A Look At Tokyo Without Tourists

Illustration for article titled A Look At Tokyo Without Tourists
Screenshot: Shinichi

Typically, parts of Tokyo are overrun with tourists. These are not typical times.

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Because of covid-19, Japan has closed the country to tourists (until this month, it had also closed the country to foreign residents and even made it exceedingly difficult, if not impossible, for permanent residents to leave and then re-enter the country).

While the number of novel coronavirus continues to decline and increasingly people are going out, the restrictions have led to a 99.9 percent drop in tourism, putting a hard stop on the number of visitors checking out the sights.

YouTuber Shinichi (via Oona McGee at SoraNews) has documented what Tokyo tourist hotspots Shinjuku and Asakusa look like without the tourists. If you’ve ever been to either, you’ll probably be surprised to see them so empty!

Shinchi visited Shinjuku during a national holiday, so it should’ve been especially crowded—but was not.

Originally from Texas, Ashcraft has called Osaka home since 2001. He has authored six books, including most recently, The Japanese Sake Bible.

DISCUSSION

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So it’s basically like when an MMO reaches the end of its life cycle and the servers are due to shut down soon, and only a few dedicated players spawn for one last huzzah. This is depressing.