When I first envisioned Japan I imagined a bunch of people dressed in cosplay or kimonos everywhere, with Samurais running around slicing people's heads off and anime.
Ok so actually I didn't really expect to see such extreme things, but Japan is just like any other country except crime is extremely low. Even the "dangerous" parts of the cities are just as safe suburbs back home.
Diver City is a place in Tokyo right by the water which is really nice to check out. It's basically a giant shopping district by the water with a super dope giant Gundam. The Japanese call it "Odaiba" so when I was asking directions to there everyone was getting confused along with myself when I asked to "Diver City."
Just about every evening at the Gundam statue is a show they do that lasts for about 10 minutes or so. They project a large animation on the side of the building behind the gundam. Loads of people line up at night just to see it. I loved it! My fascination with huge mechs and robots was just peaked my interest and I was like a little kid in awe of the show and the huge gundam the whole time.
The area itself is actually quite large and you have to cross over the bay to reach it as it's on like an island on the outskirts of Tokyo. The view to get there by subway is quite stunning especially at dusk and nighttime. You get such an incredible view of the city in the golden bath of the evening sun. Then when the sun sets the city lights up like little jewels across the horizon.
One thing that Japan has a plethora of is temples and shrines. Just about everywhere you go you'll see a shrine or a temple somewhere. On an evening walk one night I came across the Golden Gai temple which happens to be next to the Golden Gai old Tokyo area.
It was quite a small temple compared to others I've seen. It still had the signature red paint all over it. What made it stand out though was how empty and calm it felt in the evening without a ton of tourists. Actually a lot of temples are lit up at night which provide a unique view of them which differs from the day. If you don't like to be surrounded by a sea of tourists and melting in the sweltering heat of Tokyo by day, then checking out the sights at nighttime is the way to go!
Now to get to what I envisioned Japan would be. Welcome to Akihabara.
If your vision of Tokyo is anime, manga, and cosplay then Akihabara is the place to visit for sure. The place is filled with shops dedicated to just that. There's figurine stores with your favorite anime characters, maid cafes, and the Tokyo anime center. There's much more but you get the idea.
Once you walk down the street you're just hit by all the buildings with their flashing anime signs and giant posters. The ridiculously disproportionate anime girls with boobs too big for their tiny bodies that would surely cause back problems in real life. A few people from the hostel and myself walked around the area and entered a few of the shops. I'm not a huge anime fan myself, but I know a few of my friends back home would be going insane.
And of course I have to include more ramen.
The following day I decided to check out the Tokyo National Museum in Ueno Park. I've been interested in Japanese culture and history for a while so I figured I should go to the museum to check out some of the more historic items they have. While I was there they had a special Egyptian exhibit...that was pretty underwhelming considering I've been to the Louvre in Paris. Honestly it was not worth the extra money, but since I got a discount it wasn't that bad.
I have to be blunt about the museum. It wasn't that great. I enjoyed the traditional art pieces they had and the sword collection, but the pottery and other stuff was pretty sad.
The Tsukiji Fish Market is definitely a cool place to visit if you've never been to a fish market before. The fish markets differ slightly from the ones in Korea as the ones here have sushi restaurants. I didn't feel like waking up at 3AM to go see the tuna auction there so I went around 10AM and just walked around to see everything. Got some fresh sushi and went back.
So once again I made my way to the Shibuya/Harajuku area to check it out, however this time was at night. To me cities have two faces. Their day face and their night face. So I generally make it a point to see cities during both day and night to get a feel of how it is during both. Going at night you can see all the neon lights flashing and people get even a little more weirder. The freaks come out at night. In both senses if you know what I mean.
That concludes my Tokyo experience. I didn't get to climb Mt. Fuji because of bad weather, but I'll be back will climb it next time for sure!