Archive for the ‘Tokyo’ Category

New “Free WiFi” service at Tokyo subway

December 1, 2014

東京メトロと都営地下鉄で無料WiFiサービスがスタート(12月1日より)

Starting from December 1, 2014, Tokyo Metro and Toei subway companies start to offer free WiFi service to all the visitors to Tokyo. If you have an app “Japan Connected-free Wi-Fi” (iOS/Android) on your smart phone, you can use internet at free of charge for three hours. This service is available at 143 stations of Tokyo Metro and Toei as well as Seven-Eleven or Narita and Haneda airport etc.

Cherry Blossoms Forecast 2014

March 14, 2014

sakura_front_600x450_2014       As we post a blog entry at this time of the every year, it is already the season people start to forecast when is the DAY in 2014. As cherry blossoms are very short-lived, we should not miss the chance! And also we need to well plan in advance for our Hanami Party (Flower viewing party) with our friends, family and colleagues etc as the time is really limited!!

This year, according to the latest forecast, the flower will start to bloom as usual year, which is on and around March 25 in Tokyo. And then it has its peak on around April 2.

MG_Tokyo  Tokyo

Some of our tours are already booked out, but we have also some tours still available. For the availability of our tours, please check out our website! Please don’t miss this chance to enjoy Sakura flowers by bike!

 

Your kids would love it ! – Tokyo Toy Museum

October 7, 2013

tokyo toy museum

Hi there. I am Masa.

I visited Tokyo Omocha museum (Tokyo Toy Museum) with my two daughters aged 4 and 6.

They have been there this summer, I was a first timer to there.

Here is the link to this museum

http://goodtoy.org/ttm/index.html

The museum building is a former public elementary school which once closed down due to the lack of students and then remodeled to museum a few years ago.

There are NO computer games, no Nintendo DS,  Wii or iPad etc.

Many toys are very traditional, created and made of wood.

That is a museum where we can not only watch toys  but we can also play with toys.  Needless to say my kids, actually I myself really enjoyed Tokyo Toy Museum.    I played some board games with my daughters, so much fun!

At the reception we booked workshop that is for making simple toy with their conductor.

My daughters made small paper crafts and drawings. They took back them home. It took about 20 minutes.

There are some staffs who help us how to play with toy.

When we could not realize how to use, it is better to ask their staffs. They are volunteer staffs and very helpful.

Finally we spent more than four hours there.

If you have a spare time and you are with your children, I recommend you to visit there!

There are some staffs speak English. Let them know by telephone that you are coming in advance, they can arrange staffs.

The museum is 5 minutes’ walk from Yotsuyasanchome station on Tokyo Metro Marunouchi line. Admission is 700 yen for an adult, 500 yen for a child.

They also have a package ticket 1,000 yen for one adult plus one child.

They close on Thursday. (You should join our Route B tour in stead!)

There are also Shobo Hakubutsukan (Fire museum) next to Yotsuyasanchome Station. Fire department is operating it.

But, sorry I have never been there.

Tokyo’s Great Restaurant Vol. 6 ~ by Kazu ~

September 25, 2013

Restaurant Name: New Kayaba  (ニューカヤバ)

Area: Kayabacho

Address: 2-17-11 Nihonbashikayabacho, Chuo-ku, Tokyo

Category: “Izakaya”, Japanese Tavern

Business Hour: 17:00-21:00 Monday thru. Friday

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Hello, this is Kazu. I would like to introduce my favorite Tachi-nomi (Stand and drink in Japanese) style “Izakaya”, a Japanese tavern, near our office. It’s only 3 minutes walk from our office and a wallet friendly tavern.

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The tavern has counter tables with no chairs, so that customers stand and drink. What makes this place different from others is that there is a small BBQ
grill in the center, where customers can cook their own yakitori.
Yakitori is all self-service, so you can season with as much yakitori sauce
or salt as you wish!

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Drinks such as draft beer, bottled beer and “Hoppy”, and foods including yakitori (raw), sashimi, salad and more dishes at @300 yen or less / each are served cash on delivery basis by shop employees. Sake (rice wine), wheat “shochu” which is a distilled alcoholic beverage, sweet potato “shochu”, and buckwheat “shochu” are supplied by vending machines. You can have enough drink and food there with 1500 yen or less. Of course, you can drink more, but you may feel tired after 6-hours bike tour and stay standing :) Now it’s a good time to go back to your hotel with good memories of the day. If you are interested, please try this place!

M.N.YKanpai!! Together with other guides, Masa, Natsumi and Yukiko

The Asagaya Tanabata Festival

August 10, 2013

The “Asagaya Tanabata Matsuri” is one of the famous festivals in Tokyo.

It is a fun festival that is held annually, and this year is the 60th anniversary.

The festival is famous for the fancy decorations dangling from the ceiling of the shopping arcade. Well, these sentences cannot express the niceness of the scenery, so here is the photo.

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It is only one street (well, it will be branched at the very end of the arcade, though), but it will surely entertain you a lot.

You can see many characters including famous cartoon or movie ones, such as one piece or spider man.

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The festival continues until 11th (well, it means tomorrow ).

 

Matsuri – Summer festival – season has come

July 8, 2013

We have many festivals and events all year round, but especially summer is a season when a lot of Matsuri (festival) are held in Japan. The world “Matsuri” literally means “enshrine” and so the origin of Matsuri comes from the ritual to pray and thank God for the abundant crops. Also it is very humid and hot in summer, people need to pray for the future well-being.

It must be nice to experience Japanese Matsuri with local people, who may be much more open attitude than usual after a couple of beers and Sakes :)

Here are some of the scheduled Matsuri in Tokyo in this summer.

