Tokyo’s technological leaps and passion for everything new has made the rest of the world sit up and take notice. A city made of smaller cities, Tokyo’s neighbourhoods are individual and unique in what each can offer, from cultural sights to vast shopping malls. Get ready for a whirlwind of modernity and tradition in the neon-lit Japanese capital.
Before you set your foot outside the hotel door, be aware of Tokyo’s complicated address system. Very few streets have names and instead are identified by numbers indicating building, block and area. 1-11-18, Shibuya, Shibuya-ku would therefore translate as the 18th building of the 11th block of the 1st area of Shibuya in Shibuya ward. Invest in a bilingual map of Tokyo and don’t hesitate to ask police for directions, as even the locals can get confused.
Once you have grasped the navigation system, Tokyo is a delight to get around. The metro is super efficient, the city is clean and people are courteous and friendly. Though addresses may be confusing, Tokyo is divided neatly into 23 wards, each with a certain distinctive characteristic. Visit Asakusa for old-town charm and temples, Ginza for shopping, Mecca and Akihabara for electronics galore. Blend old and new to get a taste of Tokyo’s great diversity.
Variety is Tokyo’s key. Few other world cities are as wonderfully idiosyncratic. International and local influences intertwine in cuisine, festivals, music, galleries, shopping and even accommodation. Bizarre and fast-moving, yet peaceful and intrinsically religious, Tokyo’s identity is above all, distinctly Japanese, despite existing as a world of its own.Read More