welcome to tokyo!

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  • Welcome to Tokyo!

Why Tokyo?


Tokyo needs no introduction, as one of the world’s top cities. It’s a place everyone should visit once in their life, and studying at Genki Japanese School gives you the perfect opportunity to do just that!

Tokyo is composed of 23 wards, with a population of over 9 million people, and almost 15 million if the surrounding urban areas are included too! As such, it stands as one of the world’s largest cities. Despite that, and the high cost of housing, it’s regularly chosen as one of the most liveable cities worldwide.

Genki Japanese School is located in the center of Tokyo, close to Shinjuku Station. Shinjuku is the entertainment heart of the city, bursting with restaurants, bars, nightclubs, and other places to have the time of your life! Shinjuku will leave you with memories you will never forget, and you’ll see and meet some of the most interesting people in the world, just meters from where you have Japanese class each day.

Shinjuku Station is the world’s busiest train station. Students are often overwhelmed when they arrive here for the first time andrealize just how many exits there are. This symbolizes the many possibilities that are open to them in Tokyo, and in Japan. Luckily, there’s no wrong exit, just the direct route or the indirect route to GenkiJACS’ front door.

15000000

people

1693551

buildings

23

wards

80000

passangers per hour on trains

History of Tokyo

History


Tokyo history is mostly recent, the founding of the city, then called Edo, is generally only dated back as 1603, when the Tokugawa Shogunate was established. However, the larger Kanto region was already populated before, with notable settlements and castles in what grew to become today’s Tokyo Metropolis. Of those, the famous Kamakura holds many well preserved buildings and is a popular place to this day amongst both tourists and Japanese.

Edo grew rapidly, and In 1720, there were already over 1.2 million people living in the city, more than London. At the time New York population was just below 10,000 people. In 1868, after the Meiji Restoration and the consequent consolidation of Japan under one emperor, Edo was made the capital city and renamed Tokyo.

While still expanding steadily, the city was struck by the 1923 Great Kanto earthquake, where 130,000 people lost their lives and much of the city was left in ruins. While technological advancements were fast, the quick recovery came to halt again during the second world war, when the city was bombarded relentlessly. On March 10, a single incendiary raid of the US army resulted in the death of 100.000 people, mostly civilians, in minutes. An aftermath comparable to the more famous atomic bombing of Hiroshima. After the war, the population of Tokyo was only half what it used to be, at just 3.49 million people.

Helped by tense but ultimately favourable international conditions, support from the USA and without the need(or right) to maintain a proper army, the country went on an explosive economic growth, with Tokyo at the forefront of every technological, economic and social advancements. The city held the Olympic games in 1964, right after the population reached 10 million people. The same year, the Shinkansen, the first high speed electric rail service opened to the public and became a huge success with a long reaching economical impact, especially for Tokyo and Osaka.

In the end of the last century, Japanese economy boomed again, eventually becoming the second largest economy in the world in the eighties, just behind the USA. At the peak in the early nineties, Tokyo was praised as a miraculous city, significantly more technologically advanced than the rest of the world while maintaining out of the league quality of life, security and employment levels. After a harsh economic downturn in the second half of the nineties, the city continued to grow at a moderate rate until now.

Today, Tokyo is the most populous metropolitan area in the world, at about 38 million people. It’s also one of the only Japanese city whose population is still growing, even though the Japanese population has started to decline overall. Its recent and near total destruction in the last century means most of the city infrastructure has been built recently, making the city one of the most modern and convenient to live in. The quality of life is still amongst the highest in the world, with virtually no unemployment countrywide and the longest life expectancy in the world.

On the other hand, prolonged worker shortage and very low immigration has led to a stressful and busy work culture, ultimately resulting in a population decline that is now a reality. The country population is expected to shrink by about 30% in about 50 years, and with the highest median age in the world, the workforce crisis will only deepen. This combined to several emerging economies on track to surpass Japan will almost inevitably lead to a world where Japan loose in importance on the international scene, and to a possible economic recession with unknown consequences.

