Today began a short two night three day visit to Tokyo. We had plans to be in Tokyo for about 3 weeks but we changed them in favour of sailing from Osaka to Nagasaki through the inland sea on a private yacht. We kind of thought that we can always come back and see more of Tokyo on our next visit to Japan, but opportunities like this don’t come often, I had a poster on my wall as a child which read; “The secret of success in life is for a person to be ready when the opportunity comes”, are you ready?
Day 49 – April 21st, 2014.
“Today we began a short two night three day visit to Tokyo”
Up early at 4.50am to catch the 6.27 Shinkansen to Tokyo.
We had no trouble in finding the station as by now we know our way around it. Unfortunately it was bad weather and therefore no chance of a glimpse of Mt Fuji from the train, pray for better weather…
Arriving at Tokyo we spent ages in the train station looking for the info center which eventually was outside the building, go figure. There we got some clarity about the area and by now we were hanging for a coffee, we’d passed a Starbucks so went back had a coffee and sat upstairs as it rained, whilst I charged my phone.
The plans were made to go to Shibuya to check out the famous Shibuya Crossing. We took the Yamamote JR loop line around and got off at Shibuya. We had thought about getting something to eat at Tokyo station but decided not to as it was busy all around and so by the time we got to Shibuya we were well ready to eat. Walking through the station we spotted a small place tucked away where locals were going in so we took a look ourselves.
“Lunch in Shibuya Tokyo subway station”
This was a tiny place, maybe 10 stools to sit up at the counter. This was another of the ticket machines for ordering your meals and we quickly studied the pictues on the screen and made our choices, you then hand the ticket to the person behind the counter and take a seat, within a few minutes your meal is ready.
From where we sat you can see the small space that they have to work in, it’s smaller than many home kitchens back in Australia. The food was tasty and cheap, again proving that you can eat cheaply in Japan. After our lunch we find and take the Hachiko exit from Shibuya station where you basically come out to the crossing.
“I imagined it to be busier”
but maybe the weather was keeping the hoards away, don’t get me wrong there were still lots of people.
We crossed the white lines on the road a few times in each direction before walking around the shopping area with flashing neon lights and music playing (if thats what you call it) really just advertising blaring out in front of shops, restaurants etc.
Moni tried on a pair of pink Reeboks which she quite fancied but didn’t buy, then we looked in a place called Loft, where the stationary floor is full of goodies some of which Moni couldn’t resist.
“You get a good view of the Shibuya crossing from the Starbucks on the corner”
I’d read that you get a good view of the Shibuya crossing from the Starbucks on the corner but having already had a coffee we proceded to go up the escalator to the second floor of the Starbucks corner shop to sit and watch the people.
At this Starbucks you order your beverages downstairs and can sit anywhere upstairs, we had our rice triangles from earlier which were delicious and some water, when upstairs there was nobody there that controlled who came and went so we sat at a window and enjoyed a while taking it all in.
If your going to Shibuya crossing and want a good view then head to Starbucks, there’s no need to buy a coffee from the ground floor, just go up and take a seat, if you can find one.
The weather was pretty average and after a while we decided to make a move, and go to the Planetarium, unfortunately we messed up the stops on the subway and so stayed on the train for a few more stops before ending up at Akihabara the electric town.
“Akihabara is the ‘electric town’ of Tokyo”
This place is busy with shoppers after a bargain or the latest gadget, you name it you can get it. There are a few of the famous ‘Maid Cafes’ in this area if it interests you, for us it’s not a must to have girls who look young entertain you with small talk, playing games etc you can read more by clicking the link to the Maid Cafes on the Japan guide website.
We walked around looking in and out of shops which soon becomes boring so we decide to head to our pre-booked accommodation at a capsule hotel. Taking the JR line back, we change at Tokyo station then walking outside of the station down the road about a kilometre to another subway line, Minmishi line for two stops.
Out of the Kiba JR station and into the rain we walk, trying to find the place which is not so easy in the semi dark, however after a few wrong turns we find the place, which is literally just around the corner from the station, duh… You just have to take the right exit, number 13. You can read about our first ever stay at a capsule hotel for couples in Tokyo Japan in our next post.