Tokyo Japan, how to navigate the giant Japanese megalopolis.
This huge metropolis is home to some 38 million people, more than any other metropolitan area on earth. To say that it is modern is an understatement, but don;t let that fool you, Tokyo might be a modern city but it is dotted with landmarks that showcase Japan's rich history of the countries history. This old early 17th century fishing village survived earthquakes and war alike, and continues to wow visitors with its modern flare, yet maintains its heritage, and has something for every taste. Year after year, Tokyo continues to be one of the world's most visited destinations with some 12.5 million visitors in 2017 alone. Here are some refreshing stops, if you happen to be in Tokyo.
The Sensoji Temple, in Asakusa, with its distinctive pagoda style tower, is an ornate temple and one of the oldest in the country. Built in 645, it is one of the oldest in Toyo and Japan alike, and one of the most important. The Sensoji Temple holds the important Tokyo festival of the Sanja Matsuri. The Nakamise-dori street which leads to the temple, has a lot of shops that attract visitors to the temple and Tokyo as a whole, and offer souvenirs and other articles that patrons can take home, not to mention traditional Japanese street food...
Tokyo Imperial Palace:
The seat of the imperial family, is composed of many older and newer castles that served stately functions over the years. The east gardens of the palace are open to the public and showcase Japanese style botanic and architecture.
Yasukuni Shrine in Chiyoda:
This shrine, founded by Emperor Meiji in 1869, is eccentric. Following Shinto beliefs, It was built to commemorate the death in service of japan, and has since its inception held the remains of those who died in service to the country, throughout many wars. Today, It houses the remains of some 2,466,532 people.
outside the shrine, are yet again street vendors with an array of Japanese delicacies and snacks.
The Meiji Shrine:
The Meiji Shrine in Shibuya, exemplifies the mix of traditional and modern Japanese architecture. It was built by the Japanese government to commemorate Emperor Meiji's contributions to modernize japan. It was founded on the grounds of a garden the imperial couple liked to visit. It is home to many species of plants and trees donated from all over Japan.
The Shibuya crossing:
This world famous space, outside Shibuya Station, is home to japans version of time square, it sees a high amount of rail commuter traffic and hence is prime for neon advertising.
Here you can learn about the city of Tokyo's history, you walk out of the museum with a new understanding of the different parts and landmarks of the city...
The Tokyo Tower:
This Eiffel tower inspired edifice has seen over 150 million visitors since it was built, it now functions as a communications antenna and a tourist attraction.
The world's second tallest structure, Only second to Burj Khalifa in the Emirates. you can glimpse this tower from different parts of the city.
Other places you might be interested in seeing include: Ueno Park, Daibutsu, Kamakura, the largest fish market in the world at Tsukiji fish market, Lake Chuzenji & Kegon Falls...
Lodging in Tokyo:
Staying in Tokyo is both a challenge and an experience in itself. As the city offers some non traditional means of accommodation. You have probably heard of the quirky capsule hotels, where those with no claustrophobia can sleep in comfy coffin-like cot.
Japanese family owned Ryokan inns with tatami mats for beds, and are affordable. Buddhist Monasteries are usually on the edge of town but can be a cheap alternative. Not to mention love hotels, and budget hostels.For those staying longer and in family groups apartment rentals are a better alternative.
Wherever you stay, Japanese custom requires that you clean after yourself and keep tidy quarters.