Jul 12, 2017

Sights of Shibuya & Harajuku

There is just so much to see in Tokyo! Starting off my Japan blog post with the places I have visited in Shibuya & Harajuku. Rows of multi-story shops that goes up and underground, there is just not enough time to explore everything. Every corner I turn there is something interesting at sight. 

During my trip to Tokyo, I decided to record the moments and some of the areas I went to. Excuse the not-so-professional recording and video editing...still getting used to this :) I haven't touched any video editing software ever since I graduated..haha.

Located outside the Hachiko exit of Shibuya station, it was quite empty when I went there around 9am as it was a weekday so I quickly grab a photo as I could see groups of tourist arriving shortly after. Just opposite the Hachiko Memorial Statue, there is the Shibuya City Tourism Association (opens at 10am) in an outstanding green train car where you can get the map of Shibuya & Harajuku area. The personnel will recommend you the must visit places and attractions around :)

Shibuya Crossing is a one time experience to witness the crowd crossing the intersections at the same time! Check out my vlog if you havent :) There are 2 viewing spots which one is FOC and one where you have to 'pay'.

The mainstream one is Starbucks which I took my video recordings at . However, Starbucks can be extremely crowded with tourist alike.

You may hop over to Shibuya Station for a good view as well. Don't take out your Pasmo card just yet...look for the Ginza metro line sign and walk up a flight of stairs and you will be at the first floor with a bunch of shops. Do not go all the way up to the Ginza line! Keep to your right where you will see a long walkway ramp which has windows and continue your way there. However, the windows have wires which sort of obstruct the view...but a good spot for photo :)

If you are getting off from the Ginza train to Shibuya station, you will spot a huge graffiti on the right wall. Just opposite it on the left is the window to view the Shibuya crossing :)

Shibuya Hikarie Sky Lobby is a nice spot for a city view as well, best of all it is FREE! At the corner of the view point, there is an escalator & stairs which leads one level down. The windows at that level are much cleaner for photo taking which I personally recommend :)

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After that, take the elevator down to explore the space and department stores. There was a few exhibitions at level 8 which is FOC as well! The department stores also have interesting selection of items along with beautifully decorated restaurants.

Saw some interesting apartments as I got lost around Shibuya area...basically just went off route from google maps and ended up at the quieter area of Shibuya. Continued walking and ended up at Bunkamura, which I did not go into the museum as it didn't pique my interest plus there is a fee to pay.

If you are a Disney fan, check out this store! Instead of buying Disneyland / Disneysea tickets online which you still have to exchange it for the actual ticket when you arrive at Disneyland, this store in Shibuya allows you to purchase the actual ticket where you can enter Disneyland without queueing for tickets. The ticket counter is located at the top floor of the Disney store.

Other places that I have visited in Shibuya & Harajuku are Mega Don Quijote, Muji, Daiso, Loft, Tokyu Hands. These places will literally suck you in! And...it has many levels. If you think Daiso in Malaysia is relatively big...There is at least 5 levels of this in Japan!!! These stores have everything ranging from household, stationaries, electrical, food & drinks...it literally covers every aspect of your life. I had to control myself from buying too much.

From Shibuya Station, it is just a 20 minutes walk to Yoyogi Park. Lots of greens and flowers for the eyes to feast on. Plus..not forgetting the cute dogs too! It is a good way to start your morning. How I went on my route was Shibuya > 7 evelen (breakfast) > Yoyogi Park > Meiji Shrine > Harajuku. Since the weather was still cold when I went in early June, it was a nice stroll in the park :)

It was quite sad that the Meiji Shrine is under major renovations until 2019 according to Japan Guide. Since it was under major removations, there wasn't really much impact to it. However, there was a ongoing bonzai exhibition where most of it are over a few hundred years old. There was one that was about 500 years old!

I would recommend going into the Meiji Jingu Inner Garden where you will have to pay a small fee (500 yen) but it is worth it!

It was the season for Hanashobu (irises) and it was beautiful! Besides the iris garden, there are also ponds and gazebo which you can take in the sight & serenity of the garden.

After exiting Meiji Jinggu, I walked over to Harajuku Station to check out the unique design of the train station. Along with visiting the famous Takeshita Street, it was so crowded even though it was a weekday! The shops were filled with so many cute stuff...though I felt that the clothes were quite pricey. Had some delicious crepes there and then exited Takeshita Street to explore the rest of Harajuku.

Went over to LINE Friends Store to hang out with Brown :P

Popped by Alice on Wednesday and stumbled across Princess One Spoon shop while walking around the small streets of Harajuku. I somehow ended up on Omotesando, which is an upscale area. Not within my range of expenditure so it was just a quick stroll around the area. 

I find the shops off Takeshita street especially in those alleys heading towards Omotesando more interesting and have much more characteristics to it :)

After almost an entire day of walking, my feet hurt. Stopped by at Tokyu Plaza Omotesando Harajuku to check out their rooftop terrace while getting a cup of coffee to sit and relax. The atmosphere is really relaxing with a nice view.

Dinner at Ichiran Ramen to experience the private booth. Ramen was really good too :)

Continued walking around Harajuku and also bought some cute T-shirts while making my way back to Shibuya after dinner :) Did not shop much in Harajuku as it was pretty pricey..especially if you are earning in MYR. Quality wise, the items are really good.

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