It’s no secret that Tokyo is a tantalizing explosion for all of the senses. It’s a place the place you’ll be able to watch sumo wresters’ apply at a secure, belt out a track at a karaoke membership, attend a present on the well-known Robot Restaurant or eat contemporary seafood at Tsukiji Fish Market. Although there is no such thing as a scarcity of enjoyable things to do in Tokyo, you could wish to escape the bustle of the massive metropolis to delve deeper into Japan, and also you don’t need to go far to do it. The quantity of day journeys from Tokyo are plentiful, which make it the right base for any vacation. These greatest Four usually are not solely straightforward to get to, but in addition provide the right stability of Japanese custom, outside journey and scrumptious meals.
Situated simply an hour southwest of Tokyo, the Kanagawa Prefecture attracts guests for its sandy seashores, lush nature and its port capital of Yokohama, Japan’s second largest metropolis.
The way to Spend Your Day Journey from Tokyo to Kanagawa Prefecture:
I’m a sucker for an attention-grabbing and interactive museum, and Yokohama has an awesome one! The 4 flooring of the CupNoodles Museum affords the right mixture of informational reveals and actions. You can begin your go to studying about Momofuku Ando’s lifetime of meals, and particularly his creation of the primary ever ramen noodle cup. Then take a peek into the On the spot Noodles Historical past Dice that shows over 3,00Zero product packages, courting again to 1958. On that very same flooring, discover every of the six Artistic Pondering Packing containers that interactively educate the six key concepts that Ando makes use of in his course of. My favourite of those was the By no means Give Up field that teaches us to maintain working in direction of our desires irrespective of what number of occasions we fail earlier than attaining them.
There’s additionally a restaurant and youngsters’s play part, however nothing beats truly making your personal cup of noodles. And it’s easy to do. After buying your cup from a merchandising machine, you sit at a design station and colour it with your personal fashion. Then deliver it the the manufacturing line to be full of ramen and your chosen base taste (seafood, chili tomato, curry or the normal cup noodles). The difficult half is choosing 4 further substances from the dozen accessible. There have been issues like corn, hen and cheese. Your ramen then might be sealed, secured and prepared so that you can transport house. That’s it!
If you would like your dose of trip bliss, the sandy seashores and seafood at Enoshima Island are simply what you want. At this small offshore island linked to the mainland by a bridge, you’ll be able to benefit from the solar, sand and the ocean together with shrines, retailers and different beautiful spots. Fairly a couple of of the island’s points of interest are atop a hill so a good bit of strolling is concerned. However for those who don’t wish to climb, you’ll be able to at all times take the escalator for which you need to pay a charge.
Shirasu Lunch / / Meals is among the highlights at Enoshima Island and for lunch it is best to indulge within the native custom, shirasu. It’s a whitebait fish that’s served in many various methods, however probably the most fascinating is uncooked. Shirasu dishes are served everywhere in the island, however it could be the preferred at Tobiccho restaurant the place there’s nearly at all times a line. They provide a couple of completely different choices, however most order the shirasudon, which is a bowl of rice topped with mounds of the younger fish.
FYI: They’ll solely be served uncooked on the identical day as catching them, so it’s greatest to go to throughout the prime season from April to December. In any other case, you’ll be able to simply as simply organize them boiled or marinated. I ordered a trio of all of them and preferred the marinated ones greatest!
Enoshima Island Buying Avenue / / Upon arrival to Enoshima Island the bustling Benzaiten Nakamise road will lay proper in entrance of you. Crossing by way of the symbolic bronze Torii gate will lead you to an array of enjoyable memento boutiques, eating places and stands providing native specialties like Manjū (and the not so conventional chestnut ice cream that I had!)
Enoshima Shrine / / The buying road leads you to a reasonably steep uphill path to the Enoshima Shrine, which can take you about 20 minutes to stroll. Or choose to experience the very handy escalator that may get you there in simply over 4. Three completely different shrines on the island truly make up the Enoshima Shrine—Hetsumiya, Nakatsumiya, and Okutsumiya. The three shrines are inside shut strolling distance of one another and provide an attention-grabbing perception into tradition and faith.
Samuel Cocking Backyard / / This gorgeous Samuel Cocking Backyard is on the prime of Enoshima Island, and also you don’t wish to miss it! You’ll be able to stroll by way of to discover the numerous types of vegetation and flowers that bloom by way of the yr. Then make your approach to the Enoshima Sea Candle, an commentary tower the place on a transparent day you’ll be able to see Mt. Fuji.
In the course of the vacation months the gardens have a spectacular mild present the place at precisely 5:00 they flip a change and a whole bunch of hundreds of lights activate. It was one of the vital spectacular issues I’ve seen in Japan.
