Category Archives: Travel tips

“Asakusa” free map at hotels in Tokyo

The Yes in Japan team will start distributing its first Get Japan map of “North-east of Tokyo, Japan: Asakusa district” at local hotels and inns tomorrow. Hotels north and east of the imperial palace should get packs for their foreign customers in the following days thanks to enthusiastic requests from their receptionists and managers 🙂

Use this map to make the best of your time in Kappabashi Kitchen Town, Asakusa holy & entertainment district, the world’s tallest tower… then show it to a fan of Japan! It is free 🙂

Top 7 in/near Kappabashi Kitchen Town for 2015-2016

For its first selection of shops, schools and restaurants in Kappabashi Kitchen Town, the Yes in Japan team recommends you:

Enjoy Tokyo in 2015 & 2016!

Top 9 in/near Asakusa Rokku for 2015-2016

For its first recommendations of leisure spots, museums, public baths, shops, bars, and restaurants in Asakusa Rokku, the Yes in Japan members selected:

Have fun in Tokyo in 2015 or 2016!

Top 9 in Asakusa near Senso-ji for 2015-2016

In Asakusa district near Senso-ji Buddhist temple? Our travel agency recommends you the following activities and shops:

Discover many facets of Japan during your stay in Tokyo in autumn/winter 2015 or spring 2016!

Top 9 in Oshinari & Sky Tree area for 2015-2016

In Tokyo at or near the Sky Tree tower? Our travel specialists recommend you these restaurants, shops, rides, and activities:

Live great moments with friendly and competent Japanese staff this autumn or the coming winter/spring 🙂

“Cherry blossoms” trip to Japan in spring 2016? Plan now!

Planning a “cherry blossoms” trip to Japan in spring 2016? Buy your flight tickets, book hotels & ryokans, and reserve tours & activities now because Japanese hotels quickly get full for that period and because few tour guides in Japan speak English fluently! Do not wait to get what you want at a good price…

In spring 2014 & 2015, we guided and assisted joyful foreign tourists (mostly couples and families) in English or French during fun walking tours in Tokyo and in the nearby city of Kamakura. We will happily take care of you too in March, April or May 2016 to help you enjoy the soft white/pink cherry blossoms (and other Japanese flowers), seasonal “sakura” food & drinks, the Japanese culture, etc. 🙂

Pink cherry blossoms in Sakura street (Chiyoda ward, Tokyo) on 17 March 2014.

Reserve a Yes in Japan half-day or full-day private tour in/near Tokyo for you, your family or friends before we get fully booked for the season! Just e-mail our travel agency the date(s) and destination(s) of your choice along with any pertinent complementary information or request.

Note: We also gladly accompany travellers to Kyoto, Osaka, Hakone (near Mount Fuji), etc. but the cost rises significantly…

Free maps of Jimbocho & Tsukiji at Tokyu Stay Suidobashi (Tokyo)

Visiting Tokyo? Tokyu Stay Suidobashi gives our precise free maps in English showing the way to our travel agency as well as nearby stations, Shinto shrines, Japanese restaurants, coffee shops… in Bunkyo & Chiyoda wards (map of Akihabara/Jimbocho/Kanda/Kudan) or farther (map of Ginza/Nihombashi/Shimbashi/Tsukiji). Tell the nice hotel staff to give you “Get Japan maps” if you do not see them on a rack near the elevators!

Get Japan maps on a rack at Tokyu Stay Suidobashi (Chiyoda ward, Tokyo) on 29 July 2015.

Big thanks to the Tokyu Stay Suidobashi team for its active support 🙂

Free maps of Jimbocho & Ginza at Tokyo Dome Hotel

Spending time in Tokyo city? Tokyo Dome Hotel provides for free our detailed maps in English introducing great Japanese gardens, shops… nearby in Bunkyo & Chiyoda wards (Akihabara/Jimbocho/Kanda/Kudan map) or farther (Ginza/Nihombashi/Shimbashi/Tsukiji map). Ask the kind hotel staff for “Get Japan maps” if you do not find them on a rack in the lobby 🙂

Get Japan maps on a rack at Tokyo Dome Hotel (Bunkyo ward) on 30 July 2015.