Tokyo Restaurants

Restaurants


Japan is one the country with the most restaurant per person, and Tokyo is no exception, with over 130,000 establishments in the centre alone. Where to eat is a very personal matter and no list can ever even come close to cover the wide, ever changing offer of options here. But here’s some of the stuff we like, and some general advices.

What to eat

  • RAMEN

    Of course, you know about those otherworldly delicious noodles and their heavenly savoury soup, right? A staple dish of the Japanese cuisine, the immensely popular dish is actually often regarded as rather unhealthy fast food, and has originally been imported from China over a hundred years ago. There are so many varieties in both the noodles and the soup that it is hard to describe it, but the most common variations are probably the Hakata (Fukuoka) Tonkotsu ramen, the Tokyo soy sauce ramen and the Hokkaido miso ramen. One of our favourite varieties is the Yokohama iekei ramen. You can find plenty of place to eat all of these in Tokyo. It’s pretty much always salty and oily, aka, good. Also cup noodles are not ramen, real ramen noodles cannot be dried. It’s important matter here!
  • ALL KIND OF NOODLES

    Besides ramen, the most popular noodles restaurant are, we believe, Soba, Udon and Chinese noodles. Many restaurants offer both Soba and Udon at a very low price. These are simple dishes, served hot or cold, in a broth and with toppings of your choice. A typical topping is tempura, which is a broad term for all kind of fried vegetables and weird japanese stuff. Soba have a distinctive taste due to their main ingredient : buckwheat flour. Udon are less flavoury but much thicker, chewy white noodles. Additionally, some specialized restaurants serve “deluxe” soba, which are generally much tastier and expensive. In the latter case, noodles are served cold on a traditional plate, then dipped in a soy sauce based soup, that can be drank after the meal.

    Chinese noodles have different variations too, and there’s actually a lot of Chinese restaurant all over Japan where you can try those out. One of our favourite dish is Toshomen, thick noodles that are hand shaved from a big dough block and generally served in a spicy, oily, soup.
  • SUSHI

    The other essential entry in this list, sushi in Japan generally comes in two versions : cheap and good, or expensive and excellent. There are options for every budget, and many kaiten-sushi (conveyor belt sushi) restaurant offer two decent pieces for around just 130 yens. It can be hit or miss with the quality, but you need not worry about the freshness of the fish anywhere. More expansive places generally involve ordering from the chef directly, so better brush your Japanese skills! These places tend to be much better in quality overall, but the budget starts around 2500 yens per person up to infinity and beyond. A number of establishments offer no seats and instead have you standing at the counter, this is no sign of bad quality, and actually quite the opposite could be said as a general rule.
  • OKONOMIYAKI

    Behind this quirky word is a less common but still popular japanese food generally consisting of lots of cabbage, condiments, meat or fish in a dough mixture that is cooked into some sort of big pancake, often by yourself on a teppan, a large grill plate at the center of your own table. Very cool when you have some time ahead and friends to eat with. It’s the most famous dish in Hiroshima, where it includes noodles. Generally sold for around 1000 yen.
  • IZAKAYA & YAKITORI

    In Japan, most bars are Izakaya, a Japanese version of the drinking place that offers all kind of small, inexpensive dishes. Of those the most famous is surely the Yakitori, a small meat or vegetable skewer that sells around 100-200 yens a piece. You’ll seldom drink without eating here, and it’s perfectly acceptable to skip dinner before going for drinks.
  • WAGYU

    It is often said to be the best beef in the world, and we agree. This Japanese cow is expensive, but well worth it. It is fed natural and carefully selected food, and live a paisible life, generally in the mountains. The result is a signature marbled beef rich in fat, that just melt in the mouth. You can eat it in in any major cities in Japan, including Tokyo. The most famous variety is certainly the particularly expensive Kobe Beef, but the truth is most high grade (A5) wagyu will probably blow your mind anyway.

