From the calm temple grounds and classical gardens to bright neon signs that overlook endless passing faces, Tokyo is a metropolis of unlimited possibilities.
Established in the 17th century as a modest fishing village, it didn’t take long for Tokyo, then known as Edo, to flourish into a cultural, economic and artistic center. It eventually went on to supplant Kyoto as the capital of the nation and it was at the forefront leading the charge when Japan opened its doors to western civilization in the 19th century. Through a rocky 20th century that included Great Kantō earthquake, the Pacific War and WWII, Tokyo came out on the other side as a transformed nation and key player on the global stage.
Between the futuristic skyscrapers and centuries-old temples, Tokyo is the pinnacle of popular Japanese culture with enough variety to satisfy even the wildest of adventures. The city is a hub of contemporary arts that can be seen with the popularity of trendy galleries among young Tokyoites. Eating out is simply part of the Tokyo lifestyle, whether that involves splurging at a perennial restaurant headlined by celebrity chefs or fresh sushi and sake from a family-run stall at Tsukiji Market.
Navigating the world’s largest metropolis can certainly be a daunting task, but Tokyo is one of the most well-connected cities on the planet. Its public transit system is astonishing easy, efficient and clean. If you plan on visiting during August or September, keep in mind that it’s typhoon season, which often results in delays and cancellations. Come during cherry blossom season for a stunning scenery across the city. Whether you're getting ready for a casual lunch or a formal business meeting, it's worth reading up on Japanese dining etiquette before hand. Even the most minor things, such as using chopsticks properly and everyday table manners, can go a long way.