6th August 2019: Tokyo & Yokohama Book Off Rally {Japan, summer 2019}

To be honest, this was a weird day because my mind was full with some personal stuff, so I just wanted to keep busy. I did a Book Off marathon and I found a lot of interesting things, both in Tokyo and Yokohama [横浜市]. I wanted to visit the Tower there, but it was closed for renovation!

At 6pm I met up with Sr-san for way beyond amazing sushi! Lots of new things to try too!

In the end what I was worried about was solved ε-(´・`) フ and I went back without any problems (on the way out the regular train line was down).

Walked distance: 17438 steps / 12.4 km.

2nd August 2019: Ise Bunkamura {Japan, summer 2019}

When I was in Ise [伊勢市] in 2018 I could not budget (neither time nor money) to visiting the… you know what, I’m confused as hell as what the actual official name is. In English it is Ninja Samurai Kingdom – Ise, but in Japanese it is Azuchi Momoyama Jōkamachi (Ise Azuchi Momoyama Castle Town) [伊勢安土桃山城下街]. Anyway. I went there.

It is a sort of theme park where you can cosplay and walk around in costume, watch shows and play games. In theory, you can also visit the castle, but the bus there was not running that day, and a few of the areas were closed. Not that I regret going, but looking back it would have been skippable – now I know. But I had to go to know and get it out of my checklist ☆⌒(ゝ。∂) .

I think I actually spent more time travelling there and back than doing actual things. I had to wait an hour and a half between the shows that I had thought I’d use on seeing the castle… but nope.

Once back in Nagoya [名古屋], I went to the Book Off to check if there was anything interesting, as after Nagoya I would be heading back to Tokyo, and I could now go on a shopping spree.

Walked distance: 16136 steps / 11.5 km.

27th August 2018: Nippori {Japan, summer 2018}

I went to the Yanaka [谷中] area in Nippori [日暮里] because I was not feeling too well and I thought it would be urban enough but empty enough. Unfortunately it did not quite cut it.

Just after coming from the station, I went to Hongyo-ji [本行寺]:

And then to Daikokuten Kyōo-ji [経王寺], whose gate is important cultural property and keeps bullet holes from the Battle of Ueno (1868).

I arrived to Yanaka Ginza [谷中銀座], a traditional shopping street. I saw Fukuyama Masaharu posters there and I found a shop that sold humoristic hanko for foreigners. I really, really fancied the idea of one with 榊 [Sakaki] on it (with a platypus drawing) but alas, extravagancy budget had already been topped by the Oiran photoshoot.

Then I walked throughout Yanaka Reien [谷中霊園], one of Tokyo’s urban graveyards, where you can see some special see-through bamboo barriers:

I also saw the Tokugawa family graveyard within, alhtough it is technically “only” the Grave of Tokugawa Yoshinobu, Tokugawa Yoshinobu Kōbosho [徳川慶喜公墓所].

And Tenno-ji [天王寺] next to the cemetery.

The truth was that I wanted to explore a few more temples in the area. However, I decided to do a Book Off, Tsutaya, etc tour because it was my last day on the JR Pass and I wanted to check out some CDs – and because my stomach was being stupid and I needed to be close to toilets. Truth be told I don’t have that much of a good memory from this day (≧∇≦), because I was totally unable to get anything to eat till dinner – boy was I hungry by then.

21st August 2018: I see two castles… {Japan, summer 2018}

As I had made it to Nagoya a bit on the early side the previous day, I had some time to plan today carefully. The tentative plan was visiting Gifu and Inuyama, both castle towns. However, a third castle, Kiyosu, was also on the list, and it turned out that to get to Gifu, you go via Kiyosu. So there was a slight readjustment in Castle-visting schedule.

Thus I got myself on the train and 20 minutes later I stopped at Kiyosu [清洲]. I had seen the castle from the Shinkansen before, but I had never found the name until I was doing some pre-planning for this trip. Thus, it was a win/win situation. Everything seemed to be helping towards me seeing that castle this time.

Bonus points for Kiyosu: signs. Awesome, easy to follow signals reading “清洲城” in every crossing . Not in every second crossing. In every actual crossing so you can actually get to the place without even a map!

Anyway, the highlight of Kiyosu is the castle, Kiyosu-jō [清洲城]. It is not original by any means, but it is one of the prettiest ones I’ve seen. I like all the colourful stuff.

