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Tokyo

Layover in Tokyo, what to do with a short period of time

We're considering going to Singapore in late January and there are no direct flights so one of the places I can change planes is Tokyo and since we've never been, I thought we might do a short layover.  It looks like I can get a flight that arrives mid to late day on Friday, we could spend all day Saturday and fly to Singapore the next day midday.  I will guess that we will be quite tired from the 13 hour flight so probably looking for the following:

hotel for 2 nights for 2 people that won't make my pocketbook cry too loudly, I am fine with anything clean that has a bed and a private shower in a safe neighborhood (no hostels or shared facilities), easy access to transit to the airport a plus

dinner on Friday night, then off to sleep

what to see on Saturday to get a feel for the city

lunch and dinner on Saturday

I've had a look at the average weather and it says 38/50F low/high, that will be warm for us at that time of year since we live in Chicago :-)

Thanks for any help!


7 Answers

answered first by
Jacey & Scott from Fort Collins

We had a similar situation returning to the US in February with a 12 hour lay-over in Narita Airport.  We hired a driver/guide for several hours to take us around Narita.  He took us to numerous shrines around town, a beautiful pagoda, a short walking tour of the old town area and we even got to attend a prayer service at a temple.  You could easily do this, staying at one of the numerous hotels around the airport.  I would easily have spend more time in the old town of Narita-it felt like what I assumed a small Japanese village would feel like.  Katsumi from Rainbow Tours was excellent.


Mentioned in this answer:

VIEW DETAILED MAP
  1. Narita (attraction)
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answered by
Rodrigo

Hello Kristi,

Im living in japan , I can recommend you to visit AsakusaShibuyaHarajuku if you have only one full day. Near Asakusa you can visit Tokyo Skytree. I highly recommend to visit Asakusa you can find some extra info here: 

https://triplelights.com/blog/5-amazing-thingsdoasakusa-1189

Important things you should visit in one day:


Mentioned in this answer:

VIEW DETAILED MAP
  1. Asakusa (region)
  2. Shibuya (metro area)
  3. Harajuku (attraction)
  4. Tsukiji fish market (restaurant)
  5. Meiji Jingu Shrine (attraction)
  6. Omotesando (attraction)
  7. Harajyuku Gyozalo (restaurant)
1 thanks


answered by
Shinobu from Chiba

If you are tired, Narita is a good choice as it is small and quiet so that you can look around in a relaxed way. The town is small but it'll give you a bit of the Japanese feel and culture. :)

If you are full of energy and enthusiasm, Tokyo is a great choice. There are direct transportations between Tokyo and Narita. So,, no worry about that.

My recommendation is to stay in a hotel in Narita and you can plan your journey depending on your condition after arrival. :)


Mentioned in this answer:

VIEW DETAILED MAP
  1. Narita (attraction)
  2. Tokyo (city)
1 thanks


answered by
Laura from Buenos Aires

You could choose a hotel in Shinjuku because there you have direct acces from/to the airport with the Narita Express, and on saturday I'd visit AkihabaraGinza, MarunouchiShibuyaOmotesando. It seems a lot but the touristy part of the city is not so big and you can reach every place easily by train. 

I stayed in the Hotel Empire In Shinjuku, it was simple, clean and cheap. 


Mentioned in this answer:

VIEW DETAILED MAP
  1. Shinjuku (metro area)
  2. Akihabara (attraction)
  3. Ginza (region)
  4. Marunouchi (attraction)
  5. Shibuya (metro area)
  6. Omotesando (attraction)
  7. Hotel Empire In Shinjuku (hotel)
1 thanks


answered by
Carolann from Around The World

If you're just looking for a short excursion not too far from the airport with super easy access, Narita is a good option. yes, it is quiet and small, but it'll give you a bit of the Japanese feel and culture without having to travel too long and far into the city.

Tokyo is massive, so you may want to pick one area to experience - whether that be Narita or one of the other areas.

We wrote about what to do and see in Narita during a layover - http://onemoderncouple.com/layover-narita-japan/ - if you're looking for an idea of the location. There are a variety of restaurants for meals as well.

Also, make sure which airport you are flying into as there are two different airports in Tokyo and that will change what areas are most accessible.


Mentioned in this answer:

VIEW DETAILED MAP
  1. Narita (attraction)
  2. Tokyo (city)
1 thanks


answered by
Jenna from Scituate

Tokyo is one of my favorite places for a layover!  Narita airport is quite a ways out of town so I usually take the "Airport Limousine" bus. They stop at many of the large hotels and major rail stations.  If you only have two nights I recommend staying near Shibuya Station.  Granbell Hotel Shibuya  is quite convenient if it's in your budget (about $150 a night). Nearby department stores like Seibu Shibuya A have entire floors full of restaurants. If you are interested in shopping I also recommend visiting Tokyu Hands Shibuya Store everything from hardware to beauty products.  From Shibuya you can also walk to Takeshita Street in Harajuku which is excellent for people watching.  


Mentioned in this answer:

VIEW DETAILED MAP
  1. Granbell Hotel Shibuya (hotel)
  2. Seibu Shibuya A (attraction)
  3. Tokyu Hands Shibuya Store (attraction)
  4. Takeshita Street (attraction)
1 thanks


answered by
Philip from London

Don't bother with Narita, it's a small town miles away from Tokyo and is pretty boring. Get the train in and walk round Harajuku, walk on to Meiji Shrine there and then get lost in Shinjuku and/or Shibuya. More than enough. 


Mentioned in this answer:

VIEW DETAILED MAP
  1. Narita (attraction)
  2. Tokyo (city)
  3. Harajuku (attraction)
  4. Meiji Shrine (neighborhood)
1 thanks




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