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Seeing the local way of living in Tokyo

Bristol, United...
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Seeing the local way of living in Tokyo

Hi,

I will be visiting Tokyo for a week next week, and will be staying in Shibuya. I will be travelling around Tokyo through the metro. In addition to all the tourist attractions, I would like to see the local way of living, perhaps a market, or some sort of traditions, or architecture, or heritage etc. I am a photographer too so would be nice to capture those.

Does anyone got any suggestion?

Thanks.

Joe

Chicago, Illinois
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1. Re: Seeing the local way of living in Tokyo

There are locals, but lots of migrants as well, just like any global city. Kamakura is nice, as it's a great historical city as well as a suburb.

Tokyo, Japan
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2. Re: Seeing the local way of living in Tokyo

Kamakura and Nikko are recommended as day outs; in Tokyo, I think Asakusa and Yanaka are good places for insights into ye olde Edo in Tokyo.

http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e3004.html

http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e3068.html

Edited: 10 March 2014, 23:59
Philadelphia...
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3. Re: Seeing the local way of living in Tokyo

I like Yobeekool's suggestions of Asakusa and Yanaka. Besides retaining a bit of the flavor of the old days, they are places where everyday people live and shop. In Asakusa, wander away from the temple, down the shopping streets.

For architecture, you have choices: The dramatic buildings of the bubble economy, or some of the few preserved old houses (and lots in between, often unlovely).

For modern, Odaiba: http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e3008.html; Shinjuku skyscrapers: http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e3011.html

For traditional, you'll see some old houses in Yanaka, but few elsewhere in Tokyo. Nihon Minkaen is a nice collection of old houses from all over Japan, not far from Tokyo: http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e3253.html

Shibuya, and nearby Harajuku, Meiji Shrine and Shinjuku, are also aspects of modern local life: www.japan-guide.com/e/e2164_shinjuku.html

Bristol, United...
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4. Re: Seeing the local way of living in Tokyo

Thanks for the suggestions. I have never been to Japan, and all I got was the Japanese cartoon images in my head. I know they were all fictional but I bet they were created based on some Japanese ways of life too.

Is it still a tradition that you sit on your legs when eating or is it just on cartoons?

Toronto, Canada
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5. Re: Seeing the local way of living in Tokyo

To find the local way, I kind of like of like the area near Sugamo station.-an old fashioned area. There are all kinds of little areas to see all over Tokyo--just get away from the office buildings and go exploring.

ocada.jp/archive-japanasitis/…sugamo.html

Hong Kong, China
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6. Re: Seeing the local way of living in Tokyo

There are places that use chairs, there are places that you sit on the floor, and there are places that have both types of seating.

For a nice suburb to visit, head to Kichijoji. It's just 20 minutes west of Shibuya.

Chicago, Illinois
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7. Re: Seeing the local way of living in Tokyo

And thankfully for old gaijin like me, there is well seating - where it looks like you are sitting on the floor but your legs are dangling in a hole.

USA
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8. Re: Seeing the local way of living in Tokyo

The Shitamachi Museum at the southern end of Ueno Park by Shinobazu Pond gives a peek at neighborhood life in the early 20th Century. It's close to the Keisei Ueno Station. It's a small museum, but we enjoyed it very much--there was a very helpful English-speaking docent who gave us a great tour.

Tokyo, Japan
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9. Re: Seeing the local way of living in Tokyo

What you see in manga (cartoons) and anime (animated movies) are partially real, partially fiction, like London depicted in the BBC Sherlock series.

http://otaku-pilgrimages.blogspot.jp/

Tradition is a difficult matter to discuss, as new traditions are invented and old ones forgotten, like the "invention" of Scottish tartans in 19th century and a new British-born cuisine called Chicken Tikka Masala. True Japan can be found anywhere, in Akihabara or in Shibuya.

Edited: 11 March 2014, 18:29
10. Re: Seeing the local way of living in Tokyo

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