Tokyo is a dazzling city - cutting-edge modern, cosmopolitan and diverse, clean and safe, with plenty of history and culture making itself known amongst the skyscrapers. The Greater Tokyo Area is in fact the most populous metropolitan area in the world, and it lives up to its â€œworld's biggestâ€ status well - it has more Michelin stars than any other city, the tallest tower, the busiest intersection at famous Shibuya and endless options for dining and entertainment. The city also has numerous parks and green areas, sometimes a welcome break from the bustling urbanity.
As is the case with most great cities, Tokyo grew from a small fishing village. The original town was called Edo, built in the 12th century, and it grew steadily before being renamed Tokyo in 1869 and becoming the nation's capital. The city spreads around the shores of Tokyo Bay and the greater metropolitan area includes a number of offshore islands - you might sail past these as you cruise out of Tokyo.
Tokyo cruise lines and destinations
With a strong focus on itineraries in Asia, Princess Cruises offer many departures with several cruises departing Tokyo. Their elegant fleet of ships are a common sight in Tokyo Bay, and the Diamond Princess was even built in a Japanese shipyard and features a Japanese Bath facility. Other well known cruise lines that cruise through the area include the Cunard line, cruises with Royal Caribbean, Carnival cruises, Celebrity cruises and P&O. You'll also find the city is a popular departure point for luxury cruises - Silversea offers cruises out of Tokyo regularly.
You could cruise from Tokyo right down to Sydney, or across the Pacific to visit North American ports like Vancouver and San Francisco with a cruise from Tokyo. Tokyo to Singapore or Hong Kong is another popular one-way itinerary. There are plenty of round-trip cruises also, these visiting various Japanese ports as well as destinations in China and Korea. The Shiretoko Peninsula on Hokkaido is a particularly beautiful spot and scenic cruising destination.
Tokyo cruise port
There are several places your ship might dock on a cruise to or from Tokyo. If it fits under the Rainbow Bridge, it will likely stop at the Harumi Passenger Ship Terminal on Harumi Island, close to the city centre and a 2.5-kilometre walk from the Toei Oedo subway line. The terminal offers food outlets, waiting areas, customs facilities and an observation deck when cruising into or from Tokyo.
Big ships which do not fit under the bridge occasionally dock at the Oi Marine Products Wharf further south, and a new facility is in the pipeline as the cruise industry grows and ships increase in size.
Cruise ships to Tokyo also dock at the Osanbashi Pier and International Passenger Terminal in Yokohama, an hour's journey from the city centre on the train from the Nihon-Odori station nearby. The terminal features a rooftop plaza, visitors decks, an information desk, cafe, shops and departure lounge.