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Tokyo: 5-day itinerary

Good for first timers

· 97 min read

Are you looking to explore the vibrant city of Tokyo and experience its unique culture, cuisine, and attractions? With its countless activities and winding streets, it can be hard to figure out where to start. To help make your planning easier, we’ve created a 5-day Tokyo itinerary to get you started.

You can download a copy of this itinerary to help you in your planning.

Day 1: Tokyo Skytree and Asakusa

Begin your journey visiting some of Tokyo’s must-see places, such as the Tokyo Skytree, Asakusa, and Akihabara.

Tokyo Skytree

🚶‍♀️Take the train to Tokyo Skytree Station on the Tobu Skytree Line or Oshiage Station on the Hanzomon Line.

Start your Tokyo adventure by exploring the iconic tower, the 634-metres tall Tokyo Skytree! There are two places in the tower that you can get a view of the city — the Tembo Galleria and Tembo Deck. The Tembo Deck is at 350m above the ground, which already allows you to get a stunning 360-degrees panoramic view of the city. The Tembo Galleria takes you further up to the Skytree’s highest floor at 450m above ground.

There is also a mall (Tokyo Solmachi) at the base of the tower, where there are a variety of shops and restaurants.

Purchase your tickets to the Tembo Galleria and Tembo Deck online in advance for a better deal!

🗺️ Address: 1 Chome-1-2 Oshiage, Sumida City, Tokyo 131-0045, Japan

🕤 Opening Hours: 10am - 9pm daily; last admission to Tembo Deck at 8pm

⏰ Recommended Time Spent: 1.5 hours

💰 Cost: Tembo Galleria and Tembo Deck Combo ticket at 2,700JPY (for advance purchase)

🔗 Tickets:


::callout[Take the train from Tokyo Skytree Station to Asakusa Station.Estimated travel time: 16 minutes

Alternatively, walk approximately 22 minutes from Tokyo Skytree to Asakusa.]{icon="🚶‍♀️"}

Asakusa is a must-see for tourists and locals. Home to numerous shrines and temples, including Tokyo’s oldest temple, Senso-ji, Asakusa boasts a rich culture and history. Take a photo with the iconic Kaminarimon, enjoy the many traditional shops and restaurants, and stroll through the Nakamise shopping street. Try the street food, or have lunch at one of the restaurants at Asakusa.

🍽️ Recommended places for food: Sometaro, Asakusa Gyukatsu

🗺️ Address: Senso-ji: 2 Chome-3-1 Asakusa, Taito City, Tokyo 111-0032, Japan

🕤 Opening Hours: Senso-ji: Temple grounds are always open, but main hall is opened from 6am - 5pm daily Nakamise shopping street: Hours vary by shop, but most are open from 10am - 7pm

⏰ Recommended Time Spent: 1.5 hours

Ueno Park

::callout[Take the train (Ginza Line) from Asakusa Station to Ueno-Hirokoji Station Estimated travel time: 16 minutes]{icon="🚶‍♀️"}

Visit Ueno Park, a large park located in the center of Tokyo. Spend some time here admiring the stunning Japanese gardens, strolling along the lake, and visiting a museum or two. Ueno Park is also one of Tokyo’s most popular spots for viewing the cherry blossoms, so if you are planning to be in Tokyo in Spring, be sure to drop by the park for a picnic under the cherry blossoms.

🗺️ Address: Uenokoen, Taito City, Tokyo 110-0007, Japan

🕤 Opening Hours: 5am - 11pm daily

⏰ Recommended Time Spent: 1-2 hours


::callout[Take the train from Ueno Station to Akihabara Station Estimated travel time: 4 minutes]{icon="🚶‍♀️"}

Head to Akihabara, home to gaming and anime, to find the latest electronics and gadgets. Browse the arcades and dive into the world of anime and manga, then take a break at one of the many maid cafes and character goods stores.

Recommended things to see: Radio Kaikan, Yodobashi Camera, Mandarake

🕤 Opening Hours: Opening hours vary by shop

⏰ Recommended Time Spent: 3-4 hours

Day 2: Shibuya City

Spend the day checking out Shibuya City, where you will get a good mix of culture, nature, and shopping all in the same area!

Meiji Shrine

🚶‍♀️Take the train to Sangubashi Station, Yoyogi Station, Kita-sando Station, Harajuku Station, or Meiji-jingumae Station

Head to the Meiji Shrine, a symbol of Japanese culture that dates back to the 19th century. A must-visit when in Tokyo, the Meiji Shrine combines traditional Japanese architecture with gardens and parks. Explore the shrine grounds, museum, and marvel at the beauty of the gardens. Shinto ritual ceremonies and events are held through the year, and you can also watch the daily rites that are being conducted at 8am and 2pm daily, or at 9am on the 1st and 15th of each month.

