A visit to Japan is not complete if you leave out the cherry blossom. Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden is among the best spots to take a look at this beauty. Known as sakura, the cherry blossom blooms in late March and early April. During this season, millions of people all over the world flock to the spots to admire the beauty without distance. Bring along your cameras and food packs for a picnic under the trees of flowers. Petals falling down with breezes will definitely give you a lifetime memory of the scenic view.
Shinjuku, one of the busiest areas surrounding the railway station, is home to the twin towers of the Tokyo Metropolitan Government Office. You can take a look of the scenic city view at its observation decks on the 45th floor which are open to public for free. Meanwhile, northeast of the station is Japan’s largest red light and entertainment district, Kabukicho.
The Mori Tower in Roppongi Hills is a great place to spend an early evening. With a $15 ticket, you can catch the sunset view of Tokyo from the rooftop overlook and take in the latest exhibition at the contemporary art museum on the 51st floor which usually features the work of an emerging Asian artist.
Sumo is the national sport of Japan and has a long history, dated back 2,000 years ago. Figurines of sumo wrestlers have been unearthed dating back to between the third and seventh centuries. It is basically a wrestling event competed in a circular ring known as dohyo. Though with a long history, many ancient traditions and rituals have been preserved, such as the use of salt purification. You can catch some of the action at Ryogoku Kokugikan, Tokyo’s National Sumo Hall during the three grand tournaments in January, May and September.
Mount Fuji, The Hightest Mountain in Japan
For those who love nature, a visit to the symbol of Japan, Mount Fuji, is a must. It is the highest mountain in Japan with 3,776.24 m. located on Honshu Island, it can be seen from Tokyo on a clear day. Mount Fuji is frequently depicted in art and photographs and popular among sightseers and climbers for its symmetrical cone that is snow-capped several months a year. The nearest airport with scheduled international service is Mt. Fuji Shizuoka Airport. Haneda Airport Tokyo International Airport) and Narita International Airport in Chiba are hours from Mount Fuji.
If you love tranquility, perhaps you should visit temples and shrines. Among the most famous one is the Meiji-Jingu Shrine that is a striking contrast to the hustle and bustle of the metropolis. There is a 12-meter-high torii gate at the entrance and a smaller one adjacent to the shrine. Purify your hands and mouth with the water from a communal water tank before offering your prayer. On Sunday mornings, you are likely to witness a traditional wedding procession through the courtyard. Meiji-jingu is open from sunrise to sunset with free admission. You can reach there by the JR Yamanote line to Harajuku station.
If you happened to be visiting Kyoto, one activity to do at night is to watch the famous cultural show of geishas. As the services of entertaining while dining at an ochaya (tea house or tearoom) is expensive and exclusive, a more affordable way is to see the show held daily at Gion Corner that aimed at foreign tourists. It is a concentrated introduction to a few traditional Japanese arts that includes short performances of tea ceremony, ikebana (flower arrangement), bunraku (traditional puppet theatre), Kyogen (comic play) and dances performed by maiko (apprentice geisha). In April, there is also daily dance performance at Miyako Odori (Spring Dance Festival).
Famous Nightlife District in Tokyo
Ageha is the first entertainment danceclub to go when you’re visitng Tokyo, Japan. With mostly international DJs invited for gigs at Ageha and Japanese DJs hyped up the night with club mix!
Feel like the night are still young? Head on to WOMB Club is located in Shibuya nightlife district. Womb Club is popular dance club known wordwide and is one of the largest dance clubs in Tokyo, with powerful sound systems and sci-fi laser lighting effects. Definitely a must visit if you like to dance all night long. WOMB is voted #78 under the Top 100 Clubs in DJMag 2012.
In Shibuya nightlife district, you can find popular clubs such as The Room, Club Atom, Club Harlem, Club Asia and many more.
Clubs in Tokyo are ranked in Gaijin levels, some clubs have the most Japanese hanging out which only speaks Japanese language, some with 50/50 of local Japanese with foreigners and some are occupied with mostly foreigners. So if you’re heading to a club in Tokyo, you might consider this Gaijin level.
Most of the clubs in Tokyo runs till wee hours and featured top notch world DJs spinning music genre of House, techno and trance music as well as underground music.
The most important thing to do when going clubbing in Japan is to bring along your ID, dress smart, no sandals or shorts and this dress code definitely applies to any night clubs you go in Tokyo’s clubbing scene.
Other great partying areas including Naka-meguro, Azabu-Juban, Shibuya, Shinjuku (Kabukicho) or Ikebukuro. Others dance clubs to check out are Warehouse 702, Club Feria and Vanity Lounge located in Roppongi, with popular DJs featured on the weekends and you might get the chance to bump on popular celebrities.