Five Star Vagabond

Super travel tips, all road tested by David Herd. I'm an Australian guy who moved to Thailand in 2011 & still travel the world as often as possible.

Tsukiji Sushi Teriyaki Tokyo Station

December 6, 2016 by David Herd

Tokyo is a wonderful city

Tsukiji Sushi Teriyaki Tokyo Station Tsukiji Sushi Teriyaki Tokyo Station were the main areas where I spent my time in October 2016. Three nights and 2 days is just not enough time to fully enjoy this great city. It was however my staring point for my 2 week 6 city adventure on the Shinkansen or bullet train. 

I travelled to 6 interesting Japanese cities, includung Kanazawa, Hiroshima, Kumamoto, Kagoshima, Nagasaki & Fukuoka

 Tsukiji Sushi Teriyaki Tokyo Station

Tsukiji Sushi Teriyaki Tokyo Station Lets start around the Tsukiji area, here is my friend Kayo inspecting the produce. 🙂

Sushizanmai

Tsukiji Sushi Teriyaki Tokyo Station My favourite sushi restaurant located close to the Tsukiji seafood market.

We both love Sushizanmai

Tsukiji Sushi Teriyaki Tokyo Station I have also eaten in their braches in Osaka, Hiroshima & Fukuoka.

The eel is absolutely fabulous

 photo IMG_5001.jpg There is always a queue waiting to get in, make sure you sit at the sushi counter on the ground floor.

Bluefin Tuna Sells for $117,000 at Tokyo Auction

I have stayed in two excellent budget hotels very close to Sushizanmai, use these links to book and get a very good rate. Hotel Tokyu-Stay and Hotel Ban.

 Tsukiji Sushi Teriyaki Tokyo Station

Tsukiji Sushi Teriyaki Tokyo Station Around the Tsukiji market area there are many sidewalk stores selling fresh seafood. The huge market was supposed to relocate by now, the 81-year old fish market is one of the largest of its kind in the world and is a Tokyo cultural icon.

Many stores will cook for you

Tsukiji Sushi Teriyaki Tokyo Station Many people rate the market as the number one attraction in Tokyo.

 

Everyone deserves a break

Tsukiji Sushi Teriyaki Tokyo Station

He probably started work at 3 am so it’s time for a break. 🙂

My hotel was great value in a perfect location with free WiFi, book through THIS LINK for an excellent discount.

We say farewell to the Tsukiji market area

 photo IMG_5036.jpg However I can assure you we shall return. 🙂

Lets take a 15 minute walk to Ginza.

 photo IMG_5043.jpg On the way we pass the famous Kabuki Theatre.

The theatre dates to 1889 & has been destroyed by fire, earthquakes and war. It re-opened in 2013 and attracts 900,000 visitors a year.

Tokyo love buildings with a twist

 Tsukiji Sushi Teriyaki Tokyo Station

One of the great attractions in Japan is seeing the oild and the new.

The Ginza

Tsukiji Sushi Teriyaki Tokyo Station Back in the 1990s real estate in the Ginza was unbelievably expensive, one square meter of land was over 100 million yen. Prices now in 2016 have fallen dramatically however the area is still very expensive.

You can buy anything in the Ginza

 photo IMG_5049.jpg Just make sure you have your black Amex card with you. 🙂

 Kayo & I at a Spanish restaurant

Tsukiji Sushi Teriyaki Tokyo Station Close to my hotel there were a number of restaurants including this Spanish one.

Tsukiji Sushi Teriyaki Tokyo Station          Tsukiji Sushi Teriyaki Tokyo Station          Tsukiji Sushi Teriyaki Tokyo Station

Kayo had a snack & I stuck to the beers & red wine.

Instead of Spanish I chose a busy noisy Japanese restaurant

Tsukiji Sushi Teriyaki Tokyo Station I had only been in Tokyo 24 hours so I was craving Japanese food. 

Shumai?

Tsukiji Sushi Teriyaki Tokyo Station

These look more Chinese than Japanese. 🙂

This is more like it

 photo IMG_4994.jpg Chicken Yakitori delicious.

So many restaurants

Tsukiji Sushi Teriyaki Tokyo Station And such little time. 🙂

Tokyo Station

Tsukiji Sushi Teriyaki Tokyo Station There is now a bus from Narita that will bring you to a stop opposite Tokyo Station or Sukiyabashi crossing in Ginza for only 1000 Yen. 

Adjacent to Tokyo Station

Tsukiji Sushi Teriyaki Tokyo Station

The lights of Tokyo at night are magnificent. 

Akihabara

Tsukiji Sushi Teriyaki Tokyo Station famous for its hundres or perhaps thousands electronic shops.

My hotel was excellent.

Tsukiji Sushi Teriyaki Tokyo Station Close to 3 metro stations including the Hibuyu line with with free WiFi, book through THIS LINK for an excellent discount.

After 3 nights in Tokyo

Tsukiji Sushi Teriyaki Tokyo Station I’m off for a two week trip to 6 cities I have never seen before. Many thanks for visiting my Tsukiji Sushi Teriyaki Tokyo Station photo blog.

 What a great year for travel in 2015                  

                 Istanbul                  Budapest                        London

Galeta Tower     St. Stephen's Basilica       Walkie Talkie London    

          Mostar                           Dubrobnik                            Split

Thailand Europe Vietnam Japan        Dubrobnik cable car        David Herd Thailand                     

                 Saigon                            Zagreb                          Vung tau

Thailand Europe Vietnam Japan        Main Square Zagreb       Vung Tau

                           

            Great hotel room rates anywhere in the world if you book
                  through these links below.  Book now & pay later. 🙂
                              Bangkok Hotels                    London Hotels
                         Amazing Bangkok busses               Mowbray Court hotel
That’s all folks

Beach Club Pattaya Bay

Pattaya webcam

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Tokyo Towers Temples Skyscrapers

October 9, 2015 by David Herd

From the Tokyo Tower

Tokyo Tower Tokyo Towers Temples Skyscrapers make this one of the world’s truly great cities. When you add wonderful people, great food & restaurants you have the whole package. This September 2015 trip was my 4th visit to which has now become my favourite city.

