Tokyo is a one-of-a-kind destination to visit that combines the ultra-modern with the traditional. For most people, Japan’s bustling capital is a dream vacation destination. It’s a city where ancient shrines can be found next to drip coffee shops and boutiques.

To make the most of your time in Tokyo, here is a weekend itinerary to help you achieve the most of your travel. It is essential to choose your Tokyo accommodation carefully, ensuring that it is central so that you can make the most of your limited time in the city. Airbnb vacation rentals in Tokyo, Japan are good for staying close to all your favorite attractions. Shinjuku, Tokyo Station, Shibuya, and Ginza are some of the best places to stay in Tokyo.

All of these areas are conveniently located and offer a pleasant local atmosphere as well as a diverse selection of restaurants. Tokyo is a massive, sprawling city that can seem impossible to navigate – especially if you’re short on time – but with a little planning, you can see a lot.

 

Day 1

Morning: Explore Asakusa and Roppongi

If you’re interested in Japanese history, visit the Asakusa and Senso-ji historic districts. Travel back in time by strolling through Nakamise shopping street before visiting Senso-ji, Asakusa’s ancient Buddhist temple. Walking around and taking in the sights can take hours. Vendors sell tasty local snacks, the best of which are wasabi peas. In the surrounding areas, there are also excellent local restaurants and souvenir shops.

Things to do in Tokyo for free 4 Explore Asakusa

Credits: Marufish

Tokyo Illumination Roppongi Christmas

Credits: Vanish Prabhune

Meanwhile, Roppongi is Tokyo’s most central district, and it’s the polar opposite of Asakusa. Its skyscrapers gleam and glisten, and its classy restaurants entice visitors. Roppongi Hills, an impressive business district with art galleries, film festivals, a local cinema, international restaurants, and even an observatory, is the main attraction for visitors.

Afternoon: Akihabara and Harajuku

Akihabara Tokyo Super Potato

Credits: IQRemix

Akihabara, known as Tokyo’s anime capital, is lined with shops selling anime, manga, and gaming merchandise. Selling a wide range of collectibles, including DVDs, figurines, and costumes. Akihabara is also the place to go if you want to visit a variety of themed cafes, especially maid cafes, which are a subcategory of cosplay. There’s no better way for a nerd to spend an afternoon. With its massive neon billboards, arcade machines echoing out into the streets, and pachinko parlors rattling and pinging left and right, Akihabara has an electric atmosphere.

Harajuku Shopping Cat Street

Credits: Joe Mabel

After you’ve finished geeking out, take the train to Harajuku. Harajuku is a tourist and fashion hotspot. Its main street has a wide range of souvenir shops as well as a few crepe and candy floss stands. In the quieter streets surrounding it, quaint hipster cafés line the alleys. Harajuku is a frantic, bustling neighborhood full of odd fashion and quirky shops.

Night: Enjoy Ebisu’s street food and nightlife

Tokyo is bustling with activity day and night.  Even if you are not a night owl, it is well worth your time to see what the city has to offer once the sun sets. Ebisu is a district known for its high concentration of restaurants and bars. It has everything from traditional izakaya to lively ramen bars. Ebisu Yokocho is a covered passageway lined with food stalls where visitors can try Japanese classic dishes like okonomiyaki,yakitori, kushikatsu, and takoyaki.

Experience the electric atmosphere at Japanese nightlife in bars, and move on to a club afterwards.  If late-night parties aren’t your thing, the Tokyo Skytree is the place to go. This impressive structure, which is officially Japan’s tallest tower, is a fun activity and a great way to see the entire city. Visiting late at night adds to the experience. View the city from a height of 350 or 450 meters and watch it come to life.

 

Day 2

Morning: Have a refreshing morning at Ginza and Ueno Park

Credit: flickr/tmtk

Ueno Park is Tokyo’s largest park, and you could spend an entire day strolling through its grounds. The Tokyo National Museum,  Tokyo Metropolitan Art Museum, and Shitamachi Museum are all located within the park. Spend the afternoon hopping from one museum to the next, then end the day with a picnic in the park. You can have your picnic with the nearest convenience store’s selection of takeout meals and snacks.

ameyoko street ueno tokyo japanAfter your relaxing time in the park, Ginza is the place to go for high-end shopping. Ginza is a posh neighborhood in Tokyo with some of the best sushi and top-tier restaurants for a luxurious dining experience.
Luxury brands, as well as well-known department stores and boutiques, can be found in the area. Restaurants, bars, and nightclubs can also be found here.

 

Afternoon: Shibuya

Shibuya is a district that never sleeps, densely packed and brightly lit. The dozens of clubs, which are popular among Tokyo’s youth, are frequently visited by travelers looking for a night out. Shibuya is the ultimate nighttime shopping destination because shops in the area stay open late.

hachiko dog japan

Hope on the Hachiko Bus when in Shibuya! (Source:wikimedia.org)

An iconic place that travelers love to visit is Shibuya. Shibuya Crossing is a busy street lined with crosswalks and illuminated by billboards and neon signs. It is an excellent place to begin your tour of the area. The crossing is widely regarded as a symbol of Tokyo’s liveliness and vibrancy. Say hello to the statue of Hachiko, Tokyo’s most famous dog.This statue of Hachiko, which stands in a small square outside the station, is a must-see photo opportunity for all visitors.

 

Night: Shinjuku

Shinjuku is a perfect reflection of Japan. It has parks, shrines, and temples coexisting with high-street shops, hipster cafés, and restaurants. It’s the most popular shopping destination for locals, first-time visitors, and those interested in witnessing a true clash of old and new Japan. Shinjuku is one of Tokyo’s busiest nightlife districts, with many shops open 24 hours a day. Shinjuku is home to Kabukicho, Tokyo’s “red-light district.”

Shinjuku Shopping Bicqlo

Credits: IQRemix

Visit one of the many rowdy izakayas, or Japanese pubs, for a true Japanese experience. A visit to Tokyo isn’t complete without a trip to the karaoke room. Even if you’re not a great singer, karaoke in Japan is set in a small private room with just you and your friends, so you can sing your heart out without worrying about strangers judging you.

 

Conclusion

Tokyo has so much to offer, and you might think you need two weeks to explore everything. Tokyo vibrates with potential adventure, from the Harajuku district, known for its alternative street fashion, to Shibuya Crossing, the world’s busiest intersection. However, if you’re on a spontaneous weekend trip, you can squeeze in many popular sights with this sample itinerary.

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Matane!

Your Japan Staff
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