Sunday, August 14, 2016

Asakusa Area - Travel in time in Tokyo Japan

Asakusa 浅草 area, Sensoji 浅草寺, and Nakamise 仲見世通り areas have been the stables of must-visit sightseeing spots for new travelers to Tokyo Japan. With the recent development of the new landmark Tokyo Skytree, the already-popular tourist area has become even more popular not only among international visitors, local Japanese tourists have also flocked into the bustling neighborhood of Asakusa by the Sumida river 隅田川. I highly recommend both new or experienced travelers to visit and stay in Asakusa area for the feeling of traveling in time in the middle of modern Tokyo city.
Asakusa, Nakamise, Sensoji, and Pagoda in Tokyo Japan 

- To read about my recommendations of affordable, Reasonable, Convenient hotels in Tokyo, visit: Affordable Cheap Reasonable Hotels in Tokyo
- To read about my recommendations of affordable and reasonable hotels in OSAKA, visit: Osaka Reasonable Affordable Hotel
- To read about my recommendations of reasonable, affordable, and convenient hotels in KYOTO, visit: Kyoto reasonable, affordable, and convenient hotels
- To read about how to plan your trip to Tokyo, visit: Planning for your trip in Tokyo
- To read about my recommendations of best food in Tokyo, visit: Best food in Tokyo Japan

First orient yourself with a google map in front you. Notice the best access to the Asakusa area is getting off at the Asakusa station on Ginza Subway Line, south to the Sensoji temple.  After exiting, visitors will be at the famous giant lantern entrance to the Nasamise street that leads to Sensoji. Hoppy Izakaya Street is to the west of the Sensoji temple. Sumida river and Tokyo Skytree is to the east of the Sensoji temple.
Orientation Map of Asakusa, Skytree, and Sumida areas in Tokyo

Nakamise Shopping Arcade Street 仲見世通り
After exiting at the Asakusa Subway station of the Ginza Subway line, passing the giant lantern, Kaminarimon 雷門, with tons of tourist underneath it, visitors will be greeted by one of the most prominent shopping street arcade of Japan, Nakamise dori. This street is full of souvenir and snack shops. Many of the snack shop staff would put on a appetizing show of making their traditional Japanese snacks/dessert right in front of visitors.
Nakamise Shopping Street, Asakusa Sensoji, Tokyo

Shops on the Nakamise street are perfect for buying Japanese themed souvenir.
Nakamise Shopping Street, Asakusa Sensoji, Tokyo

Sensoji 浅草寺
This temple has long been iconic to Japanese tourism. This Buddhist temple is one of the oldest in Japan. Ancient temple and pagoda are the best place for photograph opportunities in Japan. I would also recommend travelers to visit after dark to avoid the daytime crowds and for the beautiful night time scenery.
Asakusa Sensoji, Tokyo

Burning incense brings blessing to the prayers at Senosji and at many other temples/shrines in Japan.
Asakusa Sensoji, Tokyo

Hoppy Izakaya Restaurant Street
East to the Sensoji temple is the Hoppy Izakaya Restaurant street. Loved by the locals and frequently visited by foreign visitors, this street offers alfresco type of dining experiences of tradition Japanese cuisine. Yakitori chicken skewer and meat stew dishes are popular items on the menu. Just find a restaurant of your liking, sit down and ask for their menu.
Hoppy Izakaya Street, Asakusa Tokyo

Try not to feel intimidated by the "locals" of these type street food vendors. They are friendlier than you think.
Hoppy Izakaya Street, Asakusa Tokyo

Your travel experience will be enriched by trying out local dining experience at Asakusa Hoppy Street.
Hoppy Izakaya Street, Asakusa Tokyo

I simply sat down and asked for their recommended dishes; these dishes turned out to be delicious meat stew soup of Japanese family cuisine. 
Hoppy Izakaya Street, Asakusa Tokyo

Tokyo Skytree
It is hard to miss the tallest tower in the world from Asakusa area.
Tokyo Skytree near Asakusa, Sumida river area, Tokyo