Where to eat

Seirinkan in Naka Meguro - Pizza

In the fancy Naka Meguro you’ll find the even fancier Seirikan, aka the only great pizza in Japan (unverified sources). Like the place’s design, the offer is quite minimalistic with only two varieties : margherita and marinara.

陳家私菜 in Shibuya, Shinjuku, Gotanda, Yurakucho, Akasaka, Akihabara

Wanna try the spicier stuff with friends? This rather large restaurant has four locations with, we believe, succulent stuff. The classic Mabo Tofu and hand shaved noodles are available, along with many others. You can choose how hot you want your dish to be, but please be aware that if you try to impress the waiters with your taste for spice, you’ll probably end up not being able to finish. The place has won an award for the spiciness of its food..

Tokyo Art Galleries

Art Galleries


Tokyo being a massive city and the capital of Japan, it has plenty of museums and galleries offering both a deep historical voyage in Japanese or foreign history and a world class contemporary art experience. Here is a non exhaustive selection.

National Museum of Nature and Science

Conveniently located in Ueno Park, the vast museum has a large display of fauna and flora, but also all sorts of tools and instruments of scientific and historic importance.

Tokyo National Museum

Still in the same Ueno Park, this is one of the oldest museum in Japan. Built in 19th century, it focuses on art and history, and covers mostly Japanese and east asian cultures.

Edo Tokyo Open Air Arichitectural Museum

This large open air museum sits in the extensive Koganei park. It features well preserved and rebuilt buildings from the Edo period, that you can all enter and visit. You can find anything from traditional houses and farms to public baths or post offices.

National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation (Miraikan)

The Miraikan is one of the main attraction in the popular Odaiba, an artificial island in Tokyo Bay. As its name indicates, it focuses on newer technological innovations and future technologies. That would be your go to place to see one of the biped robots Japan is famous for.

Ghibli Museum

Maybe the most important thing you need to know about it is that it’s extremely popular. Ticket must be bought well in advance if you want to get a chance to get in. It’s an obvious must go place for the many fan of the famous animation studio, but anyone can enjoy the cute museum filled with original drawings, sculpture, and even a small cinema with exclusive shorts.

Mori Building Digital Arts Museum

The landmark tower in Roppongi hosts regular exhibitions featuring projections, screens, all sort of lights and technologically advanced interactive experiences. A favourite of heavy instagrammers.

IMA Gallery

A well regarded photographic museum, it has many exhibitions per year with a focus on newer works and Japanese artists.

Tokyo Music & Theatre

Music and Theater


With roughly 40 millions citizen, the chances that you will be the only one around liking this obscure genre that your mom doesn’t understand are slim. But the more mainstream stuff is also all over, in many form and shapes.

For starters, there is obviously J-pop. It’s like pop music but weird, noisy, and with dozens of singers and dancers on stage. We won’t engage in a J-pop vs K-pop debate on this page and please refrain to do so at our school as we want to keep everyone safe. One of the most famous place in Tokyo, and in Japan, to experience the phenomenon is the AKB48 Theatre in Akihabara. If the name rings a bell, it’s because AKB48 is a J-pop group, and that place is, yes, their very own venue. If you need something bigger, you could try the Makuhari Messe in Chiba, for a proper stadium live experience.

Jazz has been an important music in Japan for a while, and naturally it is best reflected in Tokyo’s large collection of live bars and Jazz clubs. There is the famous Blue Note in Minami Aoyama, but also the very cosy Pres Jazz bar in Shibuya. There are also countless less famous venues and bars, like the Sunny Side in Takadanobaba.

The night owls will have a blast in the capital too. Tokyo has both big EDM clubs, and intimist underground venues. One of our staff is a Techno DJ, so we’ll go into some more details here. Lucky you.

