22/23 Nov 2009
22 Nov 2009
At Changi Airport next to the ANA check-in counter, all set for the overnight flight to Narita Airport
23 Nov 2009
MEIJI JINGU 明治神宮 - Harajuku - Takeshitadori + Omotesando hills
7 am: After almost 7 hours on board the plane, we finally landed on the tarmac of Narita Airport. Phew….
Since we had 3 luggage in addition to 2 haversacks with us, it doesn’t make sense to take the train though it’ll be a lot cheaper. We took the logical alternative - Airport Limousine Bus .
Locating the Airport Limousine counter was quite a breeze, really. It’s just outside the Arrival Hall exit.
Single trip cost 3,000 Yen per pax.
Smiling faces on board the airport limousine bus.
9.30 am: After a 1.5 hour ride and some 40 winks, we arrived at Shibuya Excel Hotel Tokyu.
The hotel is conveniently located above Shibuya Station, possibly the busiest train station in Japan
It was too early for check-in so we left our luggage at the concierge & had breakfast at a nearby café.
As planned, our next stop is Meiji Jingu. This was to be our 1st train ride in the subway. We headed down to the Shibuya Station and then I found myself staring at a huge board with all the possible train networks.
Wow, what a maze. Amazing! The next thing that struck me was all the stations in the networks were in kanji (Chinese characters). Omigosh…. I was expecting it to be in Romaji (romanised Japanese). Time to try my survival Japanese....
We made it! - Harajuku Station
Meiji Shrine (Meiji Jingu) is a shrine dedicated to the deified spirits of Emperor Meiji and his consort, Empress Shoken. In Shinto, it is not uncommon to enshrine the deified spirits of important personalities.
Emperor Meiji was the first emperor of modern Japan. He was born in 1852 and ascended to the throne in 1868 at the peak of the Meiji Restauration when the power was switched from the feudal Tokugawa government to the emperor. During the Meiji Period, Japan modernized and westernized herself to join the world's major powers by the time Emperor Meiji passed away in 1912.
Barrels of sake blessed by shinto priests
Taking a leak inside a traditional japanese lavatory
Cleansing ritual before entering the shrine
Shinto priests performing some ritual
Offerings made entirely of vegetables
The Meiji Shrine was completed in 1920, and rebuilt after being destroyed in World War Two. It is located in a wooded park area next to Yoyogi Park in Tokyo. Various events and festivals are celebrated at the shrine throughout the year.
Shopping at Takeshita - a very popular shopping belt within Harajuku vicinity
Posing with some red haired devils
Free impromptu performance by some spiderman wannabe?
Taking a break at the hotel room after a long day before another round of shopping in the evening!
That face shouts Oishii!
Tired grouchy faces. That's right, heading back to our hotel on a subway train after a long day.