Thursday, May 04, 2017

Okay! As promised, we start with Tokyo. But first, let me tell you the situation we had. Maybe most of you would go the same route as we did, but please, no. If possible and if able, do a multi-city route. To save time, try to at least make your plane route like this:

(home country) - TOKYO - OSAKA - (home country)

We are based in Singapore, and when we saw Cathay Pacific had its seat sale to Japan, the first thing that came to our mind was to book it even if it was a back and forth trip. At first, we didn't plan to visit Tokyo and concentrate more on the Kansai Region, but hey... we thought. why not?


Illustrated above is how we first manage to go around. We had Hong Kong as our stop over, and then continued the travel all the way to Osaka.

We know that even if we have the JR Pass, there are some areas we plan to visit were located on places that is not near to the JR line. Some are operated by private railway companies. Having said that, we bought another reloadable, IC card that can be used to access those trains, even subways and buses.

There are several cards in Japan for a person to use, probably because there are a lot of railway companies. Compared to countries like Singapore, there's only one universal card for all railways (EZ-Link), also in Hong Kong (Octopus), and even in Philippines, (Beep). The West Railways (Kansai Region) had one of these cards called ICOCA, and could still be used even if you're in a different region in Japan. In Tokyo, one of the few cards (with a cute penguin logo as well), is called SUICA.

know more on the different kinds of IC cards in Japan on this link.

So, to save the hassle and panic once we head to Tokyo and before we left the airport to head to the main city of Osaka, we purchased all the tickets that we would need: this ICOCA card and as well as the tickets for the Scenic Railway in Kyoto. 

From Osaka International Airport, we took a Haruka express train to go to Shin-Osaka station so that we could take the JR Yamanote or Tokaido Shinkansen (bullet train) trip that would bring us to Tokyo. But first, we took time The duration of the trip was about less than 3 hours. It was this time that we already "activated" our JR Pass.

Haruka express to Shin Osaka

We arrived at Tokyo around night time but can still pretty much roam around and check what could be the nearest areas to check like the convenience stores and the duration if we walk from our hotel back to the train station.

At Tokyo, we alighted at Kanda station since this is nearby to our hotel.

We basically roam around the night life and pretty much where our foot randomly brought us. Day 1 is more like your introduction to Japan whereby you can finally adjust your body with the temperature and the environment.  


We have set the second day to roam around Tokyo. We woke up as early as seven in the morning to do this things in this list:

Tsukiji Market
Sensoji Temple and Nakamise Shopping Street in Asakusa
Tokyo Skytree (Solamachi)

Tsukiji Fish Market is basically the portal of the freshest marine life produce that you'd know for sure could be the one plated in your meal or being exported outside Japan. We did not go to the actual market itself due to the heavy traffic that all tourists may cause, which is why we did an alternative route of exploring the outer market and tour around the retail shops and restaurants which were just as awesome.

Hands down to the tako head ojisan. LOL :D

The Sensoji Temple in Asakusa is another major landmark in Tokyo and is said to be the oldest Temple in Tokyo. We went to this part as we knew that this location is one of the music videos of WORLD ORDER, leading to Albert's inspiration to do it on our wedding SDE video :)

at Nakamise Shopping Street :)

Solamachi, or  the Tokyo Skytree is another landmark in Tokyo, a broadcasting tower and is the tallest structure in Japan. The location is not so far away from Asakusa, so we tried to visit even if we did not go up to the observation deck. 

 If you're a fan of the anime Detective Conan, they have used the Skytree as an

Akihabara Electric Town
Nippon Budokan

Well... Akihabara! Who doesn't know Akihabara? Another location of the WORLD ORDER MV, but actually, Akihabara is also dubbed as the "Electric Town" in Japan. This is where the land of gadgets, video games, maid cafes, toy aficionados, so is manga and anime goods. This is basically the haven for all otakus.

Nippon Budokan is originally a traditional dojo in the past, where martial artists are competing for national tournaments and such. In the modern times, the Budokan is being used to held major concerts by the famous acts, both locally and internationally. The Beatles and Frank Sinatra were said to perform here in the past. Even my fave group Perfume has performed there too.

At that time, there was an all-time rock concert that was about to happen and consisted the bands Asian Kung-Fu Generation and Mongol800 and others. I could only cry in despair, internally.

Chidorigafuchi Park
Zojoji Temple
Tokyo Tower and the One Piece Tower (indoor theme park)

We have selected Chidorigafuchi Park as one of the best spots for hanami (flower viewing) on this trip. Nearby the Nippon Budokan, this park is generally more than a hundred of sakura surrounding the moat of the Tokyo Imperial Palace.

The Zojoji Temple is a nice buddhist temple just in front of the Tokyo Tower. From the history records, this has been the temple selected by Tokugawa Ieyasu and his family. It was a nice sunset spot to take shots with the Tokyo Tower behind it. It is like a fusion of both old and new architecture.

We couldn't let the day pass without visiting the Tokyo Tower, as it has a lot of media references as I grow up. It was a plus for us to go inside the tower ( but did not really went up to the observation deck) but we did had fun to see the newly opened attraction / indoor theme park of the anime and manga One Piece.

Menus at Mugiwara Cafe :)


We were dead tired by this time, hence we went to these two places, for me to do some quick find of a more comfortable boots other than my DMs. I found one in Harajuku, the Fashion District. We did not dare to go past Omotesando as my feet was super tired even as early as we reached One Piece Tower.

Since Harajuku is just right after Shibuya, we decided to drop by the most famous ramble crossing.

and of course, paid homage to this wonderful statue of Hachiko.

DAY THREE (at Tokyo):

Seems like we ran out of batteries when we went to Shibuya, hence we did not manage to take a decent photo of us crossing the intersection, but we did have it when we came back in the morning before we went to our Mount Fuji tour.

We had to do the Mount Fuji tour on our third day, that is basically the highlight of our Tokyo side trip and when we came back, we just had a quick stop at Shinjuku.

That basically is it. There were some unfortunate events that we did not managed to go due to our full-packed schedule but nevertheless, we enjoyed every bit of it. Well... as they always say, you don't need to go to all of these places. You have to save some for your comeback.

So, surely... I would definitely come back for you, Disney Sea.

I would be blogging a separate post for our Mt. Fuji in the next couple of days.

Meanwhile, please enjoy this video that I came up, two years ago. :)


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