Our final day in Tokyo is one of nature, this may seem surprising in one of the biggest cities of the world, but there are a lot of green spaces in Tokyo when you look for it. We will also visit the Mori art Museum for some great contemporary Japanese art and the best panoramic view of Tokyo.
We start the day in Shinjuku Gyoen. The great size of Shinjuku Gyoen makes it a great place to escape the bustling city scape.and it interestingly combines three forms of gardens. One part is dedicated to the traditional Japanese Garden. Another to the French formal garden. Elements of this style are a geometric plan, constrained and trimmed vegetation to demonstrate the mastery of man over nature. Another element is a terrace overlooking the garden, so you are able to get an overview. The third part is dedicated to the English landscape garden, this style is known for its rolling grounds and big patches of grass against a woodland background with some big centrepiece trees.
When you’re done exploring the garden, you can either head over to nearby Shinjuku for some shopping or continue straight to the Meiji shrine.
Shinjuku ward is huge and you can spend a whole day there shopping if you would like. For focused shopping head over to Shinjuku station, here much of the different shopping options are available. The area is less expensive and high end than Ginza.
The shrine was completed in 1920 to commemorate emperor Meiji and his wife empress Shōken, whose return to power is marked as the Meiji Restoration. Under his leadership Japan opened towards the outer world and would start on a path of rapid industrialisation and modernisation.
You enter the shrine through a huge torii. The shrine is a favourite spot for traditional Japanese weddings. So, head over here in the weekend to catch a glimpse of a Japanese bride and groom. The shrine lies in a big forest with trees donated by the Japanese people. If you’re still up for more parks, head over to the next-door Yoyogi Park. On Sunday, it’s the always busy with groups of people engaging in their different hobbies like martial arts, cosplay and Japanese rock.
Mori Art Museum
For the perfect panoramic view of Tokyo and some great contemporary art, head over to the Mori Art Museum. This art museum has a collection of contemporary art from Japan and Asia. It also hosts many exhibition of other contemporary art. The museum has long opening hours, it’s open until 22h every day except Tuesdays, so it’s also ideal as an evening activity. When you arrive at the building where the museum is housed, you’re greeted by a huge spider created by Louise Bourgeois.
Tokyo City View
Via the top floor of the building you can gain access to the outdoor panorama deck of Tokyo City View. Here you have the best unhindered views of Tokyo.
This was the last post in our five days in Tokyo series. If you missed any of the previous posts, make sure not to miss our first day in Tokyo, our day trip to Kamakura, our exploration of Tokyo’s museums and our day trip to Nikko.