Tuesday, March 3, 2020

Japan - Day 10

Today was our last full day in Japan.  Tomorrow we get on an airplane and head back to Switzerland.  I think we are all a little sad to see this trip come to an end.  We have had a fantastic time.

Today we wrapped up our trip with a few touristy things.  We started the morning in the Saito Fish Market.  We wanted to walk around and see all the different kinds of unusual foods they sold and we were not disappointed.  We all had a little snack.  Finley got a dessert, while Mat tried a fish roll and Cainan tried a steam bun.  I had a very large piece of Salmon Roe (Egg) and Soy Sauce Sushi Roll.  It was delicious.

We went through streets and streets of market.  So fun

 Huge oysters.
 Finley tried this custard creme with strawberry.  We have seen strawberries everywhere, but they are quite pricey
 Cainan had a pork steam bun
 My huge sushi roll.  It was so good

We also did a fair amount of green tea tasting.  There are so many different kinds!  I love just about all of them.  We ended up purchasing a few to bring home.

After the market we headed to Atago Shrine.  To get to it we climbed the "Success Steps".  In the Edo period, a famous Samurai named Magaki-Heikurou went up and down the stairs riding a horse.  Since then he succeeded in life so these days people share his good luck and go up the stairs to wish for their success.

 We made it!

After the Shrine we strolled over to Tokyo Tower - which is modeled after the Eiffel tower.  We didn't go up - we had been to the Sky Tree and that was plenty of city viewing from there.  We just wanted to see it up close.

This is the second largest tower in Tokyo - right after Sky Tree

Our last stop was the Zojo-ji Temple for Jodo-Buddhist.  It was the biggest Temple we have been to so far.  It was really beautiful and the grounds were expansive.  We enjoyed walking around.

These are the "care guardian deities of children".  They are dedicated to the safety of children and grandchildren, as well as a memorial for still births and miscarried children.  To protect their heads and keep them warm, red hats, red aprons and a windmill are placed on each one.

 Someone really took some time with this one

 The temple was huge and really beautiful

 Inside the temple.  This one still has regular daily services

We have been impressed with how easy it is to get around.  I took some pictures of various signage that we saw everyday.  Plus almost every restaurant had English menus.

An example of our daily subway ticket.  There are 4 subway companies and about a gazillion lines.  It was always an adventure to figure it all out.  And a comment about the subway stations for those of you who are like me - every single one has a clean, free to use bathroom.  I never had to search for a bathroom our entire trip!

We were also impressed with how well the city is set up for the vision impaired.  Every street crossing has guidance for them to know they are at a corner.  Every stop light has warning.  Even in the subways, there is a tweet sound that goes off constantly around the stairs, escalators, and ticket machines.  Plus braille is on everything.  It is very impressive.

 These are what most of the subway ticket machines looked like.  We could change them to English easily, and they also had braille displays

Our time in Tokyo is complete.  It has really been a wonderful vacation and I highly recommend making a visit.  There is English everywhere.  Almost everyone speaks English, or there are pictures to point to in order to get what you want.  The subways are easy to use - and again, English is everywhere.  The people are amazing and kind.  They are patient - no pushing or shoving.  They don't smoke on the street and the streets and subways are Disney clean.  We never felt afraid or overwhelmed.  The food is delicious.  So put it on your bucket list to come and visit.  We plan on returning and exploring other areas of Japan our next go around.

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