If you are thinking of going to Japan at some point, do not hesitate, it is a country that does not leave you indifferent, and if your destination cities are Tokyo and Kyoto, you will leave totally in love with this country. I leave you some notes that can help you when it comes to creating your route:
Ginza / Downtown
- La Lonka Tsukiji: they say that it is open 24 hours, except when we went, the idea was to see the bustle of uploads and downloads, but it was not possible. If you dare to go, around the market there are a lot of fish stalls and restaurants with fresh fish.
- The Sony Building: it is to go with time and if you are passionate about technology, you will be able to see the latest that Sony brings out, they are things that you will not see, so if you go with time, this building is on the route of the theater and the fish market.
- The Imperial Palace: you cannot enter, only the east garden of the palace. If you finally do not want to enter, it is worth walking through the gardens on arrival at the palace, it is a very pleasant walk.
- The Kabuki-za Theater: it has an absolutely wonderful facade, it deserves to go there to dedicate a photo to it. If you have time to see a performance, do not hesitate, yes, you have to like the traditional Japanese theater a lot.
- The Ginza area, in general, is full of expensive shops, a kind of Ortega Gasset street (Madrid). However, there is a building in this area that is worth seeing, the Mikimoto building, especially illuminated at night.
- The Ameya-yokocho market: it is worth seeing, because you go from the fashion of Ginza to a kind of our markets, here you will see the amount of fish that they are capable of drying, the roughest Japanese and eating freshly cut fruit skewers.
- Ueno-Koen: it is a very quiet park with a pond full of water lilies, around the ponds there are usually homeless people, but they are totally harmless and very respectful they do not ask you for anything.
It is an area with a significant number of skyscrapers and where the metropolitan government offices are, it is free to go up, of course, do not hesitate because from here you can see a panoramic view of all of Tokyo when you go down (each tower has a different closing time) Go to the reception area, they have a lot of guides and maps of the city and organized by neighborhood with the most important things to see).
This area is not too interesting in my opinion. If you stop by, you can see the largest warehouses in the world: Tobu and Seibu.
Especially in Ebisu, it is a quiet area to go to dinner at night, it is a kind of Alonso Martínez (Madrid) with super cool bars and restaurants. We were in a hilarious one, which had baskets with all kinds of sweets hanging all over the place, that you could go eating while having a beer, I really don’t remember the name, but as a reference, its facade was full of lanterns, yes. If you come to see it, it is worth going to have a beer.
Without a doubt, it is the area that I liked the most, it is where there is the most noise: in this area is Omotesando, Takeshita Dori, Yoyoigi park, and the Shibuya 109 shopping center which is hilarious, it has a few floors dedicated to clothing for young people. You will be surprised at how impossible some of them are, it will be very fun to see Japanese women with those styles.
This area is to go at night so that you can see the skyline of the city, and the replicas of the Eiffel Tower, the rainbow bridge, the boats, see the street performances and dine on one of the many terraces there are.
And especially to see the Fuji TV Headquarters, the facade is very original illuminated at night.
If you want to buy some electronics, of course, the Electric City area is perfect, there is the latest of the latest.
If you want to enter the SEGA building, one pass, it has several floors of arcade and video games, full of young people and executives who come after work. And if you walk down this street you will see several comic shops and manga toys, a luxury.
There is the Sensoki Temple (the oldest temple in Tokyo). Little more.
The Sengakuji Temple. Little more.
The must-sees outside of Tokyo are:
Hakone, to see Mount Fuji.
Nikko, spectacular, after seeing this, personally the temples of central Tokyo are not worth seeing, really. This area is to arrive in the morning and leave in the afternoon quietly.
From Kyoto to Tokyo you can move on the shinkansen, incredible the speed the train reaches. The visit to Kyoto is mainly to see temples, a city full of them, and every one of the temples that can be visited (there are several free) do not leave you indifferent, each one has its style.
- From the central train station in Kyoto, you have to climb a hundred stairs that it has to see the panoramic view of the city, it is very worth it.
- There are dozens of spectacular temples, you will like them all, for sure. A must also outside of Kyoto is to go to Nara, very beautiful and relaxing to walk and spend the day.
- The Fushimi-inari shrine (which does not appear in many guides) incredible, full of orange totem poles (toriss), you have to do a good climb of stairs but it is very worth it. And then, going down the area there are as many other beautiful temples.
You will love the people, the kimonos of the young women, the bows that are constantly made to greet each other, how they put their hands with the two fingers of victory when they go to take a photo, the plastic plates simulating the food that you can order, etc. Ah! And then or before the trip, you read Tokyo Blues by Haruki Murakami or Tremors and Stupor by Amélie Nothomb, and you will surely like the country better. Anyway, enjoy it a lot, if it’s hot (when we went there was a wave of heat) take it easy because you have to go in water packs and walk slowly because it is good to heat.