A lot of my time in Japan was spent running around like a headless chicken – it was new year, so a lot of things are closed, and I spent most of my time hanging out with family and friends. I did spend some time doing some touristy things, though, and here is my list of what to do for a day out in Tokyo:
The fashion in Harajuku is as bizarre and wacky as you imagine, and is excellent for clothes shopping. We went along just after new year, which was a bit of a mistake as all the sales were on, and it was totally rammed. Crepes are an absolute must – they’re really famous, and Marion Crepes are definitely the best.
The main street in Harajuku is Takeshita Dori, which is just across the road from the station, and is filled with clothing and accessory stores mostly. It’s brilliant for people watching, as you see people wearing totally different styles of clothing – from Lolitas to punks, and everything in between.
As you turn onto Takeshita Dori, on the right you might see a little sign pointing down to a basement that says ‘Purikura’. DO IT. Purikura photo booths are unbelievably popular, and they are actually quite addictive – they automatically make your legs look longer and skinnier, and your eyes a lot bigger, in an attempt to give you a more ‘desirable’ look. The actual end result is that you look positively terrifying, and you can edit the pictures after with nonsensical stamps and messages. It is so much fun, and for 200 yen it’s a great keepsake (that you can share with your friends on Facebook, too).
Asakusa is really famous for the Sensoji Temple, but it’s got a nice promenade and some interesting architecture, making it well worthwhile. There’s also some pretty great street food there, too – and although I didn’t go up the Sky Tree skyscraper close by, my boyfriend did, and got some incredible views of Tokyo.
It would be a crying shame to go to Tokyo and not swing by the famous Shibuya crossing. It’s pretty manic, but Shibuya has some great bars, and is where I usually go out drinking with my friends when I go back. Bic Camera is also a great place to get great deals on cameras and electronics – I had to really behave myself as I was really tempted by the white and beige Olympus Pen!