Japan Chronicles: Tokyo

 

Moshi Moshi! This is the last of my 4-city tour in the majestic Japan. Of course, thou shall not miss Tokyo – the center of everything Japanese!

Other travelers would often say that going to Osaka and Kyoto are good enough for a fine Japanese experience. But I say, a tour without Tokyo is a total waste of your entire Japanese vacation.

Tokyo is obviously the most talked-about city in Japan. And going there is not just about checking out the temples, or do shopping or sightseeing. But it’s all about the “Tokyo Experience”.

During my last 3 days in Japan, I took a Shinkansen to Tokyo. Upon arriving, you can already feel the Tokyo rush: crowded train stations, bright city lights and everything metropolitan. The culture may be a little different from the other cities due to the western influence, but like i said, i was after that experience.

I stayed in an AirBnB hosted apartment in Shinjuku Ni-Chome. It was a 10 minute walk from the main Shinjuku JR station. I chose that area because based on my research, accomodation is cheaper there than in Shibuya. And on my last day, I stayed in a capsule hotel (just for the experience).

Send me a private message so I can share with you my AirBnB room!

In my 3-day tour around Tokyo, I listed a only few items in my itinerary. Obviously, I already took out the temple tours and the Tokyo Skytree tour (since i did the same thing at Kyoto) since it’ll be too redundant.

The list includes:

  1. Tour around Shinjuku area
  2. Visit Odaiba for the gigantic Gundam robot
  3. Disney Sea
  4. Shibuya crossing
  5. Hachiko monument
  6. Harajuku

Day 1: Odaiba, Harajuku and Shibuya

My first day was actually a total mess. I initially thought that it was my day for Disney Sea. So silly me, I took a train to Maihama, and went to the Disney resort. I was already beaming with joy seeing one of the best Disney resorts in the world! Then as I arrived at the gate, I confidently swiped my Disney card and alas! I got denied since my schedule was for day 2. So a piece of advice to all of you, read your tickets carefully!lol

After spending 2 hours of time wasted, I immediately went to Odaiba and checked out the famous Gundam robot. At first I was afraid (I was petrified) that the robot might have been taken out, but it was located at the back portion of Odaiba mall. Seeing the robot was so amazing! Though I am not a fan, but you can just imagine how life-like it was! Everything about the robot seemed real. Definitely, the robot was a total crowd drawer.

From Odaiba, I went straight to Shibuya and experienced crossing the world’s most crowded intersection: Shibuya Crossing. As I was there, I can already imagine the Fast and the Furious scene and the Resident Evil scene. The crossing is totally a haven for film makers. I actually saw newscasters and actors shooting. But since they cannot (and will never) close the street, they can only take shots while green light’s on. How cool is that?

Since I was already in Shibuya, I took the chance of visiting the Hachiko monument. It was the exact spot where Hachi was waiting for his master to board off the train from Shibuya station. It was another check in my bucketlist!

Lastly, I boarded a train to Harajuku, a station away from Shibuya. Harajuku is widely know for its J-Pop culture. Japanese brands such as Comme des Garcons and Yohji Yamamoto have nicely built shops for their local consumers. But I think the most exciting part of my Harajuku trip were the cos players. Yes, they have flamboyant costumes and they take the dressing up seriously. The most fashionable of the of the fashionable were all there to put up a show! It was a very interesting sight for me.

Day 2: Disney Sea

I already mentioned in my previous posts that I am a die-hard theme park fan. I have been to Disneyland but not in Disney Sea. I was hoping that it will be a different experience and thankfully I was right about it.

Totally different: No castle, just a volcano. No princesses, just the villains. And let me name them all for you: Jafar, Gaston, the old evil witch from Snow White, the beautiful evil witch from Snow White! Captain Hook, the Bad Wolf, Maleficent and my favorite Ursula! There was only one princess and it was Ariel. Of course, Mickey and friends were there as main characters for all Disney Resorts.

The rides were also different. They are more action packed as compared to the magically themed Disneyland. What I loved the most were the rides from Indiana Jones, Under the Sea and Journey to the center of the Universe. I also like the Little Mermaid show. Good thing I know most of the songs or else I ended up lost in translation. Yes, everything were in Japanese and there were no translators to assist me.

Overall, I’d give Disney Sea a perfect 10 and I will definitely go back!

Day 3: Shinjuku Area and my love for Gyumeshi

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Shinjuku shopping district

Shinjuku, is Tokyo’s perfect place for shopping. I believe they have the biggest Uniqlo in Tokyo. And Shinjuku is the place where i found my latest Japanese favorite cuisine: Matsuya’s Gyumeshi. Basically, it’s just gyudon. But the Gyumeshi is the best gyudon of all gyudons in the world. And I mean it! Had Gyumeshi for every meal and that’s how matakaw i was. It took over my fascination for gyoza and maki.

When I’m back in Tokyo, I will try to steal their recipe.

Now that concludes my 4-city tour around Japan. And this country deserves a revisit!

I will share with you my itinerary and expenses in the next blog post. Arigatou Gozaimasu!

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