Exploring Tokyo {Shibuya, Harajuku, Yoyogi, Shinjuku}

Yoyogi Park

Our very first day in Japan was cold and wet, the skies an extraordinary grey. Such unfortunate weather begged the question: what does one do in Tokyo when it’s raining? We had a bit of trouble deciding what our itinerary would be like since the weather ruled several of our plans out, but we eventually powered through the gloom and managed fill our day with plenty of activities. Here’s a quick list of what we did!

1. Himonoya, Shibuya

The first thing we did was have brunch in bustling Shibuya. We found a spectacular old-fashioned tavern-like place, dimly lit and surrounded by dark textured walls that constantly had water trickling down them, providing the coziest of atmospheres. Himonoya serves grilled food items, mainly fish and squid, but they also grill sausages and rice balls (yaki onigiri) among other things. Their menu is surprisingly affordable.

Himonoya, Shibuya Himonoya, Shibuya Himonoya, Shibuya Himonoya, Shibuya

2. Shopping in Harajuku

Straight after brunch, we hopped onto a train and headed to Harajuku Station, just one stop away from Shibuya Station via the JR East Yamanote Line. Because of the drizzle, Harajuku wasn’t as busy as usual, which meant less of a crowd to fight our way through. After slipping and sliding our way past all the clothing, bag and shoe stores along Takeshita Street (and purchasing a couple of things along the way), we ventured towards Yoyogi Park.

Takeshita Street, Harajuku

3. Yoyogi Park & Meiji Jingu

Yoyogi Park is just a short walk from Harajuku Station. It is an extensive, thickly-wooded park that acts as a sanctuary for wild birds and, most notably, houses the grand Meiji Shrine. The dark skies and light drizzle gave us some very interesting opportunities to take some moody, dramatic pictures of the area.

Yoyogi Park Yoyogi Park Yoyogi Park Yoyogi Park Yoyogi Park Yoyogi Park

4. Tonkatsu Wako, Shinjuku

We had dinner in Shinjuku at Tonkatsu Wako, a chain restaurant that specialises in breaded, deep fried pork cutlets (tonkatsu). This particular outlet is located in the SUBNADE underground shopping mall conveniently connected to Shinjuku Station. Their pork cutlets are perfectly light, crisp and airy on the outside, and satisfyingly tender and juicy on the inside. Most set meals are priced under ¥2000, and you get rice and soup on the side to boot!

Tonkatsu Wako Tonkatsu Wako Tonkatsu Wako Tonkatsu Wako

8 thoughts on “Exploring Tokyo {Shibuya, Harajuku, Yoyogi, Shinjuku}

  1. I’ll be taking a trip to Tokyo in January and this post is exactly what i’ve been needing. I’ll need to find a way to save it somewhere so I can use it out there :)

    1. That’s awesome! It’ll be really cold then, make sure you stay warm! I’ll be blogging a lot more about Tokyo over the next few days, so if you’re interested in places like Rikugien Garden, Nakamise Street, the Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building and Tsukiji Fish Market, check back soon and you’ll get to read all about them! :)

  2. That sounds like a very full, and enjoyable first day. The pictures were great, especially the ones of the Park, and especially for a guy like me who’s never been off the continent. Thanks for giving me a glimpse. It was appreciated. Enjoy the rest of your trip.

    1. Rain and sightseeing is such a terrible combination! Carrying around an umbrella in the cold whilst trying to get around in an unfamiliar area is the most troublesome thing! Impossible to take proper photographs, and in a place like Tokyo it’s highly likely someone else’s umbrella might poke your eye out! But notwithstanding the rain, Tokyo is an incredible place full of colour and vibrance! :)

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