A week in Tokyo with a toddler

Sensoji, Tokyo, Japan

After about 6 months from the last trip with our daughter, we traveled to Tokyo again the week before my work trip. This time, she was 2y2m with a lot more opinions and expressions. It was pretty easy traveling with a stroller in Tokyo (some exercise when taking public transportation), we had tons of precious memories in places that were mostly new to us on the 4th visit.

Day 1: second time to Disneyland

After the last visit to Disneyland & Disney Sea, we just went for one day to Disneyland which had more rides. More details are in this post.

Day 2: 8 hours in Skytree

In retrospect, we spent 8 hours in Skytree from 11 AM to 7 PM. The Skytree mall has many parts, with several attractions and lots of food, coffee, and shopping options. We didn’t even get enough time to go to the observation deck.

Skytree night view Waiting for Toriton Sushi at Skytree

Oyokogawa river park

We walked from the hotel in Asakusa to Skytree. It was a scenic walk and stroller-friendly most of the way. Before getting into the Skytree, we stopped by a river park with a long rolling slide. The park was full of preschool students, they wore different colors of hats for teachers to distinguish the classes. The kids were very patient to wait for our daughter to climb up.

Walking from Asakusa to Skytree

Lunch at Toriton sushi train restaurant

We first went to the Toriton sushi train restaurant to get a number, and waited about 15 minutes for a table. Near the restroom, there was a window view of the train track to wait for the restaurant. There was a high chair on top of the booth, and we ordered a few rounds on a tablet. It might be due to COVID, the chefs manually delivered the plates to each group. Having been to conveyor belt sushi restaurants like Kura and Sushiro several times, this place felt very fresh with more variety. They also had a kids sushi menu, we got a plate of cucumber sushi for our daughter. She also had udon, steamed egg, and edamame.

Toriton Sushi in Skytree Toriton Sushi in Skytree

Sumida Aquarium

The aquarium was in a different part of the Skytree mall from the main shopping area. It wasn’t super big with two floors, but there was a lot to see. We first entered to a dark room with different kinds of beautiful jellyfish glowing and flowing in the park. Our daughter loved the penguins swimming around, and the staff feeding the sea lions. They also had a wall of fish tank with tables in front of it. We spent about 1.5 hours in the park.

Sumida Aquarium Sumida Aquarium

Dinner at the food court

After the aquarium, we decided to get dinner at the food court to save some time. We also found 2 other restaurants with a high chair nearby, but thought it was easier to stay in the mall to take the metro back afterward. I got Ippudo Express for our daughter and myself, with extra noodles on the side plus another vegetable side dish.

Ippudo at Skytree food court

Day 3: Yokohama day trip

Yokohama is very kid-friendly, with a bunch of malls, exhibitions, and museums. For our toddler daughter, we debated between the Annpanman Museum and the Cup Noodles Museum. After asking around, Annpanman is way more suitable for her age (2-year-old) and the cup noodle factory activity is only for kids over 6 years old.

Hara Model Railway Museum

The visit to the railway museum was an impromptu decision, because we had 1 hour before our Annpanman Children’s Museum admission slot (another place we walked by and thought was cool to see was Nissan’s Gallery). This museum was located in an office building, and tickets were available in the Family Mart on the first floor (the staff can help with the purchase from the machine, as some Japanese typing might be required). The museum was pretty calm with exhibits of different model trains over the last few decades. It was a perfect quick stop for us, our daughter loved watching the trains in action in the big room.

Hara Model Railway Museum Hara Model Railway Museum

Annpanman Children’s Museum

πŸ“ Online tickets were required at the time of our visit, no tickets were sold on-site and most of the closest time slots were sold out when we went. We forgot to purchase the tickets beforehand πŸ˜“. Fortunately, we went on a weekday (Friday) and we were able to buy a ticket online 2 hours later (12 PM).

Even though I didn’t grow up with Annpanman (“bread superman” in my local language), the character was friendly and attractive as many people love bread. The museum certainly felt more for young kids (under 6), there were rows of strollers in the parking area.

Lunch at the food court

We decided to eat at the food court at 11 AM to avoid the crowd later on, and we couldn’t find toddler-friendly restaurants nearby that open that early. We brought our own food for our daughter, and got our food at the food court. The high chairs were in demand, we almost couldn’t get one. The dining hall was bright and comfortable, with self-serving water, sinks, bathrooms, and a diaper-changing station in the vicinity.


