November 01, 2018

Yakatabune Amitatsu: Unique Way of Dining and Touring Around Tokyo

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  • One’s TOKYO SKYTREE experience does not end in reaching the topmost observation deck and taking photos of the views. After all, the tower itself is an attraction that should be captured in your photos, besides the city scenery that can be captured from inside the tower.

    Tokyo Skytree, viewed from the roof deck of Yakatabune Amitatsu.

    A great way of experiencing TOKYO SKYTREE is from the outside, far enough from the tower for you to take in the overall beauty of the structure and especially appreciate its magnificence when it lights up at night. Such is “yakatabune,” a tradition of cruising along Sumida-gawa or Sumida River that has lasted since the Edo period, and Yakatabune Amitatsu is a provider that is almost as old as the tradition, operating for a hundred years already.

    Yakatabune Amitatsu has different kinds of boats. On the picture is Hinode, a Japanese-style room boat.

    Yakatabune Amitatsu offers the Odaiba Skytree Course which cruises around Asakusa, Tsukiji, and Odaiba, and runs for about 2.5 hours. The highlights of the cruise are TOKYO SKYTREE, Rainbow Bridge, and DECKS Tokyo Beach.

    Rainbow Bridge

    DECKS Tokyo Beach and Fuji TV in Odaiba


    Their boats take on a modern design with traditional Japanese touches, such as paper lanterns on the windows and tatami floors.

    The boats are equipped with entertainment amenities like a karaoke and sounds system.

    The boat stops for a few minutes at each spot to let you get a good view and nice photos of TOKYO SKYTREE, Rainbow Bridge and DECKS Tokyo Beach. All boats have a roof deck that lets you get a better view of each highlighted spot.

    All boats of Yakatune Amitatsu have a roof deck.

    The cruise includes a standard course meal that lets you try a variety of Japanese dishes like simmered conger eel, assorted sashimi, assorted tempura, hot pot, and more. A vegetarian course is also available.

    The course comes with unlimited drinks.

    Standard course meal /IMAGE Courtesy of Yakatabune Amitatsu

    Standard sashimi boat/ IMAGE Courtesy of Yakatabune Amitatsu

    The dining experience is made special not only by the scenery but also by the company of other people that you’re sharing the experience with. It is a nice way of making new friends, which makes the experience even more memorable.

    We were pleased to share the cruise with members of the Tokyo Lions Club.

    The people you share the ride with make the experience more memorable!

    Depending on the season, there are different experiences to be had—fireworks in summer, blossoming cherry trees in spring, colorful foliage in autumn, or enjoyment of hotpot in winter.

    Also read: TOKYO SKYTREE℠: An Unconventional Match for the City

    General Information: 

    Location: Azumabashi-sanbashi, Asakusa, Tokyo
    Rate: ¥10,800 (tax inclusive) *Reservation is required; minimum of 2 persons

    Written by Rei Leaño
    This first appeared in Philippine Primer English magazine’s Vol. 31 – October issue. 

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