Tokyo, Japan Section of Year 2000 Trip

(with a few Japan Rail photos)

Travel and Tourism, Vacation Guide
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I spent the first two Tokyo nights at the Hotel New Koyo in Tokyo. It might be the cheapest hotel in Japan and has extremely small rooms but is reasonably well located. I walked about 10 Km on Saturday -- all the way to Ueno Park and through the National Museums that are found there.
On this page I include some of the people I met and saw on my train trips. I find the Japanese to be quite friendly. It just takes some effort on my part to break through their initial privacy space.
This shows a train station vendor and her sample of strawberry specialities. Japan Rail seems to keep more food sellers and Kiosk operators employed than rail employees -- and there are certainly a lot of those.
Strawberries Japan Rail
Next I show some of teenagers that I met in Nara and Nikko. (Check out the socks. Very high platform shoes are also in vogue).
Nara Girls Japan Nara Girls Japan
The woman dressed in purple was delivering the newspaper in Kakunodate. The other shows a mother and daughter who ran a great little restaurant in Nikko.
Kakunodate Nikko

In between my people watching I did see a few sights in Tokyo. After my Japan Rail Pass travel I had several days in the western suburbs near the Keio train line.
Some of the most interesting Japanese sites and contrasts are in the common street scenes. The following group of photos are all taken within a hundred meters along the street near where I was staying. This include a surfing shop, a Lawson Station Convenience Store (like the ones that fed me during my Rail Pass Trip), a yakitori restaurant, a gas station and a thatched roof farm house.
Fuda Station area Fuda Station area Fuda Station area Fuda Station area Fuda Station area

I made a visit to the local Metropolitan Jindai Botanical Gardens and the Jindai temple. It is not in my guide books but is well worth a quiet afternoon.
Jindai Tokyo Jindai Tokyo Jindai Tokyo
More temples were seen in a later visit to the Sengakuji temple complex. This is the graveyard of the 47 Ronin that feature in so many Japanese epic stories.
There was a statue of a famous Buddhist Zen master.
Sengaku Tokyo

A short distance away I got interested in the scene through the window of a hair cutting salon. I convinced a few of the staff to pose for me.
Shinagawa hair salon Shinagawa hair salon

I spent a day at the Kabuki theatre in Tokyo (no photos allowed) followed by an evening in Shibuya area checking out the young fashion scene.
The second photo shows a woman giving out beer samples on the street corner!
Shibuya Tokyo Shibuya Tokyo
In the vast stretches of Shinjuku station I discovered this group of hard core "Maple Team" soccer fans.
Shinjuku Tokyo Shinjuku Tokyo Shinjuku Tokyo

On my last afternoon wandering Tokyo, I visited the vast electronic bazaar near Akihabara station.
Akihabara Akihabara
Outside the station there was a group using cuteness to sell ISDN computer connections.
Akihabara Akihabara
The last day was spent getting to Narita Skyport Hostel -- which is actually just another Business Hotel -- to spend my final night in Japan. After doing so well on my long distant travel I managed to make several mistakes in train and station selection as I left Tokyo. The transportation system there is very confusing and very expensive.

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