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How Many Days in Tokyo Should You Spend?

Deciding how many days to spend in Tokyo can be quite the puzzle. Tokyo is a vast, vibrant city, a tapestry of history, modernity, and everything in-between. And much like an exciting book, each traveler wishes to know how long they should dive in to truly grasp its essence.

Now, imagine you have friends (that’s us) who have been to Tokyo time and again. From those fleeting 48-hour trips to extended stays that felt like an endless love affair with the city. With each visit, we’ve gathered knowledge, stories, and insights. And guess what? We’re eager to lend you that wealth of experience to help you craft your perfect Tokyo itinerary. Whether you’re racing against the clock or stretching out your days to capture every nook and cranny, we’ve got just the right thing to guide you.

Table of Contents

Tokyo Skytree Skyline

How Many Days to Spend in Tokyo

Now let’s dive right into the crux of our topic: how many days in Tokyo should you count on when planning your Japan trip? Now, Tokyo isn’t just another city; it’s an experience. Your duration in Tokyo, much like seasoning in a dish, can truly influence the flavor of your trip.

If you’re only in Japan for a quick tour, we’d suggest you allocate a minimum of 4 days to Tokyo. Think of it as a sampler – you’ll touch on the high points, but there’ll always be that feeling of wanting more. For a more comprehensive taste, one where you can go at a slow pace, savor its dishes, and strike up conversations with locals, we suggest a solid 7 to 10 days. This duration enables a balanced blend of the iconic and the offbeat which we truly recommend.

Yet, if you’re looking to truly immerse yourself, to let Tokyo become less of a destination and more of a home, then 12 to 14 days is where the magic truly happens. Tokyo’s richness doesn’t just lie in its museums or iconic sights. The city’s soul is in its winding alleys, in the bowl of ramen shared at a street corner, in the laughter exchanged with a local over a cup of sake. The luxury of time allows you to become one with the city, soak in the ambiance, and not just see, but feel Tokyo.

We’ve often seen travelers try to cram everything into a short span. The results? A whirlwind trip where memories blur and fatigue sets in. Tokyo isn’t a city to be rushed; it’s to be relished.

But don’t just take our word for it. In the upcoming sections, we’ll detail our handcrafted 10-day Tokyo itinerary, curated with love. It’s a mix of must-dos and hidden gems, structured in a way to help you prioritize. For example, if you are only going to stay in Tokyo for 7 days, you can still use this list and go through it to pick the things you like.  So, whether you’re in for the long haul or just a fleeting visit, we’ve got something special in store for you.

10 Days in Tokyo - Ideal Itinerary

Day 1 - Shibuya, Yoyogi Park, Harajuku

Begin your journey at the iconic Shibuya Crossing, a living testament to Tokyo’s ceaseless energy. Spend some time walking around, checking out shops and restaurants. It is also a good place for a young crowd to go on a night out or hit the karaoke booths.

After the rush of the city, retreat to the serene Yoyogi Park, where you can take in Tokyo’s natural beauty. If it is a nice day, you can see many people enjoying the outdoors in the park. The famous Meiji Jingu shrine is also in the park.

Right next to the park you can find the iconic Harajuku area with its mix of trendy boutiques, themed cafes, and street fashion. It’s a sensory explosion, a blend of the old and the new.

How many days in Tokyo - day 1 shibuya

Day 2 - Shinjuku

The urban maze of Shinjuku holds countless tales. Wander its streets and stumble upon the vintage charm of Golden Gai, an area full of cozy bars and restaurants or the Memory Lane, an alley that speaks of old Tokyo.

Give yourself the gift of relaxation with a traditional hot bath in the local sento, before diving into Shinjuku’s kaleidoscopic nightlife. Bars, clubs, or even just street performers – there’s always a story unfolding here.

How many days in Japan - Day 2 Shinjuku

Day 3 - Akihabara

Akihabara is a paradise for tech aficionados, gamers, and anime lovers. Neon lights, stores filled with gadgets, and maid cafes paint a picture of Tokyo’s otaku culture.

However, if that feels overwhelming or it’s not up your alley, taking a day to randomly roam the city streets is always a good idea. It is the best way to experience the unexpected.

Akihabara Tokyo

Day 4 - Odaiba & Sumida Cruise

Odaiba, with its futuristic architecture and sweeping bay views, feels like a sci-fi dream. Dive into attractions like the Digital Art Museum or the life-sized Gundam statue.

Later, a Sumida River Cruise provides a tranquil counterpoint, letting you see Tokyo’s skyline from a fresh perspective, kissed by the setting sun.

Day 5 - Yokohama

Use this day to go on a daytrip to the nearby city of Yokohama. The Landmark Tower provides panoramic views, while the historic Red Brick Warehouse offers shopping with a twist.

Don’t miss the bustling Chinatown, and if you’re a ramen aficionado, the Ramen Museum is a must-visit. With so many interesting places, you definitely won’t regret it!

Yamashita Park In Yokohama

Day 6 - Ueno and Ginza

Start your day in Ueno, wandering through its park dotted with many museums, a huge zoo, and tranquil ponds. The Ameya-Yokocho market nearby is a shopper’s delight. Later, Ginza’s glittering streets would be an ideal place to visit. Renowned for its luxury boutiques, theaters, and fine dining, it’s Tokyo’s upscale heart.

