In September 2012, I went to Tokyo with my Fiance. It was his 30th birthday and we wanted to celebrate with a trip to remember, and with him being an avid video gamer and me being obsessed with the kitsch and cute, where better to go than the Metropolis that is Tokyo?!
|View of stormy Tokyo from Metropolitan Government Building|
|If this is fast food....|
|Rainbow in Ginza|
Kiddyland / Hanuhinken - both amazing toyshops in Harajuku/Ginza respectively. We had so much fun in there, me with the Hello Kitty and Rilakuma goodies and Boy with the Transformers and Lego! I found so many gorgeous bento boxes and wanted to buy them all but they were quite expensive. I ended up settling on this adorable Rilakkuma set (Rilakkuma is a very cute, but grumpy bear by Sanrio).
My friend had asked me to get her as much bento stuff as I could but I knew there must be some better value bits out there, so I kept on hunting and eventually I found a great 100yen (80p) shop in Shibuya, where I got her (and myself) some really sweet bento items, and now she's looking forward to competitive mumming when her little boys starts nursery! He will be the only one with flags in his food and little rice balls! I also got myself and my parents a little Japanese ceramic cat from Daiso, another chain of 100yen shops in Harajuku. I didn't want to spend too much on my parents as I spent a lot on some gorgeous carved wooden chopsticks for them in China which they admired and then promptly gave back because they don't use chopsticks, ungrateful sods! Here we also stocked up on sweets to take back to work with us.
|Tokyo Station by night|
On the subject of food, when in Tokyo, one must visit the big department stores' food halls, they are like museums! So much beautifully presented confectionery and bento! Mitsukoshi in the heart of Ginza was a favourite .
|Books from Tokyo|
At this point it sounds like all I do is shop, how dreadful! Here's some culture bits:
|Dolls representing stillborn babies, Zojo-ji Temple|
|Saki barrels at Meiji Temple, Harajuku|
|Hibiya Park Garden Installations|
|View of Skyscrapers from Imperial Palace Gardens right before a storm|
Hibiya Park was also a highlight, it's a beautiful park right in the centre of Tokyo, but is so peaceful and tranquil. While we were there they had a competition for garden design, and there were loads of miniature gardens for the public to admire. We also found the nearby Godzilla statue, which was a lot smaller than I thought it would be! We spent a lot of time walking around the Imperial Palace Gardens and got caught in a hailstorm, huddling together under our umbrella in the middle of this historic sight was memorable! There is a section of the gardens which you can enter but we went on the last day of our trip, a Friday, and unfortunately it is closed on Fridays. Ueno Park is also enormous and beautiful, and home to many of Tokyo's museums and a small zoo.
That was lengthy! Everything about Tokyo was amazing, I loved every inch of it, even the crazy-busy bits. I want to go back the first chance I get. From now on I will just have to get my cute dosage from Super Cute Kawaii instead.
This year brings a trip to Paris for my birthday in March which we booked last night via Eurostar. We are going early on a Wednesday, staying one night and heading back on the Thursday which is my birthday. I can't wait, I am so excited! I am also hoping to go to Melbourne with mum around May but this depends on whether dad needs a back operation and when it will be. Fingers crossed!