Suijo Bus Tokyo Reviews
Saturday River Cruise: Asakusa to Odaiba Mar 26, 2011
Woke up with a bad case of hangover after a night out in Roppongi. Gathered myself up and headed straight to the hotel lobby. Today’s plan was to go shopping for souvenirs and take a cruise to Odaiba. I queried the concierge who said that the Nakamise shopping street approaching the Sensoji temple is the best place to buy traditional souvenirs.
So I took the Chuo line to Asakusabashi and then the Asakusa line to Asakusa.
I entered the Nakamise through the Kaminarimon entrance on the directions of an elderly lady near the metro train station. “It will lead you straight to the temple”, she said.
There are two statues of guardian deities Raijin (god of thunder) and Fujin (god of wind) guarding the entrance. I was very pleased to see the old Tokyo atmosphere much in contrast to the modern parts of Tokyo like Roppongi, Shibuya or Ginza.
There were so many shops lined on both the sides of the street selling everything from Kimonos, folding fans, wooden shoes to local snacks and even pearl jewelry!
I got a set of Sake cups, a set of tea cups and a lot of rice crackers. Really wanted to get some of that pearl jewelry but ‘twas way over budget. Made me wonder the price of Mikimoto pearls.
Concluding my walk at the Hanzomon gate and after paying obeisance to the “Kannon” I left in search of my primary motive, the Sumidagawa river and the Sumida river cruise. BTW it’s called the Suijo bus and I have no idea why!
I had to go to Odaiba to see the artificial beach, the Fuji TV building, the Rainbow Bridge, the statue of Liberty, one of the world’s largest ferris wheel and then ride the fully automated unmanned Yuirkamome train to Shimbashi. So what better way to go to Odaiba!
The cruise will take about 75 minutes and will cost you around 1,500 yen. Although there are direct ferries to Odaiba, the frequency is much less. And if you land at the ferry terminal in Asakusa at 2 p.m. like me, you’ll have to take two ferries. One from Asakusa to Hinode Pier and then the other from Hinode Pier to Odaiba. But excitement-wise it’s the same.
The views are amazing with a lot of photo opps. Take for example the Asahi building with a golden ‘poop’ over it and over 13 bridges including the famous “Rainbow Bridge”. One of the locals on the ferry told me I should try a bike trip along the Sumida river. Odaiba is much more beautiful at night serving as a backdrop to a dozen or more small boats offering dinner cruises.
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