Japan, part five.
If you haven’t already, here are parts one, two, three and four. This is it, the final installment. One might not expect two weeks in Japan to turn into a five-part series and yet, there’s so much more I could say. But I’ll spare you and tie things up with a Tokyo-centric bow instead.
Where to even begin. We got back to Tokyo after our brief excursion near Mt. Fuji, arriving at the same hotel where we started the whole adventure, some 12 days earlier. Almost immediately, Mac took us to see a nearby market where the local shop. Here, Jesse and I got duped into eating what turned out to be cold mashed potatoes on an ice cream cone, not mashed potato ice cream as advertised. Oh well, two weeks on the road leaves you weary.
That night we went over to Shinjuku to see the neighborhood at night and indulge in one of the more bizarre meals of the entire trip. Essentially it was similar to a fondue restaurant but with a fryer in the middle of each table. This was all-you-can-eat kushiage. What the heck. Once our 90 minutes ended, we trotted back to the hotel and passed out full of fried food.
The following morning, on our last full day, we set out early to conquer as much of Tokyo as we could, starting with Ueno Park. Here, we visited some of the shrines and took the time to peruse the Tokyo National Museum but heading back to Shinjuku. Thus began our Tokyo search for record stores and other recommendations Jesse stored up. From there, we went one stop over to Shibuya to see the scramble and wander around before doing the same in Harajuku. Exhausted, we went back to the Ueno area to rest and scope out a punk bar Jesse found a day earlier. Rock Bar Sakevi turned out to be an excellent time and just what we needed to end the trip on a high note. If you go, say hi to Toshi for us. With a few hours to kill the following morning, we walked over to the Tokyo Skytree with a stop at Senso-ji on the way.
All in all, a very successful trip. Definitely highly recommend the G Adventures Discover Japan option as a way to well, discover Japan. And with that, I say, sayonara to Japan. Back soon with Memphis highlights - until then, I hope you enjoy a happy Thanksgiving.
Images above: market in Uguisudani, street art, treats near Harajuku, Tokyo National Museum, robot restaurant in Shinjuku, Senso-ji, Tokyo Skytree, Toshi’s bar