Playing with the sand at the side of the road

Japan 2017 Redux: Day 7 "No Halation"

Day 7: 2017-05-04 Thursday

I think after a set number of days into a holiday, I tend to hit a hump and get a little lazy. Considering how active I’d been in Hokkaido, I’ll take it. Today I really should have been exploring more of the towns near Tokyo, but after hanging out until the afternoon, a day of exploring in Tokyo was in order.

Go figure, Tokyo’s a big place. There was and is plenty there that I still haven’t seen.

Getting off at Asakusa, one is greeted by the sight of the marvelous Golden Turd.

The Golden Turd near Asakusa Station
The Golden Turd near Asakusa Station

It’s actually supposed to be called the Asahi Beer Hall, but the structure stands out for slightly different reasons, as you can see.

The turd is on the way to Senso-ji, the oldest Buddist temple in Tokyo. The street leading up to it, Nakamise-dori, is packed with little stalls and shops selling things, and at the entrance to the temple stands the gate—Kaminarimon.

Kaminarimon, or 'Thunder Gate'
Kaminarimon, or 'Thunder Gate'

It’s hard to get across the scale of the gate with photos, especially once one is up close and personal with the lantern in the middle. It’s an imposing and amazing structure.

The gardens of Senso-ji temple are worth a wander around as well. While the temple and the street leading up to it is very busy, the gardens are impeccably maintained and surprisingly tranquil.

The plaza just outside Tokyo Station
No school idols here today, unfortunately

Tokyo Station is the busiest railway station in Japan, and you’d think such a large station would be a carbuncle of sorts, but no. The Marunouchi side of Tokyo Station is a Western-style palacial building, which looks incredible after its renovation.

However, outside Tokyo Station is probably more well known to sometime anime tourists these days. The above photo would only be improved by being at night and in the snow at Christmas, but needs must.

A collection of anime keychains for sale, mostly from Kemono Friends
A collection of anime keychains for sale, mostly from Kemono Friends

There were far too many photos I took of anime-related tat to show on this blog, but I thought this one was worth it for the cold, hard way it signifies popularity—the more expensive your tat in the shops of Nakano Broadway, the more popular your character is. Especially with a series like Kemono Friends, which really felt like the next big thing in 2017, it’s a great way to get an idea of how popular your favourite actually is. Were you a fan of PPP? Turns out you were in the minority going by this index.