Take note of some of the etiquettes of visiting the place, and do not take photos or videos at the main sanctuary where people are making prayers.

🗺️ Address: 1-1 Yoyogikamizonocho, Shibuya City, Tokyo 151-8557, Japan

🕤 Opening Hours: Hours vary for different facilities, but general hours are from 9am - 4pm

💰 Cost: Free

⏰ Recommended Time Spent: 1-1.5 hours

🔗 Calendar of Shinto ritual ceremonies and events:

Yoyogi Park

Source: Japan Guide
Source: Japan Guide

Consider dropping by Yoyogi Park just next to Meiji Shrine for some greenery. The Yoyogi Park is a popular location for locals to gather, and if you are there on a weekend, you might be able to see groups of martial arts club members, cosplayers, or punk rockers.

🗺️ Address: 2-1 Yoyogikamizonocho, Shibuya City, Tokyo 151-0052, Japan

⏰ Recommended Time Spent: 30 minutes - 1 hour


::callout[Walk from Yoyogi Park to Harajuku Estimated travel time: 10 minutes]{icon="🚶‍♀️"}

You can have lunch at one of the restaurants in the area before heading to the fashionable district of Harajuku and explore the unique street fashion of Japan. Wander around Takeshita Street and pick up some one-of-a-kind pieces to take home with you.

Source: Japan Guide
Source: Japan Guide

🍽️ Recommended food: Ichiran Jingumae, Red Rock Harajuku, Harajuku Gyozaro

🕤 Opening Hours: Varies by shop

⏰ Recommended Time Spent: 2 hours

Shibuya Crossing, Shibuya Center-gai

::callout[Walk from Harajuku to Shibuya Crossing Estimated travel time: 15 minutes]{icon="🚶‍♀️"}

End your day in the bustling district of Shibuya. Cross the famous Shibuya Crossing and explore the nearby shops and restaurants. You can head up to Shibuya Sky for a bird-eye view of the Shibuya Crossing and spend some time just people watching. To experience Shibuya Crossing at its busiest, it is recommended to be there in the evening from about 5pm to 8pm. Be sure to take a photo at the iconic “Hachiko” statue before you leave. For a taste of the youth culture, head to the narrow streets of Shibuya Center-Gai.

Things to see: Shibuya Crossing, Tower Records (Shibuya), Shibuya Center-Gai, Hachiko Memorial Statue

🗺️ Address: Shibuya Sky - Shibuya Scramble Square, 2 Chome-24-12 Shibuya, Shibuya City, Tokyo 150-6145, Japan

🕤 Opening Hours: Shibuya Sky: 10am - 10.30pm

💰 Cost: 1800JPY for adults, 1400JPY for middle and high school students, 900JPY for elementary school students, 500JPY for children aged 3-5

Day 3: Imperial Palace, Ginza, Odaiba

Head to Akihabara, home to gaming and anime, to find the latest electronics and gadgets. Browse the arcades and dive into the world of anime and manga, then take a break at one of the many maid cafes and character goods stores. When you’ve had your fill of gaming, head to Shibuya to explore the iconic crosswalks, boutique clothing stores, and great restaurants. Harajuku.

Tsukiji Fish Market

🚶‍♀️Take a train (JR line) to Shimbashi Station, or take the Tokyo Metro Odeo line to Tsukiji Station

Start your day at the Tsukiji Fish Market, located alongside the Sumida River. Although the famous tuna auction has moved out from Tsukiji Fish Market, the outer market still has plenty of restaurants serving fresh sushi and sashimi. If you are a fan of sashimi, you should definitely check out the Tsukiji Fish Market. The queues for the restaurants could get rather long, so you might want to head down earlier, or have something light before heading out.

🍽️ Recommended food: Sushi Zanmai, Maguroya Kurogin, Tsukiji Sushidai Honkan

🗺️ Address: 4 Chome-13 Tsukiji, Chuo City, Tokyo 104-0045, Japan

Imperial Palace

::callout[Take a bus or train from Tsukiji Fish Market to the Imperial Palace. Estimated travel time: 22 minutes

Alternatively, walk for about 30 minutes. ]{icon="🚶‍♀️"}

The Imperial Palace was once the home of the Japanese Emperor and has long been a symbol of the country’s unity and power. The inner grounds of the palace are usually not open to public, with the exception of January 2 and February 23. However, guided tours of the palace grounds are offered during the rest of the year, at 10am and 1.30pm from Tuesdays to Saturdays. The East Gardens are also open for the public to visit.

