Tokyo is a place where you can come into contact with a variety of fascinating things, including traditional Japanese culture, subculture, and the latest fashion. Besides just sightseeing and shopping, you can discover new aspects of Japan's allure by having various experiences.
Tour the Urban Area on a Rickshaw!
Take a tour of the popular Asakusa area with Tokyo Skytree(R) and Kaminarimon. A shafu (rickshaw puller) who knows the local area inside out will take photos and guide you through the area. They can take you to places not many people know about, that you would not find by regular sightseeing. It is also recommended for foreign tourists because there are many shafu who can speak English. You can choose from several courses depending on your purpose and how much time you have. They vary from a 1km short ride around Kaminarimon (12 to 13 minutes), to full-blown chartered courses.
Ebisuya Asakusa Rickshaw えびす屋 浅草店
- Address East Building 3F, 1-20-4 Asakusa, Taito-ku, Tokyo, 111-0032
How About Strolling the Streets of Asakusa While Wearing a Kimono?
Sakura Photo Studio, located 2 minutes' walk from Kaminarimon, has a collection of more than 200 kimono, varying from summer yukata to vivid furisode (long-sleeved kimono). They have everything needed for wearing kimono, so you can come empty-handed to enjoy the experience. Makeup, a walking guide, and a photo session in the studio or outside on location are additional options. Some of the staff speak English. Customers with reservations are given priority.
Sakura Photo Studio サクラフォトスタジオ
- Address Suzuki Building 4F, 1-12-12 Kaminarimon, Taito-ku, Tokyo, 111-0034
Learning the Japanese Spirit Through Tea Ceremony
The tea ceremony is a complete work of art which is related to various fields including flower arrangement, calligraphy, Japanese sweets, and architecture. At Chayu Kurabu (meaning "tea friends club") Koomon, in addition to a tea ceremony experience, an experience of making matcha (powdered green tea) yourself is also available. Because they can provide the service in English and prepare chairs for those who are not used to sitting in seiza position (on the floor with feet folded under you), it is popular with foreign tourists. You can combine it with a kimono experience as well. Reservations required.
A Casual-Style Experience in Making Traditional Japanese Paper
Washi (Japanese traditional paper) is rated highly all over the world for its distinctive texture and durability. Ozu Washi in Nihonbashi is a washi seller that was established in 1653. In a corner of the shop with various papers on display is the Handmade Washi Experience Studio where you can experience making paper. You can learn the process of making paper in about an hour. There is no minimum number of people for the experience, but reservations take priority. You can keep the paper you make!
Experience the Art of Making Plastic Food Replicas
Colorful plastic samples are displayed at Ganso Shokuhin Sample-ya. On the second floor of the Kappabashi Showroom, you can experience making food replicas using wax. Based on a program designed by artisans, the staff will teach you the traditional techniques. You will make two kinds of plastic tempura and a head of lettuce in approximately one hour. A reservation by phone is required. Please note that the instruction is available only in Japanese.