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Two full days in Tokyo

I'm going to SE Asia in August/Sept. I come home through Tokyo. I arrive 8 am Sept. 7 and depart 6 pm Sept. 9. Any one have any advice on what HAS to be seen? I am considering taking a train immediately to the Mt. Fuji area and staying there Monday and Tuesday night; train back to Tokyo early Wednesday the 9th and seeing one or two attractions before going to the airport.

Any other suggestions for Tokyo or around Tokyo? Any hotels that you believe are a must stay?
Thank you.

Posted by
2788 posts

Do you realize that this is a web site dedicated to European travel? You would have better luck posting your question on an Asian or Japanese advice site.

Posted by
499 posts

It is difficult to give advice for Tokyo as the place is so new and modern. Tokyo was almost completely destroyed by an earthquake in 1923, so there are no historic buildings to see - the most ancient is probably the Tokyo railway station. Obvious tourist destinations are the Asakusa district and the museum district in Ueno park. But what I find most fascinating is wandering aimlessly in this huge city, whose main attraction are the dwellers themselves: salarymen on trains, young girls in Shibuya, strange young people at Harakuju, the unbelievable lights at Akhihabara, trains going up and down incessantly, shops like Tokyu Hands that seem to sell almost everything including things you would have never considered; Odaiba, an island reclaimed from the bay, with futuristic architecture.

There are attractions closer than Mt. Fuji like Kamakura and Nikko but frankly, in spite of having been in Tokyo four times for a total time of nine weeks (mostly working, I should admit), I never got out of Tokyo as I feel I didn't even scratch the surface.

Posted by
20 posts

If you want a very economical but still pleasant enough place, I can vouch for the Super Hotel in Asakusa.

Small rooms, but that's fairly typical.

At the moment, according to the website, the dates you wanted would be about $89 US. Breakfast included.

Close to Sensoji Temple and Tokyo Sky Tree.

I would also agree with asps2, seeing Shibuya crossing, Harakuju, just walking around, soaking in as much as you can in such a short time.

Tokyo is one the most amazing places in the world.

Posted by
565 posts

Plenty of people here have been to Tokyo. Please ignore the first reply.

Mount Fuji is best seen in the winter, but if you absolutely have to see it, go.

I could get lost in Nishi-Shinjuku alone for 2 days, but here are some must sees:

Shibuya Crossing for the sheer insanity of it
Yasukuni Shrine for the perspective of seeing war from the not-so-repentant defeated side
The Tokyo Museum in Ueno Park for the best Japanese art collection in the world.
The Akhibara district. Because it's absolutely nuts.

I enjoyed my stay at the Sunroute Shinjuku Plaza. It's a 5 minute walk from Shinjuku station (although Toei stops are next door), English widely spoken, across the street from a coffee/teahouse, next door to a fantastic Korean restaurant, and very reasonable rates. PM me with any questions.

Posted by
121 posts

Thanks for the suggestions. They were very helpful.

Posted by
809 posts

I was in Tokyo in January 2011 and was amazed at the beauty of the gardens even in winter - I hope you can find time to see one while you're there. Also enjoyed the Edo-tokyo Museum and the Fukugawa Edo museum. We found the Frommer's guide to Japan very helpful.

Posted by
191 posts

I would skip Mt. Fuji with your limited time and stay in Tokyo with a possible day trip to Kamakura.
In Tokyo, go to Asakusa and check out Sensoji. It is a temple right in Tokyo.

Kamakura is a great way to spend a day as it is close to Tokyo (easy train ride), and you can see lots of temples (Buddhist), shrines (Shinto) and a Big Buddha!

Posted by
18 posts

Use this website for your planning: As far as I know, the most informative website on travelling in Japan, they also have a dedicated forum in case you have more questions.

Must do? Tsukiji fish market. Get up early (as in 5/6am) because i believe the sushi will be sold out by 1pm and eat some of the freshest fish you will ever have in your life. Ginza district is a bit overrated imo, just upscale shops you find it any capital.

There's also this little alley near the subway station Shinjuku, called Omoide Yokocho (or piss alley), which is where japanese businessmen go to eat yakitori and drink beer after work. Not a lot of English is spoken (although that is Tokyo in general) so be prepared to eat whatever is given (and that may include chicken tongues, gizzards etc.).

For a great view of Tokyo, skip the skytree and go to the Metropolitan government building (it's free!) for a 360 view.