Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Tokyo Trip Recap - places


I was lucky enough to had a chance to live in Tokyo for around 10 months back in 2013. This blog was actually started to sort of document my life there. Now, Tokyo is no longer a travel destination for me; it's more like a home, a place to return to where I have people waiting for me. Personally, my trip last week was for that reason as well, to meet my friends and people I had not met since I left Japan back in 2014. Nevertheless, there were places that I was yet to visit in my initial stay and I used this chance to visit them.




1st day; began with me forgetting my whole skincare and body care in the airport toilet. I immediately returned to the airport because I just couldn't let go of my skincare (sobs kiehl's). Luckily, they kept it for me! After that, we're supposed to go to see the Royal Palace Garden but it was raining, and cloudy, and I got sudden call from my office (my main office is in Tokyo) telling me to come there. I had to ditch the plan for 1st day because I ended up with my coworkers and boss for a whole day. I finally returned to the hotel and unpack 30 mins before midnight. Not the first day I had in mind but I got to eat for free courtesy of my boss, so it was not entirely unlucky.

2nd day; we strolled by the hostel area before departing to Asakusa (it was last minute decision). I had been to Kaminarimon about 3 times before but I never truly appreciate its beauty until then (3 times I was there, I was escorting people).  We walked all the way to Tokyo Sky Tree but only got to admire it from outside because the ticket line was so long. After that, we went to Odaiba. My feet and shoulders were seriously killing me so I didn't take a lot of picture, I stored my camera inside my bag after I entered Venus Fort. By the night, we visited Oedo Onsen Monogatari. I heard about the magic of onsen before and finally got to experience that! All my soreness and aches were healed. I'm definitely a hot spring person.


3rd day; we went to Meiji-jinguu at Harajuku to begin the day. It wasn't as crowded as the last time I was there (August 2013) so I got to look around a bit more. The enma there was mostly written by tourists/foreigners (amusingly, many mentioned please no Trump for president). I enjoy reading these enma/wish plates, purely because it reminds me that there are people in this world who still wishes for world peace and greater things for this world. We left Meiji-jinguu for Harajuku Takeshita Doori, as always, it was crowded and overwhelming. We went to Disney Store because I wanted to buy souvenirs for my baby cousins (but left it with Captain America tsmtsum instead. I spent the next day looking for Winter Soldier's with no avail). Finished with Takeshita-doori, we visited La Foret where Amez bought a pretty Laduree lipstick (and I snatched their catalogue, of course). 

Amez wanted to go to Dominique Ansel so we went there. The line was so long, I think we spent about 20 minutes until we got seats. Luckily, Dominique himself was there! (totally unimportant but he bumped into me, and it felt like a famous celebrity bumped into me. He's a pastry chef so he is totally a celebrity for me. Everyone who makes sweets are God-sent). I ordered the infamous cronuts and matcha latte. They were good but way too sweet for my liking, after consuming them, I was pumped to walk from Harajuku to Shibuya just to burn the calories. We spent the rest of the day in Shibuya karaoke-ing and shopping. I met up with some friends I made when I was studying there, it was really nice to meet old friends.



4th day; destination was Shinjuku. I met up with my Japanese friend and her twin sister. We began by eating katein zushi then visited the Tokyo Metropolitan Government Tower to see Tokyo from above. After that we simply looked for another place to sit and talk. Bidding goodbye to her, I met up with another friend, this time from Vietnam. We almost called the appointment off but thankfully she could make it, which we was really happy for since our last meeting was in February 2014 when I went home from my study.

5th day; was the highlight for so many reason. First, we're going to the Ikebukuro, possibly my favorite place in Tokyo. But before that, we went to Seibu Department Store where I got myself Nars and Burberry products. The next destination was Animate, then Sunshine City where we're going to meet another friends. We simply visited random stores, freaked out because do we need this or not? but ended up not buying any. After meeting our friends, we went to the Otome Road where Amez kind of let herself free. Around 5, we bid goodbye to our friends and I picked up my other friend then we went to Nekorobi Cat Cafe. I'm not a cat person but I was pleasantly surprised when a cat got so clingy on me. Okay, I got to admit cat was cute, but only in that instant.

6th day; the last day, I have to leave for the airport by noon. In the morning, I met another best friend of mine from Japan. We went to eat at this very famous restaurant in Shinjuku Station called Sarabeth. The line was insane, it was longer than Dominique Ansel, I think we waited for around 30 - 40 minutes. But the food was delicious, it was so worth it. I had fun talking with my friend as well, the last time I met her was August last year so we had a lot to catch up.


As mentioned, I did not visited many tourist spot, I think only places in 2nd and 3rd day can be categorized as tourist spot. My main purpose this time was more meeting my friends and (shameless) shopping, so overall, I was really happy with this trip. I just wish I had more time to speak and hang out with my friends, it's been sooo long since I met them.

Have you ever been to Japan? Do you have any particular place you want to see/visit in Tokyo?

acceptance over understanding
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