Panoramic Tokyo

I knoooow, this is one week late, but here it goes. 

We capped off our Golden Week with another day tour, this time around Tokyo. My vision of Japan, Tokyo in particular, has always been filled with busy intersections, crowded trains, and the bustling, fast-paced city life. But wait, the capital has so much more to offer.


In the midst of the concrete jungle are hidden gems and shrines. We started off with Meiji Shrine, a Shinto Temple with roots going back centuries ago. This is a torii, a traditional gate that separates the sacred place from the outside world. It is the tallest in Japan with a towering height of 12 meters.

A giant wall of barrels of sake wrapped in straw welcomes the tourists into the temple.

Apparently, Emperor Meiji had a fine taste for French wine.


Before entering the temple, one must be mentally purified. We did the cleansing rituals ourselves — cleaning our hands and mouth.

This is the main entrance to the temple grounds.


Their practice is different too. For Catholics like me, we make the sign of the cross and pray. For Shintoists, one must throw a 5-yen coin, bow twice, clap twice, say wishes, and then bow once.


These wooden blocks are called ema, where Shintoists write their wishes or prayers, or in our terms, petitions.


Then we went to the Imperial Palace, where the Emperor and Empress resides.


It is surrounded by moats and brick walls that dates back to the Edo Period.

This is the second gate. Look at the strength of these walls!

There were other gates but were bombed down during the second world war.

There were three guard houses, this one is where visitors in the past go through for final inspection.

The discoloration of the walls were due to the bombings in the war.


It was a beautiful day to wander around the palace grounds.


Only the East Gardens is open to the public. But we had a great time exploring. I’m still in awe of the surroundings, taking note of the skysrapers and modern buildings outside. It’s like falling down Alice’s rabbit hole, spiraling down into the Edo Period.

Look at those beautiful spots! Enormous.

Breathtaking.


So that’s how it felt to walk down memory lane, historical relics right before my eyes. But out of the gate and into the present we go.

Then we went to Asakusa to visit the Sensō-ji Buddhist Temple.

A closer look of the Temple.


Okay. But this was how it really looked like.


There were a lot of people! Two reasons: Golden Week and fine weather. On top of that, it has a busy street for shopping!

After a quick tour, we went to Ginza for a lunch buffet but I was too hungry to take photos. 😂

Then, this! For me, the Tokyo Bay Cruise was the highlight of the tour.


Jack…

Then we went to Odaiba, an artificial island reclaimed from Tokyo Bay.

Perfect dating spot.

Look who’s here!

Statue of Liberty in Odaiba. Stunning.

Then we ended our trip at Ginza where we witnessed a traditional Japanese dance performance.

That concluded our Panoramic Tokyo day tour. I would definitely recommend this tour from Hato Basu if you plan to visit Tokyo. ☺️

Till my next blog post!

xx Katie

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