Rule number 1: never neglect the blog. But this time I did it, sorry. But I had a good reason! I was convinced that in ten days in Japan, there were times when I would have time to write. Instead, when arrived in Tokyo, the desire to discover any custom, tradition, particular district, has gained the upper hand and my ten days proved to be too few to be able to do everything I had planned. A mix of colors that captured the look, the omnipresent Japanese songs on the street, on the subway, in stores, the continual repeat a sort of “thank you”, the scent of gyoza (Japanese ravioli) coming from every small restaurant overlooking the street , the immeasurable amount of people standing in line at an intersection or on the subway, vending machines for drinks every hundred meters and game halls pachinko (a game that makes crazy Japanese) spread almost everywhere. Every district in Tokyo is worthwhile visiting, because each district is totally different, and for a tourist like me, this is a stimulus to curiosity. I initially move by taxi, and after I finally convinced that I must not open the door because it’s automatic, however I decided that I preferred to use the metro (very easy) to move from one area to another in Tokyo very quickly and without trying unsuccessfully to make myself understood by local taxi drivers. These days I learned that Japanese food (the real one) makes me crazy, that most of the Japanese girls (except some beautiful exception) are not dressed with the kimono, but with skirts fluttering “college style” and calzettine up to the knee , that in a country of culture and rigid caste dominate everywhere “salons of love,” the love hotels, erotic karaoke, etc., that there are so many fantastic products for facial care at affordable prices and that you can get around super relaxed because in this world there is no kind of petty crime.
The main neighborhoods that I visited in Tokyo are:
- Shibuya: One of the most dynamic areas of the city, frequented mainly by boys and young girls, who express themselves through the art of “cosplay” and fashion “ganguro”, which makes it all very colorful. There are many shops in socks and dresses “skimpy” restaurants and “love hotels”.
- Harajuku: is the district of the more extravagant fashions, like the style “Gothic Lolita”.
- Akhiabara: is the district electronics and manga, one of my favorites. There are hundreds of “special offers” on electronic products: pc, camera, iphone covers and more gadgets unthinkable. There are myriads of video games, and mechanical robots of the 80s.
- East Shinjuku and Omotesando: places to shop and stay for dinner in some nice restaurant. There are many shopping malls and unique shops.
- Roppongi is a district where to go dancing in the evening, drinking a cocktail and where you happen to cross a myriad of Westerners.
- Ginza: the cultural center of the city.
- Kappabashi: a district dedicated to cooking utensils.
- Tokyo Dome, a large amusement park in the city, where I found a fantastic luxury spa, where you should go if you happen to those parts for some days, for only 20 euro per person (I swear).
- Odaiba: it is an artificial island in Tokyo Bay, where you can enjoy walking away from the crowds.
Another thing that made me fall in love with Japan are the gardens, manicured and relaxing, able to reproduce all the beauty of nature in a limited space, where you forget time and you can get lost in contemplation. I recommend you start with these:
- The garden in Shinjuku
- Koishikawa Koraku
- Ueno Park (from which to walk to visit the National Museum of Tokyo)
- Yoyogi (near Harajuku)
I dedicated one day on a tour of the main temples, including Meiji (near Harajuku) and the Sanctuary of Asakusa. But the most beautiful temples I saw in the two days I spent in Kyoto. I took a super fast train (Shinkansen) from Tokyo that takes you to Kyoto in two hours and a quarter, and in no time at all, I found myself in the atmosphere of the true Japanese tradition. In the “city of a thousand temples”, my first and last stop was Gion, the famous district of tearooms and the Geisha (became famous due to the movie “Memoirs of a Geisha”) and where I spotted one in the evening, with the white face, a beautiful kimono and an elegant parasol in hand. the temple of gold has been the most impressive I’ve ever seen, but also the Fushimi Inari (a temple that is located on top of a mountain, and that is achieved through a distance of approximately 4 km through the red torii (a traditional portal lit the sacred Shinto). Located in Kyoto I had dinner in the restaurants of typical local cuisine dream that were hidden in a small street near a channel , unforgettable. In the “city of a thousand temples ” , my first and last stop was Gion, the famous district of tearooms and the Geisha ( became famous due to the movie ” Memoirs of a Geisha ” and where I spotted one in the evening, with the white face , a kimono once back in Tokyo again , I went straight to take a cafe on the ” Calico Cat café”, a bar full of beautiful cats we can play with while you take a cup of tea or coffee and then I had lunch at 634, a restaurant at 345 meters above sea level in Tokyo Skytree , where you have a breathtaking view of the city and went shopping in Shibuya Japanese along with a special friend who was able to advise me and guide me. In fact, ever since I was a child I wanted to know all the secrets of this strange ” world,” a little bit because of all Japanese cartoons that I have nurtured in childhood , and a little bit because my dad was always there for work , and told me many things that I then rielaboravo with imagination. And now I can only hug my beloved teddy bear cute of Rilakkuma and share this experience thanks to my blog and take the opportunity to thank this special place :
La Coquette Italienne