*July 13 – 15    (6pm- 9pm)     Bon Dance festival @ Tsukuda Island (Tsukishima station /Yurakucho line)

*July 13, 14   (2pm – 9pm)  Tsukishima Kusaichi  @Tsukishima (Tsukishima station/Yurakucho line)

*July 24-27  Kagurazaka Festival  @Iidabashi station (JR, Tozai, Yurakucho, Nanboku line)

* July 25, 26  Shimbashi Koichi Festival  @ Shimbashi station (JR, Ginza line)

*July 26, 27  Bon Dance festival @ Zojoji temple (Shibakoen station)

*July 27  (7pm – 8.30pm)   Sumidagawa Firework festival   @Asakusa

*July 31 – Aug 3   Tsukiji Honganji temple @Tsukiji (Hibiya line)

*Aug 10   Tokyo Bay Firework festival (6.50pm – 8.10pm)   @Odaiba

Enjoy Tokyo’s hot summer!!

Free Wifi spots in Tokyo – Update and wifi friendly hotel

June 21, 2013

wifi-icon11

There are more and more places starting to offer a free Wifi service these days compared to the time when we posted our blog last time about free Wifi spots in Tokyo.

[Convenience Store]

Seven Eleven : Seven Spot

Family Mart : Famima_Wi-fi

[Cafe]

Starbuck : at_Starbuck_Wi2

Denny’s : Seven Spot (Same as Seven Eleven)

[Subway]

Tokyo Metro : Manta

[Other]

Marunouchi Cafe Seek    1 min. from Tokyo sta., 5 min. from Yurakucho st.

Seibu department store   (Ikebukuro, Shibuya)   : Seven Spot

And of course   TGCT office  3 min. from Kayabacho sta.

 

And below is the list of hotels in Tokyo where you can use wifi in your room.

Keio Plaza Hotel  (will be available from the end of July ’13)
Jal City Yotsuya
Mitsui Garden Hotel Ginza Premium 
Royal Park Shiodome
Shinjuku Washington Hotel 
Kanda Grand Central Hotel
Toyoko-Inn hotel chaine

 

Tokyo 2020 Candidate City !

March 7, 2013

tokyo 2020

 

Hi, I’m Carlos ! Como vai voce ?

Probably you have already known that Tokyo is one of the three candidate cites to host 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games, competing with Istanbul and Madrid. Now IOC committee members are visiting Tokyo to evaluate the sites and the plan. So you see many more flags or posters with the logo and slogan “Discover Tomorrow” in many places in the city.

Actually Tokyo lost the bid for 2016 Games and one of the reasons was the public support was not high enough, the IOC poll in last May also shows only 47 percents of Japanese support to host the Games. However the aggressive promotion of Tokyo 2020 Bid Comittee helped to raise the percentage of the public support and recent poll shows more than 70 percents of people are supporting it. I was originally favor to host the Games, and especially after my visit to London last summer I am really eager to watch my city hosting the Games!!

Do you know the true reason why Tokyo lost the last bid? This is because of ME!  I was in Rio De Janeiro on the winning bid day for 2016 Games and Rio was selected, and on top of that I was traveling in London on July 6, 2005 when the 117th IOC Session was held and London was selected for 2012’s Games. Hmm…, this seems more than just a coincidence. So I should really try to be in Tokyo on September 7 this year!

Today is the date to six months to the 125th IOC Session.

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Seasonal Sweets, Seasonal Tours

March 6, 2013

Do you like Japanese sweets? I do! Japanese traditional sweets are called “wagashi (和菓子)”. Wagashi has developed along with Japanese tea ceremony, and wagashi craftsmen try to express seasonal beauties in every piece of sweets to please your eyes and palates. Now cherry blossom season is just around the corner, “Sakura-mochi (桜餅)”, cherry-blossom flavored rice cakes are on display.
There are two types of Sakura-mochi; one is named “Domyoji (道明寺)”, the other is “Chomeiji (長命寺)”. Roughly speaking, the former was from Kansai area (around Kyoto and Osaka) and the latter originated in Tokyo. People have their favorites of the two, but both have a perfect combination of a sweet soft mochi with a scented cherry leaf. Then, how about leaves? To eat or not to eat? (That is the question.) The leaves are edible and I like to eat a lightly salted leaf together with a sweet mochi. But some people do not eat it.

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This is a “Domyoji” type.

To celebrate one of the most festive seasons in Japan, we have arranged special tour weeks in the peak bloom weekends of cherry trees. Besides our regular bike tours, kayaking and running tours are scheduled in late March and early April. Choose your style and join us!
For details and reservation:
 Tokyo Great Cycling Tour HP  
 Tokyo Great Kayaking Tour HP
 Tokyo Great Running Tour, see Facebook page.

Cherry Blossoms Forecast 2013

February 18, 2013

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It is still very cold and snowing a lot in mountain areas in Japan, so it may be a bit too early to think about cherry blossoms, but actually the spring is just around the corner!

As it happens every year, a few companies have already predicted and announced for this season when cherry flower starts to bloom and when they become full. Above is one of them and this company (Weather Map) forecasts that cherry blossoms may start to bloom in March 25 in Tokyo. (March 23 in Fukuoka, March 27 in Osaka, April 10 in Sendai and Niigata.) The other company says that it may be March 31 when flower start to open in Tokyo.) The forecast is forecast, so it is impossible to predict the flower open day 100% precisely, but that is why many people rather get excited to talk about this matter. To wrap up, the best timing to see cherry blossoms in Tokyo is the first week of April (between March 30 – April 7).

We can basically operate everyday even on Monday, Wednesday and Friday besides our regular tour on Saturday, Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday. So please feel free to ask us if you have no other choice to make a whirlwind trip to Tokyo. Check and make a reservation from our website ;-)


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