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Travel guide for 4 days in Tokyo

Time spent in Tokyo: 4 days
Money spent per person: €250
Money exchange at the time: 100 Yen= 0,75 Euro

Tokyo is a city where you think about overfull metro’s and huge buildings with lights. This is true but we have noticed that it is really relaxed to walk around and take the public transport. Cities like New York and Amsterdam for example feel way more crowded because Tokyo is build for the amount of people it has. No one bothers you like a lot of asian cities and no on thinks you are specials because you are blond. A nice way to start our journey through Tokyo!
Tokyo counts several neighbourhoods and we visited the most important ones. We have made a short guide to the nicests places to go, included most of the prices so you see that Tokyo is not super expensive as many people think. We don’t like planning but because we had 4 days in Tokyo we wanted to make sure that we didn’t waste any time so we made a plan about where we wanted to go.
24/7 shops are everywhere in Tokyo but take in mind that the last metro is going around 01:00.

Our planning

Day 1 – Evening near our hostel to get some food
Day 2 – Daytime -> Akihabara + Harajuku, Nighttime -> Shibuya
Day 3 – Daytime -> Ueno + Asakusa + Toshima, Nighttime -> Shinjuku
Day 4 – Daytime -> Ginza + Yanaka, Nighttime -> Ueno(nightmarket) + Shinjuku
Day 5 – Any location we would like to see again
(we walked 17 km a day on avarage)

Tips

– Get a (especially the warm) drink out of the machines that are located everywhere in the city
– Hostel tip: Planetyze Hostel in the middle of the city
– Get some snacks at the 7/11 (sushi roll which can be warmed up a little)
– Use maps.me and add points before you go to Tokyo, it’s more efficient to see all of the highlights and visit 2 area’s a day
– Eat RAMEN!

From and to the Airport

The easiest way to enter the city is by monorail from Haneda airport (make sure you check on which airport you are flying to/from!). This train will bring you withing 30 minutes to the city centre. From the city centre you are able to take the JR line (metro) or another taxi if you would like. This will save you a lot of money since a taxi from the airport can go up to 20.000 Yen (€150). Another option is the bus which we didn’t took because the Monorail is really convenient, gives you a nice view and is nicely priced (1400 Yen, €11).
Our flight out of Japan was from the Narita airport and takes longer to travel to/from. You are able to take the JR line to Nippori station and take the train all the way to Narita Airport. This will cost around €9 and takes around 1,5 hour. There are many other ways to go but we found this the easiest and cheapest option.

Transport in Tokyo

It is really easy to get around with public transport in Tokyo. The metro (JR-line) lines are departing every 10 minutes and a single ticket costs 150(€1,10) to 300(€2,25) Yen which you will pay up front. At the end station the gate will only open if you paid enough and otherwise you need to pay more at a machine. If you take a look at the map of the metro, you will see all the There is always someone that can help you if you don’t understand something that is written in Japanese.

Akihabara

Akihabara is famous for all the gamehalls that are located in huge buildings and you will see them inmediately when you walk out of the station. These building are always busy and full of local people who are mostly playing in their suit. Please take a look in those buildings because only watching them play games is already awesome (incredible speed).
You are able to find loads of Ramen shops which are really tasty and for a reasonable price. Every shop has his own speciality and it doesn’t really mather where you go to, they are all really good. You have to put money in a machine which is located outside the shop and choose your dish. You will receive the receipt and give this to the cook so he can make this for you. It will take some minutes to get your food and this will cost around 400 – 700(€3 – €6) Yen. Water is always included in the price which you can take for free.

Harajuku

There are a lot of shops and cafés in Harajukuand the most of the Japanese people are dressed stylish in this area. In this area you are able to find Cat street and Takeshita Dori which are nice to walk through. The Meij Jingu temple is also located in this area and is really nice to visit because it’s colorful forest. Some people will wear traditional cloth which is also nice to see.
We searched for a nice place to eat in this area and we have founda place which is called Gyoza-Ro.There was a line outside which is normal in Tokyo and we have waited for 15 minutes. The menu is not that big but the dumplings are really nice and affordable. For 2 drinks, 2 portions of dumplings, a cucumber salad and a taugé salad we have paid 1600 Yen (€12).

Shibuya

Shibuya is maybe one of the most impressive parts of Tokyo because it contains the most busy crossroad in the world. Millions of people are crossing here every year. The best view from the top is in the Starbucks which is located right next to the crossroad and can’t be missed. On the side of the station the famous dog Hachiko can be found. There is also a large supermarket located in the big shopping street which is called MEGA. This supermarket is 5 stores high with a lot of products and is a nice place to get local candy or products.
When you arrive on an empty stomic in Shibuya you go for an ‘all you can eat’ dinner at Yakiniku which is really nice and affordable.

