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New Years Eve 2011 in Tokyo

new york
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New Years Eve 2011 in Tokyo

My husband and I are taking our first trip to Asia. We travel extensively and have been looking forward to this trip. We will end the holiday in Tokyo arriving very early on Dec 30th and departing on Jan 1st. We know that isn't enough time to see all of Tokyo, but at least we can see some of it and we'll just have to go back.

First of all, where should we stay? We can get a corporate rate at the Mandarin Oriental which is what we are leaning towards right now. Is this location good for New Years Eve? Or is there a particular area where all the celebrations are?

Will the big sights be open on the 30th and 31st? Since we only have 2 days in Tokyo, what would you recommend us visiting?

Any and all suggestions are appreciated!

Thanks in advance!!!

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for Chicago, Illinois
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1. Re: New Years Eve 2011 in Tokyo


Los Angeles
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2. Re: New Years Eve 2011 in Tokyo

...and here's a map so you can see where those attractions are (the pics are clickable for more information):


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3. Re: New Years Eve 2011 in Tokyo

Hi Rogi8,

My Family was in Tokyo during this Christmas and New Years. If you can get a corporate rate at the Mandarin, then go for it. The Park Hyatt and Peninsula are other great 5 star hotels in Tokyo you may consider.

Unfortunately, Tokyo has no real major celebration for New Years. We were expecting some fireworks near Tokyo Tower, but there was nothing. Apparently, they have a huge fireworks celebration in the nearby city of Yokohama.

Most major museums will be closed. However, Tsukiji FIsh Market will be open on the 30th of December and that is must see.


On January 1st, most Japanese people go to Meiji Shrine to start off the near year. From their, you can walk around Harajuku and Shibuya.

I also recommend going to Asakusa/Sensoji Temple/Nakamise walking street as this area will be open, and is one of Tokyo's most popular tourist sites.

If you like high end shopping, walk around Ginza.

We did have a little trouble finding places to eat for dinner as some restaurants will have closed. However, most restaurants in department stores will be open as well as the restaurants in the hotel.

Tokyo, Japan
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4. Re: New Years Eve 2011 in Tokyo

If you have a good rate at the Mandarin Oriental, then go for it. It is an excellent hotel.

Nothing going on around the hotel at New Years - it will be a ghost town.

Mitsukoshi Dept store is located next to the hotel. It will be going full blast for year end shopping.

New Year is not really a party event in Tokyo - there is one celebration at near Tokyo Tower at Zojoji Temple, but for the most part New Year is a mellow night in Tokyo.

Better to check out people going to do new year prayer at shrines - Check Hie Jinjya near Akasaka. Not too far from your hotel. www.hiejinja.net/jinja/english/index.html

For New Year party atmosphere, Singapore is much better.

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5. Re: New Years Eve 2011 in Tokyo

While fireworks celebrations maybe the "norm" for big cities around the world , it is not the case for Tokyo. But then again, if it is the norm everywhere else, one reason to experience something different in Tokyo the Japanese way.

Any case I have always enjoyed going to Zojoji temple right next to Tokyo Tower.

At around 8-9pm they hand out tickets to people who wait in line, around 10-11pm you use the ticket to pick up a balloon, they distribute over 1500 balloons (free).

At 1159 Tokyo tower goes dark, and at midnight Tokyo tower lights up (with different lights) and everyone releases their balloons into the air, so the sky is full of balloons.

You can see videos of this on youtube and pictures on flickr.

6. Re: New Years Eve 2011 in Tokyo

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