Tokyo Towers Temples Skyscrapers                    Tokyo Tower Japan

Check out this link for great food in Tokyo.

Tokyo Tower

Tokyo Towers Temples Skyscrapers

The photos above were taken from the observation deck of the Tokyo Tower. Built in 1958, the tower’s main sources of revenue are tourism and antenna leasing. Over 150 million people have visited the tower since its opening. FootTown, a four-story building located directly under the tower, houses museums, restaurants and shops. Departing from there, guests can visit two observation decks. The two-story Main Observatory is located at 150 metres (490 ft), while the smaller Special Observatory reaches a height of 249.6 metres (819 ft

Ladies at the Ginza

Ginza Tokyo

Today the kimono are most often worn by women, and on special occasions. Traditionally, unmarried women wore a style of kimono called furisode, with almost floor-length sleeves, on special occasions. A few older women and even fewer men still wear the kimono on a daily basis. Men wear the kimono most often at weddings, tea ceremonies, and other very special or very formal occasions. Professional sumo wrestlers are often seen in the kimono because they are required to wear traditional Japanese dress whenever appearing in public.

The Ginza

Tokyo Towers Temples Skyscrapers One of the best known intersections in the world.  Ginza is recognized by many as one of the most luxurious shopping districts in the world, attracting visitors and regulars alike from across the globe.

Wako store in the Ginza

Tokyo Towers Temples Skyscrapers

Wako is a department store retailer in Japan, whose best known store (commonly known as the Ginza Wako) is at the heart of the Ginza shopping district in Tokyo. This store is famous for its watches, jewellery, chocolate, porcelain, dishware, and handbags, as well as upscale foreign goods.

 Tokyo Peninsula Hotel

Tokyo Peninsula Hotel

Spectacular Tokyo Hotel near the Ginza. Only around $560 usd per night if you book through this link. 🙂

Modern Tokyo buildings

Tokyo Towers Temples Skyscrapers From the modern to the traditional Tokyo has t all.

Tokyo Towers Temples Skyscrapers

Tokyo Towers Temples Skyscrapers

The GAP building in Tokyo near the Ginza, this city is a shopping paradise.

The old and the new

David Herd Thailand

Tokyo is a city of contrasts, they preserve the old and build the new. 🙂

 Fujiya Building Ginza

Iconic Tokyo building

One of Tokyo’s iconic buildings.

Much more spectacular at night

Tokyo Towers Temples Skyscrapers Tokyo at night lights up in all its glory, walking around the Ginza in the evening is quite exciting. Ginza is a popular destination on weekends, when the main north-south artery is closed to traffic.

Accidental video

This was taken by accident, from Shabusen restaurant in the Ginza followed by our walk to the Imperial Palace. I didn’t realize my camera was making a compilation of the photos I was taking.

Kitanomaru Park

 photo IMG_0056.jpg Kitanomaru Park is located North of the Tokyo Imperial Palace.

The Imperial Palace

Imperial Palace Tokyo

One of the most popular sots in Tokyo for a photograph.

Piss Alley Shinjunku

Piss Alley Shinjunku

Piss Alley Tokyo was named many years ago, when it was a shady destination for criminals to get drunk together. The place wasn’t very built up back in those days, so instead of using a toilet, people just relieved themselves wherever they could.

 Grambell Hotel Shibuya

 photo Granbell Hotel Shibuya 1.jpg A nice budget hotel in a fantastic location. Use this link for a great rate.

Lancia Stratos

Tokyo Towers Temples Skyscrapers The Lancia Stratos isn’t just one of the world’s rarest cars, but one with an iconic cult following like no other. In total, 492 Stratos are believed to have been built, with the majority of them being competition or Rally race cars. We saw this rare beast in the Ginza.

Sushizanmai

Sushizanmai Tokyo

Open 24 hours a day adjacent to the Tsujiki fish market is my favourite restaurant in Tokyo. It is an experience to enjoy and remember. If you want a quiet romantic setting cross this place off your list. It is a happy frenetic chaotic dining experience, and the food is wonderful.  There is always a queue waiting to get in, make sure you sit at the sushi counter on the ground floor.

Shibuya crossing

Shibuya crossing Tokyo Shibuya Scramble Tokyo takes place at the famous intersection outside Shibuya Station. the traffic is stopped in all directions, which allows pedestrians to walk & scramble in every direction across the intersection.

 Live webcam at Shibuya

Kubuchiko

Kubuchiko Tokyo Only in Japan, Hamish & I were enjoying some cold beers in Kubuchiko when these nice Japanese ladies approached us to asked if they could take our photo. Of course we agreed as any cool rock star would. 🙂

Street performer at Tokyo Tower

Tokyo Towers Temples Skyscrapers

I’m not really a fan of performing animals, training methods are often cruel.

Metro Cafe at Omotosando station.

Tokyo Towers Temples Skyscrapers The whole gang gather at one of my favourite haunts in Tokyo. Bob, David, Clai, Dan & Hamish.  We usually enjoy numerous bottles of Italian wine for only $25 aud or 650 Baht a bottle.

Tokyo Towers Temples Skyscrapers          Tokyo Towers Temples Skyscrapers          Tokyo Towers Temples Skyscrapers

Thanks for visiting my Tokyo Towers Temples Skyscrapers post

Kubuchiko Tokyo

As well as Tokyo Towers Temples Skyscrapers check out my Tokyo food blog.

                   Please check out these fabulous posts
 
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Rio de Janeiro                      Singapore                       Eastern Europe
Carnivale Rio Di Janeiro         Singapore skyline         David Herd Thailand
    Bangkok Bars                          Tokyo                            Cape Town Safari
Soi Cowboy Bangkok         Shabusen Ginza          Cape Town Safari
 
                                               Great hotel room rates anywhere in the world if you book
                                                through these links below.  Book now & pay later.
                                                                 Plus free cancellation .🙂
                                                       Bangkok Hotels                    Pattaya Hotels
                                                  Amazing Bangkok busses               Amazing Bangkok busses

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Here is a hidden gem in Tokyo

 

Pattaya webcam

 

That’s all folks

Beckington Trowbridge

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Tokyo fabulous food 2015

October 4, 2015 by David Herd

The Cellar Grill Omotesando

Tokyo fabulous food 2015 Tokyo fabulous food 2015 was my 4th visit to this wonderful city. This time I was travelling with my friend Hamish from Pattaya who is also a lover of fine food & wine.

