Asakusa, Tokyo’s historic district, is a must-visit destination for anyone traveling to Japan. This vibrant and bustling neighborhood is home to some of the city’s most iconic landmarks, including Sensoji Temple and Tokyo Skytree. With its rich cultural heritage, delicious food, and endless shopping opportunities, Asakusa has something to offer everyone.
In this comprehensive travel guide, visitors will find everything they need to know about exploring Asakusa. From the best places to eat and shop to the top sights and attractions, this guide covers it all. Whether you’re a first-time visitor or a seasoned traveler, this guide will help you make the most of your time in Asakusa.
So, if you’re planning a trip to Tokyo and want to experience the best of what Asakusa has to offer, read on for our ultimate Asakusa travel guide.
Things to Do in Asakusa
Asakusa is a must-visit destination in Tokyo, offering a variety of exciting experiences that showcase Japanese culture and tradition. Here are some of the top things to do in Asakusa:
- Visit Senso-ji Temple: Senso-ji is one of the most famous temples in Tokyo and a must-visit attraction in Asakusa. Visitors can explore the temple grounds, admire the impressive architecture, and take part in traditional rituals such as purifying themselves with smoke and tossing coins for good luck.
- Stroll along Nakamise Shopping Street: The approach to Senso-ji is lined with over 50 shops selling traditional Japanese souvenirs, snacks, and sweets. Nakamise is the perfect place to pick up some unique gifts or sample some local treats.
- Take a river cruise: Asakusa is located on the Sumida River, and a river cruise is a great way to see the city from a different perspective. Visitors can enjoy a leisurely boat ride and take in views of Tokyo Skytree, Asahi Beer Hall, and other landmarks.
- Explore Asakusa Culture Tourist Information Center: This modern building is a great starting point for exploring Asakusa. Visitors can get maps, brochures, and information on local events, as well as enjoy panoramic views of the area from the observation deck.
- Try traditional Japanese cuisine: Asakusa is home to many historic restaurants and street food stalls serving up delicious Japanese dishes. Some local specialties include tempura, soba noodles, and monjayaki (a type of savory pancake).
These are just a few of the many things to do in Asakusa. Visitors can easily spend a full day exploring the area and immersing themselves in Japanese culture and tradition.
Top Attractions in Asakusa
Asakusa is a popular tourist destination in Tokyo, Japan, known for its rich cultural heritage and stunning attractions. Here are some of the top attractions that visitors should not miss:
The Sensoji Temple is one of the most popular attractions in Asakusa and is considered the oldest temple in Tokyo, Japan. It was built in the 7th century and is dedicated to the Buddhist goddess of mercy, Kannon. Visitors can enter the temple through the Kaminarimon Gate and walk through the Nakamise shopping street, which is lined with shops selling traditional Japanese souvenirs and snacks. The temple is a must-visit attraction for anyone interested in Japanese culture and history.
The Asakusa Shrine, also known as Sanja-sama, is a Shinto shrine located in Asakusa. It is dedicated to the three men who founded the Sensoji Temple and is considered one of the most important shrines in Tokyo. Visitors can see traditional Japanese architecture and artifacts, including the shrine’s torii gate and the large lanterns that light up the area during festivals.
The Tokyo Skytree is a broadcasting tower and observation deck located in Sumida, Tokyo. It is the tallest tower in the world and offers breathtaking views of Tokyo and its surroundings. Visitors can take an elevator to the observation deck and enjoy the panoramic views of the city. The tower also has a shopping mall and restaurants, making it a great place to spend an afternoon or evening.
The Sumida River is a beautiful river that runs through Tokyo and is a popular spot for sightseeing cruises. Visitors can enjoy the views of the city’s skyline and the many bridges that span the river. The river is also home to several parks and gardens, including the beautiful Hamarikyu Gardens.
Asakusa Culture Tourist Information Center
The Asakusa Culture Tourist Information Center is a great place to start your visit to Asakusa. It offers information on the area’s attractions and events, as well as free Wi-Fi and a rooftop observation deck with views of the Sensoji Temple and Tokyo Skytree. The center also has a souvenir shop where visitors can buy traditional Japanese gifts and souvenirs.
These are just a few of the many attractions that Asakusa has to offer. Visitors can easily spend a full day exploring the area and experiencing its rich cultural heritage.
Where to Eat in Asakusa
Asakusa is a food lover’s paradise, with a wide variety of restaurants and eateries serving traditional Japanese cuisine. Here are a few recommended places to try:
Nakamise Shopping Street
If you’re looking for a quick snack or street food, Nakamise Shopping Street is the place to be. This bustling street is lined with vendors selling everything from senbei (rice crackers) to traditional Japanese sweets like ningyo-yaki and melon pan. Be sure to try the famous Asakusa specialty, the ningyo-yaki, which is a small cake filled with sweet red bean paste.
Sushiya no Nohachi
If you’re in the mood for sushi, head to Sushiya no Nohachi. This cozy restaurant is located just a few minutes away from Sensoji Temple and serves up fresh, delicious sushi at reasonable prices. The menu changes daily depending on what’s in season, so you’re sure to get the freshest fish available.
