Thursday, March 28, 2019

Japan Travelogue Day 6: Tsukiji Fish Market, Oedo Onsen Monogatari Onsen theme park and Shibuya crossing

When holiday-ing in Tokyo, you pretty much have to start your day early because there is so many things to do. During my 2 weeks in Japan, i was waking up daily at 7am on average and getting out of the house by 8 (or even earlier) but then again, Japan is 1 hour ahead of Singapore so actually if you think about it, it's actually quite normal. So contradicting, whatever.  

First stop of the day, the famous Tsukiji Fish Market. Do take note that at time of writing, The inner market of Tsukiji Market closed on October 6, 2018 and moved to a new site in Toyosu where it reopened as Toyosu Market. Tsukiji's outer market, on the other hand, did not close and will remain in business. So i'm not exactly sure if it's still worth going. Maybe the famous Tuna auction moved to the new market.

Anyway, if you intend to go experience the tuna auction thing, you have to be there super early to queue. But to be honest, i'm not interested, and in fact, i'm not a fan of raw seafood so i can easily give this place a miss. But being first time in Tokyo, i thought i should just pay this place a visit early in the morning... 
First stall that caught my attention was this Tamago stall. For whatever reason you don't know what Tamago is, basically it's Japanese omelette, \made by rolling together several layers of cooked egg. This tamago is made on the spot and each slab cost a 100 Yen (SGD1.20) It's the MOST DELICIOUS tamago i ever had in my life. It's warm, eggy, seasoned so well and one slab is definitely not enough. I can totally understand why it is so popular, especially amongst tourists. Definitely a must try when at Tsujiki Market.
Lots and lots of fresh seafood stalls which i'm not very interested. 
Decided to have our lunch at the market and 90% of the stalls there were selling raw seafood related dishes (like duh!) I was so sian because i'm really not a fan of raw seafood. I don't know why but it's  the texture is just yucky to me. Then i convinced myself that MAYBE, MAYBE the quality is different in Japan (after all Japan is famous for their sashimi and sushi what) and i might just convert to a raw seafood lover after having an amazing ultra fresh salmon sashimi rice bowl. 

Didn't happen. I gave my whole bowl away after tasting the first slice. LOL

A rare appearance of the 800 Yen (SGD9.80) slice of melon! Which i didn't get again. *smack forehead*
Odaiba Ōedo-onsen-monogatari
2 Chome-6-3 Aomi, Koto City, Tokyo 135-0064, Japan

How can one go to Japan and not try their onsen. Most people would opt for the private ones at their comfort of their own room but we decided to travel all the way to Odaiba for the Onsen theme park. Yea, a theme park. Not one with rides but basically a place where you can eat, rest and soak yourself for the entire day. I got my admission tickets prior to the trip from KKday for about $20 per person (Click here)
Before entering, you have to queue up and collect your Yukata (summer kimono) as it will be your main attire in the theme park. 4 designs to choose from, they got the fancy ones as well as normal looking ones.
On top of that, you will be given a tag which you will use it to pay for food and games.
After changing, you proceed to the main hall where you are transported to a festival dated back in Edo period where everyone is in their yukata or kimono and roaming around the village. There are game stalls, souvenir stalls, food stalls and even an arcade with claw machines. The thing about paying with the RFID tag is that it's hard to keep track how much you have accumulated along the way and will only see the damage after leaving the place. LOL We had crepes, mains and played a few games here and there :)

Of course, not forgetting the main purpose of being there - The Onsen. So for the onsen, you have to get out of your yukata, bring along a small towel and proceed to one of those little shower booths to cleanse yourself before dipping into one of those onsen pools. It was a little awkward at first being naked with so many people but you will get used to it with time. Lots of pools including natural hot springs, open-air bath, steam bath, silk bath and more. It's really quite nice and relaxing spending the entire afternoon there.
We were super hungry after the onsen session and decided to leave for downtown Tokyo. That's when we had our very first Ichiran experience. I have heard and read so much on this famous Japanese ramen and i was so thrilled to finally try it! I have no idea why but there was no queue that day so we ordered our ramen through the vending machine and was ushered to our booth. Each bowl of ramen cost 890 Yen (SGD11), and one thing that i really like is that you get to customise your own ramen, like how flavourful you want the broth to be, how much garlic or onions you want etc. I love it so much! (in fact, Ichiran was my first meal i had when i went to Hong Kong) They should totally have it in SG, confirm popular one.
Decided to end the night by visiting the famous Shibuya crossing. It was drizzling at night and everyone was carrying their transparent umbrella. It was quite a sight to behold. Like some scene from a movie. I also realised 90% of the people in Tokyo carries a transparent umbrella on rainy days. No other design or colour and it's not those foldable compact kind. Of course i had to get one in Japan too! LOL

The funny thing is that, because everyone is carrying the same transparent umbrella, it's very easy to get mixed up. There were several occasions where i had to leave the umbrella at the rack outside a store and when i exit, my umbrella isn't there anymore. Someone must have mistaken it and took mine,  as a result... i took someone else's instead. HAHAHAHA and it happened throughout the 2 weeks i was in Japan! I just kept exchanging my umbrella. Sometimes i get those lousy quality ones, and sometimes i get the really good and sturdy ones (which i will be very unwilling to "exchange", lol) Anyone experience the same?
Doing the touristy photo-in-the-middle-of-shibuya-crossing thing. After few attempts, LOL

I probably have about 4 to 5 more posts left for this Japan Travelogue and after the next one, it's probably going to be on Osaka and Kyoto! I'm actually enjoying the process of recalling what happened during the trip and i can't wait to visit Japan again :D

Till the next post,