Day Tours

For Day Tours, I’ll meet you your hotel lobby and then we’ll explore the best that Tо̄kyо̄ has to offer together. Afterwards, I can bring you back to your accommodation or drop you off at your dinner reservation. Or, you can add an Out On the Town option for dinner or drinks afterwards. Transportation and lunch extra.

Not sure what you want to do? No problem. Contact me and I’ll put together something special for you!

Top 3 day tours

Shо̄gun’s Legacy
in Ueno

We’ll walk across Tо̄kyо̄’s most historic areas hitting up many hidden locations dating from the 1st century right up to the end of the Edo Period in 1868.

#1 Fan Fave!
heritage tourism, history tourism, cultural tourism, dark tourism

SUMMARY

Want to explore Tо̄kyо̄ through side-streets and back-doors? Join me for this amazing history tour of Edo (ancient Tо̄kyо̄). Let’s follow in the footsteps of the shо̄guns and discover Japanese History by way of the Ueno district. You’ll love the traditional architecture, deep-rooted culture, and the stories of valiant (and sometimes not-so-valiant) samurai.

Perfect For

  • Anyone interested in Tо̄kyо̄
  • Solo travelers, couples
  • Friends, families
  • History nerds
  • Photographers
  • Japanophiles
  • Urban hikers
  • Architecture lovers
  • People who like cemeteries
    (you know who you are!)

Accessibility

  • All-day walking tour with a lot of places to sit and rest
  • One or two spots are “wheelchair difficult” at best, but I haven’t come across any major problems yet

Shо̄gun’s Legacy
in Shiba

Walk city streets and float down rivers spanning more than 1500 years of history. I’ll show you some must-see spots, but we’ll spend most of our time uncovering the city’s secrets, many of which are even unknown to locals.

#2 Fave Fan!

SUMMARY

We’ll start out in a popular historic district to see Sensо̄-ji, Tо̄kyо̄’s oldest temple, where we’ll learn about Shintо̄ and Buddhism. Next, we’ll hop on a waterbus and travel down the Sumida River, the most important river in the capital and disembark at the ruins of the shо̄guns’ seaside villa to enjoy the traditional Japanese gardens and tea houses. After a late lunch (to beat the crowds), we’ll hop on over to Zо̄jо̄-ji, a funerary temple of the shо̄guns which is part religious and cultural complex and part public park with a stunning view of Tо̄kyо̄ Tower, a symbol of Japan’s miraculous post-war economic recovery

  • Perfect For
  • Anyone interested in Tо̄kyо̄
  • Solo travelers, couples
  • Friends, families
  • History nerds
  • Photographers
  • Japanophiles
  • Urban hikers
  • Architecture lovers
  • Fans of Japanese gardens
  • Fans of Japanese castles

Accessibility

  • All-day walking tour with many places to sit and rest at reasonable distances
  • At the Japanese garden, the path is gravel (slow and requires some effort to push) and the tea house is not wheelchair accessible.

Crash Course
Japanese History

This isn’t a history lecture and there will be no quiz. We’ll dive into 2 world-class interactive museums and one of the few remaining private gardens of a feudal lord that remain in Tо̄kyо̄.

#3 Fan Fave!

SUMMARY

First off, this is popular because it’s mostly indoors and has ample opportunities to sit down and rest. Also, it’s guaranteed to give you a firm grasp of basic cultural concepts that will prepare you for the rest of your travels in Japan. What’s more, we’ll end the day in one of the most beautiful, traditional gardens in Tо̄kyо̄.

  • Perfect For
  • Anyone interested in Tо̄kyо̄
  • Solo travelers, couples
  • Friends, families
  • History nerds
  • Japanophiles
  • Fans of urban planning
  • Fans of Japanese gardens

Accessibility

  • This is essentially a museum and garden tour
  • Except for the garden, most of this tour is indoors
  • Wheelchair accessible

original Japan This! tours

Unlike anything else on offer in English. Experience Japan like a local!

Pokémon GO
in Tо̄kyо̄

Bring your charger, GO Plus, and bottle of water cuz we’re gonna hit the mean streets of Tо̄kyо̄ and it’s gonna be awesome! What could be more fun than combining culture and hanging out doing raids and taking out gyms?

Video Game Tourism

SUMMARY

To historians, Japan is the Land of the Gods, but to gamers, Japan is definitely the land of Pokémon – they’re everywhere and beloved by everyone young and old. I’ve played all over Japan, and I think these three spots are the absolute best in Tо̄kyо̄, especially during events. These are my personal spots for regular days and Community Days. Why not hang out with a local and combine your grind with an epic dose of history and culture? All of my tours are totally unique, but this one is… well, pretty sure I’m the only person running this kinda tour. Are you ready, trainer?

  • Perfect For
  • Anyone who plays Pokémon GO! Duh.
  • Solo travelers, couples
  • Friends, families
  • History nerds
  • Japanophiles
  • Urban hikers
  • Architecture lovers
  • Fans of Japanese gardens
  • Fans of Japanese castles

Accessibility

  • This is like taking a city tour while playing Pokemon GO. I mean, it’s literally a 2-for-1.
  • Wheelchair accessible
  • Plenty of places to rest

Execution Grounds of Edo

Nobody else is going to take you to the three most haunted spots in the center of Tо̄kyо̄, so let me show you around the macabre remains of these dark places. There are so many great stories and tie-ins with Japanese culture and attitudes.