For a taste of sukiyaki, head to Asakusa Imahan. This restaurant has been serving up traditional Japanese hot pot dishes since 1895 and is famous for its sukiyaki made with high-quality wagyu beef. The restaurant has a traditional atmosphere with private tatami rooms, making it a great place to enjoy a special meal with friends or family.
If you’re looking for a more modern take on Japanese cuisine, check out Kitchen Sen. This stylish restaurant serves up a fusion of Japanese and Western dishes, with a focus on using fresh, seasonal ingredients. The menu changes regularly, so there’s always something new to try.
These are just a few of the many great places to eat in Asakusa. Be sure to explore the area and try some of the local specialties!
Where to Stay in Asakusa
Asakusa is a popular tourist destination in Tokyo, so there are plenty of accommodation options available for travelers. From budget hostels to luxury hotels, there is something for every budget and preference. Here are some of the best places to stay in Asakusa:
- Richmond Hotel Premier Asakusa International – This modern hotel is located just a few minutes’ walk from Asakusa Station and offers comfortable rooms with great views of the Tokyo Skytree.
- Asakusa View Hotel – This hotel is located right next to the famous Senso-ji Temple and offers stunning views of the temple and the Tokyo Skytree.
- Khaosan Tokyo Kabuki – This budget hostel is perfect for backpackers and budget travelers. It is located just a few minutes’ walk from Asakusa Station and offers clean and comfortable dormitory rooms.
- Asakusa Hotel Wasou – This traditional Japanese hotel offers a unique experience for travelers who want to experience Japanese culture. The rooms are decorated in a traditional Japanese style and the hotel has a beautiful Japanese garden.
When choosing where to stay in Asakusa, it is important to consider the location and proximity to public transportation. Asakusa Station is a major transportation hub, so staying near the station can make it easy to explore other parts of Tokyo. It is also a good idea to consider the proximity to popular attractions like Senso-ji Temple and the Tokyo Skytree.
Overall, there are plenty of great options for accommodation in Asakusa, whether you are looking for luxury or budget options. Make sure to book in advance, especially during peak travel season, to ensure availability.
Getting to Asakusa
Asakusa is a popular tourist destination in Tokyo, Japan. It is located in the Taito ward, and is easily accessible from other parts of the city. Here’s everything you need to know about getting to Asakusa.
Asakusa is well-connected by train, and the easiest way to get there is by using the Tokyo Metro or Toei Subway. The following train lines stop at Asakusa Station:
- Tokyo Metro Ginza Line
- Toei Asakusa Line
- Tsukuba Express
You can also take the JR Yamanote Line to Ueno Station, and then transfer to the Tokyo Metro Ginza Line to get to Asakusa Station.
There are several bus routes that operate in the Asakusa area, including the Toei Bus and the Tokyo Sakura Tram (Toden Arakawa Line). However, taking the bus can be a little more complicated than taking the train, as you’ll need to know the bus routes and schedules. If you’re not familiar with the area, it’s best to stick with the train.
If you’re in a hurry or have a lot of luggage, taking a taxi to Asakusa might be a good option. Taxis in Japan are generally safe and reliable, but they can be expensive. Make sure to have the address of your destination written in Japanese, as many taxi drivers do not speak English.
The train is the most convenient way to get to Asakusa, and the Tokyo Metro Ginza Line is the most direct route. We also recommend using a prepaid IC card, such as Suica or Pasmo, to make it easier to get around on public transportation.
Tips for Visiting Asakusa
Asakusa is a must-visit destination in Tokyo, and with the right tips, you can make the most of your trip. Here are some tips for visiting Asakusa:
1. Visit Sensoji Temple Early in the Morning
Sensoji Temple is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Asakusa, so it can get crowded quickly. To avoid the crowds, visit the temple early in the morning, preferably before 9:00 AM. You’ll have more space to explore and take photos without the crowds.
2. Try Local Street Food
Asakusa is known for its street food, and you won’t want to miss out on trying some of the local delicacies. Some popular street food items include senbei (rice crackers), melon pan (sweet bread), and ningyo-yaki (small cakes with sweet bean paste filling). You can find these and other street food items along Nakamise-dori, the street leading up to Sensoji Temple.
3. Explore the Side Streets
While Nakamise-dori is the main street in Asakusa, don’t forget to explore the side streets as well. You’ll find many small shops and restaurants that offer a more authentic experience. Some side streets to check out include Hoppy Street, Kappabashi Street, and Denpoin Street.
4. Take a River Cruise
For a different perspective of Asakusa, consider taking a river cruise along the Sumida River. You can board a boat near Asakusa Station and enjoy the views of Tokyo Skytree, the Rainbow Bridge, and other landmarks along the river.
By following these tips, you can have a memorable and enjoyable visit to Asakusa. Don’t forget to take your time and soak in the atmosphere of this historic district.