Whether you are looking for the latest high-tech PCs and mobile phones or memorabilia from your favourite anime, most likely you will be able to find it here.
If Shibuya is the centre for fashion, then Akihabara is the centre for electronics and Otaku culture. Don't forget to bring your passport in orders to get a refund on the sales tax!
Akihabara stn. → Subway Ginza line (5 min.) → Ueno stn. → JR Yamanote line (4 min.) → Akihabara stn.
Home to the busiest station in the world, Shinjuku is one of Tokyo’s must-visit night spots. Dinner, bars or karaoke, whatever you are after, you will be truly spoilt for choice in Shinjuku. By day however, Shinjuku is a great place for a spot of shopping with its fair share of brand-name goods and electronics stores.
The Takashimaya times-square department store is a great place to buy presents and the top floor of the Kinokuniya book store sells foreign language books should you need to stock up before your journey home.
If you have the time, a trip to the top of the Tokyo Metropolitan Government building is also highly recommended as the panoramic views of the city are nothing short of spectacular. You can even see Mount Fuji on a clear day!
Akihabara stn. → Subway Ginza line (10 min.) → Kanda stn. → JR Chuo line (12 min.) → Shinjuku stn.
"Ameyoko" is a very busy market street located under the Yamanote Line tracks between Okachimachi and Ueno stations. This market street used to be one of the most well-known black markets in Tokyo after World War Two.
"Ameyoko" means "Ameya Yokocho" (candy store alley), as candies were traditionally sold there. Besides, "Ame" can also relate to "America" because a lot of American goods were very popular on the black market.
Nowadays, various products such as clothes, bags, cosmetics, fresh fish, dried foods and spices are available there. Especially towards the end of a year, people will flood to Ameyoko to buy festive foods and products to celebrate the New Year.
"Ameyoko" is a really fun and interesting spot to check out. Opening hours and closing days depend on different stores, but they usually open at around 10:00 and close at around 19:00. Moreover, since many stores will be closed on Wednesdays, so it may be a good idea to go there on the rest of the week.
Asakusa stn. → Subway Giza line (5 min.) → Ueno stn.
|Tokyo Dome Cityl||
Built around the Tokyo Dome (the world's largest covered baseball stadium), Tokyo Dome City is a popular entertainment district. In this area you can find many souvenir shops and restaurants and nearby is a large spa and shopping mall complex, LaQua. LaQua also features ride attractions such as the Big-O centre-less ferris wheel and "Thunder dolphin" rollercoaster. Tokyo dome itself is home to baseball games and from time to time is also used as a concert and exhibition venue.
Asakusa stn. → Subway Ginza line (16 min.) → Ginza stn. → Subway Marunouchi Line (11min.) → Korakuen stn.