Collected by Lara Bos
高円寺北2-22-6, キャニオンプラザ大須賀 B103, ２丁目-２２ 高円寺北 杉並区, 東京都 166-0002, Japan
The twang of a Dobro or rhythmic picking on a banjo may be the last sounds a traveler expects to hear in Asia. Welcome to the wonderful world of Japanese bluegrass, which astounds roots-music lovers with its dedication to authenticity. To journey...
2 Chome-11 Nishishinjuku, Shinjuku, Tokyo 160-0023, Japan
If Manhattan’s famous music club CBGB were reimagined by a Japanese food fiend, the result would be Tatemichiya. The izakaya, or Japanese-style tapas bar, in Tokyo’s Daikanyama neighborhood, is the brainchild of punk-music fanatic Yoshiyuki Okada....
Japan, 〒106-0045 Tokyo, 港区麻布十番１丁目４−６
In addition to the works of Takashi Murakami, this gallery exhibits a lot of manga-inspired art. I go here to see the up-and-coming artists of the Tokyo scene. —Alondra De La Parra This appeared in the March/April 2012 issue.
28-17 Sarugakuchō, Shibuya-ku, Tōkyō-to 150-0033, Japan
Imagine a whole flea market crammed into one small space. That’s Hollywood Ranch, where I’ve shopped since college for jeans, T-shirts, and even incense. —Kashiwa Sato 81/(0) 3-3463-5668. This appeared in the January/February 2013 issue. Read more...
Japan, 〒150-0011 Tokyo, 渋谷区Higashi, ３丁目16−１０ アリティマ 1F
I go here when I want a really good burger or steak. They dry-age their meat, and steaks are charcoal grilled. —Kashiwa Sato 3-16-10 J Park, Ebisu Biru, Higashi, Shibuya-ku, 81/(0) 3-5447-0536. This appeared in the January/February 2013 issue....
Japan, 〒107-0062 Tōkyō-to, Minato-ku, Minamiaoyama, 7 Chome−13−１２ 南青山森ビル 2F
Owner Nobiyuki Nakamura’s whiskey obsession is on display at his scotch bar. He has a full collection of traditional Irish whiskeys and Scottish single malts. The whole place is obsessive, right down to the hand-carved ice cubes that go into the...
6 Chome-11-1 Roppongi, Minato-ku, Tōkyō-to 106-6108, Japan
Watching the sunset from Roppongi Hills was my favorite Tokyo experience. We bought tickets to the Mori Art Museum, which included entrance to the observation deck on the 52nd floor of Mori Tower. We payed 1500 yen ($17) for the museum and...
1-1 Chiyoda, Tokyo 100-8111, Japan
Even in the middle of winter, the Imperial Palace Gardens are well worth a stroll. There are plants from all the prefectures of Japan, and the bamboo is lush year-round. The palace is about a 10-minute walk from Tokyo Station, and it's a...
6 Chome-10-1 Roppongi, Minato-ku, Tōkyō-to 106-0032, Japan
Kapital is a really cool clothing chain known for its denim. They have two shops in Roppongi Hills—Kapital Duffle and Kapital Legs. I always pick up tabi, these handmade split-toe socks. They are split between the big toe and other toes and are...
Japan, 〒160-0021 Tōkyō-to, Shinjuku-ku, Kabukichō, 1 Chome−1, 歌舞伎町1丁目
Golden Gai is a tiny section of Shinjuku where you can find a nightlife experience unlike any other. Each bar seats about two to six people and some only admitting locals. Watch for English signs boasting no cover charges and find a warm welcome...
11 Naitōmachi, Shinjuku-ku, Tōkyō-to 160-0014, Japan
After reading a series of recent posts on Afar that say things like "travel has taught me X,Y,and Z," I got to thinking: what has travel really "taught" me? Has it taught me to be nicer to people? More tolerant? More..."worldly" or educated? I...
Roppongi, Minato, Tokyo 106-0032, Japan
Tokyoites often appear to have just stepped off the pages of Vogue. Lolita Goth, My Little Pony, and Little Bo Peep are all trends that have passed through the streets of Tokyo. For the extreme teen kawaii (cute) fashion, choose from tutus and Bo...
5 Chome-7-29 Minamiazabu, 港区 Minato-ku, Tōkyō-to 106-0047, Japan
I discovered Arisugawa a few weeks after moving to Tokyo and it quickly became my quiet haven in the city. The park used to house the villa of a feudal lord and was donated to the city in 1934. Arisugawa is simply enchanting. There are small stone...
Japan, 〒150-0001 Tōkyō-to, Shibuya-ku, Jingūmae, 5 Chome−51−８ ラ ポルト青山 3階
Experiential travelers look for the most authentic ventures, free of projected and kitschy presentations of culture. The literally underground Aoyama Shokudo restaurant, in Tokyo's Omotesando district, is that experience. I learned that the...
2 Chome-3-1 Asakusa, Taitō-ku, Tōkyō-to 111-0032, Japan
Both Tokyo's largest and oldest Buddhist temple, Senso-ji is one of the city's must see sights. The streets leading to Senso-ji are filled with souvenir shops where you can find tapestries, kimonos, kitschy key chains, and finger foods....
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