One Day Itinerary: Tokyo

WHERE TO GO IF YOU ONLY HAVE A DAY

Since it was our first time in Tokyo, we did a lot of research. Among our questions, were where to go and what to do. Tokyo has so much to offer, and we had to choose since we have limited time. We only had one full day in Tokyo, so a friend of ours suggested that we do a guided tour so that we can make the most out of our trip.

We had to make some difficult choices and needed to prioritize things that we wanted to do and places we wanted to visit. Below are my top things to do in Tokyo if you only have one full day.

1. ENJOY THE VIEW UP TOP THE TOKYO TOWER

First on our itinerary is one of Tokyo’s highest landmark, the Tokyo Tower. It is a communications and observation tower, a perfect spot to see the beautiful cityscape. It costs about 900-2,800 yen (about $5 – $25). There are shops and restaurants here as well. 

If you are planning on taking public transportation to get here, there are several metro and bus stops close by. I highly recommend going here, especially if it is your first time in Tokyo. If you’re lucky you might have the chance to see Mt. Fuji.

2. BE ONE WITH NATURE AT THE HAPPO-EN GARDEN

One beautiful thing about Japan is its gardens. If you want to see a collection of beautiful bonsai trees, a pond with a school of koi fish, and other lovely plants and flowers, head to this not-so-secret garden. Get some relaxing time with nature.

The Japanese garden is breathtaking. You can easily spend an hour here appreciating the beauty of nature. Every angle is “insta-worthy.”

3. WITNESS A TRADITIONAL GREEN TEA CEREMONY

While you are at the Happo-en Garden, you can experience the Japanese Green Tea at a Traditional Tea House (aka Muan). The women here gracefully prepare the green tea for everyone. Reservation is required for this one. You might have to go to their website a month or two before you go.

It was a nice experience, something that you should witness at least once. Here’s their link for more information! 🙂

https://www.happo-en.com/banquet/plan_en/detail.php?p=837

4. ENJOY DISHES COOKED ON HOT LAVA ROCKS FROM MT. FUJI

For lunch, our tour guide brought us to Mokushundo, a restaurant located in the middle of a garden. It is part of the five-star hotel, Hotel Chinzanso Tokyo. Here you can enjoy dishes that are cooked right in front of you.

My friend and I getting spoiled with the excellent service here. The servers put the bib on us!

This restaurant is on the fancier side and a little bit pricey, but I definitely think it is worth it. The servers wear Kimono, and I honestly think the way they cook the food is a form of art. They cook the food neatly and in an exact way. It is hard to explain it, you just have to see it yourself.

Since we are only here in Tokyo for a limited time, we might as well experience and enjoy this.

After having lunch, we decided to walk around the garden to take pictures and to appreciate the beauty of Tokyo once again.

5. VISIT THE IMPERIAL PALACE

Upon arriving at the Imperial Palace grounds, I was amazed by how there was a peaceful spot in the middle of all the buildings in the city. A place with plenty of greeneries.

Seimon Ishibashi Bridge – Leads to the Main Gate

6. SUMIDA RIVER CRUISE

To see parts of Tokyo from a different perspective, you can take a cruise along the Sumida River. From Hinode Pier, we took the Tokyo Cruise to Asakusa. It costs about 780yen per person. It took us about 40 minutes to get to the Asakusa Pier.

For timetables, fares and more information, visit their website. https://www.suijobus.co.jp/en/price/

7. EXPLORE ASAKUSA

There are so many things to do in Asakusa. There are plenty of shops, food stands, and restaurants to choose from. Try all the food and snacks that you can. The foodie in me was jumping up and down while I was here.


This is also a good place to buy souvenirs and gifts for your family, friends or loved ones. At the end of Nakamise Street, you will find the Sensoji Temple. It is one of the oldest temples in Tokyo. I highly recommend going to this area.

8. SAY HELLO TO HARAJUKU

Takeshita Street is something you should visit if you want to find “kawaii” (cute) finds. They have plenty of retail stores, food stands and restaurants for you to try. I love Harajuku, see it for yourself!

9. LET YOUR INNER KAWAII OUT AT PIRA KURA

There are so many photo booths in Tokyo. We went to the one in Harajuku. The Japanese photo booth is far from simple and boring. I had so much fun here. After you take photos, you get to edit and write on your photos. The artsy in me was so happy!

10. FIGHT YOUR WAY AT SHIBUYA CROSSING

Shibuya crossing is probably one of the busiest crossing in the world. Be ready to find your way! If you are not a fan of big crowds, this is not for you. Seeing all the people cross can be overwhelming. Since you are there already, stop by the Hachiko statue. If you do not know this most loyal dog ever, watch the self-titled movie to learn more about him!

There you have it, my suggested one day itinerary for Tokyo. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me and I will be more than happy to help!

Safe travels!

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