What to Do in Tokyo for 3 Days

Tokyo is Asia’s electric capital. By night, it is illuminated by neon lights glowing beside its towering skyscrapers, with a hum of crowds echoing through its streets. But by day, a peaceful atmosphere blankets the city, with locals and tourists alike roaming this metal metropolis where natural gardens and historic shrines meet multimillion-pound corporations and high-speed railways. 

The stark contrast in Tokyo’s landscape, which somehow blends the old with the new harmoniously, is what makes Japan’s thriving capital so popular with tourists from all around the world. Offering never a dull moment, it’s not hard to understand why you’ve added this ever-evolving destination to your bucket list. 

And if you’re considering taking a trip to Tokyo, one of your first questions might be how long you should stay there. Well, in my opinion, 3 days is the perfect amount of time to get a taste of what the city has to offer. From ancient shrines to quirky cultural encounters, here’s a three-day itinerary for your next trip to Tokyo, featuring the city’s best sights and experiences that I think you’ll love.

When is the Best Time to Visit Tokyo?

There is more than one best time to visit Tokyo. The city is known to be a spectacular destination to see the highly-anticipated cherry blossoms come into full bloom – an annual event that has great symbolic meaning in Japan. This takes place from late March to early April, so you may want to visit during this short period to capture one of the country’s most significant natural events. 

If, however, your focus is good weather and money is no object, travelling to Tokyo during summer will have you experiencing the best of this. With hot temperatures ranging from 20​​°C to over 30°C and dry conditions, you’ll experience the height of the city’s best weather in July and August. 

But, if you want to keep your trip to Tokyo on a tight budget, Japan’s shoulder seasons are during the months of November and March. This is when there are fewer tourists and prices are, therefore, cheaper.  The weather is also typically favourable at these times of the year, so you can save some of your savings whilst still experiencing good climatic conditions.

Where to Stay in Tokyo

During your three days in Tokyo, you’ll likely want to pick an accommodation that remains close to attractions and that is a comfortable place to rest your head after long days of exploration in the city. But, everyone has a different budget, so finding the right place to suit your financial needs and wants for your Tokyo trip can sometimes be a tricky task. 

This is exactly why I’ve outlined three top options for where to stay in Tokyo. From luxury to budget, these are some of the city’s best accommodations on offer that I feel you should consider. 


The Grand Prince Hotel Takanawa Hanakohro is a 5* accommodation offering world-class service to its guests. Situated in the heart of Minatoku, the hotel is actually a Ryokan – a traditional Japanese-style inn featuring tatami-matted rooms, zen gardens, and communal baths. Should you want a truly authentic travel experience in Tokyo that doesn’t skimp on luxuries, you can book your stay at The Grand Prince Hotel now. 


If you’re looking for your own private space during your stay, Dash Living Tsukiji is a fantastic option that stays in the mid-budget range. It’s a very popular accommodation for those visiting Tokyo, so if you want to make a reservation for your next trip, I’d urge you to make it sooner rather than later.

And within close proximity to Japan Imperial Palace and Tokyo Tower, visitors staying at these apartments can indulge in a modern and contemporary space featuring living and kitchen-dining areas and a separate bedroom. 


To make your pennies stretch further during your next trip to Tokyo, you can book a stay at Tokyo Guest House Itabashi-juku. Located only a 12-minute walk from Tokiwadai Tenso Shrine, this friendly hostel offers comfortable shared dormitories for travellers who don’t mind bunking during their stay in the city. The property also features a luggage storage space and a shared lounge for socialising with other like-minded adventurers.

How to Get Around Tokyo

It goes without saying that Tokyo is a massive city, with its sheer size making it somewhat difficult to get around in short periods of time.

But, you’re in luck, as the city’s transport system is more than easy to navigate and is relatively affordable. I’d personally recommend the subway and metro systems. With an easy-to-understand, colour-coded map route with lines that each cover a specific area of the city, it’s hard to get this wrong when you’re travelling. Rechargeable cards, such as the IC Card, can be loaded with money and therefore used to tap in and out of stations easily to pay your journey fare. 

