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Do you know the difference between Asakusa and Asakusabashi?



2020.09.24 (Thu)

By Charlotte, long-term Tokyo resident & history-loving traveler

Anyone who's planned a trip overseas will know the problems you won't find on domestic trips. One of them would be being unfamiliar with the name of the place you're looking for. It can sometimes be too long, confusing, or difficult to pronounce. This can be true even if the guidebook is in your language, or if your destination's name has some meaning in the local language.

Take Asakusa and Asakusabashi, for example. These are two completely different places in Tokyo and are only apart by 40 minutes on foot and 15 minutes by car.

Asakusa is known for the Kaminarimon Gate, where a large red lantern is hung. You may have seen pictures of the Kaminarimon Gate while looking up Tokyo's sightseeing spot. Pass through the Kaminarimon Gate, and you'll see the Nakamise Shopping Street. There, you'll see souvenir shops and other stores lined up. Just passing through is already quite an experience. It also leads to the Sensoji Temple, the oldest temple in Tokyo, boasting a history exceeding 1400 years. Asakusa is a place brimming with Tokyo's traditional atmosphere, with many shops surviving since times of old.

Asakusabashi, on the other hand, is a long-standing wholesale district where you can find accessories, stationery, clothing, toys, and Japanese dolls. If you thought Tokyo was all about shopping in big department stores, I highly suggest you go to Asakusabashi. You'll be thrilled by the staff's intimacy and the plethora of products you'd only find in specialty stores.

You can reach Asakusa and Asakusabashi directly via train from Narita Airport without having to switch trains. Be sure to check them out if you're planning a trip to Tokyo.

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