• News & Announcements
  • Theme 1: Pop Culture - Hi-Tech in Tokyo
  • Theme 2: History & Tradition
  • Event Information
  • Did you know? Fun Facts About Tokyo

Enjoy the Shinjuku WE Bus!
This convenient and economical bus service brings the business & hotel district of West Shinjuku within easy reach of the shopping & entertainment district of East Shinjuku.

Waterfront Walking Maps
Take a walking tour along Tokyo’s unique Upper Sumidagawa River Area and catch a glimpse of the real Tokyo!

Tokyo City Promotion in London and Paris Coming Soon
The Tokyo Metropolitan Government has been conducting promotional campaigns in 17 cities worldwide since 2002. You are warmly invited to join us in London on January 28th or in Paris on February 2nd for trade fairs and tourism industry seminars on Tokyo.
For details and pre-registration, visit:

Noh Theater Performances
Noh, Japan’s traditional masked theater, is one of the country’s most revered art forms. Experience the final act of a Noh performance at low price, with a "Happy Hour Ticket" (limited capacity).
http://kanze.net/index.php?id=89 (Japanese)

Omotesando H.I.S. Illumination Bellsymphony
This December, for the first time since 1998, iconic Omotesando-dori Avenue will play host to one of Tokyo’s most beautiful winter illumination displays!
http://www.omotesando.or.jp/bellsymphony/ (Japanese)

Sky Bus Tokyo
Enjoy 360-degree panoramic views of Tokyo from the comfort of a modern tour bus. Options include the Tokyo Tower - Rainbow Bridge course and the Odaiba City Lights Course. Bilingual guidance in English, Chinese, or Korean is only available for the T-01, Imperial Palace, Ginza and Marunouchi course. Other courses are only in Japanese.

From November, HATO BUS launches an open top double-decker tour bus service "o sola mio!".
o sola mio! (Japanese)

A new sightseeing spot, the AMUSE MUSEUM opens in Asakusa on November 1st! Highlights include Japanese traditional performances and an Ukiyo-e theater. Tsugaru Sashiko Kimono and BORO textiles are on display until the end of February as part of their Special Opening Exhibition.

Yoshiro Yonezawa Memorial Library of Manga and Subcultures Opens
Containing hundreds of thousands of titles opens in Meiji University from 31st October.
http://www.meiji.ac.jp/manga/yonezawa_lib/ (Japanese)










For visitors to Tokyo with an interest in technology, welcome to one of the best places in the world for finding the latest gadgets, gaming, robotics or home entertainment systems.

Modern Japanese robotics and technology are believed to have evolved from the tradition of karakuri ningyo or Edo Era automata and mechanized puppets. Karakuri, meaning a mechanical device used to surprise, emphasized craftsmanship, subtle movement and humanistic appearances. This long fascination with robots in Japan has led to countless manga and anime characterizations, innovations in Japanese factories and, of course, a constant stream of ever more lifelike and advanced robots.

1. Robotics
Any tour of Japanese robotics must begin with Honda’s amazing ASIMO robot. Check out demonstrations at either Miraikan or at Honda’s Welcome Plaza Aoyama! Not to be outdone, Toyota’s Partner Robot gives demonstrations at Megaweb in Odaiba & the appropriately futuristic aMLUX building in Ikebukuro.


Honda’s Welcome Plaza Aoyama
http://www.honda.co.jp/welcome-plaza/event/index.html (Japanese)

Toyota Partner Robot
http://www.megaweb.gr.jp/Uds/Event/Robot/ (Japanese)
http://www.amlux.jp/joy/event/robot.html (Japanese)

For other robotic adventures, why not spend an afternoon with other enthusiasts in Akihabara? Tsukomo Robot Kingdom located on the 4th floor of the Tsukumo Main Computer Shop II specializes in robot kits and products while the newly opened Robot Shop Technologia and Vstone offer anything a robot enthusiast could want, and more.

Tsukomo Robot Kingdom
http://robot.tsukumo.co.jp/ (Japanese)

Robot Shop Technologia
http://www.technologia.co.jp/ (Japanese)


2. Home Entertainment
Popular electronics shops showcase the latest in home entertainment and consumer electronics from leading brands. Events like CEATEC Japan or the Tokyo Game Show present cutting-edge developments such as smile detection camera functions, 3D television and the latest innovations for the Sony PlayStation or Nintendo Wii. You can find the latest products in the following showrooms.

