Yanaka is one of Tokyo's most charming and traditional districts. The neighborhood is dotted with some 70 temples, which were moved to the area during the Edo era to spare them from frequent fires in the city's more populated parts. Today, the street is home to Yanaka Ginza, a bustling shopping street that runs through its center and that is lined with many of the same butcher shops and produce vendors who operated there decades ago.
Stroll through the neighborhood's backstreets to visit galleries, cafes and craft workshops featuring Japanese pottery, ink prints, textiles, jewelry, and stationery. Tranquil paths wind through the vast Yanaka Cemetery, where sakura trees shade some 7,000 graves, making it a popular spot for a quiet walk and a great location to view cherry blossoms in spring.
Insider's Tip: Plan your visit for late morning at the earliest. Things in Yanaka don’t start waking up until then.
Yanaka is located just outside Tokyo's more populated, modern downtown, and is easily accessible by train. Walk west from Nippori Station for a little over a quarter of a mile (450 m) to reach the district.