Then I snooped around Kiyosu Koen [清洲公園], the park where Oda Nobunaga Nōhime-zō [織田信長・濃姫像] stand, they are the bronze statues of Oda Nobunaga and his wife Nouhime.

Afterwards I returned to the station and continued onto Gifu [岐阜], where I took a while to figure out the bus system, but in the end I managed to get to the feet of the mountain where Gifu Castle is.

Before going into the park, I decided I would not go into the insect museum, and walked off to Shōhōji [正法寺], home of the Great Buddha Gifu Daibutsu [岐阜大仏].

I took the Gifu Safu Kinkazan Ropeway [ぎふ金華山ロープウェー] (Gifu Mt. Kinka Ropeway). As much as it seems that I am getting comfortable with the whole Ropeway thing, I’m not. For the record.

But there I went, up to Gifu-jō [岐阜城], the castle up the muontain.

Later I was wandering around the park for a while and of course I needed to go and see the Gifu Kōen Sanjūnotō [岐阜公園三重塔], the Three-Story Pagoda that stands on the slope of the park.

I was sort of tired, and it was very hot, so I took the bus back to the station, and the train back to Nagoya [名古屋]. When I got there I had rested a little, and I felt up to walking a bit in Nagoya – besides it just felt too early to go to the hotel. I walked by a cute little shrine, Yuzu Akiba Jinja [洲嵜秋葉神社].

I finally made it to Ōsu Kannon [大須観音],

and the adjacent shopping streets,

where I found Hakuryu [白龍], the white dragon.

I did some shopping in Mandarake and Book Off and I walked back to the hotel.

28th July 2017: Shopping at Ikebukuro {Japan, summer 2017}

This is something I had never thought I would have done, but it was strangely fun – I went shopping along Ikebukuro [池袋]. And not fandom shopping – well, yes, there was fandom shopping, but… It was weird. I was in the Book Off as always that I’m around. I was also in the Sanryo Gift Gate but there was no Yoshikitty to be found.

The original intent was going to the Sunshine City Aquarium [サンシャイン水族館] but when I arrived there was a very long line, so I decided to wander around for a while. I accidentally ran into a T-shirt that I loved and had to buy – full of sciency formulae, and a bag I really liked. I found it a bit expensive, so “decided” not to buy it.

After some conbini lunch I went back to the Aquarium and decided to wait as the line did not seem to be about to be longer than 15 minutes (much better than the 45 before).

The Aquarium was full and it never fails to surprise me how Japanese kids are this wild in aquariums in general- but this time I got pushed around by grannies too! XD I also found a new appreciation for pelicans and ended up with a lot of pelicanbutt pictures.

After the aquarium I headed to the Closet Child on my way to the station and bought a very cool T-shirt from a group I don’t really listen to, but very cool, and 1000¥. And then, because I had not really gotten myself anything too expensive in Closet Child, I gave into temptation and went back for the handbag. Many people have complimented me for it, and I really love it.

Afterwards I met up with B**** for sushi and Starbucks while D****e was in a fancy dinner on a boat, with my camera (yay phone pictures). After I got into the train, I was messaging with D****e and we realised that we were on the same train. What are the chances? Very, very small XD

29th July 2016: Trying not to think {Japan, summer 2016}

So I got home late the previous day and I did not really feel like studying, so this morning I had to do my homework and study for the exam ( ̄◇ ̄;). However, at around midmorning, I decided that I really did not care for a perfect grade anymore, that I was not going to get anyway because the teacher was not happy with my なければなりません and wanted なけれべいけません because that was what the book had. The other day when I was in Harajuku I’d seen something I really wanted, so I decided that screw everything, I would go buy it.

First, I stopped by Shibuya [渋谷], just because. I did a quick tour over Tsutaya, Book Off and Mandarake. In Tsutaya, I bugged a lady as I was looking for a specific manga and she did not look too happy to help (~_~;). Then I went to Harajuku [原宿] to buy the item I had fallen in love with, a 40cm high photobook (limited edition).

After class (and last exam, and saying bye bye and getting our pic taken with the certificate…) I met M. in Ikebukuro [池袋] as we were going to do fanstuff together. Well, let me rephrase that. First I went home because the photobook(s) was (were) heavy as hell and it would have been more expensive to find a coin locker for them than getting home and dropping them off. After that, I waited for her in the Book Off (and was self-restrained and did not buy anything else). We checked out the Ikebukuro Closet Child and then we had dinner together.