Some of the bigger venues that host all kind of music styles would be Womb, the huge Ageha or Circus, all in Shibuya.
The less big but still big Techno and House clubs count two must-go : the modern and concrete built Vent in Omotesando, which has an extraordinary soundsystem, and the cosier Contact which is furnished with HUGE speakers and offers more affordable prices overall. Both have shows with the famous guys from Europe, but don’t expect a Berghain kind of line up.
Wanna try the smaller places and mix with the techno/house nerds? Head for one of these many small clubs :
White Space lab in Shibuya has decent sound and great affordable parties. Dimension in Shibuya has parties almost every day, with more styles represented.
Oath in Aoyama has a very stylish bar with just enough room to move. The soundsystem is not super loud but the fidelity is great.
Knock in Koenji has some seriously underground events, but sound is not great. Cool to meet people. You amount of tobacco you will passively smoke there is clearly hazardhous.
Music Island Zero in Shimo Kitazawa has fun nights, but also live bands and even jam session. The place is chill and has a big windowed wall with a cool view.
Koenji Cave in, well, Koenji. It’s your ticket to anything trance and psy, without the illicit substances. Can be quite empty at times.
Music Bar One’s in Ikebukuro has different kinds of music in a very friendly, warm atmosphere. It’s on the fourth floor. You don’t really want to get out of the lift at the floors below, not the same kind of business…
Aoyama Hachi in Shibuya has a very Europeean vibe of all of its three floors. Raw walls with graffiti as the only paint, dim lighting and funky decoration, good sound and eclectic DJ selection, you won’t be lost if you’re from the old continent.
Solfa in Ebisu has two rooms, one of which has a good soundsystem. The mood is great and the size just right. The drinks are slightly cheaper than the average.
There’s also the BPM Music bar, Koara and En-SOF in Shibuya, which are all great small venues. And many, many more…

About the “real” music with instruments and stuff, Tokyo has also LOTS of rock, metal and everything in between venues. In the hot summer, why not try the rooftop at DOM Sound Studio in Koenji? You can even bring your own drinks!
The music rich Koenji also hosts the UFO Club, but be aware that you won’t see anything conventional there! Just a station away is Nakano’s Moon Step, a live bar with rock and punk music, as well as with charming people. That is, if you’re into Mohawks.
Some other famous places include Liquid Room in Ebisu, Warp in Kichijoji or the more undeground Wall in Hatsudai.

Finally, a word on music festivals. The experience is quite expensive in Japan, but also quite unique. Many of them take place in the mountains or near beaches, and are famous for their clean sanitaries and great food. If you like warm beers, cheap hot dogs and dancing in the mud then before walking 5 hours back to a rudimentary camping, well, sorry!
Japan, like other countries, host the large ULTRA Festival in summer, which has a focus on EDM and welcome lots of world famous DJs every year. The other big ones would be the Fuji Rock Festival or the Summer Sonic Festival.

Tokyo Relaxing

Relaxing


Tokyo is a big city. Well it’s kind of the biggest actually. Luckily, most residential areas are charmingly calm, but still, when you need space and green, it might feels tricky at first. For the acclimated tokyoite however, it is not. Here’s some leads.

PARKS

Well we’re sure that’s where anyone would start, but there are so many parks in the Japanese capital it might be hard to know where to go. The vast majority of parks are small to medium sized, with some kind of playground, a water fountain and toilets. These are nice but it’s not always very green or relaxing. So let’s start with

The big, famous parks

  • YOYOGI PARK

    The park is vast, but equally popular. The giant Meiji Shrine at the middle is attracting most of the crowd though, meaning if you head for the smaller paths you could find some peace. It has a large forested part that is generally calm, as well as big patches of lawn where you will definitely get a spot for yourself.
  • SHINJUKU GYO-EN

    One of our favourite, there is a very light 200 yen entrance fee, but this is enough to make it emptier than the neighbouring Yoyogi park. It’s beautiful all year round, and it has a seriously huge flat lawn, ideal for a small pic nic. Don’t forget to pick up your trash back home, it’s a Japanese thing.
  • UENO PARK

    This rather large park is pretty much crowded at all time, but has many cool things to see. Great for a stroll, not so much for sitting down.

