If this email does not display properly, please view it on the web here.

  • News & Announcements
  • Theme 1: Toys & Collectibles in Tokyo - Hobby Heaven
  • Theme 2: History & Tradition
  • Event Information
  • Did you know? Fun Facts About Tokyo

Improved Narita Airport Access
Scheduled to debut in July 2010, and reaching speeds of up to 160 km/h, the new Keisei Skyliner will reduce the transportation time from Nippori to Narita Airport from 51 minutes to 36 minutes! In addition, passengers will be able to enjoy more convenient, comfortable access between Narita Airport and Greater Tokyo with expanded train services. From March 2010 the Narita Express (N'EX) will feature increased departures from key areas such as Yokohama, Shibuya and Shinagawa!

Venus Fort Reborn!
"One-stop shopping" is the perfect way to describe Odaiba’s rejuvenated Venus Fort. One of the floors in this 3-story building is dedicated to outlet shops from top designer brands and the latest modern fashions. Meanwhile Venus Fort also contains exciting food offerings catering to every taste!

Tokyo Metropolitan Art Museum closing for renovations
Following the next exhibit from the world famous Galleria Borghese the museum will close for a 2 year extensive renovation project! In the mean time enjoy a rare chance to view masterpieces from such painters as Raphael, Caravaggio and Botticelli.
http://www.tobikan.jp/ (Japanese)

Tokyu Stay Nishi-Shinjuku & Ikebukuro
Located in the centre of Shinjuku, Tokyu Stay Nishi-Shinjuku offers hotel comforts and the convenience of in-room kitchens and laundry facilities. From April a new location will be opening in Ikebukuro.

Akihabara Washington Hotel
From May, the Akihabara Washington Hotel will be open to welcome guests to Tokyo’s Electronic and Pop-Culture Center!
http://akihabara-wh.com/ (Japanese)

Important Notice Regarding ATM Withdrawals
Please note that due to regulatory changes, Seven Bank has decided to discontinue their cash withdrawal service for certain overseas issued cash cards and credit cards from their ATM machines from Dec 14 2009. The cards affected are MasterCard, Cyrus and Maestro. The following cards will still be accepted at their ATM machines: VISA, VISA PLUS, American Express, JCB, China UnionPay, Discover, and Diners Club.
Please refer to the following link for more information.




While Tokyo is well-known as a center of animation and manga there is a long tradition of hobby pursuits in Japan that extends beyond pop-culture for hobbyists of all ages!

1. Character Collectibles
Stroll through areas such as Nakano Broadway or Akihabara and find vending machines for products such as popular animation characters, mobile phone straps and even beetles for the amateur insect enthusiast!

Nakano Broadway

Tokyo model shops carry incredibly realistic scale models ranging from F1 cars to Japanese castles! Start with the Tamiya Plastic Model Factory in Shimbashi and check-out over 4,000 different model kits and designs!
http://www.tamiya-plamodelfactory.co.jp/shimbashi/index.htm (Japanese)

Arguably Japan's most famous animation character both at home and overseas, Sanrio's Hello Kitty has occupied top spot for over 30 years! Visit Sanrio World Ginza or toy stores and be astonished by the sheer variety of Hello Kitty collectibles available!
http://www.sanrio.co.jp/shoppinginjapan/english/index.html (shop list)

The long running animation series Gundam has inspired a host of collectible products eagerly snapped up by devotees. Visit the 7th floor of LABI 1 Ikebukuro "Mobile Dream Kan" and find its entire floor devoted to all things Gundam including models, video games, event spaces and even unique, only-in-Japan Gundam souvenirs!
http://www.yamadalabi.com/ikebukuro-md/index.html (Japanese)
http://www.yamadalabi.com/ikebukuro-md/floorguide/index.html (Japanese)

Walkerplus article
http://news.walkerplus.com/2009/1105/23/ (Japanese)

2. Model Food Collectibles
Tokyo restaurants are famous for the lifelike model dishes commonly displayed outside the entrance to entice potential customers inside. A trip to Kappabashi gives the visitor a chance to take home their own wax replica food, desserts and even beverages like beer or soft drinks!
http://yoiko.vis.ne.jp/fsamples/kappabashi_.html (Japanese)

Not to be outdone, the increasingly popular SushiDisk (show picture) has been becoming a much sought after souvenir. Most major electronics shops now carry these USBs and other computer goods cleverly designed to look like different kinds of food. A guaranteed hit gift for friends and family!