Benefit from the lights reflections on the water whereas strolling alongside the Yokohama Metropolis harbor, ogle the Red Brick Warehouse after which take a experience on the ferris wheel. It truly holds a Guinness World File for being the biggest ferris wheel with a clock! The 15-minute experience gives you 360-degree views of Yokohama.
Dinner & Drinks in Noge
Noge, or Nogecho, is an informal part of Yokohama the place the streets are full of izakaya pubs, small bars and jazz golf equipment. You’ll be able to pop into nearly any of the eating places right here for an awesome meal, however we ate at Shokai and it was scrumptious. It was a small bar with a handful of tables and served the perfect fried hen nuggets I’ve ever had. Plus, in case you are an adventurous eater, in addition they have quite a lot of horse meat dishes on the menu (a Japanese custom).
This can be a fairly busy Tokyo day journey itinerary, so for those who like to maneuver at a slower tempo then think about spending the evening in Yokohama. I stayed at The Hotel New Grand which is a historic place inbuilt 1927 and only a quick distance from the harbor.
The Saitama Prefecture is one other in style choice for a day journey from Tokyo because it’s positioned solely a few half hour to the north. The realm has quite a bit to supply guests, like the previous citadel city of Kawagoe, the Railway Museum, historic temples and shrines.
The way to Spend Your Day Journey from Tokyo to Saitama Prefecture:
Kawagoe Kumano Shrine
The Kawagoe Kumano Shrine could also be smaller than many within the space, however it’s undoubtedly value a go to. Whereas there you’ll be able to take away your footwear to take the acupuncture stroll made with stones and get your fortune advised by one of many three crystal balls (although for those who don’t converse Japanese you’ll need a translator to decipher what it’s!). My fortune was “good luck will come when you learn from your mistakes”.
After the shrine we went to Shintoshin Station to hire bicycles so we might bike across the Omiya space. You’ll be able to seize lunch at one of many many eating places close by, like Toyozushi or Serafina New York.
Omiya Bonsai Artwork Museum
Japan is known for the Bonsai artwork type that includes rising tiny decorative types of full-sized bushes in containers. These miniature bushes are cultivated utilizing particular watering, pruning, wiring and potting strategies to supply charming outcomes. The Omiya Bonsai Art Museum has an in depth assortment of reveals each indoors and outside,—70 bushes displaying and 120 all collectively! Inside a few of these vegetation are displayed in conventional Japanese styled rooms, such because the Shin, Gyo and So. Outdoor, the strolling pathways take you thru a fantastic presentation of bonsai of all ages, one is estimated to be 1,00Zero years outdated. It’s not onerous to be mesmerized by these pint-sized vegetation or to return away with a deeper understanding of them.
Omiya Hikawa Shrine
Sure, it’s true—shrines are in every single place in Japan, and every one has its personal appeal. Omiya is known for its Hikawa shinto shrine based greater than 2000 years in the past. Omiya truly means ‘great shrine’ and it’s named after the exceptional Hikawa. The shrine, which is the biggest one in Saitama, is positioned amidst a tranquil setting within the Omiya park. So, apart from simply the worshipping halls there’s additionally a zoo and museum close by.
Tip: There are a lot of cherry blossom bushes within the space, so attempt to time your journey throughout the season when you’ll be able to see them fantastically in bloom.
Dinner at Koedo Kurari
Koedo Kurari has been renovated from a former sake brewery, which was based in 1875 between the Meiji and Showa Eras, into a spot the place guests and locals can benefit from the merchandise of Kawagoe metropolis. Within the 4 transformed buildings, you’ll be able to discover the handful of memento retailers that includes items from the world, do a tasting on the sake brewery and take pleasure in handmade confectionaries. Afterwards have dinner at Taisho, a Japanese brewpub that makes a speciality of native candy potato dishes.
Fukushima prefecture is about an hour and a half prepare experience north from the Tokyo, which makes it simply accessible. However, quick access shouldn’t be the one motive guests come right here. Mountains, conventional villages and a deep samurai historical past make it the most effective day journeys from town.
The way to Spend Your Tokyo Day Journey to Fukushima Prefecture:
Nisshinkan Clan Faculty
If you are interested in Samurais, make your approach to the Aizu Hanko Nisshinkan, that used to operate as a college for younger members of Samurai households throughout the Edo interval. It was one of the vital revered establishments of its time! Younger boys have been skilled at this faculty to develop into fierce Samurai warriors. They normally enrolled within the faculty on the age of ten and purchased information of lecturers in addition to bodily and psychological coaching.
