Tokyo Japan

I know I’ve said this before, but I expected Tokyo to be pretty lame.

Oh, another huge city. Wow, more buildings. Goodie, a crap ton of people crowding me.

No. It was amazing. It was one of the best trips I’ve ever been on.

Tokyo, Japan, is a foodie’s paradise. A partier’s dream. In fact, it’s even great for nature lovers.

The only catch is that visiting Tokyo is expensive. However, I provide you with some tips in this post to help shave off at least a little cash.

***Note: This post contains an affiliate link. This link will help you find the cheapest flights to Tokyo!

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Give me a rundown of Tokyo, Japan.

When you break it down, there are two things you should know about Tokyo before you go:

  1. You’ll never be able to see everything. The city is just too huge. Unless you have a huge chunk of time to spend in Tokyo, you should’t get too caught up in the idea of seeing everything.

  2. It’s weird. It’s just reeeeeeeally weird.
Mount Fuji Tokyo Japan
Mount Fuji

What are the best outdoor activities?

  1. Go to Fuji-Hakone-Izu National Park. Here, you can see Mount Fuji, relax in hot springs, and explore a lot of natural beauty. You can do the park in a day, but I really recommend spending one night in a hotel at the park. You’ll be able to relax and enjoy the park more if you’re not rushed for time.

  2. Ride bikes or jog in Imperial Palace. Doing so is free!

  3. Take a yakatabune boat trip. Yakatabune is a type of wooden boat tour. Taking a boat tour on Tokyo Bay is a unique way to see the city. I am sad I didn’t get to make time for this in my schedule. But like I said, we can’t make time for everything in Tokyo!
Meiji Shrine Tokyo Japan
The Meiji Shrine

What free things are there to do?

  1. Go to the Imperial Palace. This is a great free option for people who like greenery and parks.

  2. Visit Shibuya Crossing. This pedestrian crossing is the busiest in the world. If you’re in a building that looks down at the crossing, it’s a crazy sight. And walking the crossing is definitely a selfie-worthy moment!

  3. See the Meiji Shrine, which was dedicated to Emporer Meiji and Empress Shoken. You can write prayers and leave them at the shrine.

ramen Tokyo Japan

What/where should I eat?

  1. Eat all the sushi you can. I’m serious. It’s glorious. The best sushi I had was definitely at Tsukiji Fish Market.

  2. Eat Kobe beef. You can find it in a lot of places.

  3. Eat ramen. When I think of ramen, I think of those instant noodles college kids live on, and I shudder in disgust. But oh man, Tokyo changed my views of ramen.

drinking Tokyo Japan

What should I drink?

My only real recommendation is to drink sake, which is Japanese rice wine. You can drink sake either hot or cold. I prefer hot, because the heat makes it easier to sip.

park hyatt Tokyo Japan
The view from Park Hyatt at dusk

Which tourist spots are worth the hype, and which aren’t?

    1. As I mentioned above, the Fuji-Hakone-Izu National Park is worth it if you can spend two days there. I could only spend one day at the park, and cramming everything into that short period of time was so stressful that I’m not sure it was worth the visit.

    2. In my opinion, the Imperial Palace is kind of a letdown. It was beautiful, but it’s basically just another botanical garden.

    3. I thought Park Hyatt would be lame, but it was amazing. People talk about going to this hotel for the best view of Tokyo. And it is. This was absolutely my favorite part of Tokyo. (Besides the food, of course!)

    4. Akihabara is Tokyo’s nerdy neighborhood, and you should absolutely go here. Think video games, weird sex shops, maid cafes, comic books, etc. Even if you don’t consider yourself “nerdy,” it’s so fun to just go to this neighborhood and people watch.
tokyo japan
Airport time!

How do I get to Tokyo?

You can catch a flight to Tokyo from most big cities. However, research whether you should arrive at/depart from Narita Airport or Haneda Airport.

Choosing one airport over another may make your flights cheaper. Or one airport might be closer to your booked hostel or the area you want to hang out in the most often.

Click here to scour the Internet for the best flight deals to Tokyo via Skyscanner. This website has saved me hundreds of dollars on flights!

Imperial Garden Tokyo Japan
Imperial Palace

Miscellaneous Tidbits

Just remember, traveling to Tokyo is expensive. In my opinion, it’s worth the expense, but dropping a lot of money on a trip can be daunting.

For this reason, I recommend you look at my guide to saving money on your next big trip! Just subscribe to my newsletter below for the guide.