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Edo History Tours in Tokyo

By Viator, November 2017

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Tokugawa Ieyasu became Shogun in 1603, ushering a 200-year reign known as the Edo period—a time of peace and rapid economic growth known as the last period of traditional Japan. Here are some options for exploring this critically important period in Tokyo’s history.

Edo History in Tokyo
Tokyo started out as a fishing village called Edo. When Tokugawa Ieyasu moved the Shogunate here in 1603, the town began to thrive. During the 260-year Edo period, Tokyo enjoyed unprecedented economic and cultural growth, transforming into a city of more than a million people—one of the largest cities in the world—by the mid-18th century. It would later be renamed Tokyo and declared the capital of Japan.

Ways to Experience Edo Culture in Tokyo
Edo history and culture are on display throughout Tokyo if you know where to look.
  • A good place to start is the Fukagawa Edo Museum, which offers an eloquent introduction to the rise and fall of the era.
  • The historic Fukagawa neighborhood is home to the 300-year-old Fukagawa Fudoson Shrine and several workshops selling Edo glass and Edo-dyed cloth. Explore it on a walking or cycling tour.
  • No visit to Tokyo would be complete without a stop at the Edo Castle, built in 1457 and occupied by the Tokugawa shoguns throughout their reign.
  • A short day trip from Tokyo (and popular among families with kids), Edo Wonderland lets visitors become a citizen of Edo for the day. Walk through a recreated Edo-era town and interact with townspeople in period costume.
  • Within a short distance of nearby Nikko National Park sits the Nikko Toshogo Shrine, a monumental mausoleum honoring the first Tokugawa shogun.

Tours & Tickets

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Best of Edo Japan: Nikko National Park and Edo Wonderland Day Trip from Tokyo, Tokyo, null
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Best of Edo Japan: Nikko National Park and Edo Wonderland Day Trip from Tokyo

4 star rating: Recommended 47 Reviews

Visit Nikko on a partially guided day trip from Tokyo to learn about the fascinating era when Tokugawa Ieyasu ruled Japan. Take a guided tour of a UNESCO World ...  Read more

Location: Tokyo, Japan
Duration: 12 hours (approx.)

From USD $139.56
Experience Edo Tokyo Walking Tour, Tokyo, Day Trips
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Experience Edo Tokyo Walking Tour

Have you heard of the Japanese word "Edo"? Do you know what it exactly means and the stories behind it? In this walking and food tour, your ...  Read more

Location: Tokyo, Japan
Duration: 4 hours (approx.)

From USD $75.59
Edo Kagurazaka Walking Tour and Standing Bar Experience, Tokyo, Full-day Tours
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Edo Kagurazaka Walking Tour and Standing Bar Experience

4 star rating: Recommended 64 Reviews

Discover the faded charm of Tokyo’s Kagurazaka neighborhood, with its cobblestone streets and traditional architecture. On this guided walking tour, wander ...  Read more

Location: Tokyo, Japan
Duration: 3 hours (approx.)

From USD $61.40
Half Day Walking Tour To Find Edo Culture Including Ukiyoe in a Sumo Town Ryogoku, Tokyo, Walking ... 
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Half Day Walking Tour To Find Edo Culture Including Ukiyoe in a Sumo Town Ryogoku

This 4 hours morning private walking tour focus on Ryogoku, a town of Sumo and Edo culture. Ryogoku has a permanent Sumo stadium, Ryogoku Kokugikan, so that 5 ...  Read more

Location: Tokyo, Japan
Duration: 4 hours (approx.)

From USD $120.95
Fukagawa Edo Architecture Cycle Tour in Tokyo, Tokyo, Cultural Tours
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Fukagawa Edo Architecture Cycle Tour in Tokyo

Visit cafes and galleries, and admire scenery that inspired legendary Ukiyo-e paintings Cycle through atmospheric Fukagawa, visiting interesting shops ...  Read more

Location: Tokyo, Japan
Duration: 3 hours (approx.)

From USD $120.95

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