Sony Bldg.

Panasonic center

Nintendo Gamefront
http://www.nintendo.co.jp/n10/gamefron/index.html (Japanese)

CEATEC every October

Tokyo Game show every September

3. Other Hi-Tech Gadgets
Advanced-technology in Japan is not only limited to robots and home entertainment. Gadgets and devices to make our everyday routines more comfortable or efficient are a hallmark of Japanese innovation.

Take the Suica or PASMO train passes for example. These smart cards can be purchased for a small deposit at any JR (Suica) or Metro (PASMO) station and used to travel seamlessly around the city, buy a light refreshment from the platform vending machine, or even pay for a bento at a convenience store! See below for more information.


http://www.pasmo.co.jp/en/pdf/pasmo_traveler_E.pdf#search='pasmo guide'

For something a little different, have a look at TOTO’s showroom for the latest in home bathroom innovations - chances are you may have already seen some of their space-age 'washlet' toilets at a hotel or department store!

http://www.toto.co.jp (Japanese)


















One of the most interesting aspects of Japanese technology is the influence of karakuri ningyo or mechanized automata dolls. These remarkably lifelike figures were produced in the Edo period and were characterized by high-quality craftsmanship and the latest in technological advancements. Karakuri’s influence has extended down through the centuries to current innovations such as robotics, assembly lines and even theater and entertainment.

Learn more about this fascinating part of Japan’s history at the National Museum of Nature and Science in Ueno!
Online movies featuring the Karakuri Ningyo exhibits may be viewed here:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=okGeSZRJMt0&feature=related http://shinkan.kahaku.go.jp/floor/2f_en.jsp

Contemporary Japanese arts and crafts are also said to have been influenced by the techniques of Edo period master craftsmen and Japanese aesthetic sensibilities. These are still to be found throughout Tokyo, offering the visitor a unique opportunity to learn about crafts passed down from the Edo period.


The Japan Traditional Craft Center in Ikebukuro is a fine place to start and gives a visitor a very good overview of Edo crafts and craftsmanship.

For something more hands-on, the Sumida area offers the chance to participate in the craft production of such diverse fields as woodcarving, textile dyeing, folding screens and Edo-style glasswork.

Enjoy a tour through Tokyo’s Edo craftwork heritage and see a side of Tokyo few get to experience!



May brings with it the celebration of two of the famous "great festivals of Edo (Tokyo)". Dating back several centuries, these matsuri (festivals) evoke memories of Old Edo while ensuring a lively atmosphere of music, dance, food and fun!

Sanja Matsuri
May 14 to 16, 2010
Asakusa Shrine
The Sanja Matsuri at Tokyo’s famous Asakusa Sensoji Temple celebrates the ties of the local community around Sensoji (called ujiko) and also serves as a prayer for continued good fortune.

Kanda Matsuri
Early to Mid May
Kanda Jinja Shrine & Kanda Area
The Kanda Matsuri honors the 1,200 year old Kanda Myoujin Shrine and the three important deities enshrined there. Participants carry portable mikoshi shrines through the historic quarters of Nihombashi and Otemachi.
http://www.tcvb.or.jp/en/event/200905a.html (2009 information)

For information on other events:



Did you know...Japanese Sake has its own version of Beaujolais nouveau? Called "Shinshu", it is sake made from rice harvested in that year. Sake brewers have traditionally hung a ball of cedar branches (Green "sugidama") outside their shop to indicate that a new batch of "shinshu" is ready for sale.

Information about sake, breweries and how to enjoy sake can be found on the Japan Sake Brewers Association at website:

At the SAKE PLAZA in West Shimbashi, it is possible to learn about the sake making process and to sample a variety of sakes.
http://www.japansake.or.jp/sake/information/index.html (Japanese)

Enjoy sake brewery tours and tasting events in Tokyo! (Reservation required)

Although the following sites are in Japanese, they cater to non-Japanese speakers and visitors:
http://sawanoi-sake.com/ (Japanese)
http://www.koyamashuzo.co.jp/ (Japanese)
http://www.seishu-kasen.com/ (Japanese)
http://www.nakajima-sake.co.jp/ (Japanese)


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Issued by: Tourism Division, Bureau of Industrial and Labor Affairs, Tokyo Metropolitan Government
Planning / Editing: Tokyo Convention & Visitors Bureau
E-mail: news@tcvb.or.jp Tel: +81-3-5840-8892 Fax: +81-3-5840-8895.