The asterisk (*) denotes mandatory group outings. Anything without it is completely optional.

STAY AT GRIDS NIHOMBASHI EAST HOTEL + HOSTEL*

A hotel and hostel in Chuo City, Tokyo, Japan.

WHY A HOSTEL?

  • In Japan, they are well designed, comfortable, and clean. (source)

  • They are the most affordable lodging option. (source)

  • They have very helpful staff and great amenities. (source)

WHY THIS HOSTEL?

  • It’s got great reviews across the web and is included in The Culture Trip's '14 Best Hostels in Tokyo' article. (source

  • It gives us a private room which we can lock (also includes a private toilet). (source)

  • It was not the first choice but the best option based on availability.

 

COFFEE AT UNLIMITED COFFEE BAR

A cafe and barista training center that is dedicated to improving coffee in Japan and cultivating professional baristas.

WHY GO HERE?

  • Started by married couple Daichi Matsubara (a World Barista Championship judge since 2011) and Rena Hirai (a Japan Barista Championship judge for more than 10 years), for the purpose of improving the quality of coffee in Japan and training baristas to be dedicated to service and lifelong learning.

  • They are involved in all areas of coffee development—roasting, training, brewing—to better understand and improve them at the customer’s first point of contact: the barista. (source)

  • Each cup brewed is like a mini-presentation by baristas who regularly compete in domestic competitions. Kota Sato (one of their baristas) most recently took first place in the 2016 Japan Hand Drip Championship. (source)

 

SEE THE TOKYO SKY TREE

A cafe and barista training center that is dedicated to improving coffee in Japan and cultivating professional baristas.

WHY GO HERE?

  • It's the tallest tower in the world and the second tallest structure in the world after the Burj Khalifa. (source)

  • It has the best 360-degree panoramic views of the city. (source)

  • It’s an architectural wonder and engineering masterpiece that changes its shape from bottom to top, from a triangle at the base to a circle at the top. (source)

  • Considered a must-see and is on Fodor’s Tokyo's Top Attractions list.

 

EAT AT ICHIRAN ASAKUSA

A highly-acclaimed, international ramen restaurant chain with tonkotsu, or pork-bone broth ramen that started in Fukuoka, Japan. (source)

WHY GO HERE?

WHAT SHOULD YOU GET HERE?

  • The standard, deep-tasting tonkotsu (pork broth), ramen is what you should get. Simply customize it the way you like. If you are really hungry add an egg and chachu (pork slices). (Favy)

 

DRINK AT KAMIYA BAR

A cafe and barista training center that is dedicated to improving coffee in Japan and cultivating professional baristas.

WHY GO HERE?

  • Established in the late 1800s, Kamiya is something of a legend. It’s the oldest, friendliest, and most popular/famous western-style bar in Tokyo. (source)

  • It’s a rare place where Japan's early-modern culture lives on. The main building is registered as a tangible cultural property. (source) (source)

  • Denki Bran was invented here about 100 years ago and is now stocked by bars throughout Japan. (source)

  • A Fodor’s choice bar and included in The Culture Trip’s The Best Bars In Historic Asakusa, Tokyo (source)

WHAT SHOULD YOU GET HERE?

  • Try the house Denki Bran (Electric Brandy) – a sweet blend of wine, gin and brandy that’s a lot nicer than it sounds. (source) (source) (source)

  • Order either 'blanc' (30 proof) or the 40 proof 'old' at the counter, then give your tickets to the server. For those afraid to drink it straight, Denki Bran is also available in many sickly-sweet punch-like cocktails. (source) (source)

  • The bar is also famous for its enormous, cheap draught Asahi beer. (source)