Oh, Tokyo!

Turning Japanese: my husband and I in coordinated outfits that we swear, didn’t plan, shot by a lovely tourist that happened to pass by the exact spot this ice cream shop was. It’s quite the serendipitous photo that I’ll treasure for life.

December 2018. It was our first time in Tokyo, a bit implausible for Filipinos who practically take the country by storm during the summer break, and now even the holidays for a chance to experience snow. Suffice to say, we now know what the fuss is all about! Japan’s capital is every bit what I expected in my dreams, and so, so much more. For a city girl like me, navigating the busy, hectic, sometimes manic streets of Tokyo is akin to a hamster in a very elaborate cage/colony that I never wanted to get out of. I lived for the rush of crossing busy Shibuya, running to catch a train, squeezing into tiny restaurants and watching the rest of the city do the same thing day in and day out. I loved how the Japanese pay attention to the most minute details, like the time to make everything around them functional and pretty. I enjoyed how bright the streets were at night, how safe it felt even at the wee hours and how they valued space (or a lack thereof) by using each millimetre. And don’t even get me started on the shopping! You can easily burn a few hundred thousands in a day if you let yourself go; same goes with the food, albeit there are lots of cheap eats for the budget-conscious. I couldn’t help but compare it to my hometown which is light years away in terms of almost everything and felt a sense of sadness mixed with awe on how it was so possible to have all these conveniences if only things were different. While we barely scratched the surface of this magnificent city, I think we did pretty well exploring, eating, shopping and bonding to last us until our next visit.

Here are some of the highlights of our trip, all shot with my trusty iPhone 8 that I whipped out about ten thousand times a day when I’d see something wonderful.

My first glimpse of Shibuya Crossing that left me awestruck.

Simple, fresh, perfection.

Meiji Temple

Early morning temple run

Omotesando & Harajuku

Kids off to school were adorable!

No shortage of IG spots here.

Uber hipster cafe.

The famed street devoid of the once colorfully dressed characters that were so popular in the ’90s. Sad to have missed that era.

Some fashion remnants of what once was.

Sneaker shops galore!

Wanted these but the smallest size won’t even fit.

Tried these on for size.

 

Went back for these two days after and it was sold out!

Famed gyoza place in Cat Street.

Verdict: a bit on the bland side, but good.

 

Ended up with these Puma Thunder Spectra and I love them!

Ginza

Newly opened Ginza Six mall.

Multi-level Uniqlo.

Happy to see the old logo still up here.

Tall and short in one street.

These are actual puppets that moved with the music!

Took a break at the Dover Street Market cafe.

Jingu Gaien

Our anniversary meal!

Shimokitazawa

Thrift shops and local ware can be found in every corner of this charming ‘hood.

Tsukiji

Sushi for brekky!

Shinjuku

At the Golden Gai.

Found this tiny 24-hour ramen shop in the maze of bars and restos.

Soup was sardine-based and so tasty.

Roponggi Hills

The breeze was nice and cool up here.

Shibuya

Daikanyama

All vegetarian tacos with different flavored tortillas. Tasted so clean and fresh.

Fish tacos.

Such a delightful ward!

Gorgeous townhouses.

Very hip local Spring Valley brewery.

Omotesando

The leaves were falling as we stolled…so whimsical.

Couldn’t leave without having his goodies!

Finally tried the famed frozen s’mores! TDF!!!

Carlo’s chocolate mousse.

Another dreamy resto.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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