A full day's walking tour through Tokyo’s shitamachi, or old town, with a knowledgeable guide. Starting in Asakusa, the first stop will be Taiko (Drum Museum), followed by a stroll down Kappabashi-dori (Kitchenware Street), to visit some specialist knife stores. Asakusa’s back streets are lined with traditional shops selling kimono, Japanese sweets and crafts.
A visit to the Edo Shitamachi Traditional Craft Museum will give you a glimpse of the traditional crafts of the shitamachi during the Edo Period (17th – mid 19th century) and the morning concludes with a visit to Sensoji Temple, the oldest temple in Tokyo. Lunch is in a local tempura restaurant.
A short taxi ride brings you to Ueno, where the afternoon begins. Jomyoin Temple is home to 84,000 Jizo (Bodhisattva) statutes, whilst nearby Kan-eji Temple was an important Buddhist temple during the Edo period. From here you will enter Ueno Park, home to some of Tokyo’s most famous museums, including Tokyo National Museum, Museum of Art and Science as well as the Metropolitan Art Museum and Western Art Museum. Your walk through Ueno Park ends at the Shitamachi Museum, where you can discover life as it was lived in Tokyo’s early 20th century.
The final destination for the day is the Ameyoko-cho market. A formal black market during after World War 2, it is one of Japan’s few remaining outdoor markets and sells clothes, fish, and spices amongst other things. What better way to end the day than with a cold beer or green tea and some local snacks including yakitori (grilled chickens) at one of the many small restaurants under the train tracks. The first round is on us!