Tuesday 22 December 2015

Tokyo Day 4: Tsujiki Market & Tokyo Tower

The kids were extra excited this morning, especially Baby Boy, although I'm not quite sure why. Perhaps they've gotten used to the lovely weather and know that every time we leave the hotel, we'll be going to somewhere fun and exciting. Well, I'm sure they'll soon be addicted to travelling like we are =)

Taking lovely pictures of us at the street that our hotel is located

We were supposed to go to Tsujiki Market in the morning but we got sidetracked with shopping at one of the buildings in Shinjuku (bought Japan's famous ceramic knives that my mum-in-law loves, alcohol and other beauty products). By the time we were on the Tokyo Metro subway, it was already noon.

We took the Marunouchi Line (Red) to Kasumigaseki Station before transferring to the Hibiya Line (Silver) to Tsujiki Station.

We found a notice board with a map after exiting the station and it clearly showed us the way that we needed to go. So convenient!

Map of how to walk to Tsujiki Market from Tsujiki Station

We have arrived!

Tsujiki Market
(Address: 5 Chome-2-1 Tsukiji, Chuo, Tokyo 104-0045, Japan;
Opening hours: Everyday except Sundays)
Most of the stalls were getting ready to pack up

A lot of shops were already closed as we arrived really late (around 1.30pm). All but one Japanese restaurant, Daiedo (I think so), which still had a long queue outside.

Quickly joined the long queue outside the restaurant

For ease of their operations, they would usually seat people in batches of 10 and will take your order while you were waiting in line. It was really easy to order too because the staff is quite well-versed in English and there are tons of pictures posted for you to point to. You really can't go wrong!

Waiting excitedly and patiently to enter

Finally it was our turn! As you can see, the restaurant was not very big, which was partly why we had to wait so long and be seated in batches.

Loads of photos inside too so that you can continue ordering (which we absolutely did!)
Plate of extremely fresh sashimi! Yummy! =)
I ordered a bowl of tuna belly, salmon roe and sea urchin (plus additional salmon belly and salmon roe)! Super duper delicious!!! =P

If you like sushi and sashimi, this is the place for you! Plus it wasn't that expensive. We only paid around S$120 for 4 adults and 1 kid, which was a steal considering the amount of salmon roe, tuna belly and sea urchins we ordered! All considered premium and exorbitant in Singapore.

Lovely group photo taken by the staff
(our bowls are empty as you can see)

After a very awesome lunch, we made our way back to Tsujiki Station. Along the way, we passed by Tsujiki Nippon Fish Port Market just outside of Tsujiki Market.

Tsujiki Nippon Fish Port Market

My sister puts it very aptly, "this is your hubby's version of Disneyland!" She was right. I was so ready to leave but the hubby was so not done. He insisted to stay and see what we can eat/buy. We stumbled upon a shop selling tasty fried squid at a discount because they were closing and of course we just had to buy some.

Clockwise from left: Fried squid shop;
Hubby queuing to pay;
Free for tasting!

The hubby said that he had a gut feeling that there was something good in the back alley so we explored and found a shop selling fresh oysters straight from the shell!

Oysters as big as your hand for just 500 and 800 yen!
The oyster fans beaming with happiness
Eating the oyster raw with just a bit of sauce and lemon. Hubby said it was perfect!

And with that, we were finally on our way to the next destination, Tokyo Tower. To get there, simply take the Hibiya Line (Silver) from Tsujiki Station directly to Kamiyacho Station.

Clear signs showing you where you need to walk after exciting the station

Be warned that you'll need to hike up a slope so ensure you are wearing comfortable shoes. Along the way to the tower we found a nice spot where we could take pictures of the tower!

Selfies with Tokyo Tower behind us
With the kids
Trying to recreate the romantic scene of TV dramas *laughs*
Pathway to the tower is decorated with Christmas trees and lights

We arrived at the base of the tower where we bought our Combo tickets to both the Observation Deck and the Special Observation Deck (you can choose between combo or Observation Deck only tickets).

Tokyo Tower Ticketing Office
(Address: 4 Chome-2-8 Shibakoen, Minato, Tokyo 105-0011, Japan;
Phone: +81 3-3433-5111;
Opening Hours: 9am - 11pm daily)

We took the lift up to the Observation Deck, which is 150 metres above ground.

