How to Practise Your Japanese in Tokyo for Free
If you’re thinking about taking a Japanese language course in Japan you are, at some point, bound to find yourself in Japan’s mind-blowing capital – Tokyo. Tokyo is an action-packed world-class city and to enjoy it to its fullest the Cactus team has put together our top tips for experiencing the best of Tokyo whilst improving your Japanese language skills.
Find Your Way Out of the Scramble
First off, make sure you go to Shibuya’s station and take pictures with Hachiko’s statue. You will also see the famous intersection ‘The Scramble’ and you will be surprised how many people you can see there in just one minute. From there you can ask one of the many passers-by for directions in Japanese to take you to your next spot.
Food and Rituals
Head to Asakusa where you will find a busy street market full of traditional fans, woodblock prints, and traditional food, through to tacky souvenirs and mobile phone accessories. Here you can have a go at ordering some sushi, noodles or wasabi ice-cream in Japanese. At the end of the street you will find the Senso-ji temple, an ancient Buddhist temple and one of the most visited in Tokyo. You can wonder around the pleasant gardens with a guide who will explain the purification rituals of the fountains – in English or even better, in Japanese.
Maid in Tokyo
Visit a Maid’s Café. In these cafés, waitresses dressed in maid costumes act as servants, and treat customers as masters (and mistresses) in a private home, rather than as café patrons. The growth in popularity of these cafes has led to a whole range of people wanting to visit – often more for being able to say ‘I’ve been there’ but it’s also a great place to practise your Japanese, with both the Maids and the other clients.
Making Sense of Manga
Make sure a trip to Akihabara in on your list. Considered by many to be an otaku (anime and manga fandom) cultural centre Akihabara is a shopping district for video games, anime, manga, and computer goods. Some mangas are very cheap and can be found with written furigana (Japanese reading aid) which make them easier to read and remember the kanji (Japanese characters) meanings.
Finally, why not really improve your Japanese with some karaoke! Before karaoke find an okonomiyaki place where you can make your own savoury pancake with a whole variety of unexpected ingredients. If you choose somewhere that has nomihodai (all you can drink) you can get some umeshu (plum wine) in you before embarrassing yourself at a nearby Karaoke venue.
Check Your Japanese Language Level
You can check your Japanese language level for free with our quick and easy online level test. Cactus offers Japanese language courses in Tokyo, Kobe and Fukoaka throughout the year and evening Japanese language courses throughout the UK. To book any of our courses please call us on 01273 830 960 or email us. Our multilingual team will be happy to answer any questions you may have.
Cactus language offers the following types of language courses:
Evening language courses: 19 different languages in 15 UK locations
Language holidays: worldwide immersion courses in the country of the language
Private tuition: tailor-made and corporate language training solutions throughout the world
TEFL: teacher training courses for both English and other languages all over the world
Online courses: for teacher training, English and French