I was there from June 22 – June 29, and let me let you know right now, it felt very short. This was one of the most get up and go trips I’ve ever done. You know how there are some places that everyone goes to and talks about, but when you get there it’s not quite the same or not as amazing as people made it sound? Well, stop and have high hopes because everything I imagined Tokyo to be was accurate and it went above and beyond what I could ever want it to be. The city was everything and more, I loved every second of it… except for a few hours in front of a certain shrine. I got a total of 5 full days in Japan so I guess I’ll start with day 1.
We left Vancouver, BC on the 22nd of June and arrived in Tokyo, Japan June 23 but in the evening. So our first full day and what I call day 1 is June 24, and this is where the adventure begins.
DAY 1 – Sunday, June 24, 2018
Hie Shrine – I found this place on the internet after browsing a few blogs and its right in the middle of Tokyo. This shrine has red gates that look similar to the ones in Kyoto (I got a lot of questions when I uploaded a small story to my Instagram a while back if I went to Kyoto, so I’m guessing from that story they look similar to the ones in Kyoto). You’ll find the entrance to the gates on one of the sides of the perimeter left of the main entrance. You have to walk up a flight of stairs before you’ll actually see the gates.
Ginza – This area of Tokyo is SUPER bougie. I was amazed at all the high-end stores beside each other. This area was also home to 12 stories of Uniqulo which was pretty cool, but I didn’t think it was super special compared to any of the other Uniqlo’s I’ve ever stepped into. The other really neat building we found was 9 floors of stationery with an indoor plant garden at the top. I would definitely recommend going there for anyone who loves paper, pens, stickers etc.. Just look up “Itoya Ginza” and it should pop up on google! I love stationary but my love for this indoor vertical farm just took the piece of cake because I also love anything food science related, and this was definitely the highlight of my day.
DAY 2 – Monday, June 25, 2018
Fuji Q – We stopped here by accident only because I expressed that I love roller coasters. If we had more time this day I would have definitely loved to ride any of the rides here, they looked HUGE from the outside of the park but the wait was so long just for one ride!
Mount Fuji – Honestly, when we got here I wasn’t as excited anymore after seeing it up close. There was lots of parking at the base and we didn’t have any difficulty parking but there were so many people. We did one hike up but didn’t last very long because there were so many mosquitoes.
Flower Field, Yamanakakohananomiyako Park – This place was beautiful. There were no flowers in the flower fields at the time we got here, but seeing big plots of land with a great view of Mount Fuji in the distance was worth the view. There was also a big greenhouse in the middle of the park which contained a lot of beautiful plants and a super cute cafe.
Onsen, Yamanakako Onsen Benifuji no Yu hot spring – A short 10-minute drive from the Flower Field I mentioned in the paragraph above and we arrived at the onsen. I was super skeptical about going into the onsen at first but after experiencing it I would go back without any hesitation. Within the facility, there are three indoor baths and two outdoor ones at various water temperatures. I found the experience to be extremely relaxing!
DAY 3 – Tuesday, June 26, 2018
Asakusa – We arrived a little before noon and the area was so packed. We found ourselves walking between rows and rows of little shops and food stalls it’s easy to spend a long time here. Along the way towards the center, there are so many temples and shrines to look at its quite amazing really. Our main goal when we came to this particular area was to wear kimonos, which we saw a few other people do. We went to Asakusa Kimono rental “Yae”. We just so happened to walk in and they had spots available, but they also take appointments if you want to book a rental kimono in advance. The staff speak Japanese, English, and Chinese so communication wasn’t that big of a problem. You are allowed to wear the kimono form the time they dress you until they close. Warning, I found the kimonos to be hot and we only really managed to wear them for an hour. Make sure you have water if you want to wear them for longer!
Akihabara – The rest of day 3 was spent in Akihabara, and it was well worth. We found an owl cafe and spent hours just exploring the many MANY arcades. Even though we spent a lot of time here, I felt like we just played arcade games in different buildings and hardly any shopping. But if you want to do more shopping (for things not related to anime, action figures or electronics) I don’t think you have to spend a long time here.
DAY 4 – Wednesday, June 27, 2018
Tsukiji Market – There *clap* were *clap* so many SNACKS!!!! We came in the morning around 8am and explored a little. After walking around for a bit and time had passed we were curious as to why so many shops were closed. Turns out this market actually closes on some pretty random days and that day we went, it was closed. However, it was still an experience to walk around and nibble on things along the way!
Yokohama – We spent the rest of the day here after leaving the Tsukiji Market at around 11am. It took us about an hour by train and we arrived in Yokohama at around 12pm. I think if you have the time it is worth the journey, we had a lot of fun here. Our first stop was the Yokohama Cup Noodle Museum and man was this place beautiful on the inside a little ugly on the outside. The outside is just a plain brown boxy-looking building and I didn’t expect anything much of it, but once we got inside I was immediately impressed and I took all the boring thoughts back. We made our own cup noodles and that was really fun, you get to draw on the cup and watch the entire process of how its packaged in front of you! Our second stop was the Shin – Yokohama Raumen Museum and it was beautiful. I suggest you come hungry to get the most out of this one trip. Every bowl was good and the pamflet was really convinent, I learnt that there are so many kinds of noodles and soup bases! Our last two stops were the Chinatown in Yokohamama (there was a lot to eat here but we were so full from the Raumen Museum), but non the less still fun to explore the area. Finally we eneded the day in the Yokohamama pier (around sunset) and it was beautiful. Its a big open area and we were glad we didn’t go in the middle of the day while the sun was up, it would have been really hot. The sun set behind the skyline of the city and I loved every moment of it.
DAY 5 – Thursday, June 28, 2018
The last day was a blur and we did 90% of our shopping on this day.
Harajuku – I enjoyed this area the most next to Shinjuku out of the three areas we visited this day. I liked the quickyness of this area and all the cute/ unusual shops. We came here early to eat at Cafe & Pancake Gram, we got there 30 minuites before the store opened so everything was just about to open or closed but it was pretty nice to explore the area before and after.
Shibuya – We spent the least amount of time here, the Shibuya crossing was cool and we honestly just looked at that and sat in a cafe drinking coffee and eating snacks. We did get to explore Shibuya 109, but didn’t go further than that.
Shinjuku – I loved this second to Harajuku and it is quite the expiernece at night. We did the most of our shopping here and found dinner. Because we were so close to the end of the day and we had a flight to catch tommrow we were just running around looking for things we planned to visit but didn’t explore much.