Senso-ji Temple is a popular spot for omikuji, or fortunes. These auspicious sheets are offered in a multitude of languages, enticing both Japanese and foreigners alike to see how their luck plays out. If the number you draw is less than lucky, don’t worry – simply tie up the offending fortune on the nearby wires and allow your bad karma to be spirited away.
The temple also shares its grounds with the Asakusa Shrine, dedicated to the three men credited with the temple’s founding. Considered one of the oldest original buildings in Tokyo, the shrine plays host to the exuberant Sanja Matsuri every May. Another popular building (and photo spot) is the five-story pagoda
A number of other festivals take place at Senso-ji throughout the year. The Kinryu-no-mai (Dragon Dance) can be enjoyed on March 18th and October 18th, when a large golden dragon on poles is paraded through the streets. Visitors on April 14th can witness the Sagi-no-mai (White Heron Dance), which features a parade of participants in both Heian-era outfits and heron costumes. In late autumn, the temple’s atmosphere grows even more exuberant during its end of the year rake fairs. Buyers come to purchase one of the many colorfully adorned tools in the hopes of raking in good fortune in the coming year.
It is arguably one of the most popular tourist destinations in the city, Senso-ji Temple – also known as Asakusa Kannon – can trace its roots back to the early 600s. In 628, two fishermen on the nearby Sumida River repeatedly brought up a golden statue of the Buddhist goddess of mercy along with their usual catch. Finally deciding not to throw the statue back to the depths of the river once more, they instead brought it to their village headman, who convinced them to build a temple in its honor. Senso-ji Temple was finished in the year 645 and quickly became a pilgrimage site.
Its popularity endured over the centuries and even continues in the present day, with most visitors making this one of their first stops in Tokyo. The road leading up to the temple, known as the Nakamise-dori or “street of inner shops”, peddles everything from lacquered chopsticks and ukiyo-e prints to cheap keychains and colorful trinkets. Cake-like ningyoyaki¸sweet treats that are served hot off the iron grill, are a popular purchase, as are warming cups of amazake in the winter months.
Nakamise-dori is the street people walk on the approach to Senso-ji. Said to have been born in the 18th century as shop keepers were granted permission to sell their wares along the way to the temple. Today, the 250-meters contains around 90 shops and sells everything from souvenirs to snacks, meals and yukata.
Kaminarimon, literally Thunder Gate, is the outer of two large entrance gates that lead to Senso-ji. The gate houses a large red lantern with a wooden carving of a dragon on the underside as well as two large statues, Fujin (god of wind) on the right and Raijin (god of thunder) on the left.
Hozomon is the inner gate, Kaminarimon being the outer, and houses many of Senso-ji’s treasures. The first story houses two large statures of Nio, the guardian deities of the Buddha; there are also three lanterns and a pair of large sandals.
The impressive five-story pagoda is easily visible as you walk along the path to Senso-ji and worth a visit—and especially worthy of some photographing. It is the second highest pagoda in Japan at 53 meters high and was built in 942 to hold Buddha’s ashes given as a goodwill to Japan from Sri Lanka.
Five-minute walk from Asakusa Station on the Ginza Subway Line, Asakusa Subway Line, and Tobu Railways.
According to a legend, Sensoji was built in 628 on the exact location where two brothers fished the golden statue of Kannon, the goddess of mercy, out of the Sumida river. The temple was completed in 645. Actually it is the largest and oldest Buddhist temple in Tokyo. With millions of visitors every year it is an awesome experience for all visitors.
Omikuji are written fortunes offered at shrines and temples in Japan. Usually, omikuji require a small offering ( ¥100 usually), and are chosen randomly from a box. At Senso-ji Temple (Asakusa Kannon Temple), Tokyo's oldest temple, in Asakusa you can pick up an omikuji to try your luck.
Northern Tokyo holds a lot of charm with its ever so popular Buddhists temple, Sensoji. Directing you to this stunning temple is Nakamise, an over 200 meter street with an abundance of traditional and exciting foods, and friendly people welcoming you to one of Tokyo's most loved sites.
During the festival the area around Asakusa's Sensoji Temple is filled with hundreds of people. There are drums and people playing the flute as well as people yelling from time to time. Also a great time to enjoy the numerous food stalls where you can purchase many different foods, desserts and drinks of course.
