Tokyo Business Trip 2008 Day 4 & 5

Harajuku and Tokyo’s second most visited shrine

12 October, 2008 by

Day 4 of my trip to Tokyo. Today was the one free day I had during the trip, I decided to spend some time at Harajuku to do some shopping. Since the rest weren’t really sure what to do, they decided to visit Harajuku as well. We headed there early in the morning before the crowd started settling in and split up to do our shopping. We agreed to meet again by the first crepe shop to decide about lunch.

Domo-kun was on in the morning.

Harajuku station.

The afternoon crowd.

Chinese food downstairs.

By the time lunch came, most of the shops there were packed. Regretting having not started queuing earlier, we went to a small underground Chinese eatery. The food was awful, the fried rice I had was terribly salty. Moving on we went view the nearby Meiji Shrine.

A long walk to the main shrine.

A little hut near the main building.

Here you could wash your mouth and extremities with holy water.

Another small hut. You could buy charms from here.

Preparing for something important.

Random chubby kid.

After purchasing some charms as souvenirs. We entered the main shrine yard.

Setting up a stage and seatings.

Very stressed guy from the previous group.

Lots of tourists were taking photos of this taiko.

The actual shrine.

You buy wooden tablets here.

To write your wishes and prayers.

To hang here.

Souvenir shop cum tourist trap on the way back.

And all the unfortunate parties who had to wait for their loved ones inside.

On the way back down the path out of the shrine, there was a cute little kid dressed in her kimono. She was on her way off as well, having visited the shrine with her father and grandmother. It was difficult for them to leave though as both tourists and locals alike kept stopping them for photos.

She seemed unmoved by all the attention.

And was more intrigued by the pebbles on the path.

Not that interested.

Time to leave.

Stopped again. Kinda looks like she's giving them the finger.

Finally managed to leave.

It was late afternoon by the time we made it out of the shrine. The sky was slowly getting darker. A small crowd had gathered by the bridge at the entrance to the Meiji Shrine. Sub-culture stranglers from the adjacent Yoyogi park seem to have stopped here for some attention from the tourists. To moderate success. A few other performers were here as well but didn’t get much attention.

They sat along the bridge.

Some sort of punk I guess.

No takers for free hugs.

Done with business.

The streets began to fill with people leaving the area. Many of the performers and cosplayers started leaving too, carrying home what new clothing and accessories they had purchased from Harajuku this weekend out. I left the rest at this point. A couple of them headed back to Akihabara again with the intention of purchasing some toys this time. Another left for Shinjuku to get some cosmetics. I left my purchases from Harajuku with the business manager who was headed back to the hotel. Another manager returned to the hotel to log onto the Word of Warcraft.

After stopping by one of the shops I had missed earlier to pick up a padded Converse jacket (as advertised by Horikita Maki) I took a train to Shibuya to pick up a bag for Yan and some stuff for myself.

Back to the station.

Shibuya 109-2.

It was pretty late by the time I was done with shopping and shops wouldn’t stay open for much longer. The leather bag that Yan wanted from Jackrose at Shibuya 109-2 was out of stock. One of their friendly staff, suggested another design which I purchased instead. After some consideration, picked up a black striped business bag from the Suit Company downstairs. The handle could be extended to function as a handbag as well. Not didn’t want to have to search for an empty restaurant still open at this time. Especially now while exhausted from a day of walking and carrying bulky shopping bags, so I stopped by the nearest McDonald’s.

Tried the McRibs. Basically, it was their promotional McPork from months back but with barbecue sauce.

It was awful. Strike two for today.


Headed back to the hotel after. Atsuhime was showing on NHK. The funny thing is, the lead actress Aoi Miyazaki was also in lots of the commercial breaks. I took a quick snap after of 3rd commercial with her in it. After a relaxing hot bath, slept through my last night in Tokyo.

Hard Gay was on the next morning.

Along with Suzanne.

View from Starbucks.

Nothing much to do on the last day since we were flying back today. Had to check out early so headed back to Shibuya to kill some time while we waited for our coach back to Narita. The business manager and myself took a break at the HMV opposite the train station. We ordered some coffee from Starbucks and sat upstairs, reflecting upon our short trip. A smooth ride back to Narita one flight later, we were back in Singapore awaiting the next day’s work.

Planning your holiday? We recommend visiting Agoda for a full list of hotels with early bird specials.

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Supermerlion's Webmaster and Editor-in-Chief. Singaporean Nikkeijin with over 12 years of experience in the media industry. Producer at a Japanese entertainment company. Former Web Developer, Graphic Designer, Multimedia Programmer, Manager and Consultant. Shoots with a Canon 5Dmk2 and Sony RX100-2.