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Texas ISD School Guide
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Travel, Teach, Live in Japan

Traveling in Tokyo: What to Do and Where to Go on Your Tokyo Vacation
By:Jessica Elliott


Tokyo is perhaps a showcase for the most interesting blend of modernity and antiquity in the world. While the city streets are covered with department stores, restaurants, flashing neon signs, apartment buildings, vending machines, and crowds and crowds of people, some of Tokyo’s back streets are vibrant reminders of Japan’s culture, covered in small wooden houses with bamboo gardens. Tokyo is alive and booming 24 hours a day, and that combined with their low crime rates and excellent public transportation system makes the city one of the world’s most fantastic places to live and travel.

Historical and Cultural Attractions

While Tokyo is mostly about its vibrant nightlife, it is also an amazing trove of historical and cultural Japanese monuments. Some of Tokyo’s biggest historical and cultural attractions include the Imperial Palace, the home of the Japanese imperial family, and its surrounding gardens; Kitanomaru Park, home of Nihon Budokan, the stage for both martial arts competitions and live concerts as well as the Kagaku Gijyutsukan science museum; Yasukuni Shrine, a controversial shrine that houses those killed in Japanese wars; and Kanda Myojin, home of the Kanda Matsuri festival which takes place in mid-May every other year. These are only a few of the most popular historical and cultural attractions to be found in Tokyo.


In Tokyo, you are never too far from a vending machine that disperses beer 24 hours a day. With that in mind, it’s impossible to travel to Tokyo and not become immersed in the extreme atmosphere that is Tokyo’s nightlife. From inexpensive bars and nightclubs to pricey upscale restaurant / bars, Tokyo will leave no taste for a cocktail unsatisfied. Roppongi is a good area for drinkers that do not speak Japanese, Shibuya is the hotspot for live music and nightclubs, and Shimokitawaza is packed with restaurants and bars that cater to a college crowd. As far as dining, you would be hard-pressed not to find something you enjoy in one of the tens of thousands of Tokyo restaurants that serve every worldly cuisine you can imagine. Those with a taste for fresh fish and sushi won’t want to miss Tsukiji, often named one of the best sushi markets in the world. The shopping in Tokyo is also phenomenal; however, buying the same things you can get at home might be a bad idea, as Tokyo is one of the most expensive cities for shopping in the world. Instead, get your souvenirs at the Oriental Bazaar or the Nakamise arcade in Asakusa, or visit Tokyo’s only open air market, Ameyoko, in Ueno.

Jessica Elliott

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