NOHGA HOTEL AKIHABARA TOKYO is conveniently located in the midst of electric town Akihabara, also known as the capital of manga and anime. In addition, this neighborhood has an abundance of tech shops, maid cafes and a variety of restaurants. With just a 6 minute walk away from Akihabara station, it provides easy access to explore other areas nearby such as Ueno and Asakusa. This hotel embodies the rich cultures of music, art and food. Nohga’s concept of music is derived from Akihabara’s local history, starting as a district of radio and wireless component merchants in the late 1920s. The artistic and luxurious space throughout the hotel is achieved by featuring art and amenities designed in collaboration with craftsmen from around Japan. As for the food menu, it’s seasonal fresh ingredients are sourced domestically. The glasses and dinnerware served are collaborations with stores in the surrounding area. All 120 non-smoking guest rooms feature an ensuite bathroom with a rain shower, in-room safety box, mini fridge, USB plugs, free Wi-Fi, a high-quality bluetooth speaker and flatscreen TV with original music and film. The lounge area and a compact 24-hour gym can be found near the reception on the second floor. Services include laundry (from 2,750JPY) and a 24-hour front desk with a check in time of 3PM and check-out time at 11AM For sightseeing you can rent a Tokyobike for the day (2,000 JPY/day) to explore the vicinity.
Enter the world of Moomin, Finnish fairy-tale comic book characters, at the exclusive Moomin cafe in Tokyo Skytree Town. This permanent Moomin cafe is designed especially for fans of Moomin, with character-themed food, desserts, drinks, and decor. Whether you're dining alone or with someone, a plushy Moomin doll can keep you company at your table. There is another Moomin cafe in Tokyo Dome City's LaQua complex.
PIZZERIA & BAR NOHGA is an all day dining restaurant interpreting a fusion of “Spanish Italian” cuisine and has a kitchen to table design. There is a casual bar area and restaurant where you can take a peek inside the open kitchen whilst enjoying your meal. Visit the cafe for a range of coffees and teas along with an offering of tapas snacks and seasonal desserts. The cafe also offers an assorted dessert and all-you-can-drink cafe set. Breakfast takes on the art of sharing, where a range of platters are combined with focaccia and your choice of eggs cooked your way. Coming for lunch? Choose from a selection of pizzas, pastas and salads. Each lunch menu is accompanied with homemade soup, iced tea and focaccia. Dinner time offers a range of exquisite tapas and pizzas that can also be shared. Breakfast: 07:00 - 10:00, Lunch 11:30 - 14:30, Cafe 14:30 - 18:00, Dinner: 18:00 - 23:00 with last order at 10pm.
Opened in March 2018, the Pokemon Cafe in Nihonbashi is the series' latest permanent character cafe in Tokyo. The cafe and adjacent Pokemon Center DX store were launched to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the first store back in 1997. The Pokemon Cafe operates on a reservation-only basis, timeslots can only be reserved up to a month in advance. The cafe serves up Pokemon-inspired dishes and drinks, making it a must-visit for fans on their Tokyo Pokemon pilgrimage. Pokemon Cafe Nihonbashi also sells exclusive cafe-only merchandise, as well as limited random coasters and placemats that are given to customers who order specific food items. The menu changes every month or so, depending on the season and game or event the store is currently promoting.
