Visiting Tokyo (Part 10)

Another attraction of Tokyo is Asakusa, known for its famous Sensoji Temple.  During one of the warmest days of our visit, we managed to pay a brief visit. The main entrance is always full of visitors.  It was a weekday and we were overwhelmed by how many visitors they have.

This is probably the signature symbol of the visitor attraction.  Though it seems to be very commercialized as the bottom of the huge lantern has an advertisement of an electric company (the 4 gold Chinese characters).

There are lots of foreigners and you can also see English signs on top of some of the shops along the walkway before getting to the temple.

Souvenirs are sold everywhere.  Some are authentic traditional Japanese creations, some are like these pins and tags that I bet are not made in Japan.

There are also merchants selling charms and bells for good luck.

Or fans of all kinds of colors and shapes for a hot summer day like today.

There are also a lot of shops selling food items.

For example, this shop sells bean related products.

This one sells some traditional sweets.

But on a hot summer day, shaved ice seems to be doing well.  The merchant uses a hand crank shaver.  It is hardly seen anywhere anymore.

It was so hot that I couldn’t help to take another shot of the store.

Moving along, you would see lots of lanterns like these ones.  The street merchants decorate the streets really well.  I regret not being able to come here at night as the last time I came in 2003 at night, I didn’t have a digital SLR and the pictures weren’t very good.

More souvenirs, I was tempted to get a wind chime here but ended up not getting one.

There are also fortune cats being sold.  Do you have a fortune cat or two at home?

And then we saw these pet dolls.  Wonder how are these related to Senso-ji?

The walkway looks and feels traditional.  I am sure there are other more traditional ones in other parts of Tokyo I have not visited.  Please let me know any other ones you know of so I won’t miss them next time.

Slowly we are getting closer to the temple.  If it wasn’t for the steamy hot summer weather, we would have spent a lot more time around the shops.

Here we are walking towards the temple.  The walkway with merchants ends before getting to the temple.  This is just a gate.  The temples are behind this gate.

Lots of towers around.  The decoration and architecture of these buildings are very unique.  At night, they are lit up and makes a perfect place for night time temple photography.

Unfortunately, a number of temples were under maintenance and we could get good pictures of them.

It was so hot that we decided to look for something cold to have.  There were lineups to some stores that sell drinks and ice creams.

After having something small to drink, we strolled along かんのんどり(Kannon Dori) for more window shopping.

Inside かんのんどりare a lot of modern day shops.

Neon signs along the ceiling.

But if you start walking towards the temple, you will find shops and restaurants that look more traditional.

I was almost getting hungry.

This coffee shop looks so cute.  And did I say I love the Japanese motorbikes like this golden one?

I also found the side streets in Japan very neat.  Unlike back alleys in Vancouver, these side streets are neatly utilized and are kept very clean.

We found some traditional hanging entrance dividers (don’t know the proper name, could someone please educate me?).  They are of very nice quality and are hand printed.  However, they are not cheap at all.

And then we found another store that sells wind chime.

Their wind chimes are a bit different.  They are more like decorations than chimes that are designed to make crisp ringing sounds.

These are other shops opposite from かんのんどり.  Lots of produce and food for sale.

I would like to shop there, please.

Close to the train station, we found this store selling traditional Japanese sweets.  Looking very good.

Speaking of trains, Asakusa connects to multiple train lines.  The first time I visited Tokyo in 2003, I was staying at Asakusa.  It was pretty convenient except the hotel I was staying was 20 minutes from the train station.

I really like the train system in Tokyo.  It is very convenient and it is not expensive.  In Vancouver, the cost of using the public transit system starts at C$2.50 (which is roughly ¥200.)  In Tokyo, you can commute with as little as ¥130.

Hope you enjoy the photos.  There will be more Tokyo trip-related posts coming.

7 replies
    • Kam
      Kam says:

      Thank you, it was a hot day and we were trying to stay out of the sun more than trying to take more pictures.

  1. FatB
    FatB says:

    I didn’t visit any temples in and around Tokyo. Only in Kyoto where I found some perfect handmade souvenirs.

    I hear having windchimes in chinese culture is bad; invites ghosts. So I hear…

      • FatB
        FatB says:

        Kyoto is nice. Very cultural, traditional, and not as hectic as Tokyo. There are temples all around the city including the golden temple you sometimes see in pics. Not to say it isn’t modern like Tokyo; they have a huge ultra modern bullet train station.

        • Kam
          Kam says:

          If you were to go to Kyoto again, how long would you stay there and what will be your focus during the trip?


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