Tokyo fabulous food          Tokyo fabulous food          Tokyo fabulous food

The Cellar Grill Tokyo fabulous food

Tokyo fabulous food

The food and atmosphere here is fabulous, I started with the chicken liver pate followed by baked avocado & BBQ sausages, Hamish went for the oysters followed by a rare steak, everything was perfect.

Our friendly waiter at the Cellar Grill

Tokyo fabulous food 2015

One of the happy workers at Cellar Grill.

Video at The Cellar Grill

Piss Alley Shinjuku

Tokyo fabulous food Piss Alley Tokyo very quaint Street in Shinjuku which really has a distinctive personality. Known also as Memory Lane however I think Piss Alley has a far better sound to it. 🙂

Piss Alley Tokyo was named many years ago, when it was a shady destination for criminals to get drunk together. The place wasn’t very built up back in those days, so instead of using a toilet, people just relieved themselves wherever they could.

Two Americans in Piss Alley

Tokyo fabulous food 2015 The restaurants here are tiny and some of them will actually turn you away because they are waiting for their regular customers to arrive.

If you want an excellent hotel 200 meters from Shibuya station & close to our “no name” restaurant, the Granbell is highly recommended. Use this link for a great rate.

 Piss Alley restaurant

Piss Alley Tokyo

These are so many fascinating little restaurants here.

 Bright lights of Memory Lane

Piss Alley TokyoThe collection of small Shinjuku bars evocatively called Piss Alley (‘Shonben Yokocho’) — or Memory Lane (‘Omoide Yokocho’), as the authorities would rather you call it — is a sliver of post-war Japanese culture a few minutes walk from Shinjuku station. The cramped alley of restaurant and bar stalls offers a ‘nostalgic’ experience, which means something like visiting a decrepit shanty-town.

Hamish Elton at Piss Alley

Piss Alley Shinjunku

Hamish loved his first visit to Tokyo.

Hagaya at Shibuya Tokyo fabulous food

Tokyo fabulous food 2015 I found this gem on my first night in Shibuya, fantastic Wagyu & chicken skewers. I went back a 2nd time and had the same food again all washed down with ice cold Asahi super dry beer.

Happy chef at Hagaya

Tokyo fabulous food

Tokyo fabulous food          Tokyo fabulous food          Tokyo fabulous food 2015

Only 100 meters from the Shibuya crossing, address: 2-6-3 Dogenzaka Shibuya-ku Tokyo

Tel:03-5458-6118

Sushizanmai Tokyo fabulous food

Tokyo fabulous food 2015 Open 24 hours a day adjacent to the Tsujiki fish market is my favourite restaurant in Tokyo. It is an experience to enjoy and remember. If you want a quiet romantic setting cross this place off your list. It is a happy frenetic chaotic dining experience, and the food is wonderful.  There is always a queue waiting to get in, make sure you sit at the sushi counter on the ground floor.

Best to sit at the counter

Sushizanmai Tokyo

The restaurant is open 24/7.

One of the happy chefs

Tokyo fabulous food 2015

This is the best sushi in the world.

Two of the happy customers

Tokyo fabulous food My friend Hamish was really enjoying his first trip to Tokyo, he was blown away by the quality and price at Sushizanmai.

Tokyo fabulous food 2015          Tokyo fabulous food          Tokyo fabulous food 2015

Sushzanmai has the best quality sushi in the world at a reasonable price.

Tokyo fabulous food

So many choices and such little time. 🙂


I’ll be back next year. 🙂

Tokyo fabulous food

Bluefin Tuna Sells for $117,000 at Tokyo Auction

I have stayed in two excellent budget hotels very close to Sushizanmai, use these links to book and get a very good rate. Hotel Tokyu-Stay and Hotel Ban.

Check out this video to experience the atmosphere.

Shabusen at the Ginza

Shabusen Ginza

Wagyu beef at Shabusen at the Ginza, a terrific restaurant for Shabu Shabu, go at lunch time for special prices.

Shabu Shabu at Shabusen

Tokyo fabulous food 2015

Slicing the beautiful Wagyu beef.

David Herd & Hamish Elton at Shabusen

Tokyo fabulous food There are two branches, the one in the basement is a far better layout. Located at the Ginza Core department store in basement level 2 (B2) TripAdvisor rating #139 of 5,353 Restaurants in Chuo

CAFE de METRO at Omotosando Station.

Metro Cafe Omotosando Station Now this is another hidden gem located in Omotosando station. A great place for light snacks including very good pasta, plus cakes and croissants.

CAFE de METRO

Tokyo fabulous food My friends and I always meet at this great cafe every time I visit Tokyo.

Tokyo fabulous food          Tokyo fabulous food         Tokyo fabulous food

Thanks for visiting my October 2015 post.

Tokyo fabulous food Tokyo is the best city in the world for food, more Michelin star restaurants than Paris & New York combined, as well as the many “hole in the wall” gems. I have just completed my 4th trip and intend to visit again every year.

I’m now heading off to Osaka for my first visit. I’m looking forward to visiting Nara and the Todai-ji temple.

           Checkout some more of my terrific blogs on the links below.

             Lisbon                                 New York                       Airole Italy     

Lisbon restaurant            Wall St New York            Airole                         

             Menton                          Pattaya Storms                   Shibuya Tokyo

French Riviera            Pattaya Thailand            Shibuya Tokyo                 

        Hong Kong                        Florianopolos                         Dubrovnik

Kowloon Hong Kong           Joaquina Beach Florianopolis            Dubrovnik

                              Bangkok Hotels                    Pattaya Hotels
                         Amazing Bangkok busses               Amazing Bangkok busses

 

Pattaya webcam

 

That’s all folks

David Herd Thailand

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Shibuya Chaotic Scramble Tokyo

July 25, 2015 by David Herd

Get ready

Shibuya Chaotic Scramble Tokyo Shibuya Chaotic Scramble Tokyo takes place at the famous intersection outside Shibuya Station. the traffic is stopped in all directions, which allows pedestrians to walk & scramble in every direction across the intersection.