There were a few areas for kids to play, and it’s worth checking the schedule for live shows. Even though we didn’t understand Japanese much, we stayed for an Annpanman music performance and our daughter seemed to enjoy it (a few kids cried and left). For the bigger show outside, we just stayed for a bit. Our daughter enjoyed the bread-making room, and there was a DIY area to make a paper headband of Annpanman or the bacteria character.

Annpanman Children Museum Annpanman Children Museum

Gundam factory (until March 31, 2024)

While our daughter was having a stroller nap, we walked from the Annpanman Museum to the Gundam factory after getting coffee at Blue Bottle and browsing at the mall. For my husband as a Gundam fan, we’ve been to Diver City for the Gundam statue and the Gundam cafe in Akihabara that was closed during COVID. We were excited to visit the Gundam factory as the temporary exhibit was extended to overlap with our visit. The venue was scenic by the bay, we stayed for 1.5 hours. We watched the 18m-tall giant Gundam walk in and out of the hanger, and visited the robot exhibit and shop with exclusive Gundam merchandise. We thought our daughter might be afraid (not a fan of robots so far), but she actually watched the robot calmly most of the time. The sound effects and lighting were impressive, and worth visiting for Gundam fans.

Gundam Factory (until Mar 31, 2024) Gundam Factory (until Mar 31, 2024)

Dinner at Jonathan’s

After the Gundam Factory, we walked to the family restaurant chain Jonathan’s near a train station. This was our first Jonathan’s, and we enjoyed the meal a lot with entertainment for our daughter and pretty good food. The store had a bookshelf with books for different age groups, and our daughter loved reading them (the pictures). Ordering was also easy with a tablet, and we got a token to play the gacha machine.

Day 4: Yoyogi park & Shibuya

We had fond memories of Yoyogi Park on our first trip to Tokyo almost 10 years ago, and had been looking forward to taking our daughter here. We considered renting a bike, but our 2-year-old daughter still hadn’t learned to ride a pushbike and the tandem bikes didn’t seem to have a child seat. After some research, we found a unique publicly run pony park and then walked around the park after lunch.

Yoyogi pony park

This was our first stop in the park area, the entrance was separate from the rest of the park and it took some time to walk there. We checked the official schedule beforehand, there were a few types of interactions with the pony – riding, brushing, and feeding at different hours and days of the week. We arrived at early 10 AM on a Saturday, and participated in the brushing at 10:30 AM and riding at 10:45 AM. Our daughter had lots of fun brushing the pony, and later got on the back of the pony for one loop. Her height was closely below the minimum 85 cm requirement, thankfully the staff let her in. On Thursdays, they also had pony rides for both parent and child but the total weight has to be 75 kg (impossible for us 🀣).

Yoyogi pony park Yoyogi pony park

Lunch at Natsume Doria & Gratin

After the pony park, we walked to get early lunch at a doria & gratin (rice or pasta baked with cheese on top) restaurant that was family friendly. They had high chairs, kids’ menu, and books for entertainment. This was one of the most memorable meals of our trip, the soul food kind of meal. With a toddler, I always appreciated when restaurants offered additional toppings to share a small amount with our daughter. We sat by the window, and there were a few tables with young kids as well. The restroom also had a diaper-changing table, which was very helpful for us.

Lunch at Natsume Doria & Gratin

Strolling in the Yoyogi Park

We walked to Yoyogi Park after lunch, passing by the Olympics Youth Center with an event. Due to the nap schedule, we didn’t stay at the park very long. We walked around the park with our daughter, she enjoyed watching the water at the small lake and sitting on the bench. There were a bunch of people having a picnic, reading, and chatting. The park was very beautiful and poetic with colorful fallen leaves and the breeze coming by.

Afternoon in Miyashita Park

It took a while for our daughter to fall asleep in the hustle and bustle of Shibuya downtown, but eventually she did and we celebrated the nap time with Kith Treats ice cream and then matcha on the rooftop. I’d recommend the vanilla-based ice cream at Kith Treats.

