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Why Tokyo?

Discover Japan's dazzling capital - where ancient meets modern

Tokyo, Japan’s bustling capital, is home to just over 9 million people, and is the country’s largest city. Tokyo mixes modern with traditional, from neon-lit skyscrapers, cherry tree-lined parks, attractive gardens and historic temples and shrines. Prior to 1868, Tokyo was known as Edo, a small castle town in the 16th century. In 1603 Edo became Japan’s political centre. Today, Tokyo offers a seemingly unlimited choice of shopping, entertainment, culture and dining to its visitors. What is unique to Tokyo is that it is made up of smaller cities without one true city centre. One of the most popular attractions in Tokyo is The Imperial Palace, located in the district of Taitō. Other districts of interest include Asakusa, where the city’s history can be appreciated. Other highlights are Ueno Park, the city’s largest green space and particularly worth a visit during the cherry blossom season, and Tokyo Skytree is the world’s tallest free-standing broadcast tower. Tokyo’s premier shopping area, the lively and popular neon-lit district of Ginza, is another highlight of the city. Tokyo also has a fantastic selection of Museums, from the renowned Ghibli Museum, showcasing the animation work of Studio Ghibli, to fabulous art museums and the historical Edo-Tokyo Museum.

For details on festivals, special events and attractions throughout Japan, please click here.

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Tokyo Highlights

Here we have selected a few of the sights and experiences that you really should see on a visit to Tokyo.


Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden

In addition to native, traditional Japanese gardens, this 144-acre park also has examples of French formal and English landscape gardens, all of which are worth visiting The park is filled with picturesque landmarks, such as a Taiwanese Pavilion on the edge of a tranquil pond. Formerly an imperial garden, it became a national garden after World War II.



The Senso-ji temple is at the end of the shopping street. Japanese worshippers gather around a large incense cauldron in front of the temple where the incense is said to encourage good health, before paying their respects at the Shinto shrine opposite.


Tsukiji Fish Market

The outer market, still in it's original position, has street-food stalls serving up everything from seared tuna to uni sandwiches in squid-ink sticky buns. Just down the road at Toyosu Market, meanwhile, you can taste fresh raw fish in a series of sushi bars and peek in on auctions and live fish sales from a second-story viewing station. You can also tour tour a large green space on the rooftop, which affords views of the Tokyo skyline.


Shibuya Crossing

Every visitor to Tokyo should visit the Shibuya Crossing and marvel at the organised way the public cross in their 1000's. The best time to go is at dusk, one of the crossings peak times and in its most flattering light.


Sumo at Ryoguku Kokugikan

Only three of six official grand tournaments happen in Tokyo, all at Ryoguku Kokugikan. The stadium houses over 11,000 eager fans under its green, pavilion-style roof. Official tournaments last just over two weeks each, which means Ryoguku Kokugikan sometimes hosts other events. But sumo is the arena's feature attraction, and if you're hoping to see sumo in Tokyo, this is where to find it.

A selection of tours to Tokyo

  • Best Value Japan new Flash other
    Japan Group Tour Value

    Private: Best Value Japan

    An 11 day tour staying in Best Value Japanese hostel accommodation, whilst exploring the country's main sights

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  • Discover Japan by Rail new flash other
    Japan Group Tour Rail

    Discover Japan by Rail

    A tour discovering this fascinating country's main attractions using iconic bullet trains

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  • Cherry Blossom update flash other
    Japan Group Tour Nature

    Cherry Blossom Tour

    A 13 day tour that explores the very best of Japan’s culture and nature, during the popular cherry blossom season.

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  • Essential Japan update flash other
    Japan Group Tour City

    Essential Japan

    The Essential Japan tour is perfect for the first time traveller to Japan.

    View this package
  • bridge river trees shinkyo nikko japan
    Japan Group Tour Culture

    Japan Golden Route

    This tour encompasses the classic Golden Route - Tokyo, Fuji and Kyoto

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  • South Korea Martial Arts
    Japan Group Tour Food

    Essential Japan and South Korea

    A perfect trip for the first time traveller to these two intriguing countries.

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  • Kinkakuji Temple The Golden Pavilion Kyoto japan
    Japan Group Tour City

    Japan and China

    An incredible two-centre tour combining the sights of Japan and China.

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  • Meiji Shrine Shibuya Tokyo japan
    Japan Semi-Escorted City

    Classic Japan

    Discover the culture and landscape of this amazing country, with our nine day Classic Japan tour.

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  • car road countryside sea mountains japan
    Japan Semi-Escorted Trekking

    Japan Self-Drive Holiday

    Hiring a car to get around Japan is a fantastic way to explore the country, especially as they drive on the left.

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  • Lake Ashi hakone japan
    Japan Semi-Escorted Family

    Japan Family Tour

    Explore the history and culture of this amazing country, with fun-filled excursions for all the family.

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  • Geisha temple Kyoto japan
    Japan Semi-Escorted Culture

    Japan Heritage

    Explore Japan’s classic sights, starting in the exciting capital city of Tokyo, famous for its fresh sushi.

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  • frost snow monkeys pool yudanaka japan
    Japan Semi-Escorted Nature

    Great Trail of Japan

    Journey through Japan, taking in some of the most picturesque locations.

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