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, Tokyo History Tour
We’ll start our history tour at beautiful Nezu Shrine, climb Mt. Dо̄kan, a former castle and one of the five famous cherry blossom spots of Edo, visit Kan’ei-ji the funerary temple of six Tokugawa shо̄guns, and finish at Ueno Station – spanning the mythological Age of the Gods until the 1870’s. Not only will we see shrines and temples, but also many traditional wood houses which are quite rare in modern Tо̄kyо̄. Most interesting is Japan’s largest urban necropolis – a literal city of the dead. I like to take a detour through Yanaka Ginza, a shо̄tengai or traditional shopping street that is famous for cute stray cats.
Remains of a 15th century castle, later a famous cherry blossom spot
- Graves of the shо̄guns
Remains of 6 samurai rulers
- Kan’ei-ji temple complex
Funerary temple of the shо̄guns, site of the peaceful abdication of the last shо̄gun
- Kiyomizu Kannon-dо̄
Iconic, picturesque, and famous from woodblocks prints cherry blossoms, this clifftop shrine survived the Battle of Ueno.
- Nezu Shrine
One of the oldest and most beautiful shrines in all of Japan (one of the Tо̄kyо̄ 10 Shrines Pilgrimage)
- Suwa Shrine
15th century shrine in a quiet, traditional neighborhood – last spot in the capital where you could see Mt. Fuji from the street
Remains of the lovers’ suicide pagoda.
- Ueno Daibutsu
This Big Buddha statue was a symbol of the capital until 1923
- Ueno Tо̄shо̄-gū
This enshrinement of the first shо̄gun is covered in gold and was recently renovated
- Graves of the last samurai
The shо̄gitai were samurai loyal to the shо̄guns who decided to go down fighting to the death
- Yanaka Cemetery
The largest urban necropolis in Japan, graves span from the 1600’s until today!
- Yanaka Ginza
A traditional shopping street famous for street food, artsy shops, and docile stray cats
- Dinner and/or karaoke in the post-war Black Market area
this area feels like pre-1980’s Tо̄kyо̄
- Edo Period Tо̄fu restaurant
Reservations required, dress code; actual Edo Period dishes on the menu
- Shitamachi Museum
Learn about daily life in the old commoners’ district
- Street Food at Benzaiten temple
If we don’t grab dinner together, it might be nice to grab a traditional snack to nibble on
Walk through an interesting, yakuza-controlled love hotel district (nothing obscene to see, but definitely adult topics, — heads up!)
Starts at ¥55,000
You Might Also Like
- Shо̄gun’s Legacy in Shiba – a similar comprehensive Tokyo history tour
- I have more original Tokyo Day Tours here.
- Check out my Day Trips from major cities
- Don’t miss my multi-day Excursions
Let’s Build our Own TOKYO Tour!
Choose your own adventure, dawg.
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.