Off you go

Shibuya Chaotic Scramble Tokyo The name “Shibuya” is also used to refer to the shopping district which surrounds Shibuya Station, one of Tokyo’s busiest railway stations. This area is known as one of the fashion centers of Japan, particularly for young people, and as a major nightlife area.

The masses collide 🙂

Shibuya Chaotic Scramble Tokyo Shibuya Crossing is one of the busiest pedestrian crossings in the world. Shibuya Station is the third busiest station in Tokyo. The busiest in Tokyo and the world of course is Shinjuku.

Beautiful girls

Shibuya Chaotic Scramble Tokyo You will see all different kinds of people and outfits in Shibuya, that’s why it’s one of my favourite places in Tokyo.

Fabulous faces in Shibuya

Shibuya Chaotic Scramble Tokyo

Tokyo is one of the world’s best cities for people watching.

Shibuya Scramble Tokyo

Shibuya Chaotic Scramble Tokyo

Something to see around every corner.

Tokyo fashion

Shibuya Chaotic Scramble Tokyo

Of course close to Shibuya on a Sunday morning you can also see the fabulous Harajuku girls.

Fabulous at night

Shibuya Chaotic Scramble Tokyo They say the neon lights are bright on Broadway, but for me Tokyo is the neon capital of the world. The Ginza, Kabukicho and Shibuya are just three of the districts that will blow your mind.

Shibuya 109

Shibuya Chaotic Scramble Tokyo Here is a popular shopping mall where the trendy Tokyo teenagers shop in more than 100 boutiques.

Dusk in Shibuya

Shibuya Scramble Tokyo The crowd seems to increase when the sun goes down  and all the workers head for the shops, restaurants and bars.

Merry Xmas 2007

Shibuya Chaotic Scramble Tokyo

My first visit was December 2007 then March 2014 and I’m returning in September 2015 & October 2016..

Cool dude

Shibuya Chaotic Scramble Tokyo

I wonder what type of music he likes?

Pablo

Shibuya Chaotic Scramble Tokyo

The speciality here is sweet, fluffy cheese tarts, with a gooey core that oozes out when you cut it open.

Shibuya hamburger

Shibuya Chaotic Scramble Tokyo

The food is one of the main attractions for me.

The Cellar Grill

Shibuya Chaotic Scramble Tokyo One of my favourite restaurants is only a 15 minute walk from Shibuya station. Good food and a great atmosphere.

Wine at Cellar Grill

Shibuya Chaotic Scramble Tokyo Thanks for visiting my Shibuya Chaotic Scramble Tokyo photo blog, I’m really looking forward to my next trip in September 2015, I’ll be staying at the Shibuya Granbell Hotel.

Granbell Hotel

Shibuya Chaotic Scramble Tokyo

I got an excellent deal booking through this Agoda link.

                         Live link

What a great year for travel in 2015                  

                 Istanbul                  Budapest                        London

Galeta Tower     St. Stephen's Basilica       Walkie Talkie London    

          Mostar                           Dubrobnik                            Split

Thailand Europe Vietnam Japan        Dubrobnik cable car        David Herd Thailand                     

                 Saigon                            Zagreb                          Vung tau

Thailand Europe Vietnam Japan        Main Square Zagreb       Vung Tau

                                        Great hotel room rates anywhere in the world if you book
                                                through these links below.  Book now & pay later. 🙂
                                                       Bangkok Hotels                    Pattaya Hotels
                                                  Amazing Bangkok busses               Amazing Bangkok busses
 
Pattaya webcam

That’s all folks

Beckington Trowbridge

 

A quaint Tokyo street

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Harajuku Girls Tokyo

July 22, 2015 by David Herd

Harajuku Girls Tokyo

Harajuku Girls Tokyo Harajuku Girls Tokyo originated among teens on the streets near Harajuku Station in Shibuya, Japan. It may have been brought to many people’s attention by American singer Gwen Stefani, but the evolution of the style certainly didn’t begin with her and it certainly won’t end with her. Like many “street fashions” it is difficult to characterise because it is constantly changing and because it has many manifestations.

Very cute indeed

Harajuku Girls Tokyo

These photos were taken a few years ago, I believe now in 2016 there are not as many girls gathering here every Sunday.

Comparing notes

 photo Fabulous Harajuku girls 001 4.jpgMix and (mis)match different fashions. What is now known as Harajuku (like Halloween in Japan every Sunday) style started as teens in the district began to integrate traditional Japanese attire, especially kimonos and geta sandals, into their wardrobe. Before, they wore primarily clothes that were influenced by the West, but by mixing the traditional with the modern, they created a new style. Other examples of mixing and matching including the punk look with the schoolgirl uniform or a goth look with designer clothes. In Harajuku, mixing different styles and mismatching colours and patterns is encouraged – you can do anything you want, as long as your outfit is a thoughtful expression of your individuality.

Lots of style here

Harajuku Shibuya  It’s impossible to pinpoint one “Harajuku style.” Many styles have originated or developed on the streets of Harajuku, and many Harajuku girls (and boys) integrate one or more of these somewhat more defined styles into their outfits.


Pink is my colour

Harajuku Girls Tokyo Decora style favours bright colours, flamboyance and accessories from head to toe. You decorate yourself with plastic toys and jewellery, and it’s not uncommon to have so many that you can hear them click together when the person moves

Here I am

Harajuku Girls Tokyo I just had to get a shot with the Harajuku Girls Tokyo.

Love the purple hat

Fabulous Harajuku girls

A beautiful Japanese face.

Lots of style this girl

Harajuku Girls Tokyo

A very interesting fashion statement.