The plan was try and hunt the Gakkuchi. That is, some of the adorable plushes that GACKT makes. He had decided to put some as prices for the UFO catchers. I do know that getting them is next to impossible, but for 500Y try, you got a clearfile, and that was awesome…

So awesome that the clearfiles were “sold out” in all Ikebukuro. We tried one station over, a smaller one. No luck. We tried my station. Still no luck. Damn, what a way to finish the day (♯`∧´).

18th July 2016: Shopping spree (I) {Japan, summer 2016}

I started the week off with a mochi breakfast that I had received as omiyage (typical present / detail from a particular area). It was delicious!

Japanese sweet pastry on a toothpick

This day I took my first real shopping spree and I headed off for Shinjuku [新宿] and Closet Child & Pure Sound. I ended up in the Pure Sound buying quite a few things, including but not limited to VAMPS DVDs. I had made a friend at Gackt’s Birthday party and she needed to be shown to the shops, so it was the perfect school.

The entrance to Kabukicho district

We also went to Ikebukuro [池袋] for some more shopping and we had lunch at CocoCurry, where I tried the kanikoroke as I was feeling adventurous. As much as I love the chicken, this was an amazing choice!

A curry dish. The sauce is spread at the bottom, and two croquettes stand on the rice

To be honest, I was sore from my fall the previous day and I was staring to feel the tiredness of “doing all the things”, so I took it slow and I just went home after school.

9th July 2016: Rainy season is rainy {Japan, summer 2016}

Because yes, we’re in rainy season, and in rainy season, it rains, lots. Especially when I want to go to certain places. I hoped that the rain would not be too much, and headed off to Kawasaki [川崎] (yes, like the motorbikes) to check out a temple called Kawasaki Daishi (川崎大師) or Heiken-ji (平間寺, Heiken-ji)

It was wet. There was some kind of child ceremony because there were a bunch of parents with very young babies braving the storm rain, while the kids (and occasionally their siblings) looked unimpressed or plain zonked out.

The only other thing for me to check out in Kawasaki were the Chinese gardens, but I decided that it was raining too much for that, so I came back to Tokyo [東京], and headed off to a shrine called Hie Jinja [日枝神社], in Chūō [中央], which I wanted to check out.

One of the most interesting thing of Hie Jinja is the way the torii is designed, with a sort of triangle on its top. It might be to deter wayward otoroshii, a creature from the Japanese mythology. Yes, this is important. As it was that it was raining. To get to Hie Jinja you have to climb a hill, as it could not be otherwise. In the rain, with my broken umbrella – because my awesome umbrella decided to stop being overdone and break, thankfully it was fixable, but not before I got home.

There was a marriage photo shoot in the shrine, and I was torn for the poor bride, having to walk in those clothes through the rain. I tried to be out of their way as much as I could, too. But kudos to the photographer for bringing a traditional umbrella which made the couple look awesome.

Tired of being wet, I decided to head out to a museum. I had two exhibitions I wanted to see, one of them in the Edo-Tokyo Museum, and the other one in the Museum of History and Science. I decided that I really wanted to se the former, just because I was feeling like it. It was an exhibition called ‘From Eerie to Endearing: Yokai in the Arts of Japan’ [大妖怪展 土偶から妖怪ウォッチまで], held in the Edo-Tokyo Hakubutsukan [江戸東京博物館], the Edo-Tokyo Museum, in Ryōgoku [両国]

This was the scenery of the first almost panic attack I caused. If you’re a visible foreigner in Japan, some people don’t want you around and they don’t want to speak to you, especially because you may require them to speak in English. This is a bit on the ridiculous side in the tourist industry, where you can be met with actual hostility at times. Japan, sorry to tell you this but you’re not ready for 2020. Point and case, the lady selling tickets in the Edo-Tokyo museum. She was literally paralysed for a moment, then she pulled back. Keep in mind, my Japanese is not the best thing in the world, but I said a grand total of six words, five if you count ‘onegaishimasu’ (please) as one “special exhibition, one ticket, please”. Straight forward. She was so much in a panic that she did not even hear me at first, it took her half a minute to realise I had asked in Japanese. When she asked me to repeat I just gave her the “yokai, one” and showed her one finger (to count!). She was so freaked out that I did not even get a brochure.

The exhibition has three main parts. The first one runs through the historical representation of yokai as supernatural beings, explaining old questions that humanity had (for example, what is the echo) or forming part of legends. It exhibits part of the Parade of the One Hundred Demons classic paints and scrolls, and a bunch of key ukyo-e in mythology, which I was very excited to see. Apparently, an huge bunch of Japanese people had decided that the museum was a perfect place to spend a rainy afternoon, too, and the exhibition was packed.

