Yo Tokyo!

Tokyo is a megalopolis. It is one of the most exciting cities, regardless of when you visit. It is a very challenging place to visit: the language barrier, the cultural differences, and the ever present possibility off getting lost; yet all this makes it very interesting.  Although most people think it’s a very expensive place to visit, I found that it was not more expensive than going out in London, and even sometimes a bit cheaper. Public transport is not very expensive, but the network is very complicated and to work out the correct fare can be challenging. However, there is a top up card you can use on the subway which makes it easier.  Intercity travel is very expensive, so if you can get a JR Pass ( Japanese Rail Pass) it could be quite useful and save you money. Additionally, with the JR Pass you can use this on certain lines within Tokyo city – you can travel from the airport to the city centre, and use the very useful Yamonote line to travel around the city.

 

After sunset, there are no lack of activities to enjoy in Tokyo. As dusk falls, the sprawling metropolis of Tokyo transforms into a city of bright lights. Many observation decks in towers and tall buildings are open until around 22:00, providing great vantage points for lovely night views.

 

Outside Shibuya station you will find this famous crossing intersection. This area gets really crowded with shoppers, students, young couples and commuters. When the lights turn red at this busy junction, they all turn red at the same in every direction

 

The pictures above are from the Meiji Shrine. This shrine is dedicated to the memory of the Emperor Meiji and his wife, Empress Shoken. The shrine can be entered through one the decorated wooden gates. When I was in Tokyo it rained all the time, but the rain didn’t stop me exploring the city.

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This is a picture of me trying to get some blessings.

The Imperial Palace Grounds are located in the centre of the city. It sits in a busy urban area.  This magnificent area contains the  residence of the Emperor, along with stone walls, watchtowers, gates, and fairytale bridges.

 

 

Senso-ji temple was rebuilt several time. It is the oldest temple in Tokyo, and is dedicated to Kannon, the Goddess of Mercy. It attracts throngs of visitors. This religious sanctuary lies at the heart of a busy commercial district.

 

Ueno Park is very impressive, with it’s  temples, shrines, cherry trees, a magnificent lotus pond, and statues. It was raining quite a lot when I was at the park. One of the things that most impressed me, was the Shinobazu pond filled with lotuses.

 

Koishikawa Korakuen Garden it one of the oldest gardens in Tokyo. If you stroll around the park you will find a Chinese style bridge, the Full Moon Bridge, called Engetsukyo Bridge in Japanese, one of the oldest stone bridges in Tokyo. It is called the Full Moon Bridge because it makes a full circle with its own reflection in the water.

 

The National Museum of Modern art is impressive place, holding lots of works by Japanese and Western artists.

 

 

After spending a lot of time in the rain, I decided to take a break at the Cat Cafe. It is a very interesting place to go if you love cats like me. They have more then fifty cats on two floors. You can go there and spend some time stroking the cats and giving them treats.

 

Overall Tokyo is a massive city with a lot to offer. It is one of those cities that never sleeps. The food is delicious, and the Japanese people are very polite and welcoming. I loved the time I spent there.

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