72 Hours In Tokyo, Japan

Thursday, 16 November 2017

Just over 2 weeks ago (how has time gone that fast?!) my dad, sisters and I went on a family trip across the world to Japan for a 10 day express tour. It was by far one of the best holidays I've ever been on and have now fallen in love with the city of Tokyo.
I thought I would share the ins and outs of what we got up to in out 72 hours in the capital and seeing as I took an insane amount of photos, it would be a shame not to put them anywhere (except my insta which has already been spammed with the snaps!).

Day 1

We arrived in Tokyo around midday and had to brave the metro to get to our hotel in Iriya. It was a struggle at first as almost every sign and machine was all in Japanese (not to mention we were shattered from our 12 hour flight), however people were extremely kind and helpful so we made our way in the end.

After a quick stop to the hotel to drop the bags, we were straight back out. First stop: coffee. We found a little cafe opposite and had a rest/reenergise. Ueno was next as my sister's shoes had holes in them (not sure why she brought them!) so we had to buy some more and heard this was a good spot. My other sister and I explored while they shopped and came across two really edgy/vintage/retro places, unfortunately the prices were v expenny so no clothes for us! 

We found this crazy neon gambling place where loads of people were just playing the same game over and over, with music blaring and loads of clanging from the machines! It was so strange and gave me a bit of a headache...
Picture by Poppy
As this was an Intrepid Travel tour, we met with our group at 6. It was a lovely mix of people from Australia and America who we got to know throughout the following 9 days. 

Kauro, our tour guide/leader gave us the low down of activities, whisked us off to dinner and then we went to bed, exhausted.

Day 2

Kauro planned to take us to Harajuku where there was this bustling little street lined either side by cute little trinket shops and food stalls. It was pouring down with rain so manoeuvring between the many umbrellas was difficult! My dad kindly bought me some jewellery from this really cool shop below :) Thanks dad xx

The jewellery shop on the left!

After a speedy shopping session Kauro wanted to take us to the infamous Shinjuku crossing rather than visiting the Meji shrine as it was an awful day for it and said it wouldn't be great. Stupidly going against her advice, we decided to try it out, not wanting to miss out, and were a bit disappointed... It was all covered up because of the rain and ongoing construction so we only got to see a bit of it :/ What we saw was lovely but I know on a sunny day it would have been even better.

Meji shrine
Having split up from the group, we had to find our own way to the crossing (which again was tricky) where we had lunch and took lots of pics! Somehow we randomly ate in the same building as everyone else and stubbled across them on the way out which was lucky as we were then off to the next stop, passing by the most famous dog in Japan: Hachiko. Google his story, its super cute.

Shinjuku crossing

Tokyo is also well known for their themed restaurants and cafes, so of course we had to see what this was all about! Kauro took us to this really busy street and into a tiny door which lead to a huge department store. I grew to learn that almost every shop there is like the Tardis! Up 4 escalators and through a maze of costumes and gifts, we arrived at the 'Maid Cafe', a place where the waitresses dress up as maids, serve you and can even play games with you. It was a little weird and very expensive for just one drink, I was also a bit uncomfortable with the whole idea seeing as the main customers in there were single old men...
But! an interesting experience nonetheless.

Before going I had googled a few things I wanted to see including going to the Robot Restaurant. I'd seen so many videos and pictures of the neon lights and robot wars I thought it would be quite fun. However, when we got there, it was closed to people who only wanted a drink and the food isn't supposed to be that good so we decided to try somewhere else. Very kindly, the woman greeting people at the robot entrance walked us over to her favourite restaurant and we had a delicious noodle meal there.

Once again, Poppy's v professional photography

After refuelling, we thought we'd go to the Tokyo Government Building where on a clear night you can see an aerial view of the city. Unfortunately, it was not a clear night for us and so we couldn't really make much out :( but we made up for that the next day...

 Day 3

On our last day in Tokyo, Kauro took us to the Tsukiji fish market bright an early in the morning during rush hour on the metro. I don't know if you've seen that video of the men literally pushing people behind the doors of the train to try and get as many people on as possible, but I had so I was very scared. However, it really wasn't that bad, actually it was nice compared to London as there was actually ventilation and people didn't seem to hate you. 

The market was smelly and the dead sea creatures everywhere were a bit gross but it was cool anyway. We quickly stopped in on a shrine and then left to have our sushi breakfast which was SO yummy :)

Shopping in Ginza was next on the list. Ginza has everything! There were super high end designer shops (which we just window-shopped in *cries*), little souvenirs and of course: a six level UNIQLO store.

Opposite the UNIQLO shop was another department store which we were told had a sky garden with a fantastic view of the area. We were not disappointed. A very welcome bonus was the Starbucks and bookshop at the top which we did not fail to use. When is Japan, there is one other thing you must do: go to a Muji store. The one in Ginza was different to any other I've seen; it was more like an Ikea than just a stationary shop, but being the stationary addict I am, I still just bought some pens :)

Our last place of interest was the Tokyo Skytree. 634m off the ground, the b.e.s.t view of Tokyo can be seen. It is the tallest tower in the world so of course had a HUGE queue to buy tickets which we begrudgingly endured. But let me tell you, it was so worth it! I stupidly didn't take any digital pics so once I get my film developed I'll post them all here.

To finish off our time in the capital, we all had dinner as a group down Memory Lane. This was a tiny street with shack-like restaurants lining each side of the alley. We ate pretty quickly, afraid of how long the structure would hold us all! Later we went on to the Golden Gai, another narrow alley but instead lined with bars. My dad, sister and I went back to the hotel at this point as we were shattered and weren't up for a night of drinking, plus we had an early start the next morning to travel to Nikko. 

Tokyo was INCREDIBLE and I would recommend it to anyone who loves to travel. I really hope to live there, even if only for a short time, at least once in my life :)

Have you ever been to Japan? If not, where is your favourite place you've travelled to?

Coco ♡


  1. Tokyo looks amazing! Like no other city I've ever been to, definitely adding it to the bucket list. And you took such amazing photos!

  2. These pictures are so cool! It looks amazing! X


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