The second part dealt with the representation of the different worlds, especially the Buddhist ideas of heaven and hell, and the concept of ‘spirit’ or ghost (yurei) as opposed to a yokai. Out of these, my favourites were the umibozu and the Peony Lantern representations.

The final part was dedicated to ‘Yokai watch’, a contemporary anime series that explores the concept of cute yokai causing mischief in present days.

On my way back I dropped by Shinjuku [新宿] and the Book Off there. The number of acquired items was slowly climbing up, and I was still on budget!

Then I did my homework because I might fail at Japanese all my life but I will still try not to.

7th July 2016: Not fishy smelling at all {Japan, summer 2016}

Well this was a new experience, but it made a lot of things gain sense. The famous Tsukiji Market, Tsukiji Shijō [築地市場] is closing down this Autumn and relocating. One of the reasons cited is health issues, cut I can understand why they think that tourists are an extra issue. Even when trying to stay out of the way you are in someone’s way.

Something that keeps fascinating me about Japan is the amount of people working on tourist services that have problems with foreigners and wrinkle their noses when they see you approach. This does not go of course to the fishmongers who were doing their jobs but the lady in the info service when we asked for a map in English. After a while we found s coin locker for T**y’s backpack and I shamelessly threw my books in (≧∇≦)

The Tsukiji Outer Market, Tsukiji Jōgai Shijō [築地場外市場] is packed with little shops mostly oriented to people getting their daily fish, and a lot of kitchen appliances, especially knives. It was bustling with tourists in the way of everybody, and little Japanese ladies examining every post for what they wanted to cook that day. After a while we found our way to the wholesale market.

There was a shrine in the way. Of course it required a visit. The Namiyoke Inari Jinja [波除稲荷神社] is located in the corner between the two markets.

The Tsukiji Wholesale Market, Tsukiji Oroshiuri Shijō [築地卸売市場], was full of… everything ≧(゚ ゚)≦. Fishmongers seemed to have learnt to work their ways around the tourists because they did not even lose their half smirk when they avoided running you to your death with their lil machines. I guess that getting someone killed would screw the day’s sales, as it would be unsanitary. The most impressive thing were the tuna <・ )))><< cutting dealers, with their long knives. Tuna has to be cut in one go, else it ruins the piece. And in case you haven’t seen an actual tuna, we’re easily talking about a two-metre long fish, and fishmongers dealing with one-metre long loin piece. Very cool.

After snooping around for a while we headed off for kaizen sushi with super fresh fish. I felt a little guilty about drinking cola with it, but damn it was hot. Very hot.

From Tsukiji we dropped by Akihabara [秋葉原] and well, there is a Book Off there… Finally we headed off to Iidabashi [飯田橋], where aside from my school, stands Yasukuni Jinja [靖國神社], quite a controversial shrine which enshrines the souls of the fallen in the WWII, which unfortunately involves some of the people considered war criminals.

But as it was Tanabata, they were preparing for a matsuri, and I incorporated that into my plans. I got the shrine seal and a sunburn for my troubles, then I headed towards the school for air-con, I mean some hard work (≧∇≦) there was a test the next day after all and I needed to prepare for that.

One of the good things about my area was that I was on the Yamanote line on one hand, and I had a direct line to my school, so commute was good. After school I went back to the apartment to study because I had a test the next day – don’t ask how it went (≧∇≦;).

6th July 2016: The first incursion {Japan, summer 2016}

As I had to study in the evenings, I tried to get used to early starts. I invited T**y over to Komagome so he could see the local shrine as opposed to the main shrines I was sending him to. Komagome Jinja is a small shrine that we’ll pay more attention in the future – because I was not carrying my camera that day.

I took T**y to Shibuya [渋谷] today as he wanted to take pictures of the crossing. Then we had a look at Tsutaya and had something to drink on the new seventh floor.

After that, we headed off to Tower Records, Tokyu Hands, Mandarake and generally some Shibuya backstreets. Throughout the morning I got myself Kanjani8’s newly released single, and a couple more CDs from Book Off.

After that I headed off to school only to find that the teachers did not like my handwriting in Japanese. Tough luck, this is how it ended up being.