Also, the Japan Rail (JR) has a number of lines in Tokyo, including the Yamanote Line which forms a circuit around the centre of the city. This is equally easy to navigate and gets you between major areas of Tokyo quickly.

Day 1:

Discover Shibuya

Start your first day of your 3 days in Tokyo by visiting one of the most iconic locations in the city – Shibuya Crossing. Also known as ‘Shibuya Scramble Crossing’, it’s not hard to understand why this famed pedestrian crossing got this name as, once its lights go green, people shoot across from every angle to get to the other side of its roads. 

When you’ve dodged the crowds at Shibuya Crossing, head to the famous Hachiko Statue in Hachiko Square. A heart-wrenching story known by many across the world, Hachiko was a dog who waited nine years for his master outside Shibuya Station, even after his passing. Many visit the statue to pay their respects to the loyal companion, and whilst you’re here it’s certainly worth adding to your Tokyo itinerary. 

And as you roam through the bustling streets of Shibuya, lined with coffee shops, backstreet restaurants, and shopfronts, you’ll no doubt hear the resonating clinking and clanking sound of one of Japan’s favourite pastimes – Pachinko. Pachinko parlours are found throughout the streets of Shibuya, and it’s a truly quirky and unique aspect of daily life in Japan that you can catch a glimpse of in action.

Go Shopping in Harajuku

Neighbouring Harajuku is known for being the Japanese pop culture ward of Tokyo. So if you’re a fan of the distinct Kawaii fashion in Japan, JPop, or anime, you’ll feel right at home here in Harajuku. Takeshita Dori is arguably one of the city’s most famous shopping streets, and it’s heaven for pop culture and fashion lovers visiting Tokyo. 

A long but very narrow avenue that cuts through Harajuku’s streets, you’ll find cute cafes, shopping boutiques, and thrift stores crammed in its small space, making for a riveting experience are you are surrounded by the country’s popular culture from every angle. For shopping lovers looking for things to do in Tokyo, this is the place for you!

And to experience some culture whilst you’re here, head on over to Meiji Shrine. This beautiful and historic Shinto shrine is nestled only a few minutes away from Harajuku Station on foot and is known for its large wooden Tori gate and stacked painted sake barrels, which are one of the most intriguing features of the shrine.

Day 2:

Uncover Tokyo’s Oldest Religious Site

Begin the second day of your Tokyo trip in one of the most visited wards of the city – Asakusa. Here lies the oldest religious site in Tokyo, and also the most visited – the distinct red-painted Senso-ji Temple.

Its delicate and ornate structure, touched with gold and hung with lanterns, is almost always flooded with tourists and was built for the goddess of Kannon and completed in 645. Due to its age, this is the best location in the city to soak in Tokyo’s breathtaking history in our modern age.

Chances are on your approach to the temple you already stopped to admire the souvenirs on the store-lined parade that leads to Senso-ji. This is Nakamise-dori Street, home to souvenir stores and food vendors, which is a convenient stop for you to grab all the gifts and mementoes you need to take home from your Tokyo trip. 

Take a Moment to Relax In the City’s Largest Public Greenspace

Next, you’ll want to head to Tokyo’s largest public park, and one of its most tranquil green spaces – Ueno Park. Established in 1873, hundreds flock to Ueno Park every day to relax in its peaceful surroundings and soak in its zen atmosphere. The park has a rich history, with temples nestled within its borders and museums for visitors to learn about the park and Tokyo’s past. 

Not to mention you’ll also find Ueno Zoo here. So if you’re struggling to think of what to do in Tokyo with kids, Ueno Park can be a great place for your family to relax and keep the children entertained.

Soak in the Electric Atmosphere of Akihabara 

And as the sun sets, Tokyo takes on its second personality, which is exactly why you want to be heading to the Akihabara district of the city. Here, buildings gleam and glow in bright neon colours and crowds buzz as they weave in and out of the many unique establishments that this ‘electronic’ district of the city is home to. 

