Top things to do in Around Tokyo

Top Choice Shinto Shrine in Nikkō

Tōshō-gū

A Unesco World Heritage Site in an idyllic natural setting, Tōshō-gū is a lavishly ornate Shinto complex within which Tokugawa Ieyasu (1543-1616), the first shōgun and founder of the Tokugawa Bakufu (Japan's last fe…
Top Choice Mountain in Fuji Five Lakes

Mt Fuji

Fuji is divided into 10 concentric ‘stations’ from base (first station) to summit (10th), but most climbers start halfway up at various fifth station points, reachable by road. The most popular climbing route is the…
Top Choice Museum in Chōkoku-no-Mori & Gōra

Hakone Open-Air Museum

Occupying a verdant swathe of Hakone hillside is this unmissable art safari, leading visitors past a rich array of 19th- and 20th-century sculptures and installations by leading Japanese artists as well as the likes…
Top Choice Buddhist Temple in Kamakura

Kenchō-ji

Established in 1253, Japan's oldest Zen monastery is still active today. The central Butsuden (Buddha Hall) was brought piece by piece from Tokyo in 1647. Its Jizō Bosatsu statue, unusual for a Zen temple, reflects …
Top Choice Shinto Shrine in Fuji-Yoshida

Fuji Sengen-jinja

A necessary preliminary to the Mt Fuji ascent is a visit to this atmospheric shrine (8th century, rebuilt 1800s) dedicated to Sakuya-hime, the goddess of the mountain. An avenue of towering cedars leads to the main …
Top Choice Monument in Kamakura

Daibutsu

Kamakura's most iconic sight, an 11.4m bronze statue of Amida Buddha (amitābha in Sanskrit), is in Kōtoku-in, a Jōdo sect temple. Completed in 1252, it's said to have been inspired by Yoritomo's visit to Nara (where…
Top Choice Shinto Shrine in Kamakura

Tsurugaoka Hachiman-gū

Kamakura's most important shrine is, naturally, dedicated to Hachiman, the god of war. Minamoto no Yoritomo himself ordered its construction in 1191 and designed the pine-flanked central promenade that leads from th…
Top Choice Shinto Shrine in Nikkō

Taiyūin-byō

Ieyasu's grandson Iemitsu (1604–51) is buried here, and although the shrine houses many of the same elements as Tōshō-gū (drum tower, Chinese-style gates etc), the more intimate scale, lighter tourist footfall and g…
Top Choice Teahouse in Hakone-machi & Moto-Hakone

Amazake-chaya

This historic thatched-roofed teahouse, the last of several that once lined the Old Hakone Highway, has been relieving road-weary travellers with amazake (a sweet drink made from rice used to make sake) and seasoned…
Top Choice Area in Itō

Jōgasaki-kaigan

A cliffside hiking trail winds over volcanic rock and through pine forest along the gorgeous Jōgasaki coast south of Itō. Most visitors head to Kadowaki Lighthouse and the adjacent Kadowaki-no-Umi suspension bridge …