Baby Got Balance

A lifestyle blog focused on a healthy balance of travel, food and love

Japan, Travel

Mighty Machida

Did you know that Tokyo is huge?  I’ll be putting another post up shortly to go over all the wards/cities and break it down more in depth but I’m still gushing about Machida right now.  Located in the Tama section of Tokyo, it’s west of “central” areas (including all the iconic wards you know:  Shinjuku, Shibuya, etc.) so it can feel a little off the beaten path.  Which is also why you’ll love it so much!

I stayed at the Best Western Rembrandt Machida my last trip (hotel availability was slim on short notice during cherry blossom season/graduation season) but it opened my eyes to why Machida is such a good choice when you want to go to Tokyo.  Keep reading for my top reasons to consider staying in Machida!

Sunrise from the 12th floor.

It’s not that far from Shinjuku Station……

Machida is on the Odakyu line and the JR line, so there’s a large train station and also a bus station.  It’s also a Romancecar stop, too, so if you’re looking to continue on the train to a different city you won’t have to go far!  On the rapid express train you can make it to Shinjuku Station in about 25-30 minutes, which isn’t bad!

…………..but it’s far enough.

You’re far enough out of “central” Tokyo that you’ll see some benefits.  The first being the hotel pricing is lower than, say, a tourist hot spot in Shinjuku.  Second, you’ll see less of your fellow tourists.  Don’t get me wrong, tourism is amazing and everyone should see the world!  I won’t lie, though:  the American couple letting their children run, screaming, through a cemetery while I was visiting a temple needed a talking to and I’ve (unfortunately) seen similarly terrible behavior from other foreigners, especially when there’s a higher concentration of tourists.

But back to Machida:  you’ll see less tourists (which means less crowding) but there’s a good mix of locals, tourists and Air Force families from Zama.  It just felt a little less crazed when I was there, which was nice to retreat back to after elbowing through throngs of other Americans trying to Instagram their cotton candy on the crowded Harajuku sidewalks (more on this soon).

Quite afternoon at Sohoin Buddhist Temple in Machida.

There’s plenty to do!

Machida Nakamise Shopping Street!  Tokyo Twins department store!  Sohoin Temple!  Machida Squirrel Garden!  Machida City Museum of Graphic Arts!  Ramen, ramen, ramen!  Yakushiike Park!  Machida Lumine!

Still pretty quite but it was early!

Seriously, Machida Nakamise Shopping Street is amazing.  There’s a regular street (mostly) closed to vehicle traffic, that you can wander for restaurants, convenience stores, fish markets, karaoke bars, arcades, cafes and shops.  The tiny alley ways are where it’s at!  At night they’re open and packed with tiny bars and restaurants, everything from crepes, boba and takeaway yakitori to Okinawan food, nail salons and Caribbean bars (I’ll be letting you know where to eat in Machida soon!).  If you’re there on a Saturday or Sunday make sure to check out the art fair (setup near the Starbucks) and any active artist demonstrations – I got to see some really great ones while I was there!

I even had a recommendation from a bartender about a Japanese hip-hop club to check out….unfortunately for me it wasn’t advisable to show up before 1am and your girl was too tired so it never happened.  Next time!

Tiny restaurant serving Okinawan food (the seating was across the alley from the bar/server station).

These are just a few small reasons I loved Machida, however there are so many more!  I would absolutely stay there again on my next trip to Tokyo.  If you’re planning a trip to Japan soon don’t forget to check out my Know Before You Go:  Japan guide!

What do you look for when deciding on where to stay in somewhere like Tokyo?

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  1. Lina

    July 31, 2019 at 8:46 pm

    Wow, Machida looks amazing! There is too much to do there! Tokyo is in my bucket list. I hope I can visit it soon.

    Love your pictures btw!

  2. Stephanie

    August 1, 2019 at 9:58 am

    I have to admit that I know very little about anything in Japan, so the sites and the streets and the places to visit all sound completely unknown to me! But I’d love to visit one day, and Machida definitely sounds like the spot to stay. The view from your hotel was incredible!

    1. Morgan

      August 5, 2019 at 1:12 pm

      It really was (being on the 12th floor helps!). Glad you liked the post, thanks for commenting!

  3. Linh

    August 8, 2019 at 11:56 am

    Ahhh travel envy! My friend travels to Japan all the time and always brings me back goodies. I have heard nothing but wonderful things about it – from the culture to how nice the people are. Thanks for sharing your travel adventures with us!

    1. Morgan

      August 9, 2019 at 11:19 am

      Thanks for reading! How wonderful that you have a friend bringing you back goodies – maybe you’ll be able to accompany them someday!

  4. Christa

    August 9, 2019 at 1:31 am

    Japan has long been on my bucket list! I really hope to plan a trip soon. Your travel guide is so helpful!

    1. Morgan

      August 9, 2019 at 11:15 am

      Glad you found it helpful! I would highly recommend Japan as a bucket list trip, it’s incredible!

  5. Cristina

    August 12, 2019 at 1:58 am

    I never travelled outside Europe, but Japan is one of the Asian countries I would really love to visit one day. Particularly for sushi, haha.

    1. Morgan

      August 12, 2019 at 1:18 pm

      Hopefully you’re able to get there soon! The food is incredible 🙂

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