The second stop on our trip was Japan’s capital city, Tokyo!

Another Rangel fellow, and good friend, was wrapping up his internship at the embassy at Tokyo and offered to host us for the week.  This offered us the chance to see the accommodations for foreign service families and also pick his brain on where to go and what to do.

While Tokyo wasn’t my favorite city that I’ve been to, it’s got some pretty cool gems.  We caught a few Pokemon at the Pokemon superstore and ate the best ramen ever.  I wasn’t thrilled about traditional Japanese food, but I at the hell out of some sushi and ramen.

Below are some of my favorite spots in Tokyo

Akihabara Electric town

Akihabara Electric town is an overwhelming display of lights, toys, and manga.  Here you can find collectibles from all of your favorite Anime and Manga comics from your obscure comics to my favorite, Naruto.  There are also a few… interesting bars, including a Maid bar, which features waitress dressed in super short French maid costumes.  Arcade games are also very prominent here.  I’ve discovered my favorite game, a drumming game because I was meant to rock in another life.

Tsukiji Fish Market

If you’ve ever seen a video of famous spots in Tokyo, you may have heard about the fish market, with sellers and resturanteurs gathering at the ass crack of dawn to purchase the freshest fish for their resturants.

Don’t show up at 4am to see this.  You’ll get in the way, and it will be fun.  Instead, sleep in and wander down to the market for a late breakfast like we did!  We stopped into the visitors center and asked which, of the many, sushi resturants to visit and ended up at Tsukiji Sushisay Honten.  Our chef spoke enough English to let us know how to eat our sushi, and was damn good at his job.  The sushi here was delicious and $1 sushi will never be ok again.

Mt. Fuji & Lake Ashi

We were so excited for our day trip to Mt. Fuji that that we arrived a full day early (read: I read it wrong in my calendar). We booked another tour through Viator that included a bus ride to Fujisan, a cruise on Lake Ashi,a trip up Mount Hakone and ride on the bullet train back to Tokyo.

I wish could have seen Mt. Fuji from a distance. The weather was quit bizarre that day – it was clear going to and from Mt. Fuji, but there were rain clouds hanging above it and obscuring our view. The bus took us up to the 5th station where we were promptly soaked by rain, only staying long enough to grab souvenirs. We took the bus down to Lake Ashi and had lunch before going on our cruse. In complete contrast to Mt. Fuji shyly hiding behind clouds, the sun was shining and the sky was blue everywhere else. While I wish I were able to get some pictures of Mt. Fuji, a day outside of the hustle and bustle in Tokyo was just what we needed.

While Tokyo was not my favorite spot in Japan, it’s still worth a visit before you head to Kyoto or somewhere else.  Any suggestions for my next trip to Tokyo? Where are your favorite spots?

Onward, to Kyoto!

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