Category Archives: Japan

District of a thousand temples

I strolled the streets of Tokyo’s Yanaka District where it felt like there were temples on every corner. In fact, there were sixty — still a surprising number for this small district. Continue reading District of a thousand temples

Tokyo’s Yanaka District

North of Ueno Park, I strolled through the narrow streets of this quiet district having heard it offered a taste of old Tokyo. But the few scattered traditional houses I passed, sadly showed signs of neglect as if they were considered unworthy of repair. Continue reading Tokyo’s Yanaka District

Tokyo City

Like Kyoto, it was hard to spot any tasteful modern buildings in Tokyo. Because there was a rush to build after the Second World War, perhaps less thought was given to design and more to necessity. Continue reading Tokyo City

Roaming Tokyo’s famous park

I would have avoided Ueno Park after experiencing Koishikawa Korakuen Gardens but for a scene in a Japanese movie where two characters met. That scene made me want to venture into Tokyo’s famous park. Conveniently, it was right next to Ueno Station. Continue reading Roaming Tokyo’s famous park

Tokyo’s Imperial Palace

The only way to visit this site was on an organized tour. Photo identification was required and bags were searched as if we were possible terrorists before we headed out with a guide who read off a set script. I’m not sure why the search was necessary because we were only ushered through about an eighth of the grounds and weren’t allowed inside the palace. Continue reading Tokyo’s Imperial Palace

Koishikawa Korakuen Gardens

These Endo-period gardens weren’t just about the artistic arrangement of plants and lakes that covered the site, there was history attached. With signage both in Japanese and English I read that once an elaborate Chinese sign marked the entrance to the gardens, but it was destroyed by bombs in 1945. Continue reading Koishikawa Korakuen Gardens

Heading to a green spot on my ap

I arrived in Tokyo on a wet, slushy afternoon, but that didn’t keep me inside. I’d sat for the past couple of hours on a Shinkansen so headed to Koishikawa Korakuen Gardens close to where I stayed in Chiyoda-ku. Continue reading Heading to a green spot on my ap