Warm thanks to the team of Tokyo Dome Hotel for its gracious support!

Asakusa + Kappabashi + Skytree: 1 day in Tokyo!

Spend a great day in Tokyo enjoying the Japanese culture, architecture and shopping without tour guide by walking from Kappabashi “Kitchen town” to Asakusa district then to the Tokyo Skytree!

  1. Ride a subway to Tawaramachi station.
  2. Walk to the south entrance of Kappabashi street; a giant “chef” head with the name Niimi is on a roof on its left and a small police station is on its right.
  3. Explore the shops of the “kitchen town” on both sides of Kappabashi street; they sell high-quality cooking knives, tableware, fake food, uniforms, lanterns… mostly from 09:00 to 17:00. Will you notice the golden statue of a mythical kappa on your way?
  4. Walk to the ancient Thunder Gate, which features a giant red lantern as well as a statue of the God of Thunder “Raijin” (left side) and a statue of the God of the Wind “Fujin” (right side).
  5. Enjoy the ambiance of the Nakamise shopping street from the Thunder Gate to Senso-ji Buddhist temple. You cannot miss the beautiful pagoda but… what about Buddha’s giant straw sandals?
  6. Visit Asakusa Shinto shrine on the right of Senso-ji’s main hall.
  7. Pay a small fee to get a “go-shuin” (sheet of paper with holy seal and calligraphy) at a small building on the left of Senso-ji’s main hall. Did you see the Japanese carps on your way?
  8. Explore the diverse small shops from the north-west to the south-west of Senso-ji and lunch at an attractive restaurant when you feel hungry. Japanese travel agencies usually recommend restaurants serving tempura fried seafood & vegetables near Asakusa station but you can also find sushi raw fish, ramen noodles, Indian food… Rokku entertainment district even features restaurants with musical shows!
  9. Walk to Asakusa Culture Tourist Information Centre and enjoy a great view from its 8th floor! This is an excellent photo/video spot for Senso-ji and its surroundings, the modern Asahi Beer headquarters, and the new Tokyo Skytree 🙂
  10. Cross the bridge over the Sumida river and follow the main street to reach Tokyo Skytree.
  11. Observe Tokyo city during the afternoon or evening from the observation decks of the sky tree (open until 22:00). Beware, night falls early in Japan!
  12. Relax at a coffee shop or dine in a restaurant of Solamachi shopping mall at the bottom of Tokyo Skytree.
  13. Go outside to photograph the sky tree colourfully illuminated at night before entering the nearby Tokyo Sky tree station or Oshiage station to return to your ryokan traditional inn, hotel, guest house, or apartment 🙂

Use a local map of Sumida and Taito wards to find your way and/or customize this plan… Any comment or suggestion? E-mail the Yes in Japan team or add your message on social networks 🙂

Kappabashi in Japan

Kappabashi is an offbeat area of Tokyo city. In Taito ward, this old “kitchen town” is visited by Japanese professionals desiring equipment for their restaurant, bar, hotel, cooking school… but also by foreigners interested in high-quality cooking knives, incredibly realistic fake food, etc.

Kappabashi is near Iriya subway station (Tokyo Metro Hibiya Line), Tawaramachi subway station (Tokyo Metro Ginza Line), and Asakusa train station (Tsukuba Express line). Asakusa subway station and Ueno train station are at walking distance; holders of a JR Pass can reach Ueno for free by riding the Yamanote Line. To easily find your way on foot, we recommend you to get a map of Kappabashi & Asakusa.

Our travel agency organizes Yes in Japan 1-day tours in English and French including “Kappabashi-dori” shopping street because its shops are fun, because fake food is a great gift, and because many foreign chefs need an interpreter to discuss with Japanese shopkeepers! On holidays in Japan with your children? Join a memorable “Make fake food” activity in Kappabashi 🙂