Sumida River 隅田川
I highly recommend visitors to take a stroll down the Tokyo Sumida riverside walk. River cruises are also highly recommended at dusk. The view of the river and Tokyo Skytree at night is considered mesmerizing by many travelers.
Sumida River Cruise, Tokyo

Right before sunset, many visitors will be fighting for a spot by the riverside walk to set up their cameras to photograph the night scenery of Tokyo Skytree.
Sumida River, Tokyo

Asakusa Culture and Tourism Center 浅草文化観光センター
This uniquely designed building is of tourism information office staffed with knowledgeable clerk. They will be able to answer your travel questions as well as giving you restaurant recommendations.
Asakusa Culture and Tourism Center, Tokyo

Top of the Asakusa culture and tourism Center building is an observation terrace, free of charge to visitors. The observation terrace offers amazing view overlooking Nakamise street and Sensoji.

Asakusa Culture and Tourism Center Terrace view, Tokyo

The less obstructed view of Tokyo Skytree and Sumida River is also worth the visit to the building terrace.
Asakusa Culture and Tourism Center Terrace view, Tokyo

Hotels in Asakusa area
*Hotel Mystays Asakusa Tokyo
*Asakusa Central Hotel
*Hotel Sunroute Asakusa
*Asakusa Town Hotel 
*APA Hotel Asakusa Kuramae
*UNIZO INN Asakusa
*Red Planet Asakusa Tokyo
*Asakusa Hotel Hatago
*Hotel Hokke Club Asakusa
*Agora Place Asakusa

Ryokan in Asakusa area
*Ryokan Shigetsu Asakusa
*Ryokan Toukaiso Asakusa 
*Ryokan Kamogawa Asakusa

Special Experiences
*Kimono or Yukata Cosplay
*Rickshaw experience
*Sumida River Cruise
*Jyakotsuyu Sento Public Bath experience

Guided Asakusa Tours by Viator
1. Tokyo Morning Tour: Meiji Shrine, Senso-ji Temple and Ginza Shopping District
2. Tokyo Asakusa Rickshaw Tour
3. Tokyo Morning Sightseeing Tour
4. Tokyo Highlights Afternoon Tour and Sumida River Cruise
5. Tokyo Skytree, Asakusa and Central Tokyo Sightseeing Tour
6. Hello Tokyo Walking Tour: Meiji Jingu, Senso-ji and Harajuku
7. Panoramic Tokyo Day Tour - Meiji Shrine, Asakusa Temple and Tokyo Bay Cruise
8. Tokyo Tower, Tea Ceremony and Sumida River Cruise Day Tour
9. Asakusa and Ryogoku Walking Tour with Sumo Wrestler
10. Half Day Asakusa Tour with Ninja Experience
11. Nighttime Local Food and Drink Tour in Asakusa

Recommended Restaurants in Asakusa area (mostly Tripadvisor pages)
*Daikokuya Tempura
*Asakusa Menchi
*Imahan Kobe Wagyu Beef Sukiyaki Shabu Shabu
*Umezono Traditional Japanese Dessert
*Tempura bowl Tenya Asakusa - Affordable and fulfilling
*Asakusa Okonomiyaki Sometaro
*Izakaya Koji - Hoppy Street
*Cafe de Royal - Western Style Breakfast
*Teppanyaki Monburan - Japanese Hamburger Steak
*Irokawa - Unagi Grilled Eel Specialty Restaurant
*Maguro Bito Sushi - relatively affordable sushi
*Sushi Sei
*Mimatsu Sushi
*Sushi Isshin

INFORMATION (mostly Tripadvisor pages)
*Asakusa, Sensoji, Nakamise shopping street (Kaminarimon)
2-3-1 Asakusa, Taito 111-0032, Tokyo Prefecture
浅草神社 浅草寺 仲見世通り (雷門)

*Hoppy Street
111-0032, 2 Chome-3-17 Asakusa, Taito, Tokyo
〒111-0032, 2丁目-3-17 浅草

*Sumida River

*Tokyo Skytree
1-1-2 Oshiage, Sumida 131-0045, Tokyo Prefecture

*Asakusa Culture and Tourism Center
2-18-9 Kaminarimon, Taito 111-0034, Tokyo Prefecture

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