5 things to do on a hot day in Tokyo


2018.08.01 (Wed)

Summers are hot in Japan and this summer has started with a long heatwave. Here are some things to do you could do on a hot summer day.

Go on a Yakatabune cruise

See Tokyo’s cityscape from a yakatabune boat. Enjoy a traditional Japanese meal while you are cruising along Sumida River towards Tokyo Bay. The Tokyo Yakatabune Association can help you make reservations. There are different plans available, both during lunch and dinner time. Please see

Make reservations for lunch

Enjoy a leisurely lunch instead of walking around during the hottest time of the day. Many restaurants offer special lunch menus. This is a great opportunity to try some of the best dishes and restaurants. Lunch sets are often less expensive than comparable offers for dinner. You could try some local favorites like tempura, sukiyaki, or even have a full kaisei style set meal consisting of several courses.

Enjoy coffee, tea, and Japanese sweets

Japanese meals usually do not include a big dessert course. So head to a cafe or tea salon in the afternoon and treat yourself to something sweet there. Kakigori shaved ice is very popular in the summer and many cafes have it on the menu now. Matcha ice cream with an intense green tea flavor is also very popular. Try a few Japanese desserts and sweets and see what you like best. If you do not have time to sit down in a cafe pick up some soft serve ice cream or a crisp monaka cake filled with ice cream.

Go shopping for souvenirs and tasty treats

Want to take some Japanese sweets home? Check out the food section of the department stores, for example at one of the stores near Asakusa, Okachimachi, or Ueno station. Depachika, meaning department basement, is what the food courts are called in Japanese. Everything here is carefully selected and presented. You can try some delicacies on the spot and pick up carefully wrapped boxes of souvenirs and gifts. Popular souvenirs that travel well are items like Japanese sweets, cakes, cookies, senbei rice crackers, or Japanese tea.

Go sightseeing in the evening

Senso-ji Temple is beautiful in the evening. The different buildings are illuminated in the evening and this makes the red and gold structures shine. This is a great time for taking pictures, especially as it is usually a lot less crowded in the evening here. The shops along the temple’s Nakamise Street close in the late afternoon, but shop shutters are painted with different scenes and make great backdrops for photos.

Tokyo Skytree is illuminated in different colors every evening. The Asakusa side of Sumida Park is a good places to take pictures of the tower. From the park and the path along Sumida River you also have a very good view of the bridges and the yakabune boats. They are decorated with colorful lanterns and add to the evening scene. Many boats can be seen in the area between Asakusa and Asakusabashi. For a city view go up to the terrace of the Asakusa Culture Tourist Information Center.

Please take care of yourself while you are out in the city. Drink plenty of water, keep out of the sun, and keep cool.

News List