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lysdor Tokyo - A travel report by Tiina
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Tokyo,  Japan - flag Japan -  Tðkyð
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lysdor's travel reports

AMAZING LAND OF THE RISING SUN

  13 votes
Page: 1 2

Tokyo travelogue picture
Here are some of the memories and thought from my short trip to Tokyo in the Land of the Rising SUN. They are normal tourist pictures but also shots of what I sensed while I was there. Yes, I know you probably won't feel those moments the same way as I did but you can let your imagination do the trick for you. This picture is from the imperial japanese gardens called Shinjuku Gyoen and was taken in wintertime! It's a large garden notable especially for the variety of styles featured (the garden's style includes include English, French, and Japanese gardens). A greenhouse filled with tropical plants offers even more variety to this peaceful scene.

Favourite spots:
Tokyo travelogue picture
Before enjoying your japanese dinner - GO to have a beer (you can choose from Kirin, Sapporo, and Asahi) or two in a local pub. Even without knowing any english the japanese waiters provided us with an excellent service. They showed me first the wine bottle in order to know if I agreed to have a glass poured from it. It was a good french chardonnay white wine - no complains. You can see two hot towels on the table. You always get one or several during a meal. HERE COMES THE STRANGE PART: I don't know how common it is but as japanese don't just "drink", we got with our beverages a cup with an almost uncooked egg. The question was how to eat it? Use the given chopsticks !?!!? or just drink it (LOL!!)?

What's really great:
Tokyo travelogue picture
Ginza was the first Japanese attempt to implement Western architecture on a large scale.(15min.on foot from Imperial Palace.) The shift that changed the area that had only contained the Shogun controlled mint into Japan's leading shopping district began at the time of the imperial Restoration in the latter part of the 19th cebtury. Today only the name remains.

Sights:
Tokyo travelogue picture
MEIJI-JINGU SHRINE
Before reaching the shrine, you pass this ICHI-NO-TORII gate made from 1700 years old cypress tree.

This shrine can be found at Harajuku (HARA = field and SHUKU = place of lodging). It's a beautiful example of SHINTO architecture.
Address:1-1 Kamizonocho, Yoyogi Shibuya-ku
Phone: 3379-5511
Admission: Free
Open: Daily, sunrise - sunset

Harajuku used to be a quiet station for visiters to Meiji Shrine
(The sanctuary dedicated to the Meiji Emperor and his consort.),
but it has changed drastically into the center for what is called Harajuku Fashion.
Both sides of the main road leading from Omotesando Subway Station
are lined with colorful boutiques,cafes,restaurants,and other stylish shops.
The teen fashion center lines on Takesita-dori,
a narrow alley crammed with little boutiques

Before you enter the Shrine you must purify yourself with water

Accommodations:
Tokyo travelogue picture
The Hilton Tokyo is located in Shinjuku, the new business, shopping and entertainment center of Tokyo. Twenty four hours a day, Shinjuku, pulsates with a vibrancy and excitement that typifies modern Japan.
The Hilton Tokyo is a glamorous landmark and an oasis of hospitality, comfort and style in this dynamic quarter. The hotel is Hilton International's largest hotel in Japan with 806 luxurious rooms and every room has traditional Shohji screens across the windows.

And as you might already know everything is VERY EXPENSIVE in JAPAN so are all hotels in this area!



Nightlife:
Tokyo travelogue picture
ETIQUETTES & BEHAVIORS
Here are some of the so many cultural tips you must know before coming to Japan.

TIPPING: it's simple - no tipping.

BILLS: always remember to put your credit card or cash in the little basket on the counter never straights in hands of the cashier.

RESTAURANTS BILLS: in Japan eating and paying do not match. You always pay on your way out UNLESS it is specified at the table that you should do it while still sitting there.

MEALS: you will always get a glass of tea or water when you arrive at your table as well as an * OSHIBORI: In most Japanese restaurants you will immediately be presented with a hot (or cool in the summer) wet towel. This oshibori should be used to wipe the hands clean before dining

...and how do you know your meal has reached the end? Well, you will be presented with a cup of japanese green tea.
...

Hangouts:
Tokyo travelogue picture
...
EATING HABITS:

* eating on the street is considered bad form

* 'Viking' meal = buffet meal

* soup is directly sipped from the bowl and slurpping sounds are acceptable also when eating noodles

* chopsticks should not be sticked vertically into the bowl of rice or pass morsels of food from one pair of chopsticks to another, as this is associated with death

BOWING: as it's the japanese custom everyone should do it including non-japanese. It's a polite gesture as shaking hands is not very common.


Restaurants:
Tokyo travelogue picture
Shabu-Shabu at the rooftop restaurant of the Shinjuku Sumitomo Building

DO NOT LAUGH, SERIOUSLY IT'S THOUGH!

I'm really trying to get hold of some slippery vermiselli with my chopsticks from a Shabu-Shabu Hot-Pot which is filled with boiling broth. You dip vegetables, wagyu a japanese beef with finely marbled flesh (OK) and some japanese nooddles (a nightmare) in it and then in a light sauce before you eat it. YOU SHOULD TRY IT - IT'S A LOT OF FUN even if I'm not laughing just now!

Meanwhile you can enjoy the breathtaking view from the 52nd floor and see all Tokyo at your feet



Other recommendations:
Tokyo travelogue picture
Some general facts

Here are some general facts and figures to show you how big Tokyo is and that in my 5 days stay I had time only to concentrate on few parts of this huge metropolitan.

HISTORY: EDO the former name of Tokyo in 1800 was at that time the largest city in the world with a population past 1 million.

TODAY: Tokyo is far more than just a city. It is the heart of the most populated urban agglomeration on the planet. Well, NOW I do believe it!! Tokyo (central part + 23 wards) has a population of about 8,9 million people!

The picture is Tokyo New City hall (243m) in Shinjuku
...................
SHINJUKU (which means 'New Lodgings') where two million people pass through each day. It seems that all Tokyo converges here. It is called today 'the city of the future' because of its towering skyscrapers and you might remember it from the films BLADE RUNNER, James Bond's YOU ONLY LIVE TWICE and SOLARIS.

Published on Tuesday October 14th, 2003


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Tue, Oct 21 2008 - 06:16 AM rating by mistybleu

Excellent report, it means so much more since i've just returned for Japan. Very cool picture of Japanese fashion

Tue, Feb 21 2006 - 11:54 PM rating by ehs1193

You would think that since Japan is so energetic, that it wouldn't be rude to eat on the street. I sometimes do that.

Tue, Apr 27 2004 - 06:17 PM rating by britman

What a fabulous report - a real lesson of what a good report is all about...thank you, I enjoyed reading it so much!

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