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Newer Page 875 of 968 Older Full Trip Report
Japan Tokyo Akihabara Ueno

4 May 2010

Akihabara and Ueno

Another fine day in Tokyo, perfect weather. Its still a holiday like yesterday and tomorrow, all part of golden week. This means some places are very crowded and others not (apparently) but since I have only been here during golden week I have nothing to compare to.
I decided to head by train to Akihabara, which is on the far side of the Yamamote loop, which is the main JR line around Tokyo. This journey took about 30 minutes. I noticed that each train line has its own little tune that plays at the stations when the doors open and a trains coming etc. I imagine a lot of serious men in suits had to listen to all these happy little tunes and decide if they are happy enough and which line each one suits.

Akihabara was pretty awesome, despite yesterday thinking SD cards in Japan are very expensive, they are in fact not in Akihabara, with a 16GB card available for $30. I didnt actually buy one though.
The place is known as electric town and its all computer shops, computer games arcades, manga shops, and porn stores. Now these are pretty much all merged into huge stores that do all of them at once, so its not unusual for you to say find ipod sales, gundam wing toys, hello kitty, tentacle porn, pachinko machines, 3d televisions. All in one store.
The porn is on big tv's as well, and although I saw some signs saying you have to be over 18, there were plenty of kids about (I think its childrens day today, the reason for the holiday).

After Akihabara I went to Ueno, thats where everyone else was getting off the train so why not. Turns out this is where some huge nature park is, and there were over 9 million people trying to experience nature simultaneously so I opted not to. Perhaps I will come back another time when its not a holiday.
The Ueno station is a lot like Shinjuku, in that 10 different lines seem to go above, under, through or around the station. The area around the station was very crowded and a but less shiny and fancy than Shinjuka and Akihabara.

And now...onto the photos!

Japan-Tokyo-Akihabara-Ueno - Akihabara, under the train line, club sega on the right, love merci (porn store) on the left.

Akihabara, under the train line, club sega on the right, love merci (porn store) on the left.


Japan-Tokyo-Akihabara-Ueno - Unlike yesterday I decided to try a Japanese coffee chain for breakfast, this one was called Dutour, and it was terrible, they didnt actually make the

Unlike yesterday I decided to try a Japanese coffee chain for breakfast, this one was called Dutour, and it was terrible, they didnt actually make the coffee it came out of an automatic machine like you would get in an airport lounge. Also the bread looking thing was very stale and I didnt eat most of it.


Japan-Tokyo-Akihabara-Ueno - So disappointed was I in the coffee, I decided a vending machine might be better, I expected what came out to be ice cold as they also had coke and wa

So disappointed was I in the coffee, I decided a vending machine might be better, I expected what came out to be ice cold as they also had coke and water and whatever in the machine, but no, what came out was piping hot, too hot to hold. Also it was delicious. I suspect it has sweetened condensed milk in it so its probably really bad for you. Oh well its not like I wont walk it off.


Japan-Tokyo-Akihabara-Ueno - Have you ever pictured Colonel Sanders as a samurai warrior? Well fear not, here he is, in all his awesomeness.

Have you ever pictured Colonel Sanders as a samurai warrior? Well fear not, here he is, in all his awesomeness.


Japan-Tokyo-Akihabara-Ueno - Inside a toy shop, and things are already starting to get a bit dicey, some of the figurines were girls with their underwear around their knees lookin

Inside a toy shop, and things are already starting to get a bit dicey, some of the figurines were girls with their underwear around their knees looking terrified, but then there was also regular toys like gundam and nintendo things.


Japan-Tokyo-Akihabara-Ueno - And then you are in the porn section. Its censored in the regular strange Japanese way. If you dont know what I mean, dont ask.

And then you are in the porn section. Its censored in the regular strange Japanese way. If you dont know what I mean, dont ask.


Japan-Tokyo-Akihabara-Ueno - This maid started posing for me even though I didnt have my camera out, so I obliged her, for her troubles she gave me a pamphlet advertising Samsung

This maid started posing for me even though I didnt have my camera out, so I obliged her, for her troubles she gave me a pamphlet advertising Samsung computers.
There are similar maids all over Akihabara, advertising just about everything, including maid cafes.


Japan-Tokyo-Akihabara-Ueno - If you are familiar with youtube memes you have probably seen Maru. You will be pleased to know that he seems to have made money from his floor slidin

If you are familiar with youtube memes you have probably seen Maru. You will be pleased to know that he seems to have made money from his floor sliding antics and now advertises wimax services.


Japan-Tokyo-Akihabara-Ueno - I stumbled upon a stage featuring amateur j-pop groups. Boring and stupid, until I noticed the main girl who spent most of her time centre stage singi

I stumbled upon a stage featuring amateur j-pop groups. Boring and stupid, until I noticed the main girl who spent most of her time centre stage singing wore a swine flu mask whilst singing. This takes it from being boring and stupid to being awesome.


Japan-Tokyo-Akihabara-Ueno - There are flea markets in Japan, but they arent particularly interesting.

There are flea markets in Japan, but they arent particularly interesting.


Japan-Tokyo-Akihabara-Ueno - This is inside a games parlour, one of the dirtier ones, but theres a big tournament going on. The photo dissapoints but the crowd is much bigger and

This is inside a games parlour, one of the dirtier ones, but theres a big tournament going on. The photo dissapoints but the crowd is much bigger and very very excited at whats going on. They were playing some sort of fighting game. Also in there are these huge pods you climb into and play some sort of team death match in mechs, theres a map at the end of each row where you can see whats going on that looks like command and conquer. But inside the pods its FPS.
A photo of these pods might have been helpful here....


Japan-Tokyo-Akihabara-Ueno - An entire multi storey building devoted to manga.

An entire multