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Sumida - good base for travelling Tokyo?

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Sumida - good base for travelling Tokyo?

Hello,

I recently booked accommodation for 4 nights and 5 days in Sumida, Tokyo. I was wondering if someone has used this a base to explore tokyo (i.e main sites such as Shibuya, Shinjiuku, if it was overall convenient.

Also, does sumida-ku have good places to eat? i know it's more of an old tokyo vibe..

Thanks!

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1. Re: Sumida - good base for travelling Tokyo?

If it's Shibuya and Shinjuku you are mainly interested in seeing, then Sumida is a reasonable distance away and would not be the most convenient base for those areas. It is convenient for other sights such as Tokyo Skytree and Asakusa, so it really depends on what you're planning to do.

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2. Re: Sumida - good base for travelling Tokyo?

The public transport system is excellent, so anywhere is fine in Tokyo. Same is true for food.

For travel times use this website;

http://www.hyperdia.com/en/

I like the temple at Asakusa, the markets and park at Ueno, the museum at Ryogokyu, the Meji Shrine/Harajuku area and a day trip to Kamakura is nice.

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3. Re: Sumida - good base for travelling Tokyo?

Tokyo is wide enough that it takes an hour to go around the central part of it on a circular Yamanote Line train. It will take about 30 min to cross the central part of Tokyo East-West. Sumida Ward (or City) is on the tip of central Tokyo and is convenient enough for Tokyo Skytree, Asakusa, Ueno, Yanaka, Ginza, Akihabara, the eastern areas of Tokyo. It is not best suited for Shinjuku, Shibuya, and Ikebukuro, ie the western part of Tokyo, but it is not particularly "inconvenient" as public transport is fairly good (but that would depend on the exact location of the large Sumida Ward).

Therefore, your question lacks the important question of where in Sumida Ward, as well as what parts of Tokyo are you interested in.

Sumida Ward: commoner's residential area, old but destroyed completely during WW2, nostalgic but redevelopment is going on, not fancy but down to earth, safe and quiet yet not alien to petty crimes, immigrants, backpacker's hostels, a bit grungy yet cozy, cheap foreign diners here and there, average Tokyo area.

Edited: 03 September 2016, 14:23
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4. Re: Sumida - good base for travelling Tokyo?

Welcome to Japan Forums!

If you stay in Sumida (or even if you don't) I also recommend the Edo-Tokyo Museum at Ryogoku Station, which tells the remarkable story of the city: http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e3070.html Not far away on the Oedo subway line is a very nice garden, uncrowded the times that I visited: http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e3034_006.html A short walk from there is the Fukagawa Edo Museum, much more intimate than the Edo-Tokyo Museum: https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attraction_Revie…

If your hotel provides good access to Asakusa, that will be convenient for a day trip to Nikko, which I highly recommend: http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e3800.html

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5. Re: Sumida - good base for travelling Tokyo?

Yep, if you are mostly interested in exploring places like Shibuya, Shinjuku (West Tokyo), I would even recommend Koenji as a good base. Very multi cultural, cheap and fun neighborhood.

Sumida is a good base for exploring old Tokyo (Asakusa, Ueno, etc), to the East.

That said, you can easily travel from one side of town to the other though Tokyo is a big city so it will take 30 min to close to an hour depending on how far you are going.

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6. Re: Sumida - good base for travelling Tokyo?

Sumida-Ku covers a large area, so the real question is where in Sumida you're going to be. Some areas of Sumida are convenient, but others are not. If you want accurate answers, you need to be more specific.

That said, if you're near a large train station, it should be fairly convenient and you'll find many restaurant nearby as well.

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7. Re: Sumida - good base for travelling Tokyo?

Hello! thank you for your response.

i am staying in an apartment in Honjyo, Sumida-ku...it is a 5min walk from Honjo Azumabashi station, 10min walk from Oshiage station and 17 min walk from Kinshicho station.

I am interested in seeing new and old parts of tokyo.

thoughts?

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8. Re: Sumida - good base for travelling Tokyo?

Hello! thank you for your response.

i am staying in an apartment in Honjyo, Sumida-ku...it is a 5min walk from Honjo Azumabashi station, 10min walk from Oshiage station and 17 min walk from Kinshicho station.

I am interested in seeing new and old parts of tokyo. How many days would you recommend in new tokyo/old tokyo? and if there any certain tourist spots that were underwhelming?

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9. Re: Sumida - good base for travelling Tokyo?

thank you so much! very helpful link and suggestions :)

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10. Re: Sumida - good base for travelling Tokyo?

I live about 15 min walk from Honjo-Azumabashi. It is not a particularly bad place for visiting Tokyo, but it isn't a particularly good one either. As mentioned, it's a quiet residential area, middle class or slightly lower, without anything notable to see (the area was totally destroyed during WW2 bombings) apart from Tokyo Skytree in Oshiage, and Asakusa touristy yet down-to-earth nostalgia town nearby. If you are on a budget, are staying for a longer term like for a week or month, and your accommodation is indeed near Honjo Azumabashi or Asakusa or Kuramae Station, and if you don't have to be in the busiest and hippest places in Tokyo, then it's a perfect choice. If your image of Tokyo is centered on the busy shopping streets of Shibuya, Harajuku, Shinjuku, or Ikebukuro, you might be disappointed.

Personally, if if you like quieter neighborhoods, I imagine that Yanaka/Sendagi or somewhere in the western suburbs in Setagaya Ward could be a better place (staying in Shimokitazawa or Sangenjaya would be more fun and exciting than staying in Honjo-Azumabashi for most people).

Edited: 04 September 2016, 04:11
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