How long to stay in Tokyo, Ginza

Day 7 - Shinjuku Gyoen Garden & Sento

Slow down and breathe in the manicured beauty of Shinjuku Gyoen Garden. With its three distinct styles – Japanese traditional, French formal, and English landscape, it’s a green haven amidst the urban sprawl.

Alternatively, visit the Hama-rikyū Gardens or a nice museum. And you can’t go wrong with a trip to a hot spring. It’s a perfect day to picnic, ponder, and perhaps pen down your Tokyo tales so far.

Day 8 - Takao San or Kamakura

Seeking a break from the urban? Takao San offers scenic hikes and spiritual encounters with its mountaintop temples.

Alternatively, Kamakura’s giant Buddha statue, historic temples, and beaches make it a cultural gem worth exploring. Both destinations offer a refreshing change of pace and we highly recommend them. Make sure to go as early in the morning as possible.

Great Buddha Statue In Kamakura

Day 9 - Relax and Revel

Begin with a easy morning, perhaps soaking in an onsen or discovering hidden alleyways. As day turns to dusk, the Tokyo Tower should be your destination. It offers panoramic views of the city bathed in golden hues. It is definitely one of the highlights so we highly recommend it.

Stay until the sun sets so when you get down from the tower you can enjoy its night look from close up. If you are the outgoing type, end your evening in Roppongi, a district famous for its vibrant nightlife, from swanky bars to pulsating clubs. You can go bar hopping or just walk the streets and enjoy the vibe.

Mansuirou Ryokan Hot Spring

Day 10 - Tokyo Skytree and Asakusa

Start high above, at the Tokyo Skytree, the highest building in Japan. From there you can marvel at the city’s vastness. Then, wander into the age-old streets of Asakusa, the old part of Tokyo. Senso-ji Temple stands as a testament to Tokyo’s enduring spirit, while Nakamise Street offers trinkets and treats, a perfect way to commemorate your journey.

Asakusa Temple In Tokyo

These ten days will give you the best of Tokyo’s iconic highlights, but will also let you feel the vibe of the city since you won’t be rushing all the time. As I said, feel free to modify this so it suits you and your travel style, but this is what we found works best for most people.

Tokyo Itinerary for 10+ Days

Stretching your Tokyo trip beyond the ten-day mark? Ah, the city does have a way of capturing hearts. And just when you think you’ve seen its many shades, Tokyo throws in a delightful curveball and shows you many new places and experiences you missed. So here are some of them. So let us help you with come up with more items for your Tokyo itinerary for more than ten days.

While the iconic Tsukiji might have said its goodbyes, the rest of Tokyo’s seafood scene thrives. The Adachi Fish Market is where the heartbeat of the seafood trade resonates, offering a deep dive into the city’s marine delicacies and traditions. As you weave through the market, the frenzied calls of traders and the scent of the ocean become a sensory delight.

If the electric vibrance of Akihabara struck a chord, the neighborhoods of Ikebukuro or Nakano might just be your encore. Much like Akihabara, they pulsate with the same love for electronics and anime but offer their unique quirks.

Tokyo Dome City isn’t just about baseball – though catching a game here, surrounded by zealous fans, is an experience in itself. Beyond the game, the area brims with entertainment, from thrilling rides to leisurely spas so you definitely won’t be bored.

And speaking of leisure, Tokyo’s not all rush. Places like Shibuya and Shinjuku, often known for their bustling intersections and towering skyscrapers, also hold intimate pockets worth exploring. Delve deeper into their alleys, and you might just find yourself in a quaint cafe, a unique restaurant, or a rejuvenating hot spring.

Ever wondered where the city’s tireless workers let their hair down? Shinbashi offers a glimpse. As evening drapes the city, salarymen flock to this district, shifting gears from corporate hustle to cheerful party mood.

But, if you’re in the mood for something out-of-the-box, the TeamLab Planets awaits with its interactive art installations. It’s a dance of light, art, and technology, making you question the boundaries of reality. Or, if introspection is what you seek, just wander. Let Tokyo’s streets guide you. Every corner, every turn holds a story, a surprise, a memory waiting to be made.


Tokyo is a city of contrasts – a delicate blend of the old and the new, the traditional and the modern. From temples and shrines nestled amid skyscrapers to neon-lit streets echoing with the hum of modernity, it’s a city that never truly sleeps but always dreams.

So to answer the original question: how many days in Tokyo should you spend? Like many things, it depends! At least four, ideally ten or twelve. Whether you’re here for four days or fourteen, Tokyo offers a realm of experiences waiting to be unearthed. And as we’ve journeyed through its many neighborhoods and attractions, remember that the magic often lies in the unplanned moments, the off-the-beaten-path discoveries. Be it Osaka, Kyoto, or anywhere else in Japan, the essence remains: embrace the unexpected. Dive deep, wander freely, and let Japan’s heartbeats guide your steps.

If you liked this breakdown of the Tokyo itinerary, we have some other interesting articles for you. For example, you can learn how many days to spend in Osaka or Kyoto. Maybe you are more interested in how long to stay in Japan itself. We have the answer to that as well!

Mate Mikulandra
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