Thursday, August 1, 2013

Our last 3 days in Tokyo

On July 23 we met up with my cousin, Tao Tao and her husband, Jing. They were nice enough to show us around Tokyo.

In front of the torii at the Meiji Jingu Shrine entrance

Barrels of sake donated to the Meiji Shrine

With my cousin Tao Tao (and another family)

Main shrine building

Prayers left by visitors

At the Shibuya crossing with Jing, my cousin's husband

With Hachiko, an Akita dog who would meet his owner after work at the Shibuya station everyday. He was so loyal that even after his owner's death he would be seen waiting for him. Hachi was one of only 30 purebred Akitas.

Tokyo Metropolitan Government Office

The view from the Tokyo Metropolitan Government Office

Oh Paul

Another view from the top

Walking around Shinjuku

A huge Uniqlo store! My cousin Amy would love this...

Paul is full after a big dinner

On July 24, we finally did our laundry and then went to a baseball game. It is hard to find a laundromat in Tokyo. First off, they call it coin laundry. Secondly, looking on Google Maps was a little frustrating. Genius idea? Ask the hotel staff. They gave us a map and directed us around the corner.

Paul is enjoying laundry day

Later that afternoon, we headed to watch the Yakult Swallows play the Hanshin Tigers. The Swallows are the home team at Jingu Stadium but you couldn't tell with the number of Tigers fans.

Heading to the stadium

Of course it was raining when we arrived

But the seats filled up despite the weather

We did not have umbrellas

Go Go Swallows!

Backpack beer ladies

I got an Asahi beer

Go Go Swallows!

There was just a dark cloud over the stadium...see, it was clear over there


Tigers fans

This guy was eating a hot dog with chopsticks!

One of the mascots

The Tigers (away team) Ryoto Arai made 2 home runs - check out how the crowd goes wild in this video

We left before the game ended but it was 11-0; final score was 12-0

Yay! We weren't completely drenched

More Tigers fans celebrating

On July 25, our last full day in Tokyo, we decided to explore some more - there really is a lot to see! I really wanted to go to the top of Tokyo Tower but it wasn't as easy to find as we thought. Four Square led us astray! But we saw some nice things along the way despite the muggy weather. We first walked through the Imperial Palace since it was right next to our hotel.

Inuibon Moat

Completed in 1638, the Tenshudai Donjon Base was the highest donjon ever built in Japan (58m) 

But it was burnt down in 1657 and has never been reconstructed

Obansho Great Guardhouse - strictly guarded by samurai guardsmen

Hyakunin-bansho Guardhouse - biggest guardhouse set up in front of the Ote-san-no-mon gate

Otemon Gate

The door at Otemon Gate

Otebon Moat

Here's a map of the Imperial Palace

After this nice long walk, we got in the subway and headed to the Tokyo Tower.

FAIL. See that pointy structure all the way over there? That's the Tokyo Tower.

So, we decided to go to the infamous electronics district Akihabara instead.

We had heard that a lot of strange people come here...

Taking it all in - it's a bit overwhelming

It really is a sensory overload

There are restaurants where these maids are your waitresses...we did not go

However, we did go to Club Sega!

Paul is obsessed with driving games lately so we tried one out at Club Sega

After the craziness of Akihabara, we finally figured out how to get to Tokyo Tower.

Hooray! We found it.

Entrance to the Zojo-ji Temple

Cool door

Daiden (Main Hall) of the Buddhist compound of Zojo-ji and Tokyo Tower

Slinky shot of the Tokyo Tower

The Tokyo Tower is 333 meters hight - 13 meters higher than the Eiffel Tower

View from the Main Observatory at 150 meters high

Looking East along the Boso Peninsula from the Main Observatory

We also got tickets for the Special Observatory at 250 meters high...Paul isn't that impressed

100 meters higher, the view is a little better looking East towards the Boso Peninsula

Lookdown Window

Looking down

We then headed down but inadvertently stopped on the kids level. Paul tried to fit inside Pokemon...

He fits

This is a better picture

He then drop kicked this robot

And was convinced he could fit inside it as well...

We don't know why Hitler was here

We finally made it out and headed towards the Shimbashi area where there is supposed to be great bars...

We didn't really find one but it looked like a happenin' place!

This is the smoking area

Our last stop of the night was the Shibuya Crossing - I wanted to get a better photo of people crossing the street


Feel free to leave comments - would love to hear from you. But remember to leave your name!