Tokyo Sightseeing

POSTED BY DANNY CHOO On Tue 2014/03/11 16:41 JST in Places to visit in Japan

If you only had a limited amount of time in Tokyo to see the sights, I would recommend Akihabara, Harajuku, Asakusa and Shibuya - you could actually squeeze all these places into a day.

In today's post we visit Akihabara, Harajuku and Asakusa - was difficult to fit in Shibuya as we were filming at the same time for a TV show called Hello Tokyo which is broadcast in Singapore and other parts of Asia.

Starting off with Harajuku - a young n trendy fashion district filled to the brim with fashion stores, cafes and restaurants.
To get to Harajuku get off at Harajuku station on the JR line.

This photo here taken at the top of Takeshita dori - a long street crammed with stores.

As part of the filming we visit the Evangelion Store located off Takeshita dori road.
Check this page for map and directions.

The first floor of the Evangelion store is mainly filled with apparel.

When we visited, the only customers there were foreigners - a few Taiwanese, Australians & American folks too.

2nd floor is filled with merchandise - everything from figures to stationery to mugs n cups.

Before I forget, thanks to ©khara for letting us film there ><

Evangelion necklaces and brooches.

Evangelion chopsticks by Kotobukiya.

Tenugui is a Japanese handkerchief that is used for a variety of applications - headband, pouch and for when you need to wipe up spilled milk at school or work.

Eva Revoltech figures.

Medicom Toy Real Action Hero figures.

Keep yourself warm with some Eva gear.

1/1 scale Rei petrified ver by the entrance.

Half way down Takeshita dori you will find a couple of places that make crepe - both taste as good as the other - I just go for the one with the shorter queue ^^;

The filming took place back in January when it was freeeeezing ><

Making sure to take photos of Mirai-chan Smart Doll for the official site which we will revamp soon as we get nearer to the release date in May.

Heading off to the next filming location which is also in Harajuku.

Next up we take a look at a popular zakka store called Asoko which stocks a variety of daily life goods and nick nacks at really low prices. Its just down the road from Meiji Jingu Mae station or a 15 min walk from JR Harajuku station. The map is on this page (the first map).

The store has had a lot of press which is why there are usually queues outside before opening time - even on a weekday.

We manage to go in before opening time to have the place for ourselves for a bit though.

I've tried to ride a skateboard because I wanted to Mirai-fy one but just can't keep a good balance ><

Done with filming at Harajuku - now off to the next location.

Been meaning to make a shoulder saddle for dolls - will do it after the Smart Doll release in May.

Arrival at Asakusa - home to the oldest standing temple in Tokyo - Sensouji .
To get to Asakusa, get off at Asakusa station on the Tokyo Metro Ginza Line or the Toei Asakusa Line.

First off we take a rickshaw tour around the area - my first time ^^
We went with Ebisuya to take us around.

Rickshaws are said to have been invented in Japan back in the 1800's and was a popular form of transport back then.
Today they are typically only in service around tourist areas.

Stopping by Sumida Park to check out the view of Tokyo Sky Tree.

The Rickshaw is surprisingly light even with somebody in the passenger seat.

Some filming in Sensouji Temple but as we were part of a film crew, we had to register each piece of filming equipment - as we forgot to register the camera, they didn't allow us to take photos and had one of their press management reps watching us like a hawk - apparently they were not ninja enough to catch me taking these two shots though.

Filming at Hanayashiki - a theme park owned by Bandai Namco located right in the middle of Asakusa and home to Japan's oldest running rollercoaster.

Just outside Hanayashiki, Mirai-chan finds a ride just right for her size.

No more ronery - not with a Smart Doll on your shoulder.

Hanayashiki filming done - now to head to the last location for the day.

Usually we would go around in a van when filming at multiple locations but as we are on a very tight budget we head around on the trains and lug around the filming equipment ourselves.

Arrival at the holy land - Akihabara.
Filled with electronics, anime, manga, figures and as of late a few fashion stores too. The easiest way to get to Akihabara is to get off at Akihabara station on the JR line.

I always get a load of lines to remember but never can so just make it up as I go along ^^

If you only had enough time to visit one location, do you think it would be Harajuku, Asakusa or Akihabara?

Akihabara - always filled with cute girls.

Next up is Gachapon Kaikan filled with nothing but rows and rows of Gacha - you will find it off the main road that runs through Akihabara called Chuo Dori.

Stuff I usually look out for are items which look like they are 1/3 scale - for Mirai-chan ^^

Which of the Free boys tickle your fancy?

Here are some of the more expensive gatcha starting at 400 yen.
Which tickles your fancy the most? cute girls or iron men?

These gatcha sold an absolute ton in Japan - the Fuchiko series.

Together with one of the planners at Kitan Club who worked on Fuchiko. They got some cool offices - some photos in this post.

The last stop for the day is filming at Noodol - a cafe where you get to chat with an idol for 3 mins while you wait for your Cup Noodle to brew. If you fancy checking out this interesting experience then head to the location below.

When you walk into the store, you will see a vending machine with photos of your favorite idol - pay 800 yen to speak to the idol of your choice or 500 yen to leave it up to the shop owner to choose for you.

After handing over the ticket from the vending machine, the idol of your choice pours hot water into a Cup Noodle and sets a timer for 3 mins during which you get to speak to her - when your time is up she will ask you to go away to sit at a table to eat on your own ^^;

If you want to continue to talk to the idol then you need to buy more Cup Noodles to top-up your talk time ^^;

If you cant eat 50 Cup Noodles then you are allowed to take them home - in that case they will just set the timer to the usual 3 mins per cup.

My 3 mins are up and I'm sent away to a table to eat on my own ^^;

But I'm actually not alone because I have Mirai-chan with me ^o^

The Noodol Cafe has a load of idols who you can chat to - find out who these 4 are and more by clicking on the idol blog links in the schedules.

While I report from locations around Tokyo, comrade Yoshimi does all the chit chat from the studio.

If you want to check out more about todays locations then check out the photo posts below. Also check out the extensive Places to visit in Japan post if you are planning to come over anytime soon.