13 Reasons to Be Excited Tokyo is Hosting the 2020 Olympics

September 27, 2013 by

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Tokyo will host the summer Olympic Games in 2020, and it’s sure to be one of the most exciting and memorable in modern history. The vast majority of Japan’s population supports hosting the Games, the proposed budget comes in at a (relatively) reasonable $75 million, and the Opening Ceremony will be broadcast in a level of high-definition not yet created. Tokyo is guaranteed to host a safe and seamless Olympic Games, but that barely scratches the surface of all that attendees and fans can look forward to. Here are 13 reasons to be excited that Tokyo is hosting the Olympic Games in 2020.

Tokyo 2020 Olympics

Photo credit: François Péladeau via Flickr.

1. Polite hosts and good sports

Japanese culture places high value on politeness and manners. No matter how crowded subways get or how long food lines stretch, visitors can rest assured that they will rarely, if ever, encounter an unkind word from a local. The same values extend to the sporting arenas, where Japanese fans will politely cheer for every athlete and give foreign spectators a warm welcome whether their team or athlete is winning or losing.

2. No safety concerns here

Tokyo won its bid to host the Games by promoting itself as a “safe pair of hands.” The city wasn’t exaggerating. Often ranked the safest city in the world, Tokyo won’t spare resources to ensure the security of the athletes and spectators in 2020.

3. Hi-def is about to get higher def

In its proposal for hosting the Olympic Games, Tokyo pitched a Super Hi-Vision broadcast, otherwise known as 8K Ultra HD. Broadcast television has always been developed in parallel with the Olympic Games, allowing countries to showcase the spectacle in higher definition every year. With the Games fast approaching, Japan has sped up its timeline with Sony to develop 8K Ultra HD, which will show images of 33 million pixels, 16x the resolution of today’s HD. Watching the Games at home will be almost as good as in person in 2020.

4. Retrofitted buildings from the 1964 Olympics

Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium

Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium – location of the gymnastics events at the 1964 Olympics. Photo credit: Mark Doliner via Flickr.

In an effort to save money and design stadium sporting venues that will draw tourists for decades after the Games, Tokyo plans to retrofit structures built for the 1964 Olympics, which were also hosted in the city. The Olympic Village and all of the new and old structures will be placed in scenic areas – either downtown or on Tokyo Harbor. The city has plans to convert the Olympic Village into housing after the Games.

5. Revitalized economy and radiation fears assuaged

Japanese officials couldn’t be more excited to host the Olympic Games.

“When I heard the name Tokyo, I was so touched, overwhelmed,” said Shinzo Abe, Japan’s Prime Minister. “The joy was even greater than when I won my own election.”

Officials and citizens alike are optimistic that the promise of the Games will boost tourism that has lagged following the devastating earthquake, tsunami, and nuclear incident in 2011. Being named the host country promises to put to rest concerns over radiation fallout. With the anticipated increased tourism before, during, and after the Games, Japan’s economy promises to bounce back.

6. Foodie paradise

Tokyo sushi

Sushi in Tokyo

Move over hotdogs and pretzels, and make room for sushi, sashimi, noodles, and curry. Japanese food is world-renowned, and spectators at the 2020 Olympic Games will eat the best of it. Athletes are sure to have first-rate options in the Olympic Village, and spectators will have the opportunity to try everything from street food to traditional Japanese restaurants while exploring the city and local food vendors in the sporting arenas.

7. Public transportation is reliable and fast

Tokyo Metro

Tokyo Metro. Photo credit: y entonces via Flickr.

Horror stories have emerged from previous Olympic Games of spectators – and even athletes – arriving late or even missing events because of traffic, subway delays, and other transportation failures. It’s unlikely this will happen in Tokyo, as the city boasts one of the world’s most reliable public transportation systems. Tokyo’s subway system serves the farthest reaches of the city and beyond, is fast, efficient, and always polite. While visitors can expect to be packed tighter than a can of sardines on some trains, they can plan knowing that they will arrive at their destination on time.

8. Tokyo is a veteran host of the Olympic Games

Tokyo 1964 Olympics

Sign from the 1964 Olympics. Photo credit: hairyeggg via Flickr.

Like veteran athletes praised for their nerves of steel and level-headed attitudes, Tokyo has hosted an Olympic Games before and knows what to do the second time around to make it even better. Potential spectators can take respite in the fact that Tokyo has proven it can handle an international spectacle. The great likelihood and expectation is that the 2020 Games will go off without a hitch. Like in the Games, you can always trust a seasoned competitor to get the job done.

9. See old Japan in the midst of modern Games

Tokyo Imperial Palace

The Imperial Palace

The capital of Japan since 1868 and known as “Edo” for centuries prior, Tokyo has an abundance of history – both ancient and modern. Tokyo houses the Japanese Imperial Family, as well as the Japanese government. Olympic Games spectators can look forward to visiting many of Tokyo’s historical sites – such as the Imperial Palace – and new ones, such as the Tokyo Tower.

10. Incredible shopping

When making out your budget for the Tokyo Olympics, be sure to include a generous allowance for souvenirs, clothing, and other retail items. Shopping in Tokyo is world-class, ranging from high-end luxury brands to hip and trendy Japanese street fashion. The popular neighborhoods of Ginza and Shibuya are some of the best for shopping in Tokyo.

11. Sky-high views of Tokyo and the Olympic venues



Tokyo boasts sky-high viewing points of the city at several locations. Tokyo Tower stands taller than any other building in the city at 333 meters (1092 feet). Other popular and gravity-defying viewpoints can be found at Mori Tower and TOKYO SKYTREE. Sunset and nightfall are the most popular times to view the city from above.

Enjoy great views from the TOKYO SKYTREE on a tour

12. Be active

The athletes aren’t the only ones who can stay fit during Tokyo’s Olympic Games. Tokyo’s many parks attract runners, walkers, yoga practitioners, and other exercise-craving individuals. Runners particularly enjoy Yoyogi Park, where a marked three kilometer trail loops around an open, green space. Be sure to bring your athletic shoes.

13. Experience traditional Japanese culture

Asakusa Temple

Asakusa Temple

Traditional Japanese culture remains prevalent in some neighborhoods in Tokyo, particularly in Asakusa, on the banks of the Sumida River. Asakusa plays home to Tokyo’s oldest Buddhist temple, Senso-ji, originally built in the 7th century. Tokyo visitors can wander Asakusa’s back street between sporting events to find handmade arts and crafts and traditional Japanese clothing, and see numerous temples and shrines.

Take a tour of Asakusa Temple

– Cyndi Waite

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One Response to “13 Reasons to Be Excited Tokyo is Hosting the 2020 Olympics”

  1. Vincent Says:

    wow…..I like the most is metro. It’s amazingly fast, clean……..