Sometimes, traveling in a big group can be a test of friendship. Because of the differences in interests, someone is always bound to want to do something that the rest of the pack isn’t up for. Sometimes, every single person in the group just wants to do his or her own thing. Thankfully, there is a place in Tokyo that travelers in large groups can go to without having to pull one another’s hair out. This place has almost everything you could possibly want in a tourist destination. It is located in the Asakusa area of Tokyo, and it is called Nakamise-Dori, one of the oldest shopping streets in Japan.
With almost a hundred shops selling all sorts of goods, there is bound to be something that suits anyone’s fancy in this 200-meter shopping street. Thinking of getting souvenirs for loved ones back home? Nakamise-Dori is one of the best places to get little knick-knacks. Is your goal to sample all sorts of Japanese street food? Snack away as you pass by stalls selling various kinds of uniquely Japanese tidbits. Do you simply just want to get in touch with your spiritual side and visit a temple? Nakamise-Dori leads up to the Sensoji Temple, an ancient Buddhist temple, and one of the oldest and most famous temples in Tokyo.
Nakamise-Dori is about 3 minutes on foot from the Asakusa station. It is easy to get lost there so be careful with the exits. Make sure to go out of Kaminarimon Exit. Kaminarimon is the entrance to Nakamise-Dori.
It is important to note that when you buy food from a particular food stand, the shop owners prefer that you eat the food while at or in front of their shop. That said, loitering while snacking is not appreciated, probably because the Japanese people want to avoid instances of littering. Fair enough!
Next stop, Sensoji-Temple! We entered through the opposite end of the Kaminarimon Gate, which is the Hozomon Gate, the gate that stands in front of the temple’s main hall.
Part 2 of our Asakusa adventures is up next!
Nakamise-Dori Address: 2 Chome-3-1 Asakusa, Taito, Tokyo 111-0032, Japan Phone: 03-3644-3350 How to Get There:
a) From Tokyo Station: Take the JR Yamanote Line to Kanda Station and transfer to the Ginza Subway Line for Asakusa.
b) From Shinjuku Station: Take the orange JR Chuo Line to Kanda Station and transfer to the Ginza Subway Line for Asakusa *Take exits 1, 3, and A4.Go out of the Kaminarimon Gate. Nakamise-Dori is just a 3-5 minute walk from the Asakusa Station Opening Hours: Monday to Friday; Opening hours depend on the individual shops (typically daily from 9:00 to 19:00) but the Kaminarimon Gate is always open Admission Fees: Free
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