Upon coming back I decided that I needed to do some exploration around the neighbourhood, but for now I would content myself with some takoyaki, which was awfully yummy (future reference: Sunkus takoyaki > Family Mart takoyaki). Then there was studying and organising the room (finally!)

2nd September 2015: New views of known sights {Japan, summer 2015}

I went to Haneda Airport to see D****e off as she was leaving already, and on my way back I shook melancholy off by climbing up the Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building, Tōkyō Tochō [東京都庁] in Shinjuku [新宿]. I had noticed that my camera was better than I was expecting it to be, but I was a bit blown away when I realised the neat stuff it could do. I am very happy with it. Here is a sequence of me aiming at Tokyo Tower [東京タワー].

Views of the Skyscraper District from the TMGB observatory:

After that, I took a stroll down the Skyscraper District, as I wanted to go back to one of the shops I had visited on Sunday. Unfortunately, at this time I was not feeling too well, so when I made it to the shop I had to be quick.

After I had made a much-needed stop, I hit a Book Off (once again) or two (again, once again) and finally headed back for an early evening. B**** and I had a relaxing dinner, tonkatsu in my case, and we both ranted out about our problems. Good for the soul.

31st August 2015: Up and down, Trains and fandom (reloaded) {Japan, summer 2015}

We took the Yurikamome line to Odaiba [お台場] once more.

Kushikatsu tries were more successful this time around, and D****e managed to get a few more Chupacabra out of the machine later. Afterwards we headed off to the Trio2 shop, located in Nakano Broadway [中野ブロードウェイ] for some more fandom shopping. We saw the X JAPAN Tour billboards.

Later, we had dinner at Swallowtail, the Butler café – the first time I’ve not been too pleased with the food. The tea set was just too sweet all around, but all in all quite an enjoyable experience, as always.

To end the evening, we had a look at the UFO catchers, where we got Chupacabra uchiwa, and I raided the local Book Off.

21st August 2015: Shibuya and Shinjuku {Japan, summer 2015}

I was to meet with D****e in Shibuya [渋谷] as she was coming directly from Haneda that day and we had arranged to meet in Tsutaya – there would be Hachiko meeting point later on, but we wanted something covered, just in case the skies opened.

As it takes a bit to get from Satte to any place downtown Tokyo, I organised myself to be out of the door with enough time to find myself a shrine to visit. Because yes, I can find shrines anywhere in Tokyo and beyond and after a while walking through skyscraper-type buildings, I turned a corner to the Konnō Hachiman-gū [金王八幡宮], which I had not been able to find the previous year due to an Internet failure. I’m still torn about going to Yasukuni Shrine, by the way, which would have been another of my options. On one hand, I would like to come back and get a calligraphy seal; on the other, it would feel like condoning the whole thing Yasukuni means and… I don’t know, I think I have to think harder about that, especially with Abe’s whole revisionist attitude. Meanwhile, this is Konnō Hachiman-gū (which was being repaired so loop-sided picture not to bother the workers), and the little Inari altar located next to it.

Once the shrine fix was achieved – come on, it was my third day already!! – I headed back to Shibuya [渋谷] to meet with D****e and as I walked back I saw something I had not noticed before, as it had been on the opposite side of the direction I was heading. However, now I could see it straight ahead.

The L’Arc~en~Ciel’s L’ArCasino billboard. Pictures happened. Maybe some inner fanbying too. Did I mention I love my new camera? Cause I do, a lot.

After a while doing experiments with the zoom, I headed off for the Tsutaya floor we were going to meet in, and barely had the time to check out the stuff before she arrived. Afterwards we headed off for the Book Off (which… is changing names?) because we could, and afterwards to the BIC Camera so she could pick up her own SIM card.

She wanted to check out a Shinjuku [新宿] kimono store to see if she found VAMPS’ bat yulata, but we were out of luck and it was already gone. And then there was karaoke, because for some reason there’s always karaoke with her in Shinjuku?

And then there was home and CocoCurry. Finally CocoCurry ♥

14th August 2014: When trains took forever {Japan, summer 2014}

It started with the train stopping for a few minutes that in the end turned out to be over an hour. Then there was an unexpected train change, and my Internet going crazy which got me lost. In the end my sightseeing morning was crushed to 10 minutes of walking around Shibuya [渋谷] and a Book Off visit.

