It seems Anthony Bourdain has visited every city on Earth, and for him, one stands out far above the rest. The chef-turned-TV personality discussed his number one pick in a recent interview with Maxim.
“I went to Tokyo the first time and my head kind of exploded,” he said. “I compared it to taking my first acid trip: Nothing was ever the same for me. I just wanted more of it. If I had to agree to live in one country, or even one city, for the rest of my life, never leaving it, I’d pick Tokyo in a second.”
Bourdain has a well-documented love for Japan: He’s visited twice for his show, “Parts Unknown,” and wrote that Tokyo was his favorite food city in a 2013 blog post.
We see his point: Tokyo is a delight for the senses, indeed. Here are a few spots to hit on your visit.
This ultra-famous temple honors Kannon, the goddess of mercy. It’s currently under renovation but will reopen in late September.
Ginza shopping district
This is Tokyo’s go-to destination for pricey retail. Shop for toys, shoes, herbs or some good old Hello Kitty merchandise.
Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden
This is the most beautiful green space in the city, according to Time. Explore amongst more than 3,000 kinds of plants, shrubs and trees, including Tokyo’s iconic cherry tree.
Meiji Jingu Shrine
Destroyed in World War II, this shrine was rebuilt in the 1950s. Enter through Japan’s two largest torii, or traditional entry gates, then roam the grounds.
Hundreds of cherry trees line this waterway that flows through Tokyo, and they bloom between the end of March and early April. Visit at night for an epic view.