Heading to Tokyo in the next couple of months and need help with planning? We know just the people. Evaneos Travel connects travellers wanting original, and tailor-made holidays with local travel agents based in the country they would like to visit. Forget your tourist traps and ‘secret spots’ that aren’t so secret, Evaneos teams up with local partners giving you the best spots in town. Because local insight is much better than a generic guide book, right?

For Japan, Evaneos Travel local partner is Kota. With an agency that has outposts in Tokyo, Osaka and elsewhere in Asia, Kota has made it his life’s work to share the unique culture of Japan with people from all over the world. Here are some of his recommendations for his hometown, Tokyo, all available to be incorporated into a customised tour offered through Evaneos.

Best Breakfast Spot: Tsukiji Fish Market

Many people might not be used to the idea of sushi for breakfast, but in Japan it’s considered a healthy and invigorating way to start the day. Head to the bustling Tsukiji Fish Market, one of the largest in the world with plenty of restaurants where you can try an authentic, fresh Japanese breakfast.

Where: Japan, 〒104-0045 Tokyo, Chuo, Tsukiji, 5 Chome−2−1

Photo Credit: Shutterstock – Gumpanat

Best Lunch Spot: The Asakusa District

The Asakusa District, just across the river from the Tokyo Skytree, gives people a glimpse into old Tokyo. The famous 7th century Buddhist temple Sensoji is there as well as a dense, historic neighbourhood. Its narrow streets are packed with friendly locals, positive vibes, and delicious yakitori and ramen shops.

Where: Japan, 〒111-0032 Tokyo, Taito, Asakusa, 2 Chome−3−1

Best Dinner Spot: Oiran Dinner Cruise

A unique way to see the city is on an Oiran Dinner Cruise. A beautifully decorated wooden boat carries you out into the bay to see the neon city reflected in the water, while a local troupe performs several different styles of traditional Japanese theatre giving you many incredible sights to marvel at while you eat.

Where: Japan, 〒105-0022 Tōkyō-to, Minato-ku, Kaigan, 2 Chome−7−104

Best Brunch Spot: Shibuya

Any of the local restaurants around Shibuya crossing are the perfect place to people watch. Thousands of locals walk across the zebra crossing every 5 minutes. No matter what the day is, it will feel like there is a parade going by while you eat your brunch.

Where: 21-6 Udagawa-cho, Shibuya, Tokyo, Japan 

Photo Credit: Shutterstock – David Min

Best Bars: Shimbashi and Ueno Stations

There are quirky local bars that tourists almost never see around the Shimbashi and Ueno Stations. Famous with Tokyo’s young professional crowd as the spot for happy hour. There are so many great ones that we organise a full drinking tour for the whole area.

Where: Shinbashi, Minato, Tokyo 105-0004, Japan

Photo Credit: Shutterstock – Sean K 

Best Street Food Vendor: Shinjuku 

Our guests love to explore the glittering back alleys of Shinjuku, where you can find street vendors selling Ramen and Japanese-style skewers before going to get drinks at the kaleidoscopic Robot Bar.

Where: Japan, 〒160-0021 Tokyo, 新宿区Kabukicho, 1−7−1 新宿ロボットビル

Five must-dos in Rio: 

– Dinner at the Tokyo Sky Tree.

– Have a home-cooked meal with a local family.

– Enjoy a tour of local food and drinks in the energetic back streets of Tokyo.

– Participate in a Tea Ceremony and learn about the importance of tea culture.

– Dress up in a Kimono and wander around like a local.