As an international airport, Haneda Airport may have fewer facilities compared to Narita Airport. However, it still wins as the closest both domestic and international hub to Tokyo. It is even located within Tokyo itself, while Narita Airport actually sits at Chiba district.
You may arrive too early before your actual agenda or next trip. It means you will need to deal with the layover period. It may sound annoying as you will have to spend some time at the airport. If you like adventure, you can take a short tour to visit some tourist attractions close to the airport. However, you have to be aware of your next flight schedule.
Alternatively, you can take advantage of the entertainment facilities provided at the airport. Why do not you spare a little time exploring them? Here are some fun things to do when you are at Haneda Airport:
1. Crossing Haneda’s Nihonbashi
Have you ever crossed the bridge at Nihonbashi River? Yes, this one inside of Terminal 3 or international terminal is its half-size replica, connecting the fourth floor and the fifth. The actual bridge was constructed in 1911 or Edo period is the starting point connecting the five main routes that connected the provinces in Edo. Who knows by walking across the Nihonbashi bridge replica at Haneda will give you a kind of feeling like living at Edo era.
2. Wandering around Edo Alley
Haneda Airport seems to be very serious in introduction Edo culture to international passengers. On the fourth floor of Terminal 3, there is Edo koji. You will find 21 restaurants with Japan and Edo inspired theme, some of them serve customers around the clock with everything like yakitori, oden, udon and green tea. There are also glasses and cosmetics from local ingredients available at 18 stores behind.
3. Renting a RoBoHon
Want to get Wi-Fi access like a geek? Meet RoBoHon, a cute mini robot dressed like a pilot. It can speak Japanese, English and Mandarin. This little walking humanoid provides the tips and information on how to get around and where to go. it is a cool way to avoid the crowd in front of the helping desk. RoBoHon is also provided with other features like built-in phone, email and camera functions as well as Robotenashi guide application.
4. Getting your Japanese pop culture fix
On the fifth floor of the international terminal, you will find Tokyo Pop Town. It has two zones, Hot and Cool where you will find all about anime, manga and character paraphernalia. If you are a fan of Hello Kitty, you can buy the impressive merchandises at the Hello Kitty Japan shop at Hot Zone.
5. Admiring the night skies
You may have used to take a trip with a plane, but it is still fun to stare at them taking off and landing. It gets more attractive when you can do it from the viewing deck on the fifth floor of Domestic Terminal 2. Additionally, the 4000 colourful LED lights can bring another experience of viewing. Do not forget to sip your coffee. If you want to get a wider view to the night skies, you can go to the rooftop which opens 24 hours.
6. Sipping Haneda craft beer
Haneda has its own craft beer called Haneda Sky Ale. You can get it at the airport premises. The best place to enjoy this beer is at the observation deck of Terminal 1’s sixth floor. The creator is Tennozu’s TY Harbor Brewery, which is reachable a few stops away on the monorail. If you want some bottles at home, you can find the shops inside Terminal 1 and 2. Take for example Smile Tokyo on Terminal 2’s second floor that offers two bottlers of Haneda Sky Ale in one set of the carriage in a special cooler bag.
7. Sleeping in a first-class bed
Sleeping overnight is the most recommended way to catch a flight in the early morning. you can even find the cheapest offer at Domestic Terminal 1, called First Cabin Haneda. It is a capsule hotel where the beds are decked out in the aeroplane style. Choose the cabin based on your need, from business class to economy class.
8. Praying for a safe flight
Built in 1931, an aviation shrine opens for those who want to pray for safe passage. It also has a correlation with the Koku Jinja aviation shrine in Shinbashi.
Those are cool things you can do at Haneda Airport. If you want to save on both domestic and international flights, always visit Airpaz to get the affordable plane tickets to book online right at your fingertips.