The locals’ Parks

If you’re after lesser known, large parks, here are a few good pick you won’t see in any tourist guide. We think.

KINUTA PARK in Setagaya is a very large parc with no station immediately near, meaning it’s mostly locals in there.

WADABORI park is an absolutely lovely park featuring a temple that isn’t famous but that doesn’t have much to envy to the bigger ones. It is a meandering, forested, lengthy park stretching around 2-3km in Suginami. A jogger favourite.

TAMAGAWA GREEN SPACE Pretty much the whole length of the Tama river is a serie of big park alongside the water. Of these many spot, we like the area around the Keio-tamagawa station. Exist there, then walk upstream and enjoy the vast greenery. No crowds here! Walking from one station to another is also great for walks.

IKUTA ROSE GARDEN (IKUTA RYOKUCHI BARA-EN) A bit further outside the city but still just a 20 train ride from Shinjuku is Kanagawa’s large rose garden and park, whose entrance is free. The surrounding is mostly calm streets and some small temples are also worth a visit.

MIZUMOTO KOUEN Equally distant from the center but still easy to access and well worth spending an afternoon is the extensive Mizumoto Park, at the limit of Tokyo-city boundary. It features gardens, food stalls, flower gardens and small playgrounds, and massive open spaces. As its name suggest (isn’t it?) it is bordered by water, the river marks the limit between Tokyo and Saitama. If you want to spend a full day in the aread, drop by the Kasai shrine, then walk along the huge Edo river.

KIBA PARK More central, this medium sized park has a big pedestrian bridge, a large green open space, and great running possibilities. You’ll see more people around, but not many tourists.

OMIYA PARK 1,2 and 3 Don’t let the austere naming fool you, this 3-in-1 park is not only vast and green, it is also located next to the large Hikawa shrine, which is one of the best to see in Tokyo. Well it’s actually in Saitama, but it’s still only a 25 min train ride from Shinjuku.

Mountains

Tokyo, like pretty much every city in Japan, is bordered by mountains. To the east lies the Japanese alps, with a few peaks over 3000m. The bigger ones would take a while to reach, but the low mountains are only one to two hours away from Tokyo, and you can see mount Fuji from most of them.

MOUNT TAKAO

Probably the most famous mountain in Tokyo, it takes less than an hour to reach with with an inexpensive, direct train ride from Shinjuku. It is filled with temples, has some amazing views of the city, and if you go on a weekday, it generally isn’t that crowded. On weekends, depending on the season, it could be a different story. If you don’t feel like climbing it, there’s a nice cable car, which is the steepest in Japan. If you feel like climbing more, read below.

KOBOTOKE-SHIROYAMA

When you’ve reached the top of Takao, continue to the east. Even on the most crowded days, most people stop at Takao’s summit then go back, meaning the short hike to the next top is much, much calmer. It should take you around an hour to get to the top of Shiroyama, which has an large, amazing, wooden built food hut with hot soup, oden, snacks, and drinks. Might not be open on a low season weekday however. From there, you could go back, or head to Sagami Lake, which is around two hours away and has a station on the Chuo Line, from which you can go back to Shinjuku easily. The way to the lake is very calm and unfrequented. You’ll see a bit of the countryside, an open air cat-shelter maintained by volunteers (drop them a coin in the tin box), the beautiful pedestrian Benten Bridge, and the little Sagami city bordering the lake. There’s even an onsen on the way.

MITAKE & ODAKE

Another famous mountain, the peak has many temples and you can even stay at a Ryokan on the top. Once again, most of the climb can be done by cable car. If you’re up for a tougher hike, you could continue to mount Odake. Be careful though, you won’t make it to the top unless you leave Tokyo early, Odake is a proper hike and the peak is nearing 1300m. Many people first stop for the night at Mitake summit, before continuing to Odake.

