Everything in Japan (or at least Tokyo) always seems so serene and organized...even after you get off a long plane ride.
A beautiful hotel right in the heart of the business district called Nihonbashi. There are lots of shops and restaurants around it to visit, especially if you walk 10 mins down the street to the Kanda train station where there is a mix of western bars and local food joints. Tokyo is extremely safe to wander around at night but it is quite spread out so bring some comfortable waking shoes!
Random places around Nihonbashi including a local 24 hour Japanese diner. Nihonbashi bridge is a 17th century commercial center known for its landmark bridge.
Local restaurant near Kandan station that was willing to stay open a little later for us as we were starving. They specialize in yakitori skewers but also had really good sushi. I love finding more local places to eat. The owner was nice enough to write out their name in Japanese for us.
Try the chicken gizzard skewers if you’re more adventurous.
Specialty Japanese pear martini at Xex, a more westernized cocktail bar. The martini was extremely smooth although I couldn’t really taste the gin as much.
Try their seasonal fruit martinis. They also had raspberry that evening.
While Nihonbashi is not as famous as the Ginza district, you can still catch cultural heritages such as the Nihonbashi bridge, a 17th century remnant from Japan’s Edo period. The statues and dragons on the bridge are truly stunning up close.
The bridge was a national symbol at that time for roads leading in and out of Tokyo. The bridge has a bronze signpost with the words « Origin of Roads in Japan, » and the location was used as a base point to measure distances from Tokyo.
Tokyo station, built in 1914, is a central gateway for many trainlines and the famous Shinkansen 🚅 high speed trains. Its red brick facade was recently renovated and is just beautiful!
This teppanyaki restaurant was recommended by the hotel was unfortunately overpriced. Our mistake for listening to the concierge for taking us to a tourist trap. I would have rather gone to a local joint. Our bad!
Cute little breakfast place near our hotel
The Misukoshi department store was Japan’s first department store and built in 1904. Japanese department stores have a certain serenity to them, not to mention the wonderful food court, usually on display in the basement.
Pick little bites to eat of your favorite Japanese delicacies in the basement.
Get their happy hour cocktails from 5-7pm! 390 yen per drink ($3-4 usd)
The famous restaurant is know for their Unaju, Japanese grilled eel dish. I love Japanese eel and unfortunately the restaurant didn’t meet our high expectations (even my local Japanese friend thought it was just ok). To make us feel worse, we learned that eel are being overfished in Japan.
They have different sizes for the Unaju dish depending on how many eels you want. The largest portion had three rows of eel.
An omakase (chef’s tasting) cocktail bar. Most of the drinks were fresh local fruit infused with Japanese spirits. You could barely taste alcohol but we definitely felt it afterwards! They have four or seven course cocktail menus. It was totally worth the experience!
Make a reservation as it can get booked up. You can call starting at noon local time every day. There is a 1,000 yen ($9-10 usd) cover charge per person added to the bill.