Solid Alliance gadgets
http://www.solidalliance.com/gadgets/ (Japanese)

In such a food-obsessed nation, it is probably not surprising that a recent trend is jewelry based on designs inspired by food dishes, desserts and candies. Check-out Q-Pot for a great selection of these fashionable food accessories.
http://www.q-pot.jp/ (Japanese)

3. Accessorizing Everything
Continue your decorative investigations at Japan Deco Creator Association (JDCA) counters. The JDCA was set up to produce specialists and promote all things "deko" (decorative) adding a custom design touch to all manner of everyday items such as glasses cases, appliances and even computers! Check out LABI 1 Ikebukuro "Mobile Dream Kan" 4th floor where visitors can purchase decorations for their phone or pc. Most Yuzawaya, Loft or Tokyu Hands shops also sell decorations that add a little glitter and dazzle to your favorite things!

Japan Deco Creator Association
http://j-dca.com/sweets_amano.php (Japanese)



http://www.loft.co.jp/shoplist/ (Japanese)

Tokyu Hands
http://www.tokyu-hands.co.jp/ylw.htm (Japanese)

4. Newest Toys
Keep up to date with the newest toys and collectibles at ranKing ranQueen, Hakuhinkan! ranKing ranQueen feature at most of Tokyo’s major train stations. Carrying the current top 10 of a wide variety of products (determined by sales and popularity), these shops act as the perfect pop culture indicator! Shimbashi’s Hakuhinkan, on the other hand, serves as a complete destination for any toy enthusiast including a full 5 floors dedicated to new toys and old favourites as well as a theatre and restaurant! Be sure not to miss the latest hot item, the Fresh Caramel Maker or, better yet, visit the Tokyo Toy Show in July!

ranKing ranQueen
http://www.ranking-ranqueen.net/ (Japanese)


Fresh Caramel Maker You-Tube Video

Tokyo Toy Show
http://www.toys.or.jp/toyshow/english/index.html (2009)












It can sometimes be easy to forget that Tokyo, and Edo before it, has a history that stretches back centuries. However, glimpses of Tokyo’s past are all around...if you know where to look.

Kites originally served a spiritual purpose and were flown to thwart evil spirits and ensure bountiful harvests. However, during the Edo Period, the activity spread to the common people and became extremely popular. Enjoy a visit to the Japan Kite Museum and view the extensive collection while learning more about the careful craftsmanship that went into these intricate kites. You may also view them in action at the Takoage Taikai Kite Flying festival every January.

Nagashibina is held every Spring and forms a part of the Hina Matsuri, or Doll’s festival. Dating back to the Heian Period, the ritual consists of young girls in their kimonos placing dolls made of paper or plants into boats, which then float away on the currents. Nagashibina is an important rite meant to dispell misfortune and evil sprits. Come view one of the most famous of these annual ceremonies at Asakusa Bridge, which is also famous for its numerous stores selling traditional Japanese dolls.

More about Nagashibina

Edo Nagashibina links in Japanese
http://www.city.taito.tokyo.jp/index/064589/053080.html (Japanese)
http://www.city.taito.tokyo.jp/index/064587/054673.html (Japanese)

Origami may be one of Japan’s most well-known traditional art forms. Participate in a unique origami experience at Origami Kaikan in Ochanomizu.

Contrasting the futuristic surrounds of Tokyo’s gleaming Odaiba lies the Daiba Ichome Shopping Arcade. An amazingly detailed reproduction of Old Tokyo, stroll through elaborate and painstakingly re-created city streets, cafes, and neighborhoods and experience a special step back in time to 1960’s Show Japan.
http://www.odaiba-decks.com/?mode=ichome&page=index (Japanese)

Getting a feel of Tokyo’s history doesn’t necessarily mean festivals and museums. Several areas still evoke the atmosphere of Tokyo’s recent or more distant past such as Tsukishima, Jingumae, Aoyama, and Ginza.

Ningyocho in Tokyo’s Chuo-ku Ward still retains a feeling of Old Tokyo. Stroll through the Amazake Yokocho Street after a visit to the area’s famous Suitengu Shrine. Then wind your way through the traditional shops on your way to the historic Meijiza Theater and scenic Kiyosu Bridge.

Chuo City Tourism Association











Tokyo Bay Grand Fireworks Festival
Early August, 2010
Enjoy this early August event, featuring the launch of over 12,000 fireworks! The effect at night with a canopy of light above and flickering reflections on the Bay water create a truly breathtaking sight! View this annual spectacle from various vantage points around Tokyo Bay.

For information on other events:




Did you know...
...that many stations on Tokyo’s Yamamote Circle Line have a distinct melody played just before the train doors close, sometimes as a substitute for a closing bell or whistle? For example, check out the Astroboy Theme at Takadanobaba Station or the Yebisu Beer Commercial Theme at Ebisu Station!

Ebisu Station - The Third Man Theme (Yebisu Beer Commercial Theme)

Takadanobaba Station - The Astroboy Theme


To access the previous edition of e-Tokyo Today and our printed newsletter, Tokyo Today,
please visit: http://www.tourism.metro.tokyo.jp/english/citypromotion/index.html.

If you wish to stop receiving this newsletter, please send an email to news@tcvb.or.jp titled, "Unsubscribe".

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.