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Tokyo has a world-renowned cultural scene, with Tokyo attractions covering the full gamut of possible offerings, including performances, tours, and museums of many kinds. Among the Tokyo attractions in the realm of performing arts, the Nippon Budokan is legendary. The Budokan provides a world-famous venue for rock music concerts. “Live at the Budokan” concerts are a byword in the music business, and groups from the Beatles to Bob Dylan to Dream Theater have performed and recorded there. Kabuki theater is an important cultural element, and there are performances at the Kabuki-za. Tokyo Opera City is a cultural complex which includes a theater and concert hall.
Sporting events are another noted element of Tokyo attractions. Besides martial arts displays at the Budokan, one can find the Yomiuri Giants baseball team at the Tokyo Dome. There is an amusement park on the premises as well, and the Dome also doubles as a concert facility. Ice hockey and basketball are the featured sports at the Yoyogi National Gymnasium. Sumo wrestling is featured at the Tokyo Kokugikan Sumo Stadium and Museum.
The government generally offers a Grutt Pass to allow visitors to Tokyo access to many museums and other attractions for a reduced rate. Among the many museums that are considered among the core of Tokyo attractions, are included the National Museum of Japanese History, the National Science Museum, and the historically focused Edo Tokyo Museum. There is also a Drum Museum and the John Lennon Museum. Art galleries, zoos, and aquariums are also included in the Grutt Pass.
Parks and gardens are another of the Tokyo attractions that form part of the city’s appeal. Viewing the 1,000 cherry trees in bloom in Ueno Park is one of the highlights of April in the city. Other popular gardens include Higashi Gyoen or East Garden, Hama Rikyu Garden, and Koishikawa Korakuen Garden.
Architecture is another noted feature that draws people to Tokyo. Temples such as Sensoji Temple and shrines such as Meiji Jingu Shrine, Toshogu Shrine, and Yasukuni Shrine, not to mention palaces, such as the Imperial Palace, are all impressive.
Special experiences such as Ikebana — Japanese flower arranging — and tea ceremonies are available by reservation. Other experiences that can be arranged include acupuncture and shiatsu introductions, public baths, and meditation instruction. For a more active activity, you may wish to visit a pachinko parlor and try your hand at the exciting game. Cruises on Tokyo Bay or the Sumida River and bus or walking tours are further highlights. Shopping sites include the Tsukiji Fish Market, the largest seafood market in the world, and for fashion and high-tech attractions, the shopping districts Ginza, Akihabara, or Harajuku. And, of course, there’s always Tokyo Disneyland . . .
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