What comes to mind when you hear “Tokyo”? Most people think of a big city. That isn’t wrong. But there are also many spots where you can enjoy Japanese traditions, such as the tea ceremony, Kabuki, and traditional crafts such as Kintsugi, the art of restoring broken pottery with lacquer and gold. Experience surprisingly tranquil culture in the big city.
When people hear “Tokyo,” few would think about islands. However, Oshima Island, less than a two-hour boat ride away, has a towering volcano that is one of the world's largest active volcanoes. The starry sky of Kozushima Island is like a planetarium. Hachijojima Island is like a tropical resort, with the blue sea and vivid flowers. Venture out to discover all-new sides of Tokyo.
Temples and shrines stand next to modern buildings in Tokyo. The city’s oldest temple is Senso-ji in Asakusa, bustling with tourists. Entering Meiji Jingu Shrine will make you forget it is in Harajuku, a popular spot for young people. Hie Shrine has torii gates and is like a different world from the nearby buildings. Enjoy a mindful journey even in the city.
It is a must to savor meals that reflect Japan’s four seasons. A traditional kaiseki meal uses seasonal ingredients plus decorations for cuisine enjoyed with all five senses. The same is true of traditional wagashi sweets, which exemplify the seasons with motifs such as cherry blossoms in spring and the moon in fall. What delicacies will you enjoy during the season of your visit?
Sento are public bathhouses that Japanese people have used since long ago. Traditional sento have Mount Fuji painted on the walls, while modern sento may have a café or coworking space. Each sento has its own unique features, such as bath types and water temperature. With the sauna boom in Japan, more young people are going to sento. A sento could be your ultimate way to relax.