DAY 2May 14 2019
We had barely enough time to get to our connecting flights, Gio and I speed walked across Calgary airport. they were mostly board by the time we got to our gate, amd when we got to our seats, we were both sweaty (made worse by how hot the plane was). I think we both slept for the whole flight, cause neither of us remember taking off.
The flight from San Francisco was good. It was a big plane and I managed to sleep a bit.
When we got to Haneda, we took our time getting our Rail pass and transit cards. I was exhausted, so I pretty much just followed Gio wherever he went.
Finally we managed to get out of the airport, and out into Tokyo! Deana and William were waiting for us outside the Hostel for us. The Tokyo Imano-Ginza is a lovely little hostel. We're staying in a 4 bunk room, and there is hardly any room to open our suitcases.
When we were settled and had had a chance to change out of our sweaty travel clothes, we set out for something to eat. We weny to Ichiro ramen in Shinbasi. There was a line up going downstairs. We got a sheet of paper to fill out our order, then paid at a vending machine to get our tickets and waited until there was enough room to be seated. The waiter/host, led us into the restaurant, and we were seated along a long hallway with a table with separated booths. There we put our order amd our tickets in the window so they could serve us the ramen. You receive your ramen through that window, they tell you to enjoy your meal and then they close your window. The food was delicious! Rich and warm!
After dinner, we went wandering the area. Gio took a lot of pictures of the streets and alleys with their nighttime lights. It was very alive. We found a very pristine garden/park to walk around for a bit, which led us to a grandiose buddhist temple.
Headed home soon after - utterly exhausted.
DAY 3May 15 2019
Fairly early start this morning. We all headed to the market for breakfast. I tried the sweet omelette on a stick, which was really good. Then we were persuaded to come into this tiny restaurant for some crab soup and fish rice bowl. I'm not totally sold on the texture of raw fish, so I might aim for cooked as much as possible. But I ate it, amd it was very good. The rice was especially nice.
After a big breakfast of raw fish, we headed out to Odaiba - Diver City. First up, the Digital Art Museum. Very Cool.
There were different rooms of interactive art, huge rooms with projections of flowers and butterflies and ambiant music. We took tons of pictures (as you are encouraged to do so). The floating lamp room was gorgeous. And I was super relaxed in the floating nest room. You lay down in a large net suspended in the air and watch the projection of butterflies set to calmimg music. Very relaxing.
Probably the best part was the Athletic Forest. The floors were wonky and hilly, and the room was dark but had projections of crocodiles, frogs, butterflies, and flowers and birds, which we discovered shortly after that you colour in these animals, and then they scan your drawing and it shows up as a living projection on the ground! If you step on them while theyre moving around, they get splatted :( but continue onwards.
The 3D bouldering was fun, but difficult. i didnt make it to the end. You had to follow one colour path through some trees.
After the museum, we made our way to the Diver City Mall, where stands the infamous Gundam statue. It moves a bit every few hours, but we missed it,cause we were in the mall having a look around. I got to try takoyaki there.
We went to a few stores, and got some matching disney shirts for the park tomorrow, at uniqlo. Then headed to Daiso to get a few essentials. I got a sun hat because it was so sunny out that between the digital art museum and the mall, I could feel a bit of a burn on my face.
Of course we had to spend some time at the gundam store where Gio geeked out and took a ton of pictures.
Then we went to thw Aqua City mall, right next door and bought our disney tickets for the next day.
After that we ended up winding down on the beach near the statue of liberty replica and looked out across the rainbow bridge waiting for it to get dark.
Dinner was japanese exclusive macdonalds items. I had the teriyaki burger.
It only about 11pm and we're all winding down and ready for bed back at the hostel.
DAY 4May 16 2019
Tokyo Disney Land!
DAY 5May 17 2019
Tokyo Disney Sea!
DAY 6May 18 2019
Travelled to Kyoto to our next hostel (Bird Hostel).
We had some time before check in, so we went to the Imperial gardens near by.
DAY 7May 19 2019
Today we headed out to Arashiyama Monkey park in Kyoto. We rented some bicycles which was really fun, and it was a lot easier to get around. So we saw a lot of buddhist shrines in the area, most you had to pay to see, so we only did 2 of them. One of which was Gio-ji Temple and we saw her grave marker. We went to that one obviously because it was Gio's namesake.
Then we biked through the bamboo forest area. Incredible.
After that, lunchtime! We got tempura udon at a cool little restaurant by the river in the park. We got a table upstairs amd had to take our shoes off, because of the tatami mats, and sat traditionaly at a low table on the floor.
Then we made our way to the Monkey Park! It was a sweaty climb up the mountain, but it was very worth it! They were so cute and I love them. We even got to feed them!!! We got tons of pics!
At the bottom of the mountain we got some matcha ice cream.
We then returned our bikes and got on a train to Inari station to see the Inari Shrines! Bright orange torii gates. We spent hours looking at everything, and as we got further up, in the quiet areas, we saw tons of stray cats chilling on the gates. Then we decided to walk to the summit of Mt. Inari! It took a while, and it was hot, but rewarding at the end, cause when we came back down to the lookout point, the sun had set and we could see all the lights coming on. The walk down was easier.