Crazy Food Adventures in Tokyo

During this summer (August 2011 - October 2011), I stayed in Tokyo because I had an internship with a company called Nikken Sekkei (a.k.a. architectural firm in charge of designing the Tokyo Sky Tree), but I was in the urban planning/town planning division.

After studying in the mountainous suburbs of Hiroshima where there isn't much choice in eating out unless you like "family restaurants", McDonalds or okonomiyaki, I decided to explore what kind of tasty food Tokyo had to offer with total disregard for the price (to certain limits!).

Most of the pictures where taken with Mr. Blurrycam (iPhone 3GS) while a select few were taken with a real camera (Canon Powershot S80).

My meal on the 4.5 hour Shinkansen train ride from Hiroshima to Tokyo.

Shinkansen Bento

Stewed pork with some sort of teriyaki sauce. 6 pieces of pork in total!

Cost 1000 yen.

Quite expensive in my opinion.

Yokohama Walks 2011: Nissan Gallery and Global Headquarters

On Sept. 23, 2011, I walked from Yokohama station to the Motomachi area of Yokohama because I wanted to see what kinds of interesting things I could bump into. Previously, whenever I went to Yokohama, I had always gotten off at Sakuragicho station and had no impression of how the rest of the waterfront area looked like.

My walking route. Once again thanks to Google Maps on my iPhone I did not get lost. I actually walked straight back to Yokohama station from the Motomachi area at the end of the day because I didn't feel like paying the rip-off fare on the Minato-Mirai line. (I did not show the return walking route on this map)

View Yokohama in a larger map

Nikko: World Heritage Tourist Trap

On Sept. 25, 2011, I took a day-trip to Nikko, Japan. Although I lived in Tokyo for 10 months when I was on the study abroad program at Tokyo University of Foreign Studies in 2005-06, I never visited Nikko.

Nikko is designated as a World Heritage Site so I thought it would be as interesting as Kyoto, unfortunately, not only was it nothing like Kyoto, but every attraction there was designed to suck money out of the tourist...(They were selling tourist maps at the Nikko railway station for 100 yen each!)

Because I was in Tokyo for 2 months for an internship this summer from August to October, I decided to take the opportunity to finally visit Nikko.

The location of Nikko relative to the location of Tokyo. After tracing the train line with Google Maps, the distance from the north of Tokyo (Kita-Senju) to Nikko was calculated to be 80 miles (130 kilometres).

View Tokyo to Nikko in a larger map

Tokyo Walks 2011 - Tokyo Station to Odaiba

On Sept. 19, 2011, I walked from Tokyo station to Odaiba because:
  1. I enjoy "urban hiking"
  2. I wanted to see how far Odaiba really was by foot, to put the distance on a human scale
  3. I wanted to see if there was anything in between all those man-made islands

My route. If it wasn't for my iPhone, data and Google Maps, I would have gotten lost. I am convinced that Tokyo is one of those places where a smartphone is really necessary for finding directions and not getting lost. Google Maps calculated the time for walking at 1.5 hours, but it actually took me 2 hours and I walk pretty fast...

View Tokyo to Odaiba in a larger map