At SHW, we love traveling to work with clients across the globe. Recently, we traveled to Tokyo for a client’s annual meeting. Tokyo is the most populous city in the world, and a hotspot for technology innovations, food, culture, and more. Here are some of our top tips for planning your next trip.
1. Japan is a foodie delight.
It is way more than sushi. Delight in the street vendors! My top recommendation would be Afuri Ramen. Ask for the bib to protect your clothes. Fun fact: A good slurp is the best way to compliment the chef!
2. Vending Machines
Vending machines are everywhere! There are more than 5.5 million machines around the country. They sell everything. You’ll come across vending machines where you’ll order food from in some restaurants. You pay first and then select the button of the meal you want. Sometimes it’s only in characters, sometimes in in Japanese and sometimes there are pictures. It’s a fun challenge to navigate.
3. Shibuya Crossing
The Shibuya Crossing is amazing. And not for those who suffer claustrophobia. The spot is rumored to be the busiest intersection in the world, at peak times shuffling over a thousand people across its busy streets. For a bird’s eye view, try heading to the Shibuya train station.
4. Kiyosumi Garden
If you suffer from battle fatigue after crossing at Shibuya, Kiyosumi Garden is the perfect place to decompress. Walk around the large pond and enjoy the combination of nature and traditional Japanese culture.
7-Eleven is AMAZING in Japan. There are 16,664 7-Elevens in the country – more than double than the U.S. And they’re chock full of high-quality local delicacies that will keep you coming back for cheap lunch and dinner. No hours-old hot dogs here. (Sadly, no Slurpees, either.)
Know Before You Go
If you’re not sure which angle you should be bowing and your feet/hands placements, overbow! Bow to everyone with a big smile on your face. Click here to read more on bowing etiquette.
Bring a small trash bag with you in your day pack. Trash cans are few and far between in Japan. You’ll be glad you planned ahead.
Most hotels offer luggage forwarding services. What a great idea! Affordable (about $30 for a large bag) and EASY. Send it off before you leave for your day’s adventures, and you’ll see your bag the next morning at your next hotel.
See more photos below!