Tokyo: Day Five

I woke up early and finished packing my bags ready for Seiji to collect me with our rental car ready to go exploring for the day.

I headed to the supermarket to get some baked goods as I was too lazy to go the full distance to the bakery. I ended up with weird pancakes with goopy stuff in the middle and little sugared raisin toast squares. They were nice but very sweet.

Seiji was waiting for me when I got back and we hit the road. First stop Yokohama. Took a while to get on the motorway and I noticed all the trees looked a but weird – all stumpy. After the earthquake they cut off all the branches because they all fell down in the middle of the road and blocked it. And I thought they were just trying something interesting!

Once on the highway it was an easy path to Yokohama just a few toll stops. Yokohama is about an hour out of Tokyo and a really popular place to visit and live.

Seiji took me straight to Chinatown and his fave park. Chinatown stretches out about 5×5 blocks. It’s huge! Seiji couldn’t even understand anything as they were all speaking Chinese. We walked the streets trying different food and watching all the people. Eventually Seiji found somewhere he thought we should eat – a tiny place with 850Β₯ ($8.50aud) set meals. The plates just kept coming! Starting with some kind of weird thing that tasted like mustard, then Chinese Gyoza, fried rice, pork noodle soup and a coconut jelly & fruit dessert. I loved the soup, beautiful broth. So cheap!

With a full tummy we grabbed Starbucks to walk around the park. This is Seiji’s fave park and its a beautiful area. It was built from the rubble after a big earthquake they had in the 1950’s. We were so full we didn’t last long walking around so we went on a driving tour then back to Tokyo.

Shibuya was the next stop. After finding a park (they do valet parking for 300Β₯ an hour in the city!) we went for a walk to a shop Seiji knew was good for gifts then tried to walk to Harajuku. We went by a huge old park but decided to go around it to get to Harajuku with more time. We got lost. I really enjoy getting lost when I don’t need to be anywhere. It’s fun. You see things you wouldn’t usually.

Harajuku meant shopping so I had a look around while Seiji chilled outside. He doesn’t like stocking shopping that much for some reason? Lol.

Back to get the car to drop it off in Shibuya before a casual dinner and to take my bus to the airport.

This is about the time I realised I was about to miss my flight and I had the most intense and crazy taxi ride of my life!!! Read more HERE

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Cheap eats in Yokohama
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Mmmm salad rice crackers..
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Playing with Seiji’s guns
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Stunning Yokohama
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Get in my belllyyyyy

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Tokyo: Day One

I arrived late last night and settled into my mate Seiji’s house. He lives in Suginami-ku which is only 15mins by train to Harajuku and Shinjuku. Lucky for me he has given me full use of his apartment while I’m here, saving me a fortune in accommodation! He is staying at his girlfriends house.

After checking my social networks (yes I’m addicted) I fell into a deep sleep and only awoke at 9am! Decent sleep in for me.

I got changed and headed for a walk to the local supermarket. My family owned a supermarket most of my life so I LOVE going to new ones, especially overseas and seeing how they run and what try stock. Add my love of random food and you’ll understand why I was on there 2hours!

You can find sushi, tempura snacks and a large assortment of I have no idea as I can’t read Japanese in their supermarkets! There’s a massive range of drinks as confectionary. Something I found interesting was that all beauty, health and pet products were stocked completely separately upstairs, you buy your produce and general groceries, pay for them, then head upstairs to the rest of it.

Anyway I came back home and Seiji had slept in and was late for our lunch so I cleaned up the tiny apartment until he arrived.

Seiji took me to his fave cafe for lunch. It’s a cute little place and all the furniture is imported from his home town Matsyuma. I had karagi chicken with salad and rice. Not sure what Seiji had but it was pork haha.

Seiji went to work and I made my way to Harajuku – one if my fave places ever. I bought some gifts and spent hours just floating around taking everything in.

Come 7pm I headed back to Seiji’s hood and tried Mos burger. Teriyaki chicken burger was my choice – yummy but could see the fat dripping off it.

Day two tomorrow, no plans but to meet Seiji for dinner – anyone have any tips for places to visit?

 

 

 

Harajuku Gyoza

Sake Sake SAKEEE!!!! Summimasennnnnn!!! Sometimes I can’t tell if they actually have something to say or whether they’re just yelling for Vacuum bags are amazing!!!! fun of it. I expect the latter.I LOVE the atmosphere at Harajuku Gyoza, it’s just so fun and exciting! Between staff yelling, dancing, the music and the design you’re never quite sure where to look in case you miss something.A huge open kitchen allows you to watch with a watering mouth as your Gyoza is cooked. You can choose to sit at a private table or at the bar surrounding the kitchen. Both are good.Dumplings are made to share so grab a buddy and choose a whole bunch. I usually go for prawn, duck and pork. Pan fried mmmm.I usually get the cucumber miso salad to accompany it with some edamame and a Kirin, delicious beer to complement the Gyoza. Mouth is watering just writing this.I made an amazing discovery here the other day. Basically it’s tempura eggplant. Holy wow. Melts in your mouth. Try it.The other awesome thing is the dessert dumpling. Yup you heard right! You can choose from Nutella an banana, deep fried with ice cream – my personal fave or the peanut butter an white choc with ice cream. Also yummy.Guess where I’m going to have to head for dinner now I’ve written this?!Do yourself a favor when you visit, order Sake. Even if you don’t want it or like it – it’s just fun πŸ™‚
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Prawn & duck gyoza
Tempura eggplant, miso cucumber salad & edamame
Kirin
Dessert gyoza

Harajuku Gyoza on Urbanspoon

Japan here I come!

Japan
I’m going to Japan again WAHOOOO!!!!

Soooo excited right now!!

So the plan is to head to Tokyo and just chill out. Live in their city, do what they do.
I have been before, done the touristy thing and this time I just want to hang out with my mate Seiji and his girlfriend and explore tokyo. Eat far too much. Get lost in Harajuku.

AND if I’m lucky, I will get to experience the Sakura festival! The dates can change every year by up to 2 weeks depending how cold it is and the trees only bloom for 2 weeks. So with a bit of luck I will catch the end of the festival and be frolicking in fields of baby pink blossoms.
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IΒ haven’tΒ booked my flights yet but Jetstar have a sale so that’s easy! $600 return from the Gold Coast plus I can stay at my mate’s apartment for free. Done deal.

Now if only I can persuade someone to come with me! It’s always more fun sharing your experiences. Especially if things go wrong!

Stunning photo of Tokyo, what a view this would be from your window!

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