Source: Japan Travel
Source: Japan Travel

🗺️ Address: 1-1 Chiyoda, Chiyoda City, Tokyo 100-8111, Japan

🕤 Opening Hours:

East Gardens: varies by season, but the shortest hours are from 9am - 4pm from November to February; closed on Mondays and Fridays, and from Dec 28 to Jan 3

⏰ Recommended time spent: 1.5 hours

🔗 Tour application:


🚶‍♀️Walk from Imperial Palace to Ginza Estimated travel time: 12 minutes

Source: Japan Guide
Source: Japan Guide

Head to Ginza, one of Tokyo’s most famous shopping districts. The area is known for its luxury stores, upscale restaurants, and entertainment. It’s also an excellent location for people-watching and you can find a variety of snacks and souvenirs in the many stores.

🕤 Opening Hours: Opening hours vary for individual shops

⏰ Recommended Time Spent: 1 - 1.5 hours

Tokyo Tower

::callout[Take a train from Ginza to Tokyo Tower Estimated travel time: 25 minutes]{icon="🚶‍♀️"}

Visit the Tokyo Tower, a symbolic landmark of the city. The tower is a must-see for tourists and offers a breathtaking view of the cityscape from the two observation decks — the main deck and top deck. The top deck is only accessible via a tour, and you can snag a better deal by purchasing the tickets online in advance.

🗺️ Address:4 Chome-2-8 Shibakoen, Minato City, Tokyo 105-0011, Japan

🕤 Opening Hours: Main deck: 9am - 10.30pm (last admission at 10pm) Top deck tour: 9am - 10.15pm (last admission at 9.30pm) Stairs to main deck: 9am - 4pm

💰Cost: Main deck: 1,200JPY for adults (19 and above), 1,000JPY for visitors from 16-18, 700JPY for visitors from 7- 15, 500JPY for visitors from 4-6 Top deck tour (includes admission to main deck): 2,800JPY for adults (19 and above), 2,600JPY for visitors from 16-18, 1,800JPY for visitors from 7- 15, 1,200JPY for visitors from 4-6

🔗 Ticketing link:


::callout[Take the train from Tokyo Tower to Odaiba Estimated travel time: 50 minutes]{icon="🚶‍♀️"}

Visit the man-made island of Odaiba, a relatively new development that is home to a variety of attractions, such as the Rainbow Bridge, Diver City Tokyo Plaza, and a replica of the Statue of Liberty. Odaiba is also where the iconic Unicorn Gundam Statue is located. You can relax at one of the restaurants at the Odaiba seaside park and enjoy a spectacular night view of the Tokyo Bay.

Things to see: Unicorn Gundam statue, Odaiba Takoyaki Museum, Fuji TV Building, Rainbow Bridge

🕤 Opening Hours: Odaiba Diver City: 11am - 8pm on weekdays, 10am - 9pm on weekends

Day 4: Day Trip to Hakone

Escape the hustle and bustle of the city and experience Japan’s natural beauty on a day trip to Hakone, a spa town and on of Japan’s most popular tourist destinations. Located just southwest of Tokyo, Hakone is a stunning region characterized by its hot springs and stunning views of Mount Fuji. Known as a spa town and one of Japan’s most popular tourist destinations, Hakone offers a plethora of activities and attractions for visitors of all ages.


::callout[To get to Hakone, take the Odakyu Limited Express Romancecar from Shinjuku to Hakone-Yumoto Station Estimated travel time: 1.5 hours]{icon="🚶‍♀️"}

Moto-Hakone, Lake Ashi, Hakone-jinja Shrine

::callout[From Hakone-Yumoto Station, take a bus to Moto-Hakone Estimated travel time: 30 minutes]{icon="🚶‍♀️"}

Start your trip at Hakone at Moto-Hakone, which offers some of the best views of Mount Fuji when visibility is good. Walk along Lake Ashi to the Hakone-jinjia Shrine for the iconic view of the torii gate.


🗺️ Address: 80-1 Motohakone, Hakone, Ashigarashimo District, Kanagawa 250-0522, Japan

🕤 Opening Hours: 8.30am - 5pm


🚶‍♀️Hop onto the Hakone river cruise to Togendai Port, and transfer to a bus up to Owakudani. Estimated travel time: 1 hour


The Owakudani is a must-visit for a trip to Hakone. Owakudani is a volcanically active spot in Hakone, and you will be able to see the smoking vents and boiling pools alongside the pungent sulphuric smell. It is most famous for the black eggs and black soft serve ice cream, which you should try if you are already at Owakudani!

🗺️ Address: Owakudani Bus Stop, Sengokuhara, Hakone, Ashigarashimo District, Kanagawa 250-0631, Japan

⏰ Recommended time spent: 1 hour

Hakone Open-Air Museum

::callout[Take the Hakone Ropeway, Cable Car, and Hakonetozan Line to Hakone Open-Air Museum Estimated travel time: 32 minutes]{icon="🚶‍♀️"}

The Hakone Open-Air Museum was founded in 1969, becoming Japan’s first outdoor, open-air museum of art. Located in a lushly green 70,000 square meters garden with a view of the Hakone mountains, the museum has on permanent display some 120 masterpieces by famous modern and contemporary sculptors. This is a unique opportunity to enjoy a leisurely stroll, taking the time to examine your favorite sculptures up close and experience firsthand what each work of art has to say. Visit the museum’s five indoor exhibitions, including the Picasso Pavilion with its rotational displays from the more than 300 Picasso pieces in this world-class collection, as well as the natural hot spring bath and the art in the outdoor plazas.

🗺️ Address: Ninotaira 1121, Hakone-machi, Ashigarashimo-gun, Kanagawa Prefecture 250-0493

🕤 Opening Hours: 9am - 5pm daily (last admission 4.30pm)

💰Cost: 1,600JPY for adults, 1,200JPY for university and high school students, 800JPY for middle and elementary school students

Recommended time spent: 2-3 hours

No trip to Hakone is complete without a visit to the onsens. Consider spending the night at one of the hot spring ryokans at Hakone, or visit a day bath before heading back to Tokyo.

💡 Tips: Get a Hakone Freepass for unlimited transport around Hakone.

Day 5: Shinjuku

🚶‍♀️Travel to Shinjuku Station

Spend the last day in Tokyo at Shinjuku, one of the biggest cities in Japan. The streets of Shinjuku will come alive with shopping, entertainment, and culinary experiences. You will be able to spend the entire day exploring Shinjuku and discovering the different dimensions that it has to offer. Apart from shopping, below are also some places that you could check out in Shinjuku.

Tokyo Metropolitan Government Office Building

The Tokyo Metropolitan Government Office Building is a towering structure located in Shinjuku. It stands to be a symbol of the Japanese government and is a great place to take in the beauty of the city. If you still haven’t had enough of Tokyo’s cityscape, or if you didn’t want to pay to go up the Tokyo Tower or Tokyo Skytree, you can choose to head up to the 45th floor of this building for free to get a panoramic view of the city.

🗺️ Address: 2 Chome-8-1 Nishishinjuku, Shinjuku City, Tokyo 163-8001, Japan

🕤 Opening Hours: 8.30am - 5pm

Tokyo Toy Museum

The Tokyo Toy Museum was converted from an elementary school, and now houses toys and games from around the world. At this museum you can explore the history of Japanese toys and get a glimpse into the past. From vintage toys to modern gadgets, there’s something for children of all ages.

🗺️ Address: Tokyo, Shinjuku City, Yotsuya, 4 Chome−20

🕤 Opening Hours: 10am - 4pm, closed on Thursdays

💰Cost: 1100JPY for adults, 800JPY for children


Kabukicho is the entertainment district of Tokyo and is widely known as the “Sleepless Town”. This area is home to countless bars, restaurants, and nightclubs, as well as the well-known Robot Restaurant. Whether visitors are looking for a night out on the town or looking for a place to just take a stroll, Kabukicho is the place to go. You can also see the Shinjuku Godzilla Head from Kabukicho.

Golden Gai

For a glimpse into Tokyo's past, head to Golden Gai. A collection of unique, small and atmospheric bars and restaurants in the centre of Shinjuku Ward, Golden Gai is a great spot to discover some of the city's hidden gems. There are also many options if you are looking for a place to grab a quick bite or a place to stay late into the night.

🗺️ Address: Shinjuku City, Kabukicho, 1 Chome−1−6 2F

Shinjuku also has many food options that you could check out, such as Shin Udon, Tsunahachi, Shinjuku Kappo Nakajima, or Rokkasen.

💡Closing Tips

  • If you are travelling with children, you could consider swapping out the day trip to Hakone for a trip to Tokyo Disneyland and Disneysea, or a trip to the Ghibli museum instead.
  • Japan is still largely a cash-based society, so be sure to have sufficient cash with you when you are there!
  • The JR pass does not cover Tokyo subways, so consider getting a IC card instead if you will be staying mostly in Tokyo.