Thursday, January 31, 2013

Tokyo Part 2 - Ueno

After a week in Hakuba, we headed back to Tokyo to spend another week there. This time, we stayed in Shinjuku at Sunroute Plaza Shinjuku.

Shinjuku has a huge train station that most train lines run through, so for us it was the most convenient place to stay. The hotel was only a 5 minute walk (as opposed to a 20 minute walk from last year) which made it easy to get to and from the station with our luggage.

We went across to Takashimaya Times Square to our favourite little Mexican restaurant that we discovered the trip before and had a really good meal. If you are anywhere near there and feel like Mexican, the restaurant is called El Torito. The prices are standard (cheaper than Aus) and the food is really good.

On to Ueno...We spent two days in Ueno because we didn't get everything done that we wanted to on the first day we went there. If you visit Japan and want recommendations on where to go, I would absolutely recommend Ueno.

In Ueno there is a huge park that is surrounded by museums, cafes, restaurants, shopping centres and a zoo. The Ueno zoo only costs 600 Yen per adult (about $6.50). I originally thought the zoo would be quite small but was pleasantly surprised at just how huge it was. There were so many animals I'd never seen before, so it was a really good day for me.
A big lonely bison
The duck house
Ueno also has a few different museums and an art gallery that each cost around 500 yen ($5) to get in to. This time, we managed to see the National History Museum and the National Museum of Western Art. The museum had some truly amazing displays and we could have spent the better part of a day discovering new rooms to look in. Unfortunately for us though, we got there an hour and a half before close, so we were in and out.
When we visited the art gallery, the Rodin exhibition was on display. The sculptures were amazing and it was such an experience to be able to see such fine works of art. I also got to see a Picasso painting in real life for the first time. Breathtaking! 

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