Day 7: Tokyo Tower, Tokyo Station, Akihabara, Shibuya

A week into our Japan trip and we had a full day planned for the day. First things first… breakfast. We’ve seen Chez Lui on our last visit but didn’t get to try it. They have a roundish pastry item here that’s so flaky and the inside kind of reminds me of a cronut.

20171127_085039

Afterwards, we headed out to see Tokyo Tower (not to be confused with Tokyo Skytree that we saw the previous day). Tokyo Tower is a self-supporting, steel lattice tower that was inspired by the Eiffel Tower in Paris and the second tallest structure in Japan. At just under 333 metres tall, it’s marginally taller than the Eiffel Tower but 300 metres shorter than Tokyo Skytree. Painted a bright orange and white colour to meet air safety regulations, it stands out among the shorter concrete and glass buildings in the area.

20171127_093234

These guys are called the Noppon Brothers and are the mascots of Tokyo Tower. The one in the blue overalls is supposedly the older brother but I’m not sure why he has a bandage on his forehead.

20171127_093602 20171127_093552

20171127_093637

They have some really nice views from the observation deck and you can see the size of the shadow that the tower casts on the buildings below.

20171127_094356 20171127_094425

From here, you can see the nearby Zōjō-ji Buddhist temple and surrounding grounds.

20171127_094514 20171127_094904

Tokyo Tower is known for their lookdown windows on the main observation deck. I was actually expecting them to be a bit bigger but they offer you a good aerial view of the streets down below.

20171127_095851 20171127_095923

20171127_100018

In the basement, you’ll find the some cafes and souvenir shops in “Foot Town” as well as an indoor amusement park known as One Piece Tower.

20171127_101126

Afterwards, we decided to head out to see the area around Tokyo Station. But first, we needed to stop off for some lunch. We’ve never been to Shake Shack before and decided this would be a good chance to see what all of the hype was about.

20171127_113648

From there, it was just a short walk to Tokyo Station. While we’ve been here in the past, we were only on the inside of the station and never really got to see it from the outside. The large brick station is quite imposing and serves a number of different train lines (including the Shinkansen bullet trains). We’ve gotten lost on more than one occasion inside this busy station either looking for our connecting train or trying to find the Tokyo Character Street.

20171127_120631

20171127_120847

Continuing north-northeast, we headed out to Akihabara because we were looking for an otamatone and figured we’d find it in one of the many large electronic stores in the area.

20171127_134244 20171127_134514

Words of advice… if you see a Mister Donut on your trip to Japan, make sure you pick up a Pon De Ring.

20171127_135342

With night descending upon Tokyo, we headed out to the busy Shibuya area. You’ve probably seen the seemingly chaotic pedestrian scramble of Shibuya Crossing in tv shows and movies. The lights cycle every two minutes and it can get very crowded during the rush hour due to the nearby Shibuya Station.

20171127_164921 20171127_165005

20171127_165507 20171127_165633

20171127_173542

Heading west, we soon found ourselves in a quieter neighbourhood of Shibuya as we tried to find our dinner destination, Kaikaya By The Sea. This izakaya is about a 10 minute walk from the Hachikō statue and located on a small side street that seems more alley than street. By far, one of our best meals in Tokyo.

20171127_193930 20171127_182308

We capped off our night with a walk to see the Winter Illumination at the Shibuya Blue Caves just south of Yoyogi Park. We thought that we’ve seen some pretty good Winter Illumination displays before but Shibuya Blue Caves is truly amazing (too bad it’s so crowded). As you can guess from the name, there are tons of blue lights here (about 600,000 blue LED lights actually). The lights are strung along the trees and, as the tree branches come in together, it gives you the appearance of a blue cave.

20171127_200304 20171127_200346

20171127_200419 20171127_200513

They also put in a reflective surface on the ground which reflects the blue lights even more.

20171127_200613 20171127_200802

20171127_200825 20171127_200913

20171127_201044 20171127_201150

20171127_201219 20171127_201212

20171127_201407

If you only see one Winter Illumination, this is the one you should check out.

Advertisements
%d bloggers like this: