Trip to Japan: Tokyo
My entire life I have been dreaming of traveling to Japan and, last week, I finally got to go!
My parents used to travel to Japan often for work (my dad was in the car business with Honda), but somehow I never got the chance to go until now. Fortunately, it was everything I hoped it would be and more! I instantly fell in love with the generous, respectful culture and traditional architecture mixed with modern. The food and bar scene was the most surprising to me in terms of variety and unique options. As a vegetarian, I was a bit nervous, but was not disappointed with one meal I had. I experienced many new flavors including new beer such as a raspberry Japanese beer.
We did everything from viewing the city from the top of Tokyo Tower to experiencing all that is the famous Robot Restaurant (literally the craziest thing I have ever seen). We spent hours going through local markets discovering both antiques and modern-day Japanese trinkets. We vintage shopped and enjoyed savory and sweet Japanese pancakes. It was an absolute dream! Below you will find my list of suggestions to do in Tokyo. I left out anything I didn’t absolutely love, so I am confident you will enjoy each item on the list. If you have been to Tokyo, I would love to hear what else you would recommend in the comments below. Enjoy!
-Explore the Imperial Palace East Gardens and Shinjuku National Garden
-Explore Harajuku for shopping, especially the vintage stores hidden in alleyways (bonus: eat a crepe at one of the many stands there!)
-Visit the Meiji Jingo Shrine
-Visit Nezu Museum and Garden
-Shop the Asakusa Market, specifically Nakamise Dori street where you will find many Japanese cheap trinkets
-Visit Akihabara to see the famous Tokyo Anime Center (and if you want a bizarre, yet fun experience, visit a Maid Cafe)
-Get up early to experience the Tsukiji Fish Market and try one of the many restaurants surrounding it that serve fresh fish caught just hours before
-Visit Mitsukoshi, Japan’s oldest department store, where you will be greeted with an opening ceremony each morning, then head to the food hall where you will find so many excellent Japanese chocolates!
-Enjoy casual drinks at one of the tiny 5-8 capacity bars in Golden Gai (this was one of my highlights of the trip!)
-Have fancy drinks at the New York Bar on the top floor of the Park Hyatt Hotel for the best views of the city!
-Go to Robot Restaurant for a trippy Tokyo show (I’ve never tried acid, but I think the Robot experience comes close to the acid experience!)
-End a night at Karaoke Kan in a private room singing your heart out!
–Tsukiji Fish Market for breakfast – go to one of the small sushi restaurants before 7am so you don’t have to wait too long!
–Rainbow Pancake – savory and sweet Japanese pancakes – TO DIE FOR! (for breakfast or brunch)
–Afuri – best ramen! (for lunch)
–Savoy Azabu-juban – best Japanese pizza (for lunch)
–Minoya – Michelin restaurant with only 10 seats – my favorite dining experience the entire trip! Only 80 Yen for an extensive tasting! Go for dinner.
–Higashi-Yama – Carey’s favorite restaurant of the trip in a beautiful contemporary Japanese townhouse – incredible food and vibe! (for dinner)