Tokyo or Tokyo, is one of 47 prefectures and also capital of Japan since 1869. In this article, we will make an analysis and complete guide about the famous capital of Japan and also one of the best cities in the world according to different rankings. A complete guide full of curiosities of the main districts that make up Tokyo.
In addition to being the seat of the Emperor of Japan, the government and the Federal Revenue of Japan. And it is noteworthy that it is the most populous metropolitan area in the world, with more than 39 million inhabitants in its region. With its giant US $ 2.5 trillion economy, if Tokyo were an independent country it would be the 8th largest economy in the world.
Tokyo is often referred to as a city, but it is officially known and governed as a “metropolitan prefecture”, which distinguishes and blends aspects of a city and a prefecture (state). As the article is very large, we will leave an index below to help in your navigation:
Originally called by the name of Edo, its name was changed at the time that the capital became the imperial capital, this with the arrival of Emperor Meiji, around 1863. And according to the Asian tradition of including the word capital (京) on behalf of the capitals, its name was changed to Tokyo.
In its origin as a small fishing village called Edo, which belonged to the former Musashi province. Edo was first fortified by the Edo clan in the late 12th century. In 1457, Dta Dōkan built Edo Castle. In 1590, Tokugawa Ieyasu was transferred from Mikawa Prefecture to the Kantō region.
When he became a shogun in 1603, Edo became the center of his decision. During the subsequent Edo period, Edo became one of the largest cities in the world, with a population of one million in the 18th century.
At the age of 17, Emperor Meiji moved to Edo in 1869. At that time Tokyo was already the political and cultural center of the country, and became an imperial capital in fact with the arrival of the Imper, so the old Edo Castle became the Imperial Palace. The city of Tokyo was officially established on May 1, 1889.
Tokyo Education and Culture
There are many universities, junior colleges and vocational schools in Tokyo. Many of Japan's most prestigious universities including Tokyo, Hitotsubashi University, Tokyo Institute of Technology, Waseda University, Tokyo University of Science, and Keio University are located here.
Public daycare centers, daycare centers (years 1 to 6) and primary schools (7 to 9) are run by local wards or municipal offices. Public secondary schools in Tokyo are operated by the Tokyo Metropolitan Government Board of Education and are called “Metropolitan Secondary Schools”.
Tokyo also has many private schools from kindergarten through high school. Education has a special role in this place, and in this area the city stands out from the rest of the country, being a point that brings together students from all over the country to attend all its educational institutions.
The great capital of Japan also has many museums. Only in Ueno Park, we have the Tokyo National Museum, the largest museum in the country that specializes in traditional Japanese art, the National Museum of Western Art and also the Ueno Zoo.
Other museums include the National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation in Odaiba, Edo-Tokyo in Sumida, Nezu Museum in Aoyama and the National Diet Library, National Archives and the National Museum of Modern Art, which are close to the Imperial Palace.
Tokyo cuisine and cuisine
The cuisine of this city is a theme that is internationally recognized. In November 2007, Michelin launched its first guide to fine dining in Tokyo, awarding 191 stars in total, this means that it is double the stars of its closest competitor, Paris.
As of 2017, 227 restaurants in Tokyo were awarded (92 in Paris). Twelve establishments received a maximum of three stars (Paris has 10), 54 received two stars and 161 earned one star.
After these data, I don't think I will look at these places more in the same way. I found that Paris is humiliated when it comes to eating the best. And as we saw above, it doesn't even reach the first place. But even so it does not lose its own shine.
Pop Culture and Media in Tokyo
As Japan's largest population center and home to the country's largest broadcasters and studios, Tokyo is routinely the setting for many Japanese films, television shows, animated series and various other media.
Hollywood directors looked to Tokyo as the setting for films set in Japan. Recent examples include Kill Bill, The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Challenge, Lost in Translation, Babel and Inception.
These are just a few examples of how the city is included in pop culture, but because of its great technology it manages to be part of the culture in many other ways. And not only through obsolete and localized, but also through the internet, which is the largest information network available in the world.
But to attract attention it is necessary to have attributes for this. And in this city there is no shortage of alternatives, but putting examples now would only spoil the surprise of having more detailed information later.
