On the morning of our day out in Shibuya we found a cheaper alternative to buying food in 7-11 for a change! It’s at least 30% cheaper and has about 3 times as many options! The place is called Maretsu Petit. For £3 I had 2 bananas, a bread and butter roll, some health jelly and a iced latte, not a bad breakfast for an ‘expensive’ city.
After eating we started our 10 minute Southbound walk to Asakusa station where we hopped on the Ginza Line all the way to the end of the cycle to Shibuya. Shibuya along with Shinjuku and Ikebukuro is one of Tokyos 3 main hubs. It is at the centre of Tokyos ‘youth culture’ with a variety of music venues, record shops and bars. Exiting the station we saw a familiar face, dog face that is. For those of you who don’t know, Hachiko was the ‘most loyal dog in the world’ returning to his owners grave everyday 9 years after he had passed away before Hachiko died himself. He is so famous there was even a film made about the story!
Strictly adjacent to the statue of Hachiko is possible the most famous crossing in the world. The Shibuya Pedestrian Scramble. A maze of crossings connected by different routes to and from Shibuya and its train station. A picture of the scramble doesn’t do it justice so instead I’ve uploaded a small video file.
Walking directly ahead of us we had entered shopping paradise. Big name brands illuminated from every corner but it was a certain yellow and red building that caught my eye. Tower records Tokyo, the last one standing in the world. From everything to K Pop and Punk to Jazz and J Pop you would certainly find what you were looking for if you wanted a new release on CD. We spent at least 2 hours in here listening to all of the obscure music on headphones and trying to find a souvenir for me. Personally, I could of spent the whole day here and be happy but it was only fair to move on by lunchtime!
After a bite to eat we strolled in the scorching sun to Yoyogi Park, one of Tokyos best natural areas for relaxing with nature. We sat and read our books in the shade whilst the mid day sun sizzled silently above us.
Circling the park for a while we exited through the Harajuku Gate and up towards Meiji Jingu. The shrine is a traditional landmark within the forests of Yoyogi as a dedicated to Emperor Meiji and his Empress Shoken. Within the complex are several points of interest. The Naien in the inner precinct houses the main shrines and a treasure museum showcasing the Emperor and his wife’s fortunes. The Gaien on the outer precinct holds the Meiji Memorial Picture Gallery, several halls and the National Stadium.
Retreating from where we entered we headed towards Omotesando, a thriving shopping street with fluorescent advertisements, big logos and audio coming from every direction. If you’re a luxury traveller this is where you go to spend your money.
Afterwards we turned right onto Cat Street. This (I hate this word but ) trendy shopping street makes Dalston and Shoreditch seem boring. We went in so many vintage and unique clothe shops that it broke our hearts the more we continued with how expensive it was.
After Cat street we spent the entire evening wondering deep into the heart of every artery and capillary in Shibuyas organ.
Thanks for reading! If you have any suggestions of places to visit in Tokyo, please let me know! The next blog post will be about our day in Odaiba!