Translated by Collin Radford
Get the Most Out of Transportation in Asakusa
Written by Hori Yuhei
Introducing 4 modes of transportation that'll help you make the most of your trip to Asakusa. Pick which one suits you the best!
Asakusa is a large city, which can make it difficult to get around. The city has several methods of transportation available. Today, we'd like to introduce 4 that are especially convenient for travelers.
①RentaCycle ～Ride With Freedom～
The municipality that is Taito ward, where Asakusa is located, offers its own "rent-a-cycle" service. There are 4 stations you can use to rent your bicycle which are located all around Asakusa. You can return your bike to any of the stations, regardless of where you rented it. The price is an agreeable ￥200 per day.
The best thing about moving by bicycle is that you can go where you want, when you want. On foot, it would take you about 25 minutes to walk to the Tokyo Skytree, while it only takes 7 minutes by bicycle. The difficult walk to Ueno can also be simplified with a bicycle.
②Megurin ～For Family Trips～
The tour buses provided by "Megurin" circulates Taito ward in its entirety. "North Megurin", "South Megurin", and "East-West Megurin" are its 3 routes, on which you can see most of Taito's highlights. They run year-around, and take off every 15 minutes. It only costs ￥100 to ride, which makes for great ease of use.
Megurin is a low-floor bus, which makes it accessible for those in wheel-chairs and the elderly. It also has air-conditioning, which makes it great on both cold and hot days.
"North Megurin" will take you to Asakusa Station and Sumida Park; "South Megurin", to Kappabashi; and "East-West Megurin", to the Ueno Station and Ueno Onshi Park.
If you get the chance, try riding one of Megurin's adorable retro buses.
③ Rickshaw ～Asakusa's Signature Mode of Transport～
Riding a rickshaw around Asakusa's hotspots is a sightseeing fixture in the area. A rickshaw is a wagon pulled by a local. They seat 2 people. They aren't fast like buses, nor do they have air-conditioning, but they allow you to feel Asakusa with the whole of your person.
When you're riding a rickshaw, the shafu (the person who pulls the cart), will explain the sights as you pass, and give recommendations for places to take snapshots. Some of them can speak English and Chinese as well, so even those with little to no Japanese can rest easy.
The rickshaw can be more expensive than the other modes of transportation, but it provides a unique experience you don't get anywhere else. Why not give it a shot next time you're in the area?
Reference Article: Time for a Throwback: Take a Ride on Asakusa's Rickshaw
④Water Bus ～Asakusa from the Outside～
For those who want more than just a ride around Asakusa, a look at the scenery from the outside might be what you're looking for. The Sumida river runs through Asakusa, and countless water buses tour the area. There are several famous places and unique bridges around Sumida river, and all can be seen from the water buses. Seeing surroundings you don't normally get the chance to see is the primary attraction.
There are sight-seeing spots all over Asakusa. Ride around freely on a bicycle, ride a tour bus, feel Asakusa on the rickshaw, or enjoy the unique scenery on a water bus. Take your pick, and enjoy Asakusa on the move.