Darlings! I’m back after a week hiatus; work has been crazy since I came back from Tokyo two weeks ago. As you might know from my ENDLESS #npmaptokyo post on Instagram, I have so many stories to tell and even more photos to show you from my trip from Akihabara, Ueno and Asakusa!
I was in Tokyo for the Asian Open Brazilian Jiujitsu Competition (but more story on that later guys), together with a bunch of crazy boys from my Arena BJJ team. This was actually my first big group trip in Tokyo, and naturally we visited more “boys” places (gadgets, toys, sneakers. So typical.) than what I usually head to.
(I had my fair share of my skincare shopping spree later, so nobody was hurt.)
Akihabara, Ueno and Asakusa are one subway stop from each other, which make them efficient distance-wise for a whole day sightseeing. Also our first AirBnb was located in Ayase, which was close to our tournament location but far away from Shibuya/Shinjuku city centers. Akihabara was twenty minutes away from our apartment so it was the first destination that we visited. So without further ado, let me share you the first day diary and itinerary that might inspire you boys and girls for your next trip to Tokyo
The legendary electric city Akihabara is the closest thing the outside world can imagine when thinking about Tokyo. Video games nerds/Otakus, manga, action figures, maids cafe, girls in maids costumes, more cosplay, neon lights, sickly cute girlband, all the stereotypes of the city that the everyone is familiar with, is centered in this area.
Two people in the group were looking for Gundams, one wanted to get a camera and others preferred DVD hunting -as I’ve said earlier, this is the ultimate boys destination; though girls will love it just as much. If it’s electronic, games, toys or cosmetics you need, I am pretty sure Akihabara got it somewhere.
Don’t miss out:
- Electronic Megastores such as BIC Camera and Yodobashi Camera. Akihabara is Tokyo’s electronic mecca so if you need the latest gadgets or games, this is where you can score new products that hasn’t been released anywhere else in the world. As with every other big stores in Tokyo, bring your passport to be eligible for a tax free purchase.
- Gundam Cafe (or even AKB48 Cafe, really, depends on what you’re into. I won’t judge. They’re next to each other, so I guess both pretty much adhere to the boys fantasies)
- Mandarake: EIGHT floors of manga, dvds, toys and action figures collectibles. Really as many Godzilla/Sailor Moon/Kaiju/Hello Kitty/Pokemon that you can take. A true collector mecca.
There’s probably one most sought after activity that all the boys have in common: sneaker hunting. When you travel with a bunch of people who each devotes himself to a specific brand, you take them nowhere else other than Ameya-Yokochō (Ameyoko) in Ueno.
Aside from three big ABC Marts buildings located a short walk away from each other, Ameyoko is brimmed with footwear stores and market stands (80% of them sneakers but you can find a great selections of other shoes too such as the Redwing boots.) One of my favorite shop here is the Mita Sneakers, a humble market stand proudly showcasing and selling many limited edition treasures (#Hypebeast approved yo). Each of the boys copped at least a pair or two in Ameyoko (I’m talking to you Mas Adien.)
After you’re finished with your crazy shoe shopping, it’s time to head to Mihashi Ueno to have one of the best Anmitsu and Kakigori you’ll ever taste in your whole life.
I’ve visited the Senso-Ji temple multiple times (also earlier this year on Spring when I also had the chance to wander around in kimono), but this is the first time I come here at night. I have to say that I enjoy the area much more after dark. No crazy crowd (which happens daily in the daytime), no tourist shops and the temple looks so magical beneath the whole summer night sky.
It’s almost impossible to get an empty shoot of Senso-Ji in the daytime (unless you arrive very very early in the morning), but I much prefer it at this time, don’t you think so?
You can get your O-mikuji (おみくじ / Fortune telling strips) read in this temple for a mere 100 yen. You will draw a straw, get a number, and opened the drawer based on the number to get the piece of paper telling your fortune. Your luck will range from great curse to great fortune; if you happen to unfortunately draw a curse, you shall fold and tie the paper on the metal wire provided for this purpose. This is done to dispose the bad luck or curse coming your way. Deddy drew his paper and got The Best Fortune! I’ve seriously never seen one before.
Better stay around him at the moment… you know, so the great luck might get rubbed on me somehow?
That’s all for my Akihabara, Ueno and Asakusa journey folks. See you on the next Tokyo Journal!10