Panda hat

Harajuku boys

A great hat & a nice tie.

Perhaps I’m a little confused

David Herd Thailand  Don’t be worried what other people think of you. People might think your weird, Asian people might call you gaijin, but if you’re happy, don’t change for other people. Advice from this webpage.

Ah! What the heck

Harajuku Girls Tokyo  Many styles have originated or developed on the streets of Harajuku, and many Harajuku girls (and boys) integrate one or more of these somewhat more defined styles into their outfits.

 Pink panthers

Harajuku Girls Tokyo

I must say I’m not a fan of body piercing.

Painted faces

Harajuku Girls Tokyo

A couple of very cool dudes.

I’m guessing they are Goths

Harajuku goths

A good horror movie outfit.

A gathering of Goths

Fabulous Harajuku girls

Harajuku girls are one of the most interesting sights to see in Tokyo.

Lets finish with “cute”

 photo Fabulous Harajuku girls 001 17.jpg

Bye bye girls, nice to meet you.

Harajuku station

Harajuku Girls Tokyo Here is where it all begins, Harajuku Station is a railway station near Shibuya.


Here is where they buy their clothes

David Herd Thailand A nearby busy street is where many of them buy their clothes.

Don’t buy anything

Harajuku Girls Tokyo What you are wearing now is perfect. 🙂

Just walking the dogs

 photo Fabulous Harajuku girls 001 31.jpg

They all seem to be the same breed. 🙂

Hmmm, not sure he approves.

Harajuku Girls Tokyo

A very interesting face in the crowd.

 This should explain everything

Thanks for visiting my Harajuku Girls Tokyo photo blog.

                              Here are some more posts to check out
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Sydney Opera house        Paris hotel        Grand Palace Bangkok
             Tokyo                        Rio De Janeiro                        Budapest
Tokyo        Copacabana        Buda Castle
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Kings road Chelsea        David & the General photo DHandthegeneral.jpg        David Herd Thailand
                                       Great hotel room rates anywhere in the world if you book
                                                through these links below.  Book now & pay later. 🙂
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Asia best city definitely Tokyo Japan

April 17, 2014 by David Herd

Tokyo Skytree

Asia best city definitely Tokyo Japan

Asia best city definitely Tokyo Japan, this was my 3rd visit after being there twice in 2007. There is so much to see and do in this fantastic city. I guarantee I won’t wait 7 years before I visit again.

Tokyo Skytree is a broadcasting, restaurant, and observation tower in Sumida, Tokyo, Japan. It became the tallest structure in Japan in 2010 and reached its full height of 634.0 meters in March 2011.

Asakusa

Asia best city definitely Tokyo Japan Looking down at Asakusa from the Skytree. Asakusa is a district in Taitō, Tokyo, Japan, most famous for the Sensō-ji, a Buddhist temple dedicated to the bodhisattva Kannon. There are several other temples in Asakusa, as well as various festivals.

Sky Tree at night

Asia best city definitely Tokyo Japan

I rarely use a photo I have not taken myself, however this one I found on Twitter is an exception as it is so spectacular.

 Sensō-ji, a Buddhist temple

Asia best city definitely Tokyo Japan Sensō-ji is an ancient Buddhist temple located in AsakusaTaitō. It is Tokyo’s oldest temple, and one of its most significant. Formerly associated with the Tendai sect, it became independent after World War II. Adjacent to the temple is a Shinto shrine, the Asakusa Shrine.


Tsukiji Honganji Temple

Asia best city definitely Tokyo Japan Hongwan-ji, is a Jodo Shinshu Buddhist temple located in the Tsukiji district of Tokyo. Tsukiji Hongan-ji’s predecessor was the temple of Edo-Asakusa Gobo, built in Asakusa in 1617 at the behest of the 12th monshu, Junnyo Shōnin. The temple burned during a city-wide fire in 1657, and the shogunate refused to allow it to be rebuilt in Asakusa due to a prior project there. Instead, the temple was moved to a new parcel of land being reclaimed by the Sumida River—today’s Tsukiji. This land was said to have been reclaimed by Jodo Shinshu followers themselves who lived at nearby Tsukudajima. The name Tsukiji comes from the kanji characters meaning “reclaimed land”. This new temple, named Tsukiji Gobo, stood until it was leveled by the Great Kantō earthquake of 1923.

New Sanno Hotel

Asia best city definitely Tokyo Japan Dinner with Clai & Dan at the New Sanno Hotel It offers a swimming pool, recreational facilities, a Navy Exchange, and other services designed for military travelers. The hotel is regulated and controlled by the U.S.–Japan Status of Forces Agreement. In addition to active duty and retired US military personnel eligible to use other Armed Forces Recreation Centers, DoD civilian employees duty stationing in Japan, contractors on DoD orders to execute contracts for the US Armed Forces stationed in Japan, US Embassy Tokyo personnel and individuals administratively attached to US Embassy Tokyo are eligible to use the hotel.

New Sanno Hotel

New Sanno Hotel I dined with friends at the US military hotel in Tokyo (New Sanno Hotel). You actually need a passport checked by an armed guard just to get in the door.

Met a couple of military guys, one was an ex Lieutenant Colonel whose name is Lance Gatling, you guessed it, his great great Grandfather was Doctor Richard Gatling who invented the Gatling gun in 1861 during the American civil war. Naturally talking to these guys I learnt some interesting facts, America lost about 600,000 in the civil war. In World War II, they lost about 200,000, & 54,000 in Vietnam. The primary cause of death in the Civil War was disease and infection.

Metro cafe

Asia best city definitely Tokyo Japan Metro cafe is one of our favorite Tokyo bars, you can always meet delightful Japanese ladies there. It is located at Omotesando Station.

The Cellar Grill at Omotesando

Asia best city definitely Tokyo Japan Not far from the Metro Cafe is a great little restaurant called the Cellar Grill.

Bob Bitzer & I at the Cellar Grill

Asia best city definitely Tokyo Japan

A great night with lots of laughs.

The Cellar Grill

Asia best city definitely Tokyo Japan Feeling no pain at the Cellar Grill, now lets get back to Cafe Metro.

