Asakusa is the place to be for all things traditional this weekend in Tokyo.

The Sanja Matsuri, one of Tokyo’s biggest, is marking its 700th birthday with the usual processions, dancing, mikoshi and music. Head over to Asakusa for this, the third weekend in May, where the three portable shrines (san-ja) will form the centrepiece to a weekend of celebration.

Along with a couple of million other guests you might want to get there early to get a good view but remember, there is always the short walk over to the Sky Tree to keep you amused should the crowds be too much. Given that the opening of Tokyo’s tallest tower is only days away, though, you perhaps may need to go further afield for peace and quiet. Embrace the crowds, then, grab some noodles from one of the thousands of street stalls and get stuck into the spirit of the occasion.

Go on Saturday or Sunday, but if you want to see the major event, with the three shrines carried along Nakamise-dōri towards the Kaminarimon and to Senso-ji, early Sunday morning should be in your diary.

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