Tokyo is one of the largest, most vibrant cities in the world. Home to more than 13 million people, the city is chock full of intriguing places to explore and interesting things to see and do.
Unfortunately, Tokyo can be an expensive city, especially during the peak tourist seasons. Fortunately, it’s possible to see and enjoy some of the best sights and attractions Tokyo has to offer without spending a penny.
This article will list 5 of the best free things to do in Tokyo.
#1 – Visit Tokyo City Hall to get a bird-eye view over the city
Tokyo is a beautiful city and the best way to take in its beauty is to look down on it from above.
Tokyo City Hall, at 243 metres high, is one of the tallest buildings in Tokyo. Located in the centre of Tokyo, it offers breathtaking views over Tokyo from its free public observation decks on its 45th floor. (Image by Andy)
Make sure to include a visit to Tokyo City Hall on your Tokyo trip itinerary. Try to visit on a clear day, if possible, to get the best views possible.
#2 – Pay respects at one of Tokyo’s many temples and shrines
Tokyo is home to dozens of stunning temples and shrines built hundreds of years ago. These temples and shrines can be found dotted throughout the city and they are normally surrounded by lush gardens and parks.
Arguably the most impressive shrine in Tokyo is the Meiji Shrine in the Shibuya district. Built in 1920 in commemoration of the Japanese Emperor Meiji, the Meiji Shrine, while simple in design, is stunning to behold. It’s a must visit for every Tokyo traveller.
Sensōji, Tokyo’s oldest temple, is also worth a visit. Built in the 7th century, the temple is remarkably well preserved considering its age.
Sensōji is also one of the best places in Tokyo to sample some of Tokyo’s more unique street food dishes, including skewered shrimp, street sushi, and deep fried eel. These dishes, while plain in appearance, are normally made from unique ingredients with unique flavour combinations. Make sure to arrange holiday insurance before trying these dishes, though – some can be unfriendly to western stomaches and they may cause stomach problems.
#3 – Explore the Tsukiji Fish Market
Fish is one of the cornerstones of Japanese cuisine. In addition to being the main ingredient in sushi, it’s used in many of Japan’s most famous dishes.
Tsukiji Fish Market, located in the Chuo ward in central Tokyo, is the biggest fish market in Japan and one of the biggest in the world. Open from 9am, Monday to Saturday, the fish market sees thousands of Japanese fisherman manning over 1,600 stalls to flog their wares to locals and tourists.(Image by jamesarthurtravel)
The Tsukiji Fish Market is one of Tokyo’s most unique sights and a must visit on any trip to Tokyo. Make sure to visit early to see the best the fish market has to offer.
#4 – Get a free tour with a Goodwill Guide Group
Exploring Tokyo with the help of a local is one of the best ways to explore the city. Locals, with their intimate knowledge of their home city, can often take you to interesting places you would have otherwise missed if you were exploring on your own.
Japan’s National Tourism Organisation run a number of free tour groups throughout Tokyo. These groups, ran by volunteers, offer free tours around some of Tokyo’s most interesting wards, including Ueno, Asakusa and Tsukiji.
Make sure to call into one of Tokyo’s many tourist information centres to book one of these free tours.
#5 – Go for a stroll
Tokyo is a stunning city with tons of style, character, and charisma. It’s unlike any other city on Earth and it’s a joy to explore.
Spending a day strolling around Tokyo is arguably the best way to see the city up close and take in its unique atmosphere.
Simply pick a direction and start walking. You’ll be sure to find some hidden gems while on your adventure.
Tokyo is an amazing city and one of the best tourist cities on Earth. Make sure to sample the 5 free activities in this article to make the most of your time in Tokyo.
Related post : Getting Around Tokyo-the Easy Way
Feature image by Hal Arai