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For Beginners! Model Course for Exploring the Major Sightseeing Spots in Tokyo – Asakusa and Ueno Edition

One of the leading megalopolises in the world, Tokyo is overflowing with sightseeing spots. Below is a model course for touring the major sightseeing spots in Ueno and Asakusa districts from Tokyo Station in a day.

2017.12.14
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Transit ▶ Tokyo Station → Akihabara Station

Take the Keihin-Tohoku Line from JR Tokyo Station, and get off at Akihabara Station after about 3 minutes on the train

Around 10:00 am: Depart from Tokyo Station, then Sightsee and Shop in Akihabara

The first target spot in this course is Akihabara. Japan’s premiere electric town, Akihabara, is known as the mecca of the so-called otaku (nerd) culture. It is home to all kinds of shops dealing with electronics – from major stores that sell the latest electrical appliances, up to shops that carry electronic goods with a cult-like following. Shops that sell goods related to anime, comics, games, and idol merchandise, along with maid cafes and other shops, are also famous here.

▼Length of stay (approximate)▼
1 hour

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Transit ▶ Akihabara Station → Ueno Station

Take the Keihin-Tohoku Line Rapid from JR Akihabara Station, and get off at Ueno Station after about 3 minutes on the train

11:05 am: Sightsee and Have Lunch at Ueno ameyoko Shopping District

Next stop is the Ueno Ameyoko Shopping District that sees an endless stream of people throughout the year. This area is filled with rows of restaurants that mainly serve fish, crab, and other seafood dishes, as well as stores that sell shoes, apparel, and miscellaneous goods. When you’ve experienced the bargains and bustling atmosphere that is abuzz with the voices of high-spirited hawkers attracting customers into their shops, then it’s nearly time for lunch! It is highly recommended that you go to two shops where you can casually eat the food while walking.

▼Length of stay (approximate)▼
2 hours

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11:05 am: Sightsee and Have Lunch at Ueno ameyoko Shopping District

Ohyama Ueno Shop

Ohyama is a restaurant that is directly managed by a popular meat wholesaler. While it has steaks and other luxurious dishes in its menu, it also offers a take-out menu that includes treats like the menchi-katsu (made by finely chopping ground meat and onions, mixing them with seasonings and spices, covering it in breadcrumbs, and then deep-frying it), which matches perfectly with the casual vibe in Ameyoko. It’s crispy on the outside and juicy on the inside! Stuff your cheeks with freshly cooked menchi-katsu that is loaded with beef. One of the dishes that you can have here is the Tokusei Menchi (special menchi-katsu) (200 JPY (excl. tax)).

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Minatoya Food Main Shop

Minatoya Food is a shop that is famous for its kaisen-don (bowl of rice topped with sashimi) and other dishes that use fish directly delivered from Tsukiji Market. If you will be eating while walking, then their takoyaki (octopus dumplings) is recommended. Munching on piping hot takoyaki with beer is the best! Sample dish: 4 pieces of Takoyaki (200 JPY), etc.

All right, now that our stomachs are full, let’s head to the next destination – Kappabashi Dougu Street!



Transit ▶ Ueno Station → Tawaramachi Station

Take the Tokyo Metro Ginza Line from Ueno Station, and get off at Tawaramachi Station after about 3 minutes on the train

1:10 pm: Sightsee and Shop in Kappabashi Dougu Street

Approx. 3-minute walk from Tawaramachi Station

Kappabashi Dougu Street is a famous shopping district that boasts a history of over 100 years. Around 170 shops selling Japanese, Western, and Chinese tableware, lacquerware, confectionery/baking equipment, kitchen equipment/tools, raw ingredients/packing supplies for food, and other items are lined up on this street that stretches around 800m north to south. Ordinary people get to buy professionals’ favorite products, making this street extremely popular among enthusiasts. Tourists visiting Japan apparently love the Japanese knives and plastic food samples here!

▼Length of stay (approximate)▼
50 minutes

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1:10 pm: Sightsee and Shop in Kappabashi Dougu Street

Transit ▶ Tawaramachi Station → Asakusa Station

Take the Tokyo Metro Ginza Line from Tawaramachi Station, and get off at Asakusa Station after about 1 minute on the train

2:05 pm: Sightseeing in Asakusa

Next, let’s enjoy Asakusa, one of the most popular sightseeing areas in Tokyo! You can visit Asakusa Senso-ji, the oldest temple in Tokyo that houses Kaminari-mon, whose symbol is the huge red lantern, or go shopping at Nakamise Shotengai (Nakamise Shopping Center). Another recommended thing to do here is to ride on a rickshaw and go around the tourist spots in the area. If you come in the spring, you will get to see beautiful sakura (cherry blossoms), while in the summer, you can enjoy a huge fireworks display.

▼Length of stay (approximate)▼
2 hours

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Transit ▶ Asakusa Station → TOKYO SKYTREE Station

Take the Tobu Skytree Line from Asakusa Station, and get off at TOKYO SKYTREE Station after about 3 minutes on the train

4:05 pm: Go to Tokyo Solamachi

Short walk from Tokyo Skytree Station

Next, move to the vicinity of Tokyo Skytree – the new symbol of Tokyo. First, head over to Tokyo Solamachi, which is a commercial facility that has more than 300 shops and restaurants. They offer a wide variety of goods, from fashion items to miscellaneous products and food, making it the perfect spot for fully enjoying shopping. There is also a planetarium and an aquarium inside the property.

▼Length of stay (approximate)▼
1 hour

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4:05 pm: Go to Tokyo Solamachi

Have Unagi for Dinner

For dinner, try the famous shop, Maekawa, on the seventh floor. It is a veteran restaurant that boasts of over 200 years of history serving unagi (eel) dishes. Their aromatic grilled unagi covered in salty-sweet sauce is fatty, and has a melt-in-your-mouth texture. One of the dishes here is the Unaju (broiled eel served on top of rice) (prices start at 4,212 JPY (incl. tax)). English and Chinese (simplified and traditional) menus are available.

▼ Length of stay (approximate)▼
50 minutes

Have Unagi for Dinner

Gaze at the Sunset from TOKYO SKYTREE

TOKYO SKYTREE is the tallest tower in the world with a height of 634m, which was certified by the Guinness World Records. If you go up the Tembo Deck that is 350m above ground, you can see the whole Kanto region, and even Mt. Fuji on a clear day. It need not be said that the view here is stunning during the day, but note that it is also famous for its utterly gorgeous sunset view and nightscape.

Sample admission fee: Same-day Ticket for Tembo Deck
Adult (18 years old and over): 2,060 JPY
High school and junior high school student (12 – 17 years old): 1,540 JPY
Elementary school student (6 – 11 years old): 930 JPY
Toddler (4 – 5 years old): 620 JPY

▼Length of stay (approximate)▼
40 minutes

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Gaze at the Sunset from TOKYO SKYTREE

Heading Back

After marveling at the beautiful sunset and night views, you can go home by heading straight to Tokyo Station. But if you want to have a little more fun, then stop by Yurakucho Station on the way. It is also a great idea to go home after having a drink or two at the famous Guard Shita (under the train tracks) – a famous alley lined with drinking spots.

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Transit ▶ TOKYO SKYTREE Station → Tokyo Station

Via Tokyo Skytree Line → Transfer at Asakusa Station → Via Toei Asakusa Line → Transfer at Asakusabashi Station → Via Chuo-Sobu Line → Transfer at Akihabara Station → Get off at Yurakucho Station via Keihin Tohoku Line, 34 minutes total. After a drink at a drinking joint at Guard Shita (around 7:15 pm – 9:00 pm), get on the Yamanote Line, and you will reach Tokyo Station in about 2 minutes.

Aside from the spots featured in this course, there are many other famous shops that are recommended in Asakusa and Ueno. Please enjoy sightseeing there!

*Please note that the information in this article is from the time of writing or publication and may differ from the latest information.

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Writer: nakamura

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