Tokyo, the capital city of Japan, is the largest metropolitan area in the world, that manages to mix ultramodern skyscrapers and ancient temples effortlessly. Whether you are travelling to Tokyo to discover its futuristic architecture and technology, or to learn about its traditional culture, you won’t be disappointed.
We’ve got an amazing selection of youth hostels in the city, many of which feature iconic Japanese design to make sure you have an unforgettable stay. The best hostels in Tokyo tick all the right boxes, including great design, a friendly atmosphere and spotless facilities. The alternative is a traditional Japanese inn, known as a Ryokan, where you can go back in time and imagine what it would have been like to live in Japan 100 years ago. Regardless of where you decide to stay, remember that most Tokyo hostels have private rooms for anyone in need of a bit of alone time, or those travelling with a significant other. If you’re travelling on a budget, check to see if your hostel offers a free breakfast, or has any self-catering facilities you can use. And if you want to mingle with other travellers, you can stay in a Tokyo youth hostel with a bar on site.
Tokyo is vast, and can be expensive, but hostels are the perfect way to keep you within easy reach of the city centre and all the best attractions. Here are a few suggestions on the best places to stay in Tokyo. Some of the best areas are Shinjuku, Harajuku, Shibuya, Roppongi and the area around Tokyo Central Station. Asakusa in the North is a popular backpacker choice, and if you want to get away from the crowds try Ebisu in the south for more of a neighbourhood feel.
Some popular attractions worth visiting include Sensō-ji, the oldest temple in Tokyo, Tsukiji market for the epicentre of seafood and Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden for a moment of zen calm in the city. For more unusual options, why not check out one of the many themed cafes in Tokyo. How about an owl café? Or maybe you prefer cats? Possibly even vampires? There’s also the well-known robot restaurant for a unique dining experience, or the slightly more down-to-earth Ghibli Museum. Check out our blog post for free things to do in Tokyo.
Despite its size, Tokyo is amazingly well-connected, if not slightly confusing to get around. You can try to take the bus but trains and subways are easier for tourists to understand. If you want to make things easier for yourself, get a prepaid card, called Pasmo or Suica, for trains and subways. Narita International Airport, the city’s main hub, is about 60km out of the city centre, but is easily reached by the Access Narita Bus (1000 yen) or the JR Narita Express (3000 yen).