Bizarrely, we woke to snow! The weather changed so much throughout our stay, two days previously we were in t shirts and then today in thick scarves and coats battling through a blizzard. And we also swayed into the day again. Another earthquake hit, I was calmer this time round and it lasted only a few seconds but still woke us early so we headed out to explore.
We went to Tokyo station to activate our JR pass* and booked the bullet train for our trip to Kyoto the next day. From there we went to Kappabashi in the Taito District which is also known as the Kitchen District. As pottery fans, we wanted to see all the ceramic shops. We also stopped for a coffee in the 'Bridge' cafe which had a really industrial vibe. We returned to Akihabara to a couple of shops I had on my list to visit; Super Potato and Mandarake. All things retro, comics and of course, Studio Ghibli.
We also returned to Shibuya to do some last chance shopping and discovered a beautiful independent book shop. We ate lunch at Uoebi where you order on a screen and your food comes zapping down a chute. The food wasn’t the best but the experience was great! We decided to spend our last night in Tokyo in Shimokitazawa and ate in a lovely Mexican restaurant, Rainbow Kitchen, and wandered the streets taking in every last bit of Tokyo as we could.
We had been surprised by Tokyo, always knowing we would love it, but presumed it would feel busy and chaotic, but instead the opposite. It was so organised, flowing and efficient. But also beautiful, every corner and alley way and building was well kept, and interesting. The cleanliness and friendliness stood out particularly to us. We were sad to leave, but also ready to see our next destination… Kyoto!
*The Japan Rail Pass (JR Pass) is a brilliant cost effective way to travel long distances in Japan. It can be used by foreign tourists only and offers unlimited use of JR trains for one to three weeks. This can be purchased online before you travel to JapanYou can purchase a JR pass and find out more information on the following website:https://www.japan-rail-pass.com/?ap=j0095g