Miyashita park Kith ice cream at Miyashita park

Dinner at Gonpachi Shibuya

This was a popular izakaya for international visitors, the staff was very fluent in English (their Nishiazabu branch was an inspiration for a scene in the Kill Bill movie). They had high chairs but no kids’ menu (we’ve been to one that did), and we came at 5 PM to avoid the crowd and enjoy an almost empty spacious restaurant. This seemed like a great venue for business or group meals, the view from the booths was stunning. The menu wasn’t the biggest, we ended up ordering a bowl of rice and tofu dish for our daughter and two rice/noodle dishes to share with her. It was a great tour of the restaurant going to the restroom, passing different types of seating with window view.

Dinner at Gonpachi Shibuya Dinenr at Gonpachi Shibuya

Day 5: Akihabara

From Asakusa, we took the Ginza metro line to Kanda station. Since most places were closed before 10 AM, the brunch reservation time, we spent a few minutes at a local park with baby swings which our daughter had a hard time leaving.

Brunch at Eorzea cafe

πŸ“ Reservation was required and the weekend slots are usually taken within minutes. The reservation system started at 12 PM (I mistook it as 12 AM before and missed the first day of the weekend).

πŸ“ The elevator didn’t go to the second floor, we carried the stroller upstairs.

We didn’t expect this place to be equipped for toddlers and prepared a chair restraint for our daughter, but the staff was very nice to find a booster seat for us (maybe he had to borrow it from the Honey Toast cafe downstairs). I wasn’t very familiar with Final Fantasy other than the moogles, but enjoyed watching all the different decorations, food and drinks, and video clips. Included in the entrance fee, we each got a free drink. For our daughter, I checked the menu beforehand and was looking forward to getting a Tonberry omurice (green from basil) for her. However, it was sold out when we were ordering and had to change to a noodle dish. Even though my husband didn’t play the version of Final Fantasy at the cafe, it was a lot of fun for all of us. Our daughter was very calm the whole time, with so many new things for her to see.

Eorzea cafe (Final Fantasy 14) Eorzea cafe (Final Fantasy 14)

A brief visit to Asakusa

We stayed in Asakusa, but just took a walk to the Buddhist temple Sensoji through the streets around it. This was a very touristy area, and there were lots of visitors and vendors. We got snacks at the popular stands, and ate them at designated areas (there were signs that said no food on the streets). It was raining at the time, and the covered walkways were a bliss. After the walk, we had dinner at a family restaurant chain Juraku.


The hotel we stayed in last time, Mimaru Ueno East, was a great experience with baby-friendly facilities. Perhaps due to its popularity after COVID, the price at any convenient Mimaru location became out of budget. We decided to stay at another apartment hotel, Koko Hotel Asakusa Tawaramachi. It was a chain with two locations in Asakusa, the price was similar and we picked the Tawaramachi location mostly for its vicinity to the Ginza line (less than a 5-minute walk with an elevator). The room was small, but the benefits of having a washer/dryer in the room, a crib (playpen style), a dining table, and a kitchen were so worthwhile.

Koko hotel Asakusa Tawaramachi

Asakusa ROX matsuyuri

The hotel offered free entrance tickets to a super sento (bath house) within walking distance. After a few full days of travel, I finally got to try it on two nights. I went around 9 PM, and stayed for about 45 minutes. There were some rules to follow but it was pretty clear. I first took off the shoes at the shoe locker area, then took the key to the front desk. The staff gave me a bag of yukata (bathrobe) and towels. There were a few types of baths to try out and a small outdoor area, some with massage streams. It felt quite relaxing sitting down after a long day. Outside of the bath area, there were also other paid facilities like the UFO machines, massage, and dorm rooms for resting.

Dining out

Now that our daughter was over 2 years old, she started having more of the same food as us when eating at restaurants. To find restaurants with a high chair, we found a better keyword in Japanese, 子供怅子 (kids chair), in Google Maps and Tabelog. We were able to find a few local restaurants that were very kid-friendly but hard to search otherwise.

Wrap up

After the first trip to Tokyo with our daughter, this time felt a lot easier even though we stayed in a different area. We got better at navigating through the city with different subway lines (the accessible option in Google Maps is very useful when taking the stroller or luggage). Every day was so much fun exploring with the little one, experiencing new things and trying out different food. Next time, we plan to take our daughter to a different city but will certainly be back again.

Here is the full itinerary and lists of venues:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.