At a glance
For travelers from overseas, experience in Tokyo can be wonderful for some, but frustrating for others. Tokyo is a gigantic maze. This is partly true. However, if you are instructed first-hand on how to get around major districts and how to use subway and trains, you will be able to explore this town with ease. Tokyo is one of the most expensive cities in the world. This is also partly true. However, if you are advised by savvy natives, you will find very nice restaurants and shops at reasonable prices.
If you are a nature lover, visit Mt. Takao or Mt. Mitake, known as historical ascetic training area. Escape from the hustle and bustle of downtown Tokyo, enjoy the wilderness which you cannot imagine this is Tokyo, and a hike in the sacred ground.
You cannot enter the actual palace (inner palace) except on January 2 and December 23 (present Emperor’s birthday).
For runners, jogging around Imperial Palace, a 5 km course, is an experience not to be missed. The palace is located in the center of Tokyo. Famous views will keep coming into sight, such as gates, bridges, moats and massive stone walls of Imperial palace, business center of Japan in Marunouchi and Otemachi business district and National Diet Building. If you are not a runner, it is worth just walking the course.
Tsukiji is a must-see place not just for sushi-fans. Tsukiji is the one of the largest wholesale fish and seafood markets in the world. Daily trade value amounts to as much as $ 30 million. Just wander around the Jogai market and you will find not only fresh seafood, meat and vegetables but many necessary ingredients that add charm to delicious Japanese cuisine, such as konbu (kelp)and katsuo-bushi (dried bonito fish, respectively, for making broths), nori (sheets of laver) and even rolled eggs. Of course, the highlight of the visit to Tsukiji is definitely sushi restaurant. You can enjoy the freshest sushi lunch for about 30dollars.
Mt. Takao & Mt. Mitake
Visit sacred mountains in Tokyo within 1.5 hour by local train. If you love walking in nature, but have no time to travel around Japan, Mt. Takao and Mt. Mitake can be recommended.
Mt. Takao is known as a Michelin awarded mountain in Tokyo. From the mountain base, a cable car ride and a short hike will take you to the top of mountain of 472 metres above sea level. Visit a mountain temple established in 744. If the weather is clear, you will be able to see a view of Mt. Fuji, Japan Alps, and skyscrapers in Shinjuku city. Enjoy buckwheat noodles with grated yum and steamed buns in this area.
Mt. Mitake is considered as the center of ancient mountain worship around Tokyo area. Mitake shrine has been believed for longevity, prosperity and protection against evils, since the establishement in 90 B.C. Take a hike to small gorge, waterfalls for ascetic monks, and mysterious tree of 1000 years. Experience mountain-style herbal lunch at one of the established monasteries. After a hike, it is nice to visit a sake brewery or a beautiful stone garden highly ranked in "Journal of Japanese Gardening" magazine.
Since it is required to hike on rocky paths, hundreds of stairs, steep slopes, please make sure that you are in good health, wearing good shoes and preparing rain wear, snacks, etc. For details on Mt. Mitake private tour, please click here.
Tokyo Private Tour
If you would like to take a 1 day Tokyo Private Tour, click Tokyo Private Tour.
We will design your own tour of Tokyo or the surrounding area of Tokyo (Kamakura, Nikko, etc) with an English-speaking licensed tour guide.