OKUTAMA and OKUTAMA LAKE

Okutama is a tiny city lodged in the mountains, easily accessible by train as it is a terminus on the Chuo Line. From there you can walk the old road all the way to Okutama Lake, which is the source of the Tama river. It’s an rather easy walk as the old road was used by cars before a newer, bigger one was built with lots of tunnels.

GONGEN YAMA

A medium sized mountain peaking just over 1300m, the hike to Gongen yama is for acclimated walkers but is far from undoable. It can be very calm, and it is entirely possible that you won’t meet fellows hiker for over an hour at times. Bring your anti-bear bell!

Mount TSUKUBA

The only peak of this list in the western side of Tokyo, it is a rather famous mountain, easily accessible by train and bus. Depending on where you live, it could be a bit far from the city, and it will be most expensive to get there than to any other hikes listed here. However it is a well known peak that attracts many tourists as well as Japanese people. It also has a cable car for easy access.

JIMBA-SAN

Jimba san is an easier but pleasant hike, with a 857m high, mostly flat summit. It has several simple restaurants and bars on the top, and offers a splendid view of the neighbouring mountains.

HAKONE

Hakone is famous and generally frequented by both tourists and Japanese people. It has many ryokan, and is mostly famous for its onsen. Hakone is a thermal area with high volcanic activity. For that reason, many walking paths in the mountain are now closed, as the sulfur gases can be a real danger. It is accessible by train and by the Shinkansen. The very particular, old train that goes to the top has many U turns, where the driver stops the train, then head to the other end of the train before starting again in the opposite direction.

Tokyo Shopping

Shopping


Tokyo is beyond any doubt the most important place in Asia for any world-famous brand, and it has been for a long time. As such, you won’t have trouble shopping for anything, even if it’s a niche product. The Japanese capital has much more to offer however, and it is in fact a one of a kind place in terms of underground fashion and independent retailers. But what you probably want to know above all is, where to get all these goods?

Shopping in Tokyo – Our Favourites

HARAJUKU

A world famous center of fashion, the crowd it permanently attracts speaks for itself. The neighborhood is filled with small shops, niche brands and surreal wearables. Sometimes barely wearables.

GINZA

Ginza is the place to go if you’re after luxury...or just enjoy crazy looking buildings. It has shops from any famous brand you could think of, and is the place to be for any big player in the luxe industry. It is largely pedestrian during the day, and is worth dropping by even if you don’t care that much about the products.

OMOTE-SANDO

Next to Harajuku, this large street is another center for the pricier stuff. In winter, it is decorated with thousands of small LEDs and other bright decoration.

AMEYOKO

Next to Ueno Station is one of the most famous open air market, open every day and overflowing with cheap shoes, apparels and food. A must see, in a neighborhood with lots of must sees. Try the near SATAKE SHOPPING STREET too, it’s a few minutes away and is radically different. This one is a roofed traditional Japanese shopping street, the second oldest in Japan.

SHIMO-KITAZAWA

The thrift-shopper’s paradise, the block has well over a hundred second hand stores, in all price ranges. It’s the hipster centre of Tokyo, and as such, as many great coffee joints. KOENJI is pretty much the same spirit, but smaller and less crowded, great if you already know Shimokitazawa, or if it rains, as Koenji’s main shopping street is mostly roofed.

JUJO-GINZA

This shopping street is said to be the cheapest in Tokyo, and as far as we know it’s probably true. It is also a very Japanese place with a great, relaxed atmosphere. Might not be enough there to spend a whole day, but it’s a nice break from the busy city and a charming piece of a Tokyo often unknown from tourists. An alternative could be the larger and busier, but still very authentic KITA-SENJU neighborhood.

Tokyo Sports

Sports


Tokyo being a capital city, and of course the biggest metropolitan area in the world, the wealth of possible activities is almost infinite. Sport is also a cornerstone of the Japanese culture, and Tokyo has both the sea and the mountains, which means if you are the sporty type, you’re in for a treat.

