I hope you’ve all recovered from any Pikachu face mask related trauma. If you don’t know what I’m talking, about check out Tokyo Madness: Part 1. Following that post, read on for a few more of Tokyo’s delights.
I loved Asakusa! This could have something to do with the fact that we went at 9:30am and avoided the droves of tourists. Ultimately, it was just a really beautiful place – a piece of old school Tokyo culture spared from the eruption of skyscrapers.
The district’s landmarks are entered through the grand Kaminarimon Gate (“thunder gate”).
This leads to Nakamise, a street lined with market stalls selling all sorts of Japanese snacks, crafts, souvenirs and artwork.
A few of the stalls had their shutters down but these were a spectacle in themselves.
Nakamise ends with one of the city’s most famous Buddhist temples: Sensoji.
Compared to the hectic atmosphere experienced in a lot of Tokyo, a peaceful morning in Asakusa was very welcome.
Kappabashi Street is where all of your kitchenware dreams come true. On arrival you are greeted by a massive chef and a stack of teacups.
As you walk down Kappabashi Street you can find a shop for pretty much anything kitchenware related that you could possibly think of. From the obligatory chopsticks and ramen bowls to knives the length of my arm and machines that cook 20 eggs in one go! Shops are stacked up to the ceiling.
Have you ever seen such a huge selection of cookie cutters!?
You can even buy the plastic food replicas that are displayed in a lot of restaurant windows in Japan.
A lot of the goods in these shops are very reasonably priced; if I lived in Japan I would have a very well stocked kitchen! It took a lot of strength not to buy anything!
Some of you may remember Gwen Stefani’s Harajuku girls from back in the day.
These girls were named after the Harajuku neighbourhood in Tokyo. Harajuku is quirky, colourful and cute. In Japan, no matter age or gender, there is never such a thing as “too cute”.
As you can make out from that photo, Harajuku is very crowded. It mainly consists of busy vintage clothing and cosplay shops.
A fun place for a bit of window shopping and people watching!
Kabukicho, in the Shinjuku district of Tokyo, is the city’s red-light district. Despite this, the area doesn’t seem particularly seedy. It is full of bars, themed restaurants, host and hostess clubs and love hotels.
Kabukicho is best visited at night when you can enjoy all the sounds, bright lights and crowds of people. Shinjuku is the centre of the nightlife and great fun for a night out.
The Shibuya crossing is famous for its manic scramble crossing. Hundreds (and even thousands at peak time) of people cross here in all directions every time the traffic lights change.
It is the busiest intersection in Japan, and maybe even the world. Despite the number of people on the crossing, the Japanese manage to manoeuvre through the crowds elegantly, avoiding the mad jostle that would be expected.
Admittedly, it is slightly more difficult in the rain with all the umbrellas!
Despite filling two posts with places to visit in Tokyo, I have barely scratched the surface of what the city has to offer. You could probably spend a lifetime here and still be in the same position. One thing is for certain though, there is definitely something for everyone in the gigantic metropolis of Tokyo.