No trip to Japan would be complete without a visit to its legendary capital city. Where else can travellers visit the world’s most famous fish auction, pray at a 1,000-year-old temple and eat out on the charmingly named Piss Alley all in one day? These are the 20 things you must do when you’re in Tokyo
Eat the freshest sushi in town at Toyosu Fish Market
© Cameron Hilker / Alamy Stock Photo
Tokyo is famous for its superb sushi, and one of the best places to get your hands on some is the Toyosu Fish Market. In 2018, the world-famous Tsukiji Fish Market relocated to Toyosu, and the latter now hosts the market’s renowned daily tuna auction. You can still visit Tsukiji, though, where the historic outer market’s food stalls and restaurants remain in business.
Explore historic Asakusa and its ancient temple, Sensō-ji
© Jui-Chi Chan / Alamy Stock Photo
The well-worn neighbourhood of Asakusa and its main attraction, the sacred temple Sensō-ji, are must-visits – there’s nothing else quite like them in Tokyo. The classical temple, with its iconic red lantern and the charming Nakamise shopping street that lines its approach, will transport you to Japan of old. Nearby is Hanayashiki, the oldest amusement park in the country.
Strut your stuff in stylish Harajuku
© Filip Fuxa / Alamy Stock Photo
Visitors can explore the fashionable Harajuku, Omotesandō and Aoyama neighbourhoods in a single day. But if you only go to one, make it Harajuku. The colourful area’s Takeshita-dōri (Takeshita Street) is the place to go for offbeat style, such as Lolita, a Japanese fashion inspired by Victorian and Rococo clothing. Continue your shopping trip at the high-end brands in Omotesandō, admiring the stunning architecture along the way, and finish up in the art galleries and cafes of cultured Aoyama.
Snap up anime films and collectables at Akihabara
© Roland Nagy / Alamy Stock Photo
Tokyo’s Electric Town wows visitors with its sheer volume of anime, manga and gaming paraphernalia. Discerning shoppers will be able to find everything they need to complete their collection – comics, DVDs, detailed figurines, trading and playing cards, costumes, magazines and an endless supply of knick-knacks. It’s also the place to check out Tokyo’s quirky maid cafes.