The flow of tourists is also an aspect that helps the economy. In 2006, 4.81 million foreigners and 420 million Japanese visits to the city accounted for 9.4 trillion yen, according to the Metropolitan Government.
Tourists visit the various districts, shops and entertainment districts in the neighborhoods of the city's special wards, these wards function as giant neighborhoods. Cultural offerings include Japanese pop culture everywhere.
As well as associated neighborhoods such as Shibuya and Harajuku, subculture attractions like Studio Ghibli which is an anime center, as well as museums like the Tokyo National Museum, which houses 37% of the country's national art treasures.
And as the main focus of this article is the sights, we will now acquire more information about the sights of this great city called Tokyo. For that I would need a giant list, so I will highlight just a few sights.
As Tokyo has many sights, it is difficult not to please the most varied audiences from children to the elderly. Passing through entire neighborhoods geared to tourism to temples, parks and several other attractions that belong to this city. So let's get down to business!
Shinkuju - One of Tokyo's main wings
Shinjuku (新宿) is one of Tokyo's 23 wings, but the name is often associated only with the large entertainment, business and shopping area that surrounds Shinjuku Station. Shinjuku Station is the busiest train station in the world, with more than two million passengers daily.
To the west of the station is the skyscraper district of Shinjuku, which houses many of Tokyo's tallest buildings, including the Government's twin towers, whose observation platforms are free for public access. Around the four sides of the Shinjuku station we find shops, buildings and shops.
Omoide Yokocho, also called Piss Alley, is a small network of alleys to the northwest of Shinjuku station. The narrow streets are full of small restaurants serving ramen, soba, yakitori, sushi and kushiyaki. Many restaurants contain only a counter with a few chairs, while others have a couple of tables.
O Shin-Okubo Koreatown is a collection of Korean shops and restaurants found along the main road and side streets around Shin-Okubo Station, a nearby Shinjuku station. Many of the shops and restaurants are run by Korean immigrants who sell a variety of Korean products.
Odakyu Department, Keio Department Store and Store Mylord - They are buildings full of shops, markets and restaurants. Tokyo is packed with buildings with restaurants on its top floor, ground and underground, so you can make a gigantic list of just them.
Shinjuku Gyoen it is one of the largest parks in Tokyo and one of the best spots to observe cherry blossoms in the city. It was opened to the public in 1949, after serving as a garden for the Imperial Family since 1903.
Next to Shinkuju we access Kabukicho, Japan's largest red light district, where we find numerous restaurants, bars, clubs, motels and entertainment venues. It is recommended to be careful with the countless explorers in this neighborhood. Mainly in establishments managed by non-Japanese customers.
Shibuya - Greatest Crossing in the World and Hachiko
Shibuya (渋谷) is one of the 23 wards in Tokyo, but it often refers to just the popular shopping and entertainment area found around Shibuya Station. This is one of the most colorful and bustling neighborhoods in Tokyo.
Shibuya is a center for fashion and youth culture, and its streets are the birthplace of many of Japan's fashion and entertainment trends. More than a dozen major department store branches can be found around the area. They, in turn, cater to all types of buyers.
A prominent landmark of Shibuya is the large intersection in front of the exit Hachiko from the station. The intersection is heavily decorated by neon signs and giant video screens. And it is usually flooded by pedestrians every time the intersection light turns green. Thus becoming a popular location for shooting photos and films.
Center Gai it is the birthplace of many Japanese fashion trends. It is a busy pedestrian zone in the center of Shibuya, filled with shops, boutiques and game centers. At night, the street is full of young people who go to night clubs, restaurants and bars, or just wander around.
Koen Dori it is a popular shopping street that runs from the Marui department store to Yoyogi Park. O Spain Slope it is a narrow street approximately 100 meters long, with stairs leading to the department store. It is full of boutiques, cafes and restaurants, and has been dubbed for its resemblance to a Spanish street scene.
Shibuya Hikarie is a complex of skyscrapers with cultural space east of Shibuya Station. In addition to a theater and exhibition floors, it offers office space on the upper floors, and shops or restaurants on the lower floors.
O Shibuya 109 it is a complex of trends for young women. For this reason, it is an icon of the Shibuya district, with more than one hundred boutiques on ten floors. Shibuya Mark City is a small town within the city, located next door and connected to the JR Shibuya station. It consists of a wide variety of shops and restaurants.
