Tokyo

Small world (again)

Addemdum from Tokyo! I just received this pic of me and my former neighbors Tiziana and Andrea in a Starbuck’s in Tokyo. The world is so small. Andrea mailed me about my old apartment, and we figured out that we’d all be in Tokyo at the same time, so he arranged for me to ‘run’ […]

Japan budget

Japan is expensive, that’s what you hear. Well, not that much, actually. Twenty years of deflation have left a mark in their price levels. As did the recent depreciation of the Yen against the Euro, losing 40% within a couple of months. If you have visited London, New York or San Francisco, you won’t find […]

Tremendous Tokyo

Here’s my best-of-Japan, a mix of Tokyo and Osaka: Best part/scene/place: It is hard to decide, as Tokyo has so many different scenes, from the Hanami at the Meguro Kanal, to the bars of Shinjuku, to the Harajuku in the Park. Whatever you are looking for, you will find it in Tokyo. Best drink (alcoholic): Sake. What […]

Full circle

Today, I am boarding my last flight of my first Round-the-world ticket, flying from Tokyo-Narita back to Zurich, where it all started 6 months and 26 days ago. I’ll have a short technical stop at Lake Constance, seeing my family and a few friends there, washing, changing clothes and dropping some superfluous weight before heading […]

Last day in Japan

I spent the last day in Japan really relaxed. I had toyed with the idea of doing a day trip to Nikko, but scrapped that. Instead, I checked out of my hotel and first had a working breakfast at Starbuck’s, using their fast wifi for some blogging and sorting some stuff… Then I went to […]

Rainbow week

My last Sunday in Tokyo, but in time for their Rainbow Pride week. I went with Paul and his friends John and Ole, drinking Champagne on the streets, seeing the parade (weirdly interrupted by cars and traffic!) and just strolling through Yoyogi Park along the stands. I am sure I saw some Harajuku boys and […]

Back to Tokyo

I hopped onto the Shinkansen again this morning, speeding back the 894.2 km in around 4h45, which includes the little stop in Osaka. It’s an amazing technology, and such a smooth ride. Time flies. The tracks run through what is I guess the most populated areas of Japan, honestly it seems like one big continuous […]

Shimokitazawa

Today I went to Shimokitazawa, often simply referred to as Shimokita. This is yet another side of Tokyo, only two train stops from the Shibuya craziness. The houses are small again, yet the whole area is full of shops. You won’t find any international chains though. Second hand, mostly – one shop appropriately called Ashbury Haight – then record […]

Traditional

Albeit being a metropolis of roughly 37 million people in the whole metropolitan region, Tokyo has so many quiet and traditional spots that provide a nice, calm balance to the craziness of it all. Yesterday I went back to the Meiji shrine again and witnessed another traditional Japanese wedding. While certainly not alone (the guards had to […]

Harajuku Girls

It took some time to find them. The famous girls and boys from Harajuku. Dressed up to the nines. Every guide book claims that on sunday afternoon, the bridge between Harajuku Station and Yoyogi Park would be crowded with crazed Japanese fashionistas and girls and boys dressed up like Japanese Manga characters. Or caricatures. However, […]

Ueno

After Ameyoko, I walked over to Ueno Park, where I had been already a couple of days earlier with Brandon, Paul, Mike and Marco. This time I wanted to visit the National Museum of Western Art. Ok, it might be a bit weird to run into the one museum in Tokyo that has the exact […]