Hawaii Mom Blog: Visit Japan: 24-hour Adventures in Tokyo

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November 9, 2015

Visit Japan: 24-hour Adventures in Tokyo


Night lights in Shinjuku.


Taking advantage of the stopover in Tokyo from Singapore, I took the advice of friends and stayed one night in Shinjuku; a large entertainment, business and shopping area around Shinjuku Station.  My hotel's proximity to Shinjuku Station, the world's busiest railway station made visits to Harajuku and Shibuya super easy.


Japan's cool weather was a nice contrast to the heat in Singapore, but I was surprised that the sun had already set before 5pm, about the time I arrived to my hotel.  I quickly checked-in and set out to grab a bite(s) at the Dominique Ansel Bakery and Magnolia Bakery on Omotesando before exploring the surrounding area.  



After two desserts, ramen, and beer I walked around Harajuku checking out the cool shops (and one of the largest Daiso) along Takeshita Dori and taking note of the mass amounts of crepes for sale.  Before heading back to my hotel on a friend's recommendation, I stopped at the Tokyo Metropolitan Government Office, whose observation decks on the 45th floors are open to the public for free.

 



Lots of Shopping!

Kyushu Jangara Noodle Restaurant



Beautiful view of Tokyo.


I honestly didn't have much planned for my one night stay so I was thankful that friends via Facebook and Instagram gave me suggestions which I built my day around.  After I checked out of my hotel, I headed to Meiji Jingu, one of Tokyo's major shrines.  It was quite beautiful and I'm glad I arrived early as I enjoyed the walking paths in solitude.  
 


One of the entrances to Meiji Jingu.
 



I offered a prayer.



A wedding on the grounds.



After devouring my first cronut, I set out to find Umegaoka Sushi no Midori in Shibuya having heard great things.  After about an hour of walking, I finally realized (when I ended up at a sushi counter in a grocery store) that I had routed the wrong location in my maps app.  I felt defeated (and super hungry), but there was no way that I was going to eat sushi in a grocery store when I was in Japan.  After several deep sighs, I headed back to the train station and finally arrived at the sushi bar's correct location.  Only now, I was number 117 and they were serving customer 77.  My stubborn resolve finally gave way as they called out number 97.  The restaurant had a takeout counter with ready-made sushi, so I asked if they could make me a set from the restaurant's menu.  After about 20 minutes, I was eating some really authentic and delicious sushi! 



This sushi was worth getting lost!



Since I was in Shibuya, I stopped to visit Hachiko, the statue of the famous Hachi, a dog who continued to wait for his master every day in front of Shibuya Station even after his master had passed away.  This was a popular spot as people lined up for their turn to take a picture with the cute dog.


Hachiko


  My last stop was for some ice cream at Laduree back in Shinjuku before heading to the airport for hours of omiyage shopping.  I only had a little taste of Tokyo (city 38 of 40 cities) this time around and I can't wait to go back for more. 


Delicious Laduree ice cream.



Can't wait to return to Japan!


    

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