Thursday, April 29, 2010

Japan trip 2010 - day 1 Tokyo

Hi everyone
We are back from Japan but I am going to write up the journey now , day by day. I wasn't able to load photos while I was away so this seems the best way to do it.

6th April we flew to Tokyo after a really early flight from Wellington. We had to be at the airport at 5.15am. Above is a picture of ice that formed on the window,  looked like a bullet hole! This trip t Japan, I  travelled with my 17 year old son.

7th April we spent in Tokyo. In the morning we went to Asakusa Senso-ji temple. Chris and I were in competition to see who could get the most classic shot of cherry blossom. Chris won this round!

Above are some photos from the Amuse Gallery in Asakusa. I went there last year but was only allowed to see a small section of the museum because it is closed on a Monday. This time I was able to see the whole museum which included a collection of Boro clothing, Kogin clothing (sashiko stitched) a temporary exhibition of wool embroidered aprons and these amazing salmon skin boots (see above). There was also a young girl demonstrating 'sakiori' weaving which is done by ripping up old clothing and using the strips to weave new cloth.

The museum also has a collection of sashiko embroidered clothing. It has a really nice shop and a few publications available for sale. It is worth a visit and easy to find.

From Asakusa Senso-ji temple. Face the front of the main building of the temple. Turn right (East) and go to the side street. On one side is a duty free shop and on the other is Amuse Gallery.

Drum Museum
My son plays the drums and the Drum museum is also in the Asakusa area. He was able to try out the steel drums, Japanese Taiko drums and all sorts of percussion instruments from around the world. The curators close themselves into their office and just let visitors 'go for it' on different drums.
Face the main gate of Asakusa Senso-ji temple. The gate is called Kaminarimon. Ahead of you is Nakamise Dori, a long shopping street filled with tourist souvenirs and strange food items. To get to the Drum museum turn left and walk till you get to the next really major street. The Drum Museum is straight across the road in front of you.

In the afternoon we went to Studio Ghibli Museum. I went there last year but wanted to take my son there as he and I really like the Ghibli Movies, such as 'My Neighbour Totoro', 'Nausicaa', 'Spirited Away'.
You need to book this via the internet before you get to Tokyo. I booked my tickets through JTB in Auckland when I bought our JR Rail passes.

Here is a picture of a single room at Hotel New Koyo in Tokyo. Minami Senju area (up near Asakusa, Yanaka area.)  This is a 2 mat room. I could lie across it and it was exactly my length so 1.6metres wide. My son had to lie across the room diagonally or sleep with his feet either out the door or in the microwave. His room was the gold painted 'Samurai room' with swords decorating the walls. Mine was a much more boring colour! It was nice to have a single room rather than sharing with 7 other backpackers :-)

1 comment:

  1. lovely post on your visit to Japan. one thing though. Steel drums are not from Jamaica, but Trinidad and Tobago.
    It's my passion and my family has been making them for more decades.

    be well
    liz mannette