One type of unique establishment you’ll find here is its robot restaurants, which are one of the biggest attractions in the city. And if you’re looking for something really unusual in Tokyo to do, watching robots play fight, roller skate, and perform dance routines will undoubtedly satisfy this want. So, if you’re considering what to do at night in Tokyo, a visit the Akihabara should top your list.

Day 3:

Head to Tsukiji Fish Market for Your Breakfast

You shouldn’t start any morning of your Tokyo 3 day itinerary on an empty stomach, which is why I’ve weaved in this irresistible foodie option for those hoping to sample some of the best local produce and authentic flavours of Japanese cuisine. 

Tsukiji Fish Market is one of the biggest of Japan’s fish markets. Situated close to Tsukiji Shijo Station, this open-air market is home to hundreds of shopfronts and vendors lining its streets selling a selection of the best seafood you’ll find in the city. But that’s not all, as you’ll find fresh produce like fruits and vegetables, as well as kitchen utensils, being sold here. And not to mention that sushi shops and quaint ramen stalls are not in short supply, meaning you can grab a bite to eat and taste the delicate and umami flavours of Japan’s wholesome cuisine to start your day off right.

Roam the Ginza District

Near the Tsukiji Market, you’ll find the Ginza District of Tokyo, known for its luxury and offering the finer things in life. Here, you’ll find popular restaurant chains, high-end boutique shops, and a wealth of bars and clubs. If it’s shopping you’re after, heading to Ginza during the day is a great opportunity for you to get your retail-therapy fix in this sophisticated part of the city. But, if you’re searching for what to do at night in Tokyo, wait until the sun sets and the district comes alive to captivate those looking for an evening full of fun. 

Go For Sunset to Tokyo Tower

And last but not least in my 3 day itinerary in Tokyo, you can top off your final day with a trip up Tokyo Tower. Built in 1958, this structure was inspired by the Eiffel Tower but instead has a red and white colour scheme.

It stands 33 metres above ground and symbolises Tokyo’s rise from the ashes after World War II. It’s a popular tourist attraction in the city, with visitors able to climb to its top to gain a panoramic bird’s eye view of Tokyo. I’d recommend going when the sun sets to watch the orange haze disappear behind the towering buildings that stretch as far as the eye can see for a really moving experience during your trip to Tokyo.

I’d recommend booking your ticket to Tokyo Tower in advance so that you can head to this attraction without the worry of it being booked up.


Unlike any other Asian capital, Tokyo has the ability to mesmerise all those who flock to its borders, leaving them with a desire for the city that they can never seem to shake after leaving. Trust me, I know from experience! And this is exactly why it takes the top spot on my list of favourite travel destinations.

And if you’ve surrendered yourself to the magnetism of Tokyo and have booked a trip, I hope this 3 day itinerary has been helpful in highlighting the city’s most memorable attractions and experiences to make your trip to Tokyo one you won’t soon forget.


Is Tokyo Expensive to Visit? 

Tokyo is one of the world’s most expensive cities, with a high cost of living for its residents and high prices for accommodation, dining, and attractions compared to other cheaper Asian destinations. 

But, this definitely doesn’t mean that you should strike a trip to Tokyo from your bucket list, as the destination is certainly worth it and there are ample ways to travel around the city on a budget. With cheaper accommodations, food, and free attractions on offer, you can still enjoy all of Tokyo’s wonders without spending a fortune. 

What is the Best Month to Go to Japan?

Visiting Japan during its cherry blossom season, which takes place in late March to early April is a wondrous time of year to visit the country, but it does come with a higher price given its popularity. 

If, however, you’re hoping to visit the country whilst striking a balance between affordability and good weather, travelling in late summer to early autumn is a great period to do so. At this time, the weather sees warmer and largely dry conditions as well as fewer tourists, meaning there are cheaper travel options.

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About the Author

Charlie Whitaker

Charlie Whitaker is a skilled content writer and PR professional currently writing pieces for, and working with, clients in the travel, tourism, and recruitment industries. With a passion for travel and creative writing, you can most likely find her travelling to the next destination on her bucket list or enjoying some down time in the countryside of the north of England, which she calls home.