Akihabara - The Otaku and Technology neighborhood
Akihabara (秋葉原), also called Akiba, is a district in central Tokyo that is famous for its many electronics stores and items related to games, anime and manga. Akihabara is considered to be the home of the Otakus in Tokyo.
Hundreds of electronics stores surround the main Chuo Dori street. Just like the crowded side streets around Akihabara. They offer everything from the newest computers, cameras and appliances to second-hand products and electronic waste.
In addition to the stores, several other animation-related establishments have become popular in the region, especially the waitress cafes where waitresses dress and act like maids or anime characters, and manga.
THE Akky specializes in tax-free products and operates two stores around Akihabara station. Akky sells a variety of electronic equipment for use abroad. This includes cameras, computers, televisions, DVD players and software. Some agencies transport used or refurbished items.
THE Radio Kaikan is one of Akihabara's emblematic landmarks. It has more than 30 stores selling electronic products and other anime related products. Some of the famous stores include K-Books, Kaiyodo and Volks. These sell all types of manga, models, toys, Action Figures, cards and figurines.
Asakusa - The traditional entertainment district
Asakusa (浅草) is one of the most traditional districts in Tokyo, nicknamed "Lower City". Asakusa's main attraction is the Sensoji Temple, built in the 7th century. Access to the temple is via the shopping street called Nakamise, where you can find a variety of souvenirs and traditional foods.
For many centuries, Asakusa used to be Tokyo's main entertainment district. During the Edo period (1603-1867), when the district was still located outside the city limits, Asakusa was the site of kabuki theaters and a major red light district.
However, large parts of Asakusa were destroyed in the air strikes of World War II. And while the reconstructed area around Sensoji regained its former popularity after the war, the same cannot be said for Asakusa's entertainment district.
Kaminarimon it is the first of two large entrance gates leading to the Sensoji Temple. First built more than 1000 years ago, it is the symbol of Asakusa. The Nakamise shopping street leads from Kaminarimon to the temple grounds.
THE Nakamise shopping street extends for about 250 meters from Kaminarimon to the main enclosure of the Sensoji Temple. THE Asakusa Underground Street it is one of the oldest underground shopping streets in Japan. The short walkway connects Tobu Asakusa station to Shin Nakamise shopping street and contains about 20 shops and restaurants.
The Sumida Park stretches along both sides of the Sumida River. In the spring, it becomes an observation point for flowers, while on the last Saturday of July it becomes the site of the Sumida River Fireworks festival. In Asakusa you will also find a drum museum called Taikokan.
Other attractions in Tokyo
There are several other attractions in Tokyo that we have covered in detail in other articles, we will list them below:
- Tokyo Skytree - Japan's tallest tower
- Odaiba - The famous artificial island of Tokyo
- The Tokyo Tower / 東京タワー / Tokyo Tower
- Yoyogi Park - Tokyo's largest park
- Shinagawa Aquarium - Tokyo
- The Rainbow Bridge - Tokyo Rainbow Bridge
What do we think of Tokyo?
Technology lovers, otakus, modern young people who enjoy pop culture, NERDs, adults interested in beautiful parks, old people looking for some traditional things, students looking for a good school to study, lovers of cutting-edge gastronomy and many other types of people certainly have to visit this city.
Not only because it is one of the biggest tourist destinations in Japan but because it is one of the most complete places to be. The cost of living is a little high, but it is worth it. This is due to the fact that you can find everything just a few kilometers away.
As we have seen, the city of Tokyo is more than any city, it is almost a country within another. And for this and several other aspects it attracts thousands of visitors every year. And the Japanese population also helps in this regard. That is, with its reputation for receptive help, but in this city it is good not to abuse it.
We all have a stress rate and as this city is extremely busy, it is normal for people to be stressed, especially Japanese people because they work several hours a day. Not to mention that Tokyo is a place known for attracting tourists, be careful that no one makes you toast money on worthless things.
OK people. It's all we can offer in this article, and if you have any suggestions, doubts, criticisms or the like, just leave your comment below. In addition, thanks to you, my dear reader, for reading this article. To the next!