Dark Tourism

SUMMARY

I started running this tour simply because I thought it sounded cool and maybe 1% of people who found me would think so too. Turns out, I get about two requests a year for this and since I might be the only person qualified to run this tour, I’m going to continue offering it. Edo, Tо̄kyо̄’s original name, had 3 main execution grounds where a whopping 300,000-600,000 criminals were executed between the 1600’s to the late 1800’s. These neighborhoods still bear the stain of ritual impurity and are a far cry from the neon-lights Blade Runner image many people have of Japan. If you appreciate the dark side of things, you really should join me for this one.

  • Perfect For
  • Goths
  • Vampires
  • People who love cemeteries
  • Solo travelers, couples
  • Friends, families
  • History nerds
  • Japanophiles
  • Urban hikers

Accessibility

  • All-day walking tour, but there are plenty of places to rest (including trains/subways)
  • Wheelchair accessible

Modern architecture, but I’m more than happy to do classical architecture.

Architecture & Design
Tо̄kyо̄

Home to some of the greatest architects in the world, top studios from around the world bid hard for the opportunity to make their mark on Asia’s greatest city.

Art Tour

SUMMARY

Tōkyō is home to a myriad of striking architecture, but navigating the city to see all the coolest stuff if probably impossible if you’re not a local. Well, luckily I am a local and I’ve been here for almost 20 years.

This tour never runs the same way twice. We’ll explore Tōkyō’s eclectic modern cityscape, focusing on Pritzer Prize winning architects and gorgeous interior spaces. I try to run the gamut from fashionable flagships stores to quirky buildings that have become beloved icons of the capital. The pacing is way more important that cramming in three days of buildings into a few hours, so we’ll have a great time looking around the interiors and (if experience is any metric) probably getting distracted by all kinds of eye candy along the way.

  • Perfect For
  • Architecture lovers!
  • Design fans!
  • Anyone interested in Tо̄kyо̄
  • Solo travelers, couples
  • Friends, families
  • Photographers
  • Japanophiles
  • Urban hikers

Accessibility

  • All-day walking tour, with plenty of places to rest along the way
  • Wheelchair accessible

Tо̄kyо̄ Futuristic

Anime, manga, technology – Akihabara is the epicenter of Japan’s passionate geek culture. From cutting edge AI to classic GodZilla (see what I did there?) you can easily spend a day in this otaku mecca.

video game tour, pop-culture tour, akihabara tour, manga tour, anime tour, otaku tour

SUMMARY

One of the beautiful things about Japan is the blending of classical tradition with bleeding edge technology. We’ll explore that dichotomy of old and new as a vibrant, evolving pop culture with its own aesthetics, themes, and trends. I’ll also take you to some ancient spots that don’t just sit to the side of, but are fully part of this neighborhood’s day-to-day lifestyle. If anime and manga are your thing, you will love this – it’s weird, yo.

  • Perfect For
  • Gamers
  • Weebs
  • Otaku
  • Anime fans! Manga fans!
  • Japanophiles
  • Families, friends
  • Solo travelers, couples

Accessibility

  • Wheelchair accessible for the most part (a recent welcome development!)

Shinagawa Post Town
on the Old Tōkaidō

The Tōkaidō was a medieval highway linking the shо̄gun’s capital in Edo with the imperial capital in Kyōto. Shinagawa was the largest post town and the entrance to city for almost 300 years. It’s a great example of what happened to Edo after all the earthquakes and wars.

Heritage Tourism, Historical Tourism, Urban Hiking

SUMMARY

Go granular! Anyone can walk Japan’s most famous medieval highway, the Tōkaidō, immortalized in a series of 53 woodblock prints by the master Utagawa Hiroshige. But if you don’t know what you’re looking at it, it’s just a road like any other in Tōkyō. I specialize in exploring the streets and shops of Edo Period post towns and love diving into the spacial anthropology of this amazing neighborhood.

Shinagawa was arguably the largest and most important post town in all of Japan during the Edo Period. To cash in on the heavy traffic of samurai and merchants coming and going, hundreds of shrines and temples were built in the area. There are something like 30 festivals that take place here every year.

  • Destinations
  • History nerds!
  • Photographers
  • Solo travelers, couples
  • Friends, families
  • Japanophiles
  • Urban hikers
  • Architecture lovers
  • Fans of urban development
  • People who like cemeteries
    (you know who you are!)

Popular Add-ons

  • All-day walking tour with many places to sit and rest
  • Wheelchair accessible

Tōkyō WWII Sites

Most of the Pacific War was in the southern islands of Okinawa and Kyūshū. Tōkyō was utterly destroyed in the Firebombing of 1945. Unbeknownst even to locals, there are still a handful of spread out ruins in the Greater Tōkyō Metropolitan Area.

Heritage Tourism, Historical Tourism, Urban Hiking

SUMMARY

Most of the capital was obliterated in the 1945 Firebombing of Tōkyō. As you can imagine, holding on to the few remaining structures of a lost war and occupation has never been a priority. That said, if you’re willing to crisscross around the prefecture, there are a number of preserved sites that only WWII history nerds can appreciate. These are not tourist sites, so I’d love to show you these secret spots.

  • Destinations
  • WWII nerds!
  • History nerds!
  • Solo travelers, couples
  • Japanophiles

Accessibility

  • All-day walking tour with many places to sit and rest
  • I think this is mostly wheelchair accessible

Build your own day tour!

Custom Tours

Choose your own adventure, dawg.

Private Tour

SUMMARY

Here’s a secret. All my tours are customized in one way or another. If you need a private tour or someone to make things smoother, or if you’re gathering contents and shooting video and need a fixer, I’m sure I can help out and get you sorted.

  • Services
  • Fixer
  • Guide
  • Liaison
  • Personality
  • Interpreter
  • Wingman
  • Shoulder to cry on
explore tokyo

Contact Me!