One week trip to Japan

Discussion in 'Social Life, Food & Drink, Travel' started by nahneun, Jul 31, 2010.

  1. hboogz

    hboogz Senior member

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    Yeah, I love trying to explain the nonsense that is the Japanese address system.

    Good spot for lunch
    http://www.bento.com/rev/0490.html

    another of my fav spots in that area
    http://www.bento.com/rev/3164.html


    Definitely going to try the tonkatsu place today. Fuck. I've been pouring through Bento and all I want to do is eat everywhere and everything man. lol
     
  2. photoguy

    photoguy Senior member

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    If you enjoy modern art, don't miss the smallish but excellent Bridgestone gallery in or near Ginza. Really amazing what they have. Only takes 20 min to see.

    Regardless of your interest in art, the small Ukiyo-e museum just off Omotesando is a must see.

    The lack of street names is part of why I advised not getting hung up on finding specific places. It can get frustrating (even for locals sometimes!). Just enjoy being there. Wander around and you will find amazing things just randomly. And it is pretty hard to find bad food. Possible, but it requires effort. Do make sure you go to at least one good-looking wagyu place though. If you ask a cabbie to take you to a good one, I bet they will.

    I'll ask my fiance to provide directions to the unaju places. Unlike most things in Tokyo, they are easy to find because they are literally right on the corner of the park.
     
  3. ratboycom

    ratboycom Senior member

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    If you got the time and are interested in some more exclusive Japanese brands/boutiques roll through Daikanyama on to Nakameguro or Ebisu. Its a nice place to walk in general and off the normal tourist path, but only one station away from Shibuya on the Tokyu Toyoko line (just take the local). Lots of cool cafes and embassy buildings there too (like the Egyptian one, has like mini sphinxes and stuff, really out of place looking)
     
  4. impolyt_one

    impolyt_one Senior member

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    Yeah, definitely hit up Maisen. If you like katsu enough, try Maisen first and then go to Kimukatsu in Ebisu later, and try the mille feux katsu. haha. Both are good.
     
  5. Dragon

    Dragon Senior member

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    If you want a taste of the best pork try 豚組 (ぶたぐみ = Butagumi) in Roppongi/Azabu area. The prices are a bit higher, but you can experience some of the best pork in the world.

    Another idea while in Ebisu is to try the pizza places. In Tokyo there are many Napoli style pizza places and they are all very close to the real thing. Most of them trained in Naples and some won pizza competition there.
     
  6. hboogz

    hboogz Senior member

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    Thanks Guys. what a day! I haven't walked this much in years. Meiji, YoyoGi Park, Most of Harajuku (found an Indian Motorcycle Store in the middle of no where..loved that), A small part of Aoyama and, I believe, most of popular Shibuya -ku

    I came across some great and amazing boutiques, but missed undercover, fragment and visvim, whichI'mi not even sure they exist as stand-alone stores. I saw a pair of SugarCane's going for 135,000 yen and 21oz Iron Heart for 189,000.

    Experienced Shibuya Crossing...cool. I thankfully found Maisen with the help of someone who worked at 3M on Ometesando. It looked nice and of course, at 2pm, there was a line with about 15 people. I skipped it and settled for a really good Doner kebab sandwich in Harajuku.


    Tomorrow is Roppongi Hills along with the viewing station. I believe asaksa is within walking distance and I'll kill those both. If time permits I'll do Ginza or Ueno...Not leaving Japan until I've had, a few pieces of sushi, good tempura, tonkatsu and curry with or without the tonkatsu.
     
  7. photoguy

    photoguy Senior member

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    I wouldn't say Asakusa is walking distance from Roppongi, unless you are a serious long distance walker. One nice way to get there is by ferry. Takes about 20 min or so. BTW, I really like the Roppogi Hills observation deck at night. IMO the city is more impressive lit up than during the day. The Mori Museum is open pretty late, too.

    Go to a DIY okonomoyaki place while you are there. Just pop in one that looks good. But if you happen to be by Design Fiesta (on the way to Omotesando from Shibuya), there is a really nice outdoor one in their courtyard.

    I will get you the unaju directions later today.
     
  8. blackjack

    blackjack Senior member

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    ...

    Tomorrow is Roppongi Hills along with the viewing station. I believe asaksa is within walking distance and I'll kill those both. If time permits I'll do Ginza or Ueno...Not leaving Japan until I've had, a few pieces of sushi, good tempura, tonkatsu and curry with or without the tonkatsu.


    Akasaka is within walking distance, however Asakusa is not.
     
  9. photoguy

    photoguy Senior member

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    Aha - got you.

    Directions to the unaju restaurants - they are by the SE corner of Ueno Park, near the end of Shinobazu Dori and close to the Shitamachi Museum (which is just inside the park). One of the places isn't as nice looking, is a little cheaper, much busier and is considered to have better eel. It is on the opposite side of the street from the park. The other is on the same side of the street as the park (IIRC), is in a three story house, looks pretty fancy, is a little spendier, has great unaju and starts off the meal with mini-kaiseki. Hard to go wrong either way, but I think most would recommend the slightly cheaper, busier one.
     
