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Tokyo Day one

Tokyo Travel Blog

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Imperial Palace Gardens

The difficulties of last night spilt over into today. Our toughest day yet began with a trek to find the tourist information centre  in the Tokyo government building in Shinjuku. It was signposted at first but then the signs dried up and we ended up trapped in a sub terranian maze beneath the city. We eventually managed to find some steps back up to the street and from there found the entrance to the building we were looking for, and lo there it was. We were glad we hadn`t given up as the staff were  very sweet and helpful.

We had some tickets to book for our upcoming trip to Mt. Fuji so we set off in the direction of the ticket office for the Highway Buses, which cost 700yen and take about an hour and three quarters from Shinjuku station.

Yasakuni Shrine
The office kept moving, everytime we asked we were given directions but when we got there the office was somewhere else. We were both there the office was somewhere else. We were both getting a bit frustrated, lack of food and a good cup of coffee is what we put it down to. Eventually we got there and got our tickets sorted but by this time it was noon and all we'd experienced of Tokyo was trudging around underground passages and searching non descript offices.

We headed into the maze that is Shinjuku station and set off for the Imperial Palace. We managed to get off at the wrong stop but a very helpful lady put us back on the right track, literally. The Imperial Palace was yet more disappointment. It may have been our mood but we really didn`t think it was anything special. We sat down and decided to go to the Yasakuni Shrine and the Yushukan War Museum.

Tokyo Tower
That`s when our day began to turn. The shrine was beautiful and the museum was quite a shock. The total lack of contrition and insistance that Japan was the slighted party throughout the history of every conflict they have been involved in seemed totally at odds with our western perspective. The biggest shock though was the reverence as well as obvious admiration and pride in the suicide squads of WW2.

We were starving but still hadn`t managed to find any vegan food. We headed off to Tokyo Tower which if it looks familiar, is because it is.It`s a copy of the Eiffel Tower except painted red and white! Just as we got to the tower we stumbled across an organic cafe which had veggie options. Not exactly the Japanese food we were hoping for but it was good to eat. Tokyo Tower was awesome, by sheer fluke we had timed it just right and got up to the viewing platform just as the sun was setting.

Views from Tokyo Tower
The photos we got are stunning but they really can`t do it justice. Especially the ones of Mt. Fuji in the distance which we are using as our photo for the Japan section of these blogs.

Elated we made our way to the Kabuki-za theatre in Ginza district and, as is the way when you feel positive, everything was easy and we arrived without any hassles. The performance can be several hours long which might be great if you are into it but we were really just interested in a tasting, so opted to see just one act, which was just over an hour and only cost ¥900. We hired an earpiece translator and commentary, which you really have to do to get anything at all from the performance. Have to say it was totally brilliant, really interesting and we both thoroughly enjoyed it.

All in all we had a brilliant day. The delights of the morning were made more so by the trials and tribulations of the morning.

sylviandavid says:
Good job of staying positive! Sylvia
Posted on: Dec 08, 2007
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Imperial Palace Gardens
Imperial Palace Gardens
Yasakuni Shrine
Yasakuni Shrine
Tokyo Tower
Tokyo Tower
Views from Tokyo Tower
Views from Tokyo Tower
Steph in Imperial Palace Gardens
Steph in Imperial Palace Gardens
Adam in Imperial Palace Gardens
Adam in Imperial Palace Gardens
Moat around Imperial Palace Gardens
Moat around Imperial Palace Gardens
Us at Yasakuni Shrine
Us at Yasakuni Shrine
Steph at Yasakuni Shrine
Steph at Yasakuni Shrine
Yasakuni Shrine
Yasakuni Shrine
Yasakuni Shrine
Yasakuni Shrine
Yasakuni Shrine
Yasakuni Shrine
War Museum
War Museum
Tokyo Tower
Tokyo Tower
Views from Tokyo Tower
Views from Tokyo Tower
Views from Tokyo Tower
Views from Tokyo Tower
View of Mt. Fuji from Tokyo Tower
View of Mt. Fuji from Tokyo Tower
Views of Mt. Fuji from Tokyo Tower
Views of Mt. Fuji from Tokyo Tower
Views from Tokyo Tower
Views from Tokyo Tower
Steph on the lookout glass in Toky…
Steph on the lookout glass in Tok…
Kabuk-za Theatre
Kabuk-za Theatre
Kabuk-za Theatre
Kabuk-za Theatre
Tokyo
photo by: maka77