Asia

Tokyo: Perfect For Two!

Japan Couples Version 3

Couples who visit Tokyo will discover a place of apparent contradictions that work together to captivate and endear.

IMG_0114

When we first stepped off the Narita Express and emerged from Shinjuku Station, we were dazzled by sleek modern towering buildings and flashing lights of every color. Chic and stylish young professionals dashed along, effortlessly weaving through the endless crowds. Emerging from the train station was like arriving in a future decade. This sensation was not entirely surprising, since so much of Tokyo’s original architecture was destroyed during World War II. But as we began to explore Tokyo’s many districts, we found hints of the past well preserved and woven into the city’s infrastructure, from temples and shrines to the tiny bars of Golden Gai.

As a couple, we found endless delights in Tokyo, from the romantic to the absurd. If you are wondering what to do in Tokyo, or just looking for a few more items for your Tokyo itinerary, here’s seven of our suggestions for Tokyo activities for two.

Robot Restaurant Dinner Show

IMG_0129

The Robot Restaurant is absolutely iconic. The glitz, glamour and tech aesthetic of modern Tokyo comes together in a non-stop onslaught of entertainment.

We suggest that you prepare yourself for kitsch, and then embrace it. When you enter Robot Restaurant, you’ll be immediately overwhelmed by loud pop music, flashing lights and moving lasers. We won’t reveal too much of the show’s actual performance to preserve the shock factor for you– however, we will guarantee that you will gasp, laugh and shriek throughout.

Robot Restaurant is perfect for couples because you’ll have someone to exchange shocked looks with and someone to photograph you with a “robot” actor.

Pro tip: Show up 45 minutes before your show time, and you’ll be able to stop by the “Rainbow Lounge” for a quick performance by a robot band.

Robot Restaurant is like no other– it will make for a dinner date you’ll never forget.

Imperial Palace Picnic

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Tokyo’s Imperial Palace is a sprawling enclosed estate. You’ll spend a bit of time walking as you attempt to visit the various gardens and the castle itself. As you explore, you’ll see an expansive lawn area that’s perfect for a quick midday picnic. (If you are visiting during the hot and humid summer, you may enjoy this activity more in the morning or evening.)

We recommend stopping ahead of time at one of the plentiful 7/11 shops that line Tokyo’s streets. These 7/11’s have a surprising variety of delicious fresh Japanese food. You can grab bento boxes, but we suggest trying a seaweed wrapped rice snack called an O-nigiri along with a hard boiled egg. Toss these easy to carry items in your bag and head to the Palace!

Nakamise Street Nighttime Stroll

IMG_0103

The Asakusa district is extremely popular with tourists, and with good reason. The lively shopping market on Nakamise Street brims with intriguing trinkets and traditional paper lamps hang from every corner. The Senso-ji Temple and Pagoda offer stunning examples of traditional Japanese architecture. However, a daytime visit will leave you maneuvering against hundreds and hundreds of tourists and competing to find space for a temple photo.

That’s why we recommend a nighttime visit. Start by strolling down Nakamise Street to see the open air market and then Dembo-in-dori Street for a glimpse at traditional shops. You won’t be able to enter and make purchases, but the shop shutters display beautiful paintings.

Then enter the Senso-ji Temple complex. Everything is illuminated with bright lights until 11:00 pm each night. You’ll be able to appreciate the beauty of this temple without distraction. Plus, you’ll be able to take photographs that aren’t full of tourists and their selfie sticks.

End your evening by heading west to the nearby Koenchi Street (also known as Hoppy Street). This stretch is packed with eating and drinking establishments. Visit an izakaya, a small Japanese style pub, for a quick meal of yakitori.  If the weather is nice, sit outside to observe the passersby.

Romantic Views From Tokyo Skytree

nature-of-tokyo-skytree-2496153_960_720

A remarkable skyline view makes for an epic way to wrap up– or begin– a couple’s date! No view surpasses that offered by the Tokyo Skytree.

The Skytree is a fairly new addition to the Toyko skyline. It was completed in 2012, and it quickly became one of Tokyo’s most visited attractions. We advise heading up just before sunset. The crowds will have died down, and you’ll be able to share the experience of watching day turn to night over sprawling Tokyo together.

Pro Tip: Check the smog forecast before heading to the Tokyo Skytree. Your romantic views could be obscured if smog is particularly heavy on your chosen day.

Bathe in an Onsen

IMG_0106

After thrilling and overwhelming experiences like the Robot Restaurant show, you’ll enjoy and appreciate a chance to unwind in a onsen, which is a private hot spring. You and your beau will be able to lean back and let the warm healing waters relax you.

We recommend taking a day to venture outside Tokyo to visit Hakone, a stunning mountainside town just outside of Tokyo known for its hot springs. If you choose a private tour, you’ll have a chance to pair your onsen experience with a cable car ride to catch views of the majestic Mt. Fuji and a visit to the ancient Hakone Shrine.

Animal Cafes in Harajuku

IMG_0111

A stroll through the endlessly crowded and dazzling Harajuku district is a must for your Tokyo trip. As you explore, you might choose to wander down Takeshita Dori Street and grab a giant rainbow cotton candy to share from Totti Candy Factory Shop.

During our time in Harajuku, we stumbled across a few special cafes that you don’t want to miss. Most people have heard about Tokyo’s famous cat cafes– but have you ever heard of a hedgehog cafe?

IMG_0110

At Hedgehog Cafe Harry Harajuku we were able to cozy up to friendly hedgehogs.  These little guys are just the sweetest!

But it gets even better.

We also got an up close and personal look at a variety of the most adorable owls at Owl Cafe & Bar Fukurono Sato. We were shocked to discover that we could not only visit owls inside this cafe, but have them come to perch on our heads and shoulders!

Where else but Tokyo?

Teppanyaki Dinner in Roppongi

Roppongi is one of Tokyo’s most popular areas for clubbing, but it also has some fantastic authentic dining options. A teppanyaki style restaurant makes for a unique and memorable date night experience.

Teppanyaki is a style of Japanese cooking that uses a flat iron griddle to cook up various delicious meal components. The exciting thing about teppanyaki cooking is that it occurs right in front of guests! You’ll be able to see the chef in action as they whip up your meal.

Teppanyaki dining lends itself well to a couple’s night out because, with the distraction of live cooking, it’s unlikely you’ll be carrying on a large group conversation! You and your loved one can whisper to one another and “ooh and ahh” at the chef’s techniques.

If you want to pair a fantastic meal with a stellar view of the city, try out Teppanyaki Steak Kisentei in Roppongi Midtown.

These suggestions are just the tip of the iceberg in Tokyo, a city that always has another surprise waiting around the corner. If you are looking for more ideas, or if you are planning a solo or group trip, check out our suggestions here and here.

Subscribe to get latest updates

0 replies

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.