The view from the Observation Deck
View of Tokyo, with the sunset in the background
Baby Boy standing on the window sill

We decided to join the very long queue to take the one and only lift to the Special Observation Deck. Needless to say that the family was not happy. You can imagine how long we waited when we literally witnessed the sun go down while we were waiting.

Queuing at the waiting area for the one and only lift to the Special Observation Deck
(Enjoy the view and take selfies while waiting.. Might as well)

It was finally our turn to enter the lift (like finally!). We were actually kinda freaked out as the lift whizzed all the way up to 250 metres above the ground, further and further away from Earth! Boy were we glad when the doors of the lift finally opened.

Night view of Tokyo city

The family didn't think the view was worth the wait though and wanted to leave after a while. Well, if you thought the queue to go up the tower was long, you should have seen the long, snaking queue to take the, say it with me, one and only lift down!

Needless to say, the family was in a cranky mood by the time we were back at the Observation Deck. The hubby thought it would be a great idea to hang out at Cafe Tour and rest while we enjoyed  some dessert.

Having nuggets, cake and ice-cream at Cafe Tour while enjoying unblocked views of the city. Also cheered everyone up immediately.

It was also a night of stars as the Observation Deck was decorated with Sanrio's Little Twin Stars! So pretty right? =)

Clockwise from left: My girl bravely standing on the floor window that gives you a glimpse of how high up you were;
Sparkly Little Twin Stars light up the deck;
You can see that the whole tower was lighted up!
With Little Twin Stars Kiki and Lala at the Tokyo Tower.
Love this cute photo booth!

After spending some time in the gift shop and buying some cute souvenirs, we proceeded to take the lift to the first floor. On the way, the lift stopped and the lift attendant told us that there was a Christmas tree we might be interested in if we exited so we did.

Quite a pretty tree too if I might add!

With the brightly lit Christmas tree, which looks even brighter against the pitch black sky
View of Tokyo Tower from the bottom up

We boarded the lift again and descended to Level 3 of the tower before the lift stopped (again!) and the lift attendant told us that we had to exit the lift and take the escalators.

Say what now?

I think it's their way of ensuring that people check out the Tokyo One Piece Tower attraction and shop as much as they can at their gift shop and various other shops at Level 2.

Outside the Tokyo One Piece Tower

It was a brilliant ploy because shop we did, at the famous Tokyo Banana shop at Level 2!

Bought like boxes and boxes of Tokyo Banana! Crazy!

Finally, after hours in Tokyo Tower, we made it back to Earth! *laughs* We took some final photos at the miniature Tokyo Tower next to a bigger Christmas tree while basking in the Christmas atmosphere with carols playing in the background.

Such a lovely, lovely night =)

We return the same way that we came and went back to the same spot that we took the first picture earlier that day to capture the Tokyo Tower at night.

Looks quite different in the day as compared to the night doesn't it?

We reached Shinjuku Station after boarding the Tokyo Metro back and stopped at the hubby and my favourite cheese dessert shop in Japan, LeTAO! We just had to buy a cheesecake to eat back at the hotel!

Clockwise from left: if you look carefully, the LeTAO cheese biscuits the hubby and I bought were delicious!
(only if you are a fan of cheese of course);
The original cheesecake was rated as the most popular;
Chocolate cheesecake, which we bought, was rated as the 2nd most popular;
Variety of dessert to choose from!

We returned to our hotel hoping to have a decent dinner nearby but was disappointed to find out that all the restaurants were full. I think it was because it was the emperor's birthday the next day and therefore it was the eve of a public holiday!

We had little choice but to take away some food from a convenience store next to our hotel as well as takoyaki and ramen from this Takoyaki restaurant down the street.

Clockwise from left: Japanese boy took our order;
With the signboard of then restaurant;
Piping hot takoyaki, perfect for a chilly night!

Although it wasn't our ideal dinner, we still had a great time eating and fellowshipping with each other.

Clockwise from left: Ramen for me, the sister and the kids;
Our box of LeTAO chocolate cheesecake;
Wooo see how rich it is! Yum!;
Our yummy takoyaki.

All in all, a good end to our last night in shopaholic-paradise Shinjuku! It's going to be Disney from tomorrow onwards and I can't wait! =)

Continue to >> Tokyo Day 5 (Part 1): Tokyo Disneyland
<< Back to Tokyo Day 3: Hakone & Mount Fuji


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