Friends in Tokyo at Metro cafe

Asia best city definitely Tokyo Japan Here we are back in our favorite drinking spot in Asia best city at Omete-Sando station. I’m with Clai, Dan and Bob.

kabuki theatre tokyo

Asia best city definitely Tokyo Japan The building was destroyed on October 30, 1921. Since it burned down from an electrical fire, the second building was designed to “be fireproof, yet carry traditional Japanese architectural styles”, and at the same time using Western building materials such as lighting equipment. The reconstruction commenced in 1922, and was uncompleted when the 1923 Great Kantō earthquake struck and caused it to burn down. It was rebuilt in a baroque Japanese revivalist style, meant to evoke the architectural details of Japanese castles, as well as temples of pre-Edo period. The theater again burned down in the Allied bombing during World War II. It was restored in 1950  preserving the style of 1924 reconstruction, and was until recently one of Tokyo’s more dramatic and traditional buildings.

The Ginza

Asia best city definitely Tokyo Japan The Ginza is known as an upscale area of Tokyo with numerous department stores, boutiques, restaurants and coffeehouses. Ginza is recognised as one of the most luxurious shopping districts in the world.

Asia best city definitely Tokyo Japan

Asia best city definitely Tokyo Japan

A great people watching corner.

Shabusen in the Ginza

Shabusen Ginza Kobe beef at Shabusen at the Ginza A terrific restaurant for Kobe beef, go at lunch time for special prices.

Near the Tsukiji Market

Tsujiki market The Tsukiji Market is the biggest wholesale fish and seafood market in the world and also one of the largest wholesale food markets of any kind. 

Tsujiki Market

Asia best city definitely Tokyo Japan

The market is being relocated.
 

Sumida River 

Asia best city definitely Tokyo Japan  Sumida river flows through Tokyo, Japan. It branches from the Arakawa River at Iwabuchiand flows into Tokyo Bay

Sumida River

Asia best city definitely Tokyo Japan

I must say Tokyo 2014 was better for me than Tokyo in 2007, it certainly helps now I know the city better and I have some friends to mix with.

 Sushizanmai

Asia best city definitely Tokyo Japan Sushizanmai at Tsujiki is still my favourite restaurant in Tokyo.

Sushizanmai

Asia best city definitely Tokyo Japan I met this lovely lady called Mammi at Sushizanmai.

My favourite Japanese song

 

David Herd at Shabusen

David Herd Shabusen Thanks for visiting my Asia best city definitely Tokyo Japan post, please check out Shinjuku and Yokohama.

                          What a great year for travel in 2015                                    

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A quaint Tokyo street

 

My visit to HCM City January 2015

 

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Shinjuku Tokyo’s New Business Center

April 16, 2014 by David Herd

Mode Gakuen Cocoon Tower

Shinjuku Tokyo’s New Business Center

Shinjuku Tokyo's New Business Center

Shinjuku Tokyo’s New Business Center located in Tokyo Metropolis. It is a major commercial and administrative center, housing the busiest train station in the world and the Tokyo Metropolitan Government building.

Mode Gakuen Cocoon Tower is a 204-meter, 50-story educational facility located in the Nishi-Shinjuku district in Shinjuku. The building is home to three educational institutions.

Shinjuku is the busiest train station in the world

West of the station

Shinjuku Tokyo's New Business Center Nishi-Shinjuku: The area west of Shinjuku Station, historically known as Yodobashi, is home to Tokyo’s largest concentration of skyscrapers. Several of the tallest buildings in Tokyo are located in this area, including the Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building, KDDI Building and Park Tower.

From Skyscrapers to tiny restaurants

Shinjuku Tokyo's New Business Center There is an incredible diversification in Shinjuku, everything from modern skyscrapers to tiny “hole in the wall” restaurants.

Meet my new best friend

Shinjuku Tokyo's New Business Center Here I am with y new best friend in the little “no name” restaurant that sits only 3 people, 4 at a squeeze.

Food was average, wine was excellent

Shinjuku Tokyo's New Business Center I was not worried about the food being very average & overpriced, the experience was well worth it. My friend Kayo had given me a lovely present, a nice bottle of red & a bottle of sake. So I drank the red at this tiny “no name” restaurant.

Here is my present from Kayo

Shinjuku Tokyo's New Business Center Japanese people are so nice, they love to give you presents. I will look forward to returning the favor when Kayo visits Thailand in August.

My friend Kayo

Shinjuku Tokyo's New Business Center We met on the Gold Coast in Australia 10 years ago and it was great to catch up again in Tokyo.  

Kabukicho is in Shinjuku

Shinjuku Tokyo's New Business Center Kabukicho is in the heart of Shinjuku and right next to the railway line is one of my favorite places, Piss Alley.

Piss Alley

Shinjuku Tokyo's New Business Center Piss Alley is a quaint Tokyo Street in Shinjuku which really has a distinctive personality. Known also as Memory Lane however I think Piss Alley has a far better sound to it.  :lol:

My favourite Japanese song

Toyoko Inn

Shinjuku Tokyo's New Business Center My hotel was in a perfect location and a very reasonable price if you book through my Agoda link.

Granbell Hotel

Shibuya Chaotic Scramble Tokyo

If you would prefer to stay at Shibuya I got an excellent deal booking through this Agoda link.

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Kabukicho Tokyo the sleepless town

April 15, 2014 by David Herd

Kabukicho Tokyo

Kabukicho Tokyo Kabukicho Tokyo the sleepless town, an entertainment and red-light district in Shinjuku, Tokyo. Kabukicho is the location of many host and hostess clubs, love hotels, shops, restaurants, and nightclubs, and is often called the “Sleepless Town”

Kabukicho Tokyo has transformed from a residential area to a world famous red-light district housing over three thousand bars, nightclubs, love hotels, massage parlours, hostess clubs and the like. Although referred here as a “red light district”, there are no red lights in the literal sense with prostitutes in the windows as in Amsterdam.

Selling dreams to lonely women in Kabukicho.