Lunch was good as we met in the Book Off and headed for a great shabu-shabu. That was very yummy and I probably ate too much of it. But come on! There was wakame to spare and then some!! XD

Afterwards we headed off towards Shinjuku [新宿] to browse Kinokuniya Book Store to buy JLPT study material and, in my case, GACKT’s novelised version of MoonSaga, because I am weird like that. It was raining like crazy, too, so not much stuff to do outdoors, and shrines would already be closed by that time, so I was feeling rather unaccomplished.

We ended up heading off to the Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building, Tōkyō Tochō [東京都庁], to watch sunset – which did not work as it was cloudy – and the pretty lights – which were fewer than usual because some of the buildings were not as full since it was Obon and many people had head home for the holidays.

Day was finished with CocoCurry. CocoCurry is always good, although I was so intent on reading kana correctly that I ended up messing up the order XD

12th August 2014: Yokohama & friends {Japan, summer 2014}

We headed off to Yokohama [横浜] to visit Chinatown.

Our goal was an early lunch and then a division of forces – either temples or Panda shops. I was on Team Temple, as nobody will be surprised to hear – Kwan Tai [関帝廟] and Kanteibyō / Kuan Ti Miao [関帝廟 / 中華会館].

Then we walked around the seaside park, Yamashita Koen [山下公園] and looked at the bay.

After a visit to (yet another) Book Off stop, we headed back to Tokyo [東京], where we had arranged to meet a few Japanese friends in Shibuya [渋谷].

The first plan of the afternoon was meeting at Hachiko’s sculpture in Shibuya, because that is what you do when you meet in Shibuya. Then we headed to Bic Camera to check out the special promo that they had running on the 4K audiovisual set. The promo featured the trailer of the L’Arc~en~Ciel’s concert at the National Stadium earlier in 2014, which will be released in October.

One of our friends had to work that afternoon, but as this was the only day we could see the three of them before they went home for Obon, we decided to surprise her and drop by the cafe she works at to keep her company. This was the day when I discover that Japanese people actually flop on the floor when they are surprised, for real.

The Mr. Happy cafe is located in Shibuya and is something akin a non-profit which is affiliated to a children’s character. We had amazing milk shakes and mini smiling sponge cakes (lemon and caramel) and took pictures of them, of course. As we were leaving, our friend presented us with a mini box of berry sponge cakes per person! They were very kawaii and delicious, too.

For dinner we went for yakiniku again, although this time it was something quite more posh / expensive. We ate a lot, but I felt that there was too much smoke to be completely comfortable there.

5th July 2013: Enoshima {Japan, summer 2013}

Enoshima [江の島] is a bridged island not far from Tokyo where there are three shrines that have been merged into one for convenience, a local dragon legend and an asphyxiating hot and humid weather. It was also the last stop for this trip.

I guess that’s why the local rhythm is so chilled:

Enoshima Iwaya [江の島岩屋], the Enoshima caves, are beyond amazing.

The legendary dragon, which roars when you get close and produces flashlight when you clap your hands.

There was a bit of wavy weather due to wind, which allowed for a couple of good pictures of the seaward area:

Including the “turtle rock”, even in high tide. You just need to know how to count the wave frequency to know when the water is going to retract enough to let you see it ^_~

It was so windy that at points it was difficult to keep the camera straight for pictures, but we also visited Enoshima Jinja [江の島神社]

Well, the actual last stop was a bunch of Shinjuku [新宿] Book Offs but… don’t tell anyone XD. Then, the next morning I was off to the airport to go back home, fortunately the flight was much, much better.

8th July 2012: How high can you fly? {Japan, summer 2012}

After a very sophisticated brunch in a pizzeria in Roppongi [六本木], on Sunday the 8th we headed off to the calligraphy museum, which did not allow pictures, so there is none. Sorry, I’m civilised XD

After that we headed towards Ikebukuro [池袋] to see the Sunshine 60 and spend money in a Book Off.

A very high skyscraper

Later on we headed off to Shinjuku, particularly to the Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building (TMGB), Tōkyō Tochō [東京都庁] in Shinjuku [新宿]:

Two twin skyscraper towers joined by a middle building from about two thirds down. There are thousands of windows

The TMGB has a free observatory on floor 45 (202 meters high), actually two, but only one was open . We aimed to see sunset but… it was cloudy. Still some impressive sights though, particularly of the skyscrapers around it.

Tokyo cityscape. There are thousands of buildings.

Tokyo cityscape. On the foreground there is a triple tower

Sunset and thousands of tiny buildings to the horizon

Close up of the Shinjuku highrises, a group of ten pr skyscrapers

Tokyo cityscape