Tokyo Solamachi is a shopping complex that makes up part of the Tokyo Skytree Town, and boasts over 300 shops and eateries featuring a wealth of goods and tastes from around Japan. Even for those unimpressed by the typical tourist shops, Tokyo Solamachi brings together a collection of unique outlets worth exploring. Select the perfect pair of chopsticks at Ginza Natsuno, paper products from 360-year-old Kyukyodo, or plastic food samples from Ganso Shokuhin Sample-ya. Character goods, such as Rilakkuma and Hello Kitty, are perfect for fans of kawaii culture; Tabio and Beams offer Japan-made clothing, such as split-toe socks and local denim products. For those who simply want a slice of Japan to remember their trip, the selection at Nihon-Ichi often fits the bill. Food options abound in the Solamachi complex, with a handful of rather well-known eateries stationing an outpost here. Slurp up the savory goodness of a bowl of Rokurinsha’s signature ramen, or dine on delicious yet affordable seafood from noted Hokkaido sushi-go-round Toriten. Need a pick-me-up? Get your caffeine kick at Gion Tsujiri, which has been selling Uji green tea and sweets in the Tokyo region since 1860. Visitors who don’t mind splashing out a bit more for a meal can enjoy the sky-high dining options on levels 30-31 of the Tokyo Skytree – cuisines on offer range from Korean barbecue to French to upscale teppanyaki joints. Tokyo Solamachi is just one part of the sprawling Tokyo Skytree Town complex, and an entire day could be devoted to exploring the many diversions on offer. Aside from the obvious – the towering Tokyo Skytree – visitors can also enjoy the Sumida Aquarium and a recently-opened museum dedicated to the postal system in Japan. The Tenku Planetarium is also an option, though travelers should be aware that shows are offered in Japanese only. For visitors needing a step back from the crowds, Tokyo Sky Town’s abundance of green spaces and shady terraces make it the perfect place to simply relax.
Measuring in at 634 meters, the Tokyo Skytree is the largest free-standing tower in the world. It sits in the northeastern part of Tokyo, in an area known colloquially as a shitamachi, or old downtown. The tower’s height is a nod to both its current location and the area’s history – 634 is a another reading of the characters for musashi, the ancient name of the province where the tower current stands. Construction on the tower began in 2008, with the project reaching its completion in 2012. While the upper half of the tower looks like a long cylinder, the base actually forms a triangle shape, allowing for extra support. The Tokyo Skytree also draws on historic Japanese building techniques common to temple pagodas with the addition of a central pillar, or shinbashira. This core cylinder acts as a pendulum in the case of an earthquake and works to counterbalance the effects a massive tremblor may have. Such a technique was actually seen in action during the Great East Japan Earthquake in 2011, mere weeks before the tower reached its completed height. Tokyo Skytree is popular for its two observatories, both of which offer impressive views over Tokyo and surrounding area. The Tembo deck is the lower of the two observatories, sitting at 350 meters above ground. The deck actually spans three floors and houses both a souvenir shop and the Musashi restaurant, a lauded French-Japanese eatery. From the Tembo deck, a second elevator delivers ticketholders to the 450-meter high Tembo Gallery, where a spiral viewing gallery swirls around the tower up to the final observation deck at 451 meters. Tickets for the observation decks can be purchased both online and on-site. At the tower itself, tickets for the lower Tembo deck can be purchased on the 4th floor, while tickets for the upper Tembo Gallery can only be purchased from the Tembo deck. While the view from the top is certainly incomparable, Tokyo Skytree’s other big attraction is the Solamachi Mall at the tower’s base. Floors 1 through 4 boast a wide selection of popular retail shops (such as Uniqlo and Onitsuka Tiger) and copious eateries, offering everything from ramen to takoyaki to Hawaiian-style burgers. There’s also an aquarium and a museum devoted to Japan’s postal service. With so many attractions, it’s possible to spend hours exploring the site and still not see it all!
Sumida Aquarium has been bringing aquatic wonders to the Tokyo Skytree area since 2012. The aquarium is a two-floor housing complex for over 10,000 animals. With its artificial seawater system, the aquarium also reduces CO2 emissions in ways that most other aquariums do not. The aquarium centerpiece--a 350,000-liter tank--is the largest of its kind in Japan and is home to penguins and fur seals. The aquarium lies in the West Zone of Tokyo Skytree Town on the 5th and 6th floors. Instead of following lines or pre-chosen routes, guests are instead free to find their own way through the aquarium and enjoy the aquatic animals from many angles. There are also many seating areas scattered throughout the aquarium to enhance watching experiences and allow visitors to take a break while they wander. As of 2020, the Sumida Aquarium has also added a jellyfish exhibition area. Watch jellyfish float beneath you in a surreal alien landscape from the viewing platform. More than 500 moon jellyfish are illuminated in this area and create a one-of-a-kind view. The gift shop is where you can find all kinds of merchandise and stuffed animals of your favorite aquarium inhabitants. Visit the café and restaurant for a snack or a meal, and be impressed by their themed foods.