SEE

Sumo

How to not start with that? Sumo is the national sport of Japan, and a significant piece of culture. Be careful though, the heavyweight wrestlers only display their skills on limited occasions. Arguably the best and most authentic way to see a sumo match is to attend a tournament. These are held three times per year in Tokyo in January, May and September. The place where this happen itself, the Ryōgoku Kokugikan, is a worthy visit and is very famous in Japan

Baseball

If Sumo is Japanese national sport, its complex rules and nature means it is not the most popular. After America introduced it in Japan, baseball went on to become the biggest sport in the country. In Tokyo, the main stadiums are the Tokyo Dome, the Omiya Park Baseball Stadium and the Yokohama Stadium. Omiya and Yokohama are technically not a part of Tokyo but are easily accessible from many stations.

Football

It’s not soccer and you know it. It’s a pretty big deal in Japan now(The sports, not how you want to call it) and their exceptional performance in the last World Cup only gave it more momentum. A great place to catch a match is the Ajimoto Stadium in Chofu, easily accessible from Shinjuku, where our school is located.

DO

As mentioned before, the choice is yours. A personal favourite is hiking in the nearby mountains.

Hiking

It takes around an hour to get in the lower mountains and it is rather inexpensive. The most visited, Mount Takao, is a one hour train ride away from the heart of Tokyo and the trip cost just 380 yens, which is like 3$.
The views are amazing and many mountains feature temples, points of interest and many times, toilets in place so remote you can’t possibly think of an explanation for them. Oh and yes, they’re clean. They even have TP. Who furnishes them is still puzzling me to this day.

Gym

Gym goers fear not, there’s plenty of options here, and pretty much anywhere in the city. If you need help registering or figuring out things, let us know!

Ski

Japanese snow is world famous and if you want to find out why, Tokyo is a good place to. Whether you want to spend a night in a ryokan (traditional japanese hotels) in a ski station or just want a quick escape in the snow on a single day, you have options here. Many stations are reachable in a few hours from Tokyo, in the Nagano area.

Ski

Japanese snow is world famous and if you want to find out why, Tokyo is a good place to. Whether you want to spend a night in a ryokan (traditional japanese hotels) in a ski station or just want a quick escape in the snow on a single day, you have options here. Many stations are reachable in a few hours from Tokyo, in the Nagano area.

Surf

We told you : everything is possible around Tokyo. Surfing is actually quite popular. Of course you’ll need to get a little bit outside of the mega-city, unless you plan in surfing in an industrial harbour. Still, one to two hours away from our school, you’ll find plenty of very surfable beaches, many of which are accessible by train.

Running

A thing we love in Tokyo is its surprisingly calm streets. At times the city seems almost car-free, and whether you’re walking or running, that is pretty awesome. Leave the busy centers and go into the residential areas, and what you’ll discover is quiet, peaceful small streets with seldom any cars. Most streets are one way and narrow, meaning you can run all you want risk free. Check out the many rivers for greener runs, most of them are bordered by parks or pedestrian walks. You can also try to spot one of the many pedestrian walks nearby your home. These are cool, sometimes many kilometers long, car free walks decorated with trees and flowers pot. Many of them meander between houses and parks and they can also take you from place to place quite fast. Finally, you can find some running tracks in various parks, we personally love Komazawa Olympic Park.

Baseball, football, tennis…

We can’t think of a popular sport that cannot be played in Tokyo. Every school feature a large multi-sport court and a gymnasium, and they are sometimes rented to sport teams after school hours. Join a local team, or form one with your fellow students. We’ll help you out.

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About Us

Accredited and award-winning Japanese school in Tokyo, Kyoto and Fukuoka. Learn real-world, communicative Japanese in small, intimate classes. Kickstart the journey of a lifetime in Japan, or bring your existing skills to new levels.

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Hakataekihigashi 1-16-23,
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