  10. hboogz

    hboogz Senior member

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    Another day in and another day i'm just further impressed. Slim + Impolyt -- Maisen was really fucking great; the best pork tonkatsu i've ever had. And it is really reasonably priced. Thanks guys.

    I did Roponggi Hills Tokyo View with Skydeck which was absolutely incredible. The Mori Art Muesuem had one of the best mixed media installations i've seen in a long time. I also caught the Van Gogh exhibit going on at the National Art Center of Tokyo. The Don Quixote store in Roppongi is sensory overload at times. The walk from the Aoyama-Ichome Train Station to Ometesando was filled with cool surprises. The Prada store in person is worth the walk. Walking through Harajuku after 9pm on a Monday night has its benefits too.

    12 hours of exploring has me exhausted by 10 - 11pm...but plan on going out to a bar/club at least twice before i leave.

    I plan on doing Ebisu/Daikayama tomorrow during the day tomorrow and play the rest of the day by ear.
     
  11. impolyt_one

    impolyt_one Senior member

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    If you go to Julius, here's a hint - it's black and has no signage or anything. It's really fucking hard to find, because it's right there in front of your face and you won't recognize it.
     
  12. photoguy

    photoguy Senior member

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    I did Roponggi Hills Tokyo View with Skydeck which was absolutely incredible. The Mori Art Muesuem had one of the best mixed media installations i've seen in a long time. I also caught the Van Gogh exhibit going on at the National Art Center of Tokyo. The Don Quixote store in Roppongi is sensory overload at times.

    If you are interested in art, a couple things not to miss:

    1) Bridgestone Museum of Art (stunning corporate art collection of mostly western modernist classics):

    http://www.bridgestone-museum.gr.jp/

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bridgestone_Museum_of_Art

    2) Ota Memorial Museum of Art (famous ukiyo-e museum just off Omotesando near Meiji Dori):

    http://www.ukiyoe-ota-muse.jp/

    Both only require 20-30 min to fully appreciate. Totally worth doing, verging on essential for art fans.
     
  13. hboogz

    hboogz Senior member

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    Tuesday:

    Went to Ebisu and checked out the Yebisu Beer Museum. It was elegant, brief and definitely worth it. The beer tasting being particularly fun. I walked around Ebisu for a bit and liked the vibe. It was quiet, subdued and a more my speed. I didn't spend much time here and then hoped on the train to Asakusa.

    Did my first train-train transfer, which wasn't that bad (SUICA card makes that part of travelling thoughtless) Arrived in Asakusa in about 30 minutes. The Senjoi Temple was great. I loved the precession of vendors leading up to the Temple. I would have been remiss to have missed this before leaving.

    Headed back to Shinju-Ku, rested for a bit then walked around Shinju-ku east for a bit. Went to Kobuchiko (red-light district) The aggressiveness of the africans is very off-putting and their existence juxtaposes what i've come to expect from the Japanese. Coming from NYC, I could care less, but they ruin that area 10-fold. I had yakitori within the omoide-yokocho (piss alley), which was fun. I swear the alcohol content in Beer here has to be higher than back in the states.

    Walked around a bit more and called it a night.
     
  14. wetnose

    wetnose Senior member

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    Am planning to visit Japan in December. Here's my tentative plan...

    Dec 18: arrive in Tokyo
    Dec 19: Tokyo
    Dec 20: Kyoto
    Dec 21: Kyoto
    Dec 22: Kyoto
    Dec 23: Nara
    Dec 24: Hakone or Kamakura?
    Dec 25: Niseko (skiing!)
    Jan 1: Return to Tokyo
    Jan 2: Nikko
    Jan 3: Tokyo
    Jan 4: return

    Thoughts? I'm not big on shopping nor partying, more on scenery and good food. Also prefer hostel environments, so I can meet up with people. I know some mandarin (ergo, kanji) but otherwise do not know any Japanese.

    Not the best time to travel to Japan but I figure it won't be my first time.
     
  15. Tokyo Slim

    Tokyo Slim In Time Out

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    Am planning to visit Japan in December. Here's my tentative plan... Dec 18: arrive in Tokyo Dec 19: Tokyo Dec 20: Kyoto Dec 21: Kyoto Dec 22: Kyoto Dec 23: Nara Dec 24: Hakone or Kamakura? Dec 25: Niseko (skiing!) Jan 1: Return to Tokyo Jan 2: Nikko Jan 3: Tokyo Jan 4: return Thoughts? I'm not big on shopping nor partying, more on scenery and good food. Also prefer hostel environments, so I can meet up with people. I know some mandarin (ergo, kanji) but otherwise do not know any Japanese. Not the best time to travel to Japan but I figure it won't be my first time.
    More Tokyo. Kamakura is kind of a beach town. There probably isn't going to be a lot to do in December. If you can get a reservation for a few days at Hotel New Koyo in Tokyo, I'd recommend that, as it seems to be in line with your preferred accommodations.
     

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