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Old meets new: Tokyo Matsuri

Old meets new: Tokyo Matsuri

A beautiful old temple here, a brilliant new skyscraper there…Everywhere you look in Tokyo, there’s a beautiful marriage of tradition and technology to create one of the most marvellous cities in the world.


Nothing exemplifies Tokyo more than its festivals, known as Matsuri (祭り). Celebrating the passing of seasons, or historical and cultural events, it is a time for all to be festive and joyful. Tokyo’s matsuri often fuses old and new to create something truly spectacular in Japan’s capital city, so come and visit! We’ll guarantee you won’t regret it. 


Sunshine Aquarium

(Image credit: Sunshine Aquarium)


Located on the top floor of the famous Sunshine City, Sunshine Aquarium (サンシャイン水族館 Sanshain-suizokukan) might seem like your run-of-the-mill attraction, but a minute inside will convince you that it is anything. Within this aquarium is the famous “Penguins in the Sky,” an ideal spot for taking photos. 


This special attraction is a large tank built with the sky as a backdrop, allowing guests to look up at the penguins from a unique perspective never seen in other aquariums. Adding to that, a new attraction called “Immersive Space of Jellyfish”, or “Jellyfish in the Sky” opened up in 2020, adding another unique viewing experience for visitors. You’ll feel less like a guest in an aquarium, and more like a participant in a large calligraphy painting.


Of course, the classic aquarium delights are present as well—most popular among them the curious otters. At the “Otters in the Waterfront”, you can see otters running around on land, swimming around in the water and living in an environment close to their natural habitat. A sea lion has also recently joined the aquarium last year. 


From new attractions to timeless classics, Sunshine Aquarium is enjoyable to everyone, so head on over and spend your time with the sea creatures!


Hie Shrine


(Image credit: : photoAC)


While there are many shrines located all across Tokyo, each of which with their own history and claims to fame, there are few as visually striking as the Hie Shrine (日神社 Hie Jinja), known for its red torii (鳥居 traditional Japanese gates) tunnel, as well as its presence for the Sanno Matsuri Festival (山王祭).


Hie Shrine is different from the moment guests reach the entrance. While traditional shinto shrines often have a dog statue guarding the entrance, Hie Shrine instead has a monkey.


The shrine is a very tranquil area, but many visitors actually come to take a look at Hie Shrine’s back entrance, which is a tunnel of over 80 red torii gates, creating a unique atmosphere not seen elsewhere in Tokyo.


If you’re lucky and happen to be travelling in June, you might also catch the kick-off of one of Tokyo’s biggest festivals, Sanno Matsuri, where a variety of cultural performances and processions will take place within the shrine and around Tokyo.


So, if you’re looking for that one-of-a-kind Instagram shot, or just a place to sit down and admire the beauty of Japanese tradition, we’d happily suggest Hie Shrine as your first stop.


Have a Nice TOKYO!

(Image credit: Tokyo Convention and Visitors Bureau)


With how large and beautiful Tokyo is, it can sometimes get a little confusing to navigate around Japan’s capital city. Thankfully, The Tokyo Tourist Communication Centre has got guests covered.


Called “HaNT”, or “Have a Nice Tokyo”, the centre is focused on allowing tourists to engage with the local community and learn more about the various attractions and services that Tokyo has to offer. 


The space of HaNT itself can be considered a tourist attraction in its own right, with its design based on modern Japanese architecture. Even the materials used to make the centre are from Japanese regions like Wakayama and Akita. Periodically, HaNT hosts events celebrating various different regions in Japan and Tokyo. These events can be anything from talk shows, exhibitions, or even fun workshops, so keep watching their website to see if there’s any event up your alley,


Whether it’s your first time in the city, or you’re a frequent Tokyo traveller, HaNT will always have something exciting to see, so head on over and have a great time!


Discover your Tokyo at Tokyo Matsuri Fair @ JAPAN RAIL CAFE

There’s plenty more places to see and things to do in Tokyo, but we hope that our little list above has managed to convince you to visit this dynamic city when you have the chance. If you still need a little bit more convincing, why not head down to the Tokyo Matsuri Fair at JAPAN RAIL CAFE? Happening from 1–15 September 2022, find out more about Tokyo’s exciting attractions and bring some goodies home while you’re at it.


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