Ueno

Ueno is the cultural part of Tokyo. You are able to find the national museum here but we didn’t have enough time to visit. Next to the museum is a really nice park with a big lake and a temple which is really nice to visit and take photos. Next to the Ueno station is also a nightmarket which we didn’t like that much but was great to get some local food.

Asakusa

Asakusa is famous for the beautiful temple named Seno-Ji. The whole area is something that you can’t miss because there are a lot of nice shops and local food which you can try. It is also possible to do wishes for 100 Yen. You have to put 100 Yen in a money box and after it you will do your wish and you have to shake a box with small wooden sticks in it. The box contains a small hole where 1 wooden stick is coming out. A Japanese character is written down on this stick and you will have to get a paper out of the wall which is located in front of you. On this paper is written down if your wish will come out or if not. This is written in English also so it’s easy to read. If the wish is coming out, take the paper with you. If not, wrap the paper around a line (we had bad luck 2 times).
Next to the temple a nice part of Tokyo is located which contains all kinds of shops. It is possible to eat some local food here which are delicious such as:
Fishcookie with red beans (180 Yen – €1,40): They will show you how they will make these
Seaweed snack (100 Yen – €0,75: Wasabi can be added and these are freshly made
Ball in different tastes (130 Yen – €1,10): We had a ball with a sesam taste
The skytree is also located in Asakusa. This is a TV-tower which can be entered for a nice view over Tokyo.

Toshima

There are a lot of big stores and shops in the area of Toshima. A big Pokemon store is also located in one of the large shopping malls Sunshine City. We have spend a little time here and found a lovely sushi restaurant to eat something for a good price. The price was 2100 Yen (€16) for 30 pieces of sushi which are made in front of you by the chefs. If you walk just outside the shopping street you are able to find many more nice (sushi) restaurants.

Shinjuku

Shinjuku is famous for the large billboards that are hanging next to large buildings and stripclubs can be found here as well. The Metropolitan Government building is a must visit to see Tokyo from 200 meter in the sky. It is free to enter the building so it’s a nice place to look all over the biggest city in the world. Piss alley was more something for us which contains all kinds of mini bars and bbq places. In some bars you need to pay a fee for a seat. We needed to pay 400 Yen (€3) but this is really a nice experience and also a good way to interact with the locals. The owner puts all kinds of food for you on the BBQ. We had lady fingers (okra), vegetables, 3 beers, 2 sake-greentea and 1 bottle of sake which costed 3700 Yen (€27).

Ginza

Ginza is an area with the most expensive shopping streets of Tokyo. When you have enough money with you this can be a great time windowshopping suited us better. When the stores are closed, the nightlife will start in this part of the city with neon lights and theathers included.
The coolest thing to do is the Tsukiji Fish Market which is the largest fish market of the world. They will bring in the fresh fish in the morning and sold afterwards. There is a possibility to go to the auction in the morning but be there really early because there is only place for a small group. We needed our sleep for the rest of the city so we arrived a couple of hours later. The market starts at 9 in the morning and is really crowded with locals and tourists. Fresh fish and all kinds of sea animals are shown everywhere and also people from restaurants are asking you to come inside. Sometimes you can taste their products which is nice to do because we didn’t know the most of their food.
We wanted to go here becasuse we heard the best sushi/sashimi of the world can be found here. We didn’t want to pay loads of money for a bowl so we walked just outside the busy area into the fish market. Next to the fish markey a couple of small restaurants are located and the prices are way less here. We had to wait for 30 minutes in a row because… well, that’s Tokyo, people everywhere! We both had a sushi bowl with tuna and salmon. Miso soup, water, tea and small seafood was included in the price which was 1600 Yen (€12). The dishes were made right in front of you and it was the freshest fish we have ever had!

Our opinion about Tokyo

This is a city like no other we have ever experienced. The city is clean, huge, crazy and relaxed even when there are so many people. Japanese are really kind and always willing to help. The transport is extremely well arranged and the city is not as expensive as people say. If you just look a little further you will find really good quality dishes for a nice price for example: 6 dumplings for 250 Yen (€1,85), a big noodle soup for 600 Yen(€4,50) and a Beer for 400 Yen (€3).
In every part of the city there are a lot of nice things to visit. For us, 4 days wasn’t enough and we could spend here 1 week and not even see all of it. The price of tickets to Tokyo are really good and also from Asia it is really easy to fly to the airport. Please check from which airport you are flying to/from because these are located on a totally other place.

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