Sunday, August 26, 2012

Tokyo Tower, Zojoji Temple, Roppongi, and Nogi Shrine

Ben and I spent the day being tourists. It was a beautiful day, we had reasonable temperatures, blue skies, and light breezes.
Our plan was to go to Tokyo tower, look out from the observatory, and go where ever looked interesting. It turned out to be a great plan, and we had a fantastic day.
Tokyo Tower:


 To anyone going to Tokyo, I would highly recommend going to Tokyo Tower, and making a day of the area surrounding it. Tokyo Tower is the Eiffel Tower of Japan, (the designs for the building were based on those of the Eiffel Tower). It is beautiful, iconic, and romantic. The view from the observation decks is stellar, you can see a full panorama of the city.
























To the East you can see Tokyo Bay.

To the North you can see Tokyo Skytree as a tiny sliver in the distance (the new tallest broadcasting tower in the world).

To the West you can see Roppongi Hills.






















To the south you can see Mount Fuji, if you're lucky, or at least a beautiful restaurant.

*Pro-tip from Katie.* Tokyo Tower, like most tourist destinations in Japan, will have long lines, and big crowds, once you get to the viewing deck, you will be on the upper of two floors that have panoramic views of the city. The floor that you get off on will be packed, but if you go down the flight of stairs one floor, there will be a lot less people, and cool viewing holes in the ground.

From the tower we saw Zojoji Temple, and Roppongi Hills, so we made those two spots our destinations for the day.

Zojoji Temple:
Zojoji Temple was cool. There were beautiful views of Tokyo Tower. The insides of the temple were stunning, with what looked like huge golden chandeliers hanging from the ceiling (no photography was allowed). My favorite part were the hundreds of little statues with hats and pinwheels. They were simultaneously adorable and haunting.








Roppongi:
Roppongi is odd, it's the foreigner district of Tokyo, and caters to an odd crowd. Vandalism is very uncommon in Japan, but the walls of Roppongi were littered with graffiti. We saw prostitues, and people dressed in so many eclectic outfits that I felt like dubstep should have been emanating from their very being. There is a lot to do in Roppongi, but Ben and I were feeling a bit whimsical, so we just enjoyed walking through, and passing it all by.


Nogi Shrine:
Nogi Shrine is a tiny shrine in the heart of Roppongi, we enjoyed the shrine, but wouldn't recommend going, unless you happen to be passing it by. There was a miniature shrine, with miniature gates leading to it, which made the area feel like a Japanese version of Alice in Wonderland.



Tokyo Tower at Night:
After wandering around for the day, we returned to Tokyo Tower to see how it would look at night. We were not disappointed, and sat in a garden for a while just to look at the marvels of mankind.





For a map of where we went: click here.

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