department stores and well-heeled, side-street boutiques. For more down-to-earth shopping, there’s the Jinbocho area for books, Akihabara for discount electronics and software, and the earlymorning Tsukiji Fish Market. Central Tokyo’s continuing political importance is evident in the Hibiya and Marunouchi districts, and the area is also home to two very different shrines: Kanda and Yasukuni. Y Y A selec A tion of green spaces provides a respite from the frenetic bustle elsewhere.
Situated to the north and west of the Sumida River, this area has been at the heart of Tokyo T T since the first shogun, Ieyasu, built his castle and capitol where the Imperial Palace still stands today. Destroyed by a series of disasters, including the Great Kanto Earthquake of 1923 and the Allied bombing in World War II, the area has reinvented itself several times over. Ginza and Nihonbashi were commercial centers and are still thriving and prosperous, offering a mix of huge