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Lush Nature and Gourmet Delights: Explore Tokyo’s Fun, Famous Rooftops!

Department Stores

In Japan, the rooftops of department stores have long been popular. It all started back in the 1940s and 50s when the first department stores started to build various attractions on their spacious rooftops. Resembling genuine amusement parks, these rooftops quickly became easily accessible entertainment for old and young, but especially for children, these rooftops were like a paradise high above the ground. While you’ll still find some attractions here and there, nowadays department stores have taken a different route to using their rooftop space. A lot of them transformed their highest open-air floor into relaxing, sophisticated spaces for the grown-up Tokyoite, offering rich gardens, barbecue, and restaurant corners that let you savor the taste of Tokyo while gazing over the city’s amazing skyline. In recent years, a lot of department stores have made great strides in redeveloping their rooftops and are quickly becoming some of the city’s most well-beloved leisure and dating spots. Here are our favorites, the must-visit rooftop hot spots that’ll give you a whole new perspective on Tokyo!

Dinner in Kagurazaka: 3 Recommended Restaurants to Enjoy an Authentically Japanese Evening

Kagurazaka Sashimi

Kagurazaka is a neighborhood close to Tokyo’s Imperial Palace, famous for its historic scenery and old Edo atmosphere. Waseda-dori is the main street leading through the area, but don’t be afraid to explore some of the narrow alleys as well – numerous secret hotspots dot the narrower streets of Kagurazaka! This time, we’ll take you to three restaurants of Kagurazaka that skillfully unite the charm of old Japan with an amazing gourmet experience!

Ryokan Sawanoya: Four Reasons Why This is Tokyo’s Most Popular Japanese Inn

Ueno Ryokan

Two rooms have their own bath and toilet but the guests of the other ten rooms have to share a bathroom – these twelve Japanese-style rooms belong to Ryokan Sawanoya, a traditional Japanese inn run by an equally Japanese family. Simple and without much décor, these rooms can be called almost nostalgically Japanese when examined from a Japanese perspective. This is by no means a bad thing, however, seeing that Ryokan Sawanoya boasts an annual occupancy rate of 95% throughout its 30 year long history, with 87% being guests from overseas. After talking to Mr. Isao Sawa, the owner of the ryokan, I realized why his traditional Japanese inn was so immensely popular among international tourists.

Ueno’s Ameyoko – Tokyo’s Charismatic Shopping Paradise of Amazing Deals

Ueno Pharmacies

One of the favorite pastimes of many a visitor to Japan is going on a souvenir shopping spree, hauling in as many amazing goods and deals as possible. In Ginza, people shop for high-end and trendy fashion in its many department stores and high-class duty free shops, while Shinjuku is known for its abundance of massive electronics retailers – Tokyo offers many a shopping spree hot spot. One of them is Ameyoko in Ueno, an atmospheric open-air market that offers various stores selling a massive selection of fashion, cosmetics, drugs and medicine, and even fresh food at almost ridiculously cheap prices. Additionally, Ameyoko is close to both Koreatown and Asakusa, famous for its many sightseeing spots, and since the atmospheric open-air market has always been very popular among international visitors, Ameyoko is known as extremely welcoming and tourist-friendly since many years. Let’s take a stroll through this wonderfully busy and bustling shopping area and take a look at some of its most popular shops, stores, and stalls!

Free Wi-Fi: Staying Connected in Japan

Despite Japan’s reputation as a country on the cutting edge of technology, travelers to Japan may find that the nation is not as generous with Wi-Fi accessibility compared to other major tourist destinations. One thing that you will notice about Wi-Fi in Japan is that is as although there are many available hotspots, places will often require registration (either with an e-mail address or social networking account) as well as the use of a password. Additionally, if it is your first time connecting to a public hotspot, note that you will want to connect to the SSID indicated and then navigate to a website in your browser to complete registration. As Tokyo prepares to welcome more tourists leading up to the 2020 Olympic and Paralympic games, Japan is working on ways to alleviate Wi-Fi connectivity problems by updating its citywide Wi-Fi network and making access to Wi-Fi hotspots as smooth as possible. In addition, multi-lingual directions and support are available in a variety of languages including English, traditional and simplified Chinese, Korean, and Thai. For information on Wi-Fi apps, city-wide Wi-Fi hotspots, pocket Wi-Fi, and sim cards, use this guide to help you connect during your stay in Tokyo!

[MOVIE] DRUM TAO’S MANGEKYO – a Kaleidoscope of Taiko Drums

Shinagawa Shows

Japan’s traditional drums, taiko, conquered video games, modern pop music, and stages all over the world alike. Ranging from small to so big that they tower over whoever plays them, taiko drums have held an important place in Japanese culture ever since the 6th century. One group, however, has taken the traditional art of taiko drumming and adapted it to the global style of the 21st century in the most fascinating fashion imaginable. Meet DRUM TAO and their Martial Art of Drumming!

Choice Spots

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  • Harajuku
  • Ikebukuro
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  • Shibuya
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  • Tsukiji
  • Ueno

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