On a go to to the museum, you’ll be taught concerning the faculty life right here and be advised samurai tales of the Aizu Clan throughout the Boshin Warfare particularly that of the courageous younger warriors, the Byakotai. However there’s far more than only a historical past lesson at Nisshikan, you may as well get an opportunity to apply some samurai disciplines together with archery and martial arts, plus you can also make your personal akabeko, a legendary purple cow from the Aizu area of Japan.
After you’ve gotten a style of samurai tradition, head over to Ouchi-juku, a well-preserved and scenic village from the Edo interval. The village was used as a transit level by feudal lords on their approach to Edo metropolis. Seeing the normal constructions with thatched roofs on either side of the road gave me a sense of touring again in time. These buildings are greater than 300 years outdated and have a quaint appeal about them. To get the perfect view from above these superb constructions, head up the steep street to a hillside shrine from the place you’ll be able to see all of it. On the best way, you may as well cease at retailers and eateries, a few of which serve handmade items and different native delicacies.
Lunch in Ouchi-juku / / For lunch cease by Ouchijuku Misawaya for a bowl of their signature dish, takato soba that’s served with an extended inexperienced onion (negi) to eat with as an alternative of chopsticks. I’m not going to lie, it was difficult!
In the direction of the top of the Edo Interval, the Tsuruga Castle in Aizuwakamatsu became a battle web site of the Boshin Warfare. The citadel was well-known for the distinctive red-colored tiles on the roof containing iron. A samurai stronghold, it turned well-known as a consequence of its function throughout the time of the Boshin conflict. But it surely was destroyed throughout the battle and later rebuilt. At the moment, it capabilities as a museum the place you’ll be able to be taught all about Samurai historical past and life-style, the conflict and the citadel itself. Undoubtedly don’t miss climbing to the highest flooring for the superb view and visiting the teahouse on the grounds.
If you happen to determine to increase your day journey into in a single day a keep at Harataki won’t disappoint. This place is a conventional ryokan (Japanese inn) and onsen. There are 4 open-air baths there so that you can take pleasure in!
Chiba’s shut proximity to Tokyo and Narita Airport make it an excellent day journey. This prefecture has its fair proportion of pure magnificence within the type of mountain peaks and stretches of sandy seashores, however it’s also house to in style theme parks and attention-grabbing buying locations.
The way to Spend Your Day Journey from Tokyo to Chiba Prefecture:
Hike Mt. Nokogiri Mountaineering and Sightseeing
It will likely be straightforward to spend fairly a couple of hours of your day climbing and exploring the websites at Mt. Nokogiri (additionally referred to as Sawtooth Mountain). The 1,079 foot mountain has a pure magnificence on it’s personal, so take your time exploring it, however it additionally house three main points of interest to not miss:
001 // Hell Peek Level // A climb to the highest of the mountain will lead you to Jigoku Nozoki, translated because the Hell Peek Level. This lookout is located on a jagged rock that protrudes from the mountain. So, if you look down from above, all you’ll be able to see is the deep plunge to the mountain flooring under with nothing in between. As you stand on the sting of the rock, there’s only a railing between you and the bottom under that will give a sensation that you’re falling off. When you recover from the marginally scary feeling of standing on the rock, you can begin having fun with the spectacular views of the encircling areas.
002 // Hyaku-Shaku Kannon // Carved proper into the cliffside in a deep gorge is the 30-meter tall Hyaku-Shaku Kannon, the Buddhist Goddess of Mercy. The carving was created within the 60s and is devoted to those that have had unlucky deaths.
003 // Nihonji Daibutsu (Massive Buddha) // One of many principal points of interest at Mt. Nokogiri, is Nihonji Daibutsu, Japan’s largest sitting buddha. It was based throughout the Nara Interval, is 31 meters excessive and was constructed over 1300 years in the past in 1783.
As soon as you might be finished with the climbing, you’ll be able to take pleasure in a little bit of consuming and buying at a unusual place not too removed from the mountain generally known as Hota Shogakko. A former elementary faculty, Hota Shogakko has been transformed right into a buying, consuming, lodging and neighborhood occasions vacation spot. The enjoyable half is that many parts of the college have been saved intact within the design together with blackboards, tables and chairs! So, return to high school for a few entertaining hours.
Undoubtedly don’t miss consuming at Da Pe Gonzo, the place the pizzas are made within the wood-burning oven and mixture meals are served on faculty lunch trays.
In Tokyo, you’ll be able to benefit from the pulsating vitality of the massive metropolis with all its points of interest and the fast-paced life. And if you wish to unwind, stability it out by occurring day journeys from Tokyo to all of the superb prefectures only a quick distance away. It’s a good way to take pleasure in the perfect of each worlds!
This expertise was supplied in collaboration with All About Japan.
All opinions my very own. This publish might comprise affiliate hyperlinks. You’ll be able to learn my disclosure here.
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