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6 Must-Visit Places to Go Along the JR Yamanote Line

The JR Yamanote Line is the green circular line that connects to 30 stations around Tokyo. This includes major stations such as the Tokyo Station, Shibuya Station, Ueno Station, and the Shinjuku Station.

The line carries more than a million commuters daily, with trains that depart from stations every two to three minutes during the day. Here are some of the places you can visit with your JR Pass:

 

1. Shinjuku

Shinjuku

The Shinjuku Station is constantly ranked the busiest station in the world with over three million people passing through on a daily basis. Here, commuters can connect to multiple lines including the Narita Express, which goes directly to the airport.

The station is so massive that there are over 200 exits, and runs a total of 12 different lines.

Shinjuku is also considered one of Japan’s major business and shopping districts, and is home to the most restaurants in Tokyo.

  • Where to eat: Shinjuku Kappo Nakajima (one of the cheapest Michelin Star restaurants), Mentsu-dan (Udon), Menya Musashi (Ramen)
  • What to see/do: Tokyo Metropolitan Building, Kabukicho

 

2. Harajuku

Harajuku
Image Credit: Niphon Subsri / Shutterstock.com

The Harajuku station will take you right to one of Tokyo’s most popular shopping streets where you’ll find everything from thrift stores to high-end boutiques.

It’s where you can experience Japanese youth culture, which birthed the term “Harajuku Girl”. Aside from shops, the area also has themed cafes, little dessert kiosks, and rooftop bars.

  • Where to eat: Omotesando Ukaitei (Teppanyaki), Luke’s Lobster
  • What to see/do: Meiji Shrine, Takeshita Dori Shopping street

 

3. Akihabara

Akihabara

When you get off at this station, you are welcomed by a myriad of gizmos and gadgets, hence it being known as Japan’s “electric town”.

Akihabara is known as the place to go when you want to find the latest gadgets, toys, manga and other things that revolve around the otaku culture. Neon signs line the streets, while little alleyways take you to wacky discoveries like maid cafes and adult hobby shops.

  • Where to eat: Yamano (Yakiniku), Tempura Hisago
  • What to see/do: Visit Pinafore (a maid cafe), shop at Don Quijote, play Gachapon

Read More: 12 Best Tourist Spots in Tokyo Not to Miss
 

4. Shibuya

Shibuya
Image Credit: Food Travel Stockforlife / Shutterstock.com

You can’t visit Tokyo without scrambling your way across the world-famous Shibuya crossing. The bustling shopping and entertainment district is lined with skyscrapers, department stores, and larger-than-life billboards.

Because so many Hollywood movies were shot here, it’s probably the first image that comes to mind when you think of Japan.

Brave the crowds to experience your very own Lost in Translation moment and burn some pasalubong money at the giant Shibuya Donki.

  • Where to eat: Kaikaya by the Sea (seafood), Hot Pepper Shabu Shabu
  • What to do/see: Take a photo with Hachiko, Visit the Tokyu Department Store

Read More: Top 10 Things to Do in Tokyo
 

5. Ueno

Shinobazu Pond and Benten Hall Temple Ueno

Ueno is another one of Tokyo’s major hubs, and it’s where you can find the best collection of Japanese Art. But art enthusiast or not, there’s pretty much nothing you can’t find in Ueno, from a zoo to dodgy street markets, and bizarre street performances.

Whether or not you arrive with an itinerary set, it’s easy to spend a day getting lost in this beautiful historical town.

  • Where to eat: Tesshin (Teppanyaki), Issho Tokyo Ueno (Kyushu Cuisine)
  • What to do/see: Ameya Yokocho Market, Ueno Zoo, Nezu Shrine

 

6. Nishi-Nippori

Nishi-Nippori
Image Credit: kuremo / shutterstock.com

Nishi-Nippori is worth the visit if you want to experience Tokyo sans the flashy neon signs and ultra-modern buildings.

The sleepy town is a great place to experience traditional Japan with its beautiful gardens and teahouses. While it may not be as exciting as the glossy Tokyo of the movies, it’s worth the trip for a taste of the countryside.

  • Where to eat: Yakiniku Kotoen, Habutae Dango (Japanese dumpling shop founded in 1819)
  • What to do/see: Shounji Temple, Yanaka Cemetery

Book JR Yamanote Pass Here

 
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