By Rachel Arandilla
TOKYO is known as an ultramodern city with a frenzy only unique to a megalopolis such as Tokyo.
As a highly urbanized city , it is not surprising why many families shy away on the idea of bringing the family and little kids to Tokyo as a trip.
Let me tell you myself: it shouldn’t be! Tokyo is extremely efficient, clean and kid-friendly. The city has a lot to offer educational and recreational experiences for kids.
Whether you are kids or just kids-at-heart, this Tokyo Itinerary is specifically designed for the family to have a holistic Tokyo experience: fun, cultural, modern and exciting!
1. Explore Tokyo Disneyland and DisneySea
Theme parks would be any family’s first priority and obvious choice. Tokyo boasts two Disney parks: Tokyo Disneyland and DisneySea.
Disney Sea is a unique Disney theme park you will never see anywhere else around the world, so it is a definite must see. Tokyo Disneyland is a lot similar to the Disneyland theme parks around the world, especially the closest one which is in Hong Kong. If your family has never been to Disneyland, it is worth seeing otherwise if you are more limited with time, go for Disney Sea.
2. Cultural Activities in Japan
There are just some of unique, cultural activities you can do in Tokyo with kids: Goldfish scooping, Daruma doll painting and Japanese candy sculpting.
When Nao our guide told us that we are going goldfish scooping, my first reaction was “why?” I was hesitant about the activity because it didn’t sound very fun the way it was first described: scoop a goldfish and then transfer to a bowl.
They were already set on the itinerary so we went to this little shop called Asakusa Kingyo, located in the Senso-ji Temple grounds (complete address Asakusa Nishi-sando Shopping Street, 2 Chome-7-13 Asakusa, Tait?, Tokyo 111-0032, Japan).
As soon as we got in, we were asked to put on a funny goldfish hat. This is where the fun starts.
The rules to the game are simple: players need to scoop as many fish using a poi, or a paper scooper and transfer them into a bowl. The game ends when the poi is broken and unable to scoop fish anymore.
We had a complete blast at the game! It feels quite therapeutic scooping the fish, almost zen-like. We became competitive, as we placed bets and saw who gets to get the most fish.
Daruma doll painting
Another fun and creative leisurely activity kids can enjoy is Daruma doll painting. A Daruma is a Japanese wishing doll is usually made of paper mache. It is red, round with a fierce facial expression.
The whole group painted Daruma dolls with different styles that really showed our different personalities. I personally painted a Santa daruma doll because I am excited about Christmas, my favorite holiday.
Japanese candy sculpting or Amezaiku
Japanese Candy Sculpting is another truly unique Tokyo for the kids. Although I recommend this for older children as the traditional Japanese scissors are very hard to maneuver.
For that afternoon, the activity was to create rabbit-shaped candy. The demo guy made it looked so easy, but when we tried our hand at it, it was way more challenging than it looked! First off, the candy hardens fast. The more you manipulate the candy, the faster it hardens. Thus you have to make sure your movements are quick and precise.
3. Modern Activities in Japan
After seeing traditional side of Tokyo, itÕs time to check out the ultramodern side of Tokyo, the city of the future. One can check out these famous kid-friendly and Instagram-worthy attractions: Teamlab Borderless and Sky Circus.
Since Teamlab’s debut in Tokyo, it has become the top bucket list of travelers coming to Tokyo. This digital art museum is a visual experience of its own, and each room provides an experiential surprise. It provides plenty of fun for all ages!
It’s not hard to see why this is has become a must-do and must-visit to everyone coming to Tokyo: its unlike any museum you’ve ever seen. Teamlab Borderless is a beautiful digital art museum that recently unveiled last June 2018 in Odaiba. The 10,000-square-meter space creates a modern art experience for museum goers and let their imagination run wild.
Our next modern adventure is the Sky Circus at the Sunshine 60 Observatory.
Sky Circus Sunshine 60 is sixty floors up the building, hence the name. It is the only place that boast a breathtaking 360-degree view of metropolitan Tokyo. On a clear day you can even see amazing Mt. Fuji.
Sky CircusÊoffered so much more than that: it offered a sensory experience that is radically innovating peopleÕs concept of an “observatory” with a unique range of experiences you can enjoy. There are a couple of aerial VR experiences one can try, such as the Swing Coaster, VR Sky Escape and Tokyo Bullet Flight.
Tokyo is so exciting, there’s bound to be interesting things to see and do just around the corner. What are you waiting for? Enjoy Tokyo with kids and book that unforgettable 2019 trip for the family.
Instagram: @ racheltagaisla