The “sleepless town”

Kabukicho Tokyo

According to a spokesperson of Metropolitan Tokyo in 2004, there are more than 1,000 yakuza members in Kabukicho, and 120 different enterprises under their control.

Entering the new millennium, laws were more strictly enforced and patrols became more frequent. These, adding to the installation of fifty closed-circuit cameras in May 2002, reduced criminal activities here, amidst controversy.

In 2004, the police undertook an operation clamping down on illegal clubs and brothels, causing many to go out of business. Also, there is a movement to rid this area of the yakuza (“bad hand” gangs), known as the Kabukicho Renaissance.

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Neon lights everywhere in Kabukicho

Kabukicho Tokyo

Kabukicho Tokyo was a great place to stay as there is always something to see & do. Also it is close to Piss Ally, one of my favorite spots in Tokyo.

An Australian influence?

Kabukicho Tokyo

You gotta love Wombat herbs. 🙂

DVD shop

DVD shop Tokyo

A typical Kabukicho neon.

One of many love hotels

Kabukicho Tokyo Kabukicho is the largest red light district in Asia.


 

Another love hotel

 

Love hotel Kabukicho You have the option to pay for a short stay or all night, up to you.

 

It really is the town that never sleeps

Kabukicho in Tokyo They say the neon lights are bright on Broadway, but for me Kabukicho Tokyo is the world’s brightest city.

Here is a site which shows you what is available

slika 9

Check out those wonderful innocent faces. 🙂 Photo by Phoenix & Phoenix.

Selling dreams to lonely women in Kabukicho.

 Grambell Hotel Shibuya

 photo Granbell Hotel Shibuya 1.jpg

A nice budget hotel in a fantastic location. Use this link for a great rate.

 

My favourite Japanese song

zulu928's Kabukicho album on Photobucket
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Here is a hidden gem in Tokyo

 

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My wonderful world trip in March 2014

 


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Piss Alley Tokyo very quaint Street

February 27, 2014 by David Herd

Piss Alley Tokyo very quaint Street in Shinjuku which really has a distinctive personality. Known also as Memory Lane however I think Piss Alley has a far better sound to it.  😆

Piss Alley Tokyo

Piss Alley Tokyo

Piss Alley Tokyo was named many years ago, when it was a shady destination for criminals to get drunk together. The place wasn’t very built up back in those days, so instead of using a toilet, people just relieved themselves wherever they could.

Wonderful tiny restaurants

Piss Alley Tokyo

Many of the restaurants in Piss Alley Tokyo only seat 6 or 7 people, the larger ones probably up to 20 and people are often packed in like sardines.

Little “hole in the wall” restaurants

Piss Alley TokyoThere are some very strange dishes available on Piss Alley.

  • Frog sashimi
  • Pig testicles
  • Soft-shelled turtle
  • Still-beating frog’s heart
  • Grilled salamander
  • Snake liquor

I was not taking any risks so I stuck to the Yakitori.

Yakitori in Piss Alley Tokyo

Yakatori shinjuku Piss Alley

Great yakitori,  this is still the place to eat Japan’s original fast foods: yakitori (chicken skewers), motsu-nabe (offal stew) and hormone-yaki (grilled organ meats). Most items on the menus are made from the rejected body parts of livestock.

Foreign television crews love izakaya Asadachi (Shinjuku 1-2-14, no phone) for delicacies such as pig testicles, grilled salamanders, frog sashimi and other foods. Even for adventurous Japanese eaters, most of the menu is considered off-the-wall. There’s a reason Asadachi has maintained its near city-wide monopoly on serving horse penis.

For the less experimental, standard yakitori joints abound, though truth be told, many of these Shinjuku bars survive as much on location as quality. Finding the best yakitori is often a hit or miss affair. The best strategy is to follow the crowds — or better, go with a knowledgeable friend. A general rule of thumb: the less crowded an establishment, the less you can trust its cooking.


 

One of the larger restaurants in Piss Alley

Piss Alley photo Kabukicho 37.jpg Most are not much bigger than a shoe box. 🙂

 Bright lights of Memory Lane

Piss Alley Tokyo The collection of small Shinjuku bars evocatively called Piss Alley (‘Shonben Yokocho’) — or Memory Lane (‘Omoide Yokocho’), as the authorities would rather you call it — is a sliver of post-war Japanese culture a few minutes walk from Shinjuku station. The cramped alley of restaurant and bar stalls offers a ‘nostalgic’ experience, which means something like visiting a decrepit shantytown.

My favourite Japanese song

Busy chef at work

piss alley tokyoOn a Friday night Piss Alley is in full swing. It’s like a film set of tiny buildings, with staircases leading nowhere. The place feels like it’s painted nicotine brown (no smoking laws definitely don’t apply to Piss Alley), and then spritzed with a hot, savory steam. It’s beside the railway (at one point, there’s a rusty ladder up to the main train track out of Tokyo) and the rumble of trains never goes away. Nor does the smell of fried food and sake, as salary-men eat and drink their fill.

My favorite PA photo

 

piss alley tokyo

  Each time I look at this shot it reminds me of the song “Only the Lonely’. The truth, however, is that the run-down, old-timey atmosphere of the Alley is as carefully cultivated as any of the city’s famed theme bars. The theme here just happens to be ‘post-war poverty.’ A black market drinking quarter in the 1940s, Piss Alley earned its name from its lack of toilet facilities, which compelled patrons to relieve themselves against nearby train tracks. The ramshackle post-war infrastructure lasted until 1999, when a fire destroyed most of the buildings and the Alley had to be rebuilt. Along with the renovation came actual restrooms and a new marketing campaign — at least officially, the Shinjuku bars of Piss Alley became Memory Lane. Though none of the current structures are more than a decade old, you’d hardly know it from the grease and grime covering nearly every surface. Although positioned as the ‘ultimate old-style Japanese drinking experience,’ the bars of Memory Lane are mostly staffed by young women from various Asian countries. Between the broken Japanese and hard-drinking patrons, many of them tourists, the area remains a little seedy — just in a new way.

Two American girls

 photo Kabukicho 40.jpg I visited Piss Alley again in September 2015 & chatted to these nice American girls.

In October 2017 I travelled to Kagoshima and was happy to find another “Piss Alley” type village, check it out on THIS LINK.

It will remain a favourite part of Tokyo for me.
  piss alley tokyo border=

Make sure you put this unique piss alley Tokyo 0n your bucket list.   My hotel was 10 minutes walk from here, great value for Tokyo, only $85 per night. Use THIS LINK to book.

Granbell Hotel

Shibuya Chaotic Scramble Tokyo

This is a great hotel in Shibuya, I got an excellent deal booking through this Agoda link.

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Tsujiki wholesale Fish market Tokyo

December 21, 2013 by David Herd

Tsujiki wholesale Fish market Tokyo

Tsujiki wholesale Fish market Tokyo

Tsujiki wholesale Fish market Tokyo is an amazing sight to see, however you have to set your alarm for an early start. To experience the action yo need to be there around 5am or earlier. The address is 5 Chome-2-1 Tsukiji, Chuo, Tokyo 104-0045, Japan

Negotiating the price

Tsujiki wholesale Fish market TokyoThe Tokyo Metropolitan Central Wholesale Market, commonly known as the Tsukiji Market, is the biggest wholesale fish and seafood market in the world and also one of the largest wholesale food markets of any kind.

Tsujiki wholesale Fish market Tokyo      Tokyo Tsukiji market      Tsukiji Tokyo Fish market

Don’t argue with this guy.  😯


His knife is almost as big as a Samurai sword.

Tsujiki wholesale Fish market Tokyo The Tokyo Fish market is located near the Tsukijishijō Station on the Toei Ōedo Line and Tsukiji Station on the Tokyo Metro Hibiya Line. There are two distinct sections of the market. The “inner market” is the licensed wholesale market, where the auctions and most of the processing of the fish take place, and where licensed wholesale dealers (approximately 900 of them) operate small stalls. The “outer market”  is a mixture of wholesale and retail shops that sell Japanese kitchen tools, restaurant supplies, groceries, and seafood, and many restaurants, especially sushi restaurants. Most of the shops in the outer market close by the early afternoon, and in the inner market even earlier.                      

 

  Tsujiki wholesale Fish market Tokyo      Tsujiki wholesale Fish market Tokyo      Tokyo Fish market  

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Beautiful fresh seafood at Tsujiki wholesale Fish market Tokyo

Tsujiki wholesale Fish market TokyoThe Tokyo Fish market handles more than 400 different types of seafood from cheap seaweed to the most expensive caviar, and from tiny sardines to 300 kg tuna and controversial whale species. Overall, more than 700,000 metric tons of seafood are handled every year at the three seafood markets in Tokyo, with a total value in excess of 600 billion yen (approximately 5.9 billion US dollars on November 24th, 2013). The number of registered employees as of 25 January 2010 varies from 60,000 to 65,000, including wholesalers, accountants, auctioneers, company officials, and distributors.

Here’s looking at you kid.

Tsujiki wholesale Fish market TokyoTokyo Fish market opens most mornings (except Sundays, holidays and some Wednesdays) at 3:00 a.m. with the arrival of the products by ship, truck and plane from all over the world. Particularly impressive is the unloading of tons of frozen tuna. The auction houses (wholesalers known in Japanese as oroshi gyōsha) then estimate the value and prepare the incoming products for the auctions. The buyers (licensed to participate in the auctions) also inspect the fish to estimate which fish they would like to bid for and at which price.

The auctions start around 5:20 a.m. Bidding can only be done by licensed participants. These bidders include intermediate wholesalers (nakaoroshi gyōsha) who operate stalls in the marketplace and other licensed buyers who are agents for restaurants, food processing companies, and large retailers.

The auctions usually end around 7:00 a.m. Afterward, the purchased fish is either loaded onto trucks to be shipped to the next destination or on small carts and moved to the many shops inside the market. There the shop owners cut and prepare the products for retail. In case of large fish, for example tuna and swordfish, cutting and preparation is elaborate. Frozen tuna and swordfish are often cut with large band saws, and fresh tuna is carved with extremely long knives, some well over a meter in length.

 Hauling fish at the Tokyo Fish market.

Tsujiki wholesale Fish market Tokyo

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Sushizanmai at Tsujiki wholesale Fish market Tokyo

Sushizanmai at Higashi GinzaMy favourite sushi restaurant in Tokyo is very close to the Tokyo Fish market & open 24 hours a day. There is always a queue of people waiting to get in.

One of the happy chefs

Tsujiki wholesale Fish market Tokyo

This is the best sushi in the world.

Two of the happy customers

Tsujiki wholesale Fish market Tokyo

My friend Hamish was really enjoying his first trip to Tokyo in September 2015, he was blown away by the quality and price at Sushizanmai.

        Tokyo fabulous food          Tokyo fabulous food          Tsujiki wholesale Fish market Tokyo

Sushizanmai has the best quality sushi in the world at a reasonable price.

Tsujiki wholesale Fish market Tokyo

The Sushizanmai in Tokyo is an experience to enjoy and remember. If you want a quiet romantic setting cross this place off your list. It is a happy frenetic chaotic dining experience, and the food is wonderful. Check out this video to experience the atmosphere.

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A very quaint Tokyo Street

             Checkout some more of my terrific blogs on the links below.

             Lisbon                                 New York                       Airole Italy     

Lisbon restaurant            Wall St New York            Airole

             Menton                          Pattaya Storms                   Shibuya Tokyo

French Riviera            Pattaya Thailand            Shibuya Tokyo                 

      Hong Kong                        Florianopolos                         Dubrovnik

Kowloon Hong Kong           Joaquina Beach Florianopolis            Dubrovnik

 
            Great hotel room rates anywhere in the world if you book
                  through these links below.  Book now & pay later. 🙂
                              Bangkok Hotels                    Pattaya Hotels
                         Amazing Bangkok busses               Amazing Bangkok busses
 
 
Pattaya webcam

 

That’s all folks

David Herd Thailand

 


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