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Literally translating to “Eastern Capital,” Tokyo, Japan, is one of the three world finance ”command centers” alongside New York and London. But unlike the others, Tokyo has a serene feeling of safety along with pristine cleanliness.

With the world’s most extensive urban railway network in about six times the size of Manhattan, there are an intimidating amount of things to do and see in Tokyo.

Stroll around Ginza at night to take in an absolute mayhem of lights. Jolt yourself at 4 a.m. with bells and yelling at the world’s largest wholesale fish market, Tsukiji. Saunter through the old entertainment district of Asakusa with its temples, but don’t miss the modern playland of the Shinjuku area. Club and dance the night away with other foreigners and locals at Roppongi’s discos, pubs and bars (if you’re so inclined).

Other Things to Do. Go karaoke’ing in the Japanese private-room style. Hit up an onsen (bath house) to soak in an ancient ritual.

Prices. Tokyo is expensive. Taxi fares start at $8, and each additional 200 meters is about a dollar. Tall coffee at Starbucks: $3.75.

Where to Stay. Shop around. With the convenient JR Line, location is not as important.

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cboortz Sept. 24, 2009 @ 5:05 a.m.

Tokyo’s a blast but sometimes you might think you just went further west on Santa Monica Blvd than you thought possible. Its not the most exotic place you could visit but definitely one of the strangest. For cheap eats and places to stay look around the south end of Ueno Station and Ueno Park. Really convenient, you can take the Kesei Skyliner right from Narita Airport to its station right across the street from the Ueno station. Just wander around, drink canned whiskey and water from vending machines and eat stuff you can’t identify.


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