I recently visited Japan again with the family and was so excited to experience the beautiful cities of Tokyo and Kyoto once more. I love immersing myself in the culture and experiencing different things the cities have to offer. I put together a bunch of highlights of my trip if any of you are or are planning on visiting soon. Traveling can be overwhelming but here are some of my favorite places to visit:
Tsujiki Market: This is the oldest fish market in the world. It opens at 9am and is a great place to walk around and have breakfast/lunch. Two of the most popular restaurants at the fish market: Daiwa-Zushi: A good place to have sushi and beer for breakfast! Be aware that it is cash only. Sushi Dai: This one is right next door and is equally as good. Anthony Bourdain wrote about this place so the line tends to be long. Be aware that it is cash only.
Peninsula hotel High Tea: A great experience to experience the culture and celebrate tea time in an amazing hotel.
Marunouchi House: A great dinner with a rooftop bar.
The Park Hotel Library Bar: Drinks with beautiful views of the city.
Takeshita Street: It is located in Harajuku and has a lot of great shops and restaurants to visit. Beware: Overly crowded during high season.
Design Sight 21.21: They have one of my favorite exhibits of all time. There is an exhibit on rice which is so culturally rich and very interesting to see. They always have amazing work and is worth a visit.
Ometsando Hills Mall and Ginza: Great high-end shopping to see. Favorite store in Ginza: Dover Street Market
Cafe Kitsune and Blue bottle
JBS: This is an incredible Jazz, Blues and Sould bar in Shibuya. It is small but it is run by the owner and serves coffee and whisky exclusively. A real gem to visit.
Arashiyama Sagano Bamboo Forest: Here you get amazing scenic views and is truly breathtaking.
Nishiki Food Market: This is an amazing market and definitely worth a visit!
Cordon Noir Bar: This place has great whiskey and you could walk through all of the cute alleyways in that neighborhood. The area has hundreds of restaurants and bars and shops to go to.
Golden Pavilion (Kinkaku-ji): Here you can walk to Ryoen-Ji Gardens and have lunch at Yudofuya. It only has a few types of tofu soup but the view of the gardens and the style of seating (Japanese style on the floor) is seriously unforgettable.
Gion is the Geisha District: A great place to walk around and you might even see a real geisha!
Higashiyama: Here there is adorable shopping, and then walk up to the Kiyomizu Dera temple for a gorgeous sunset.
Fushimi Inari Shrine: There are thousands of red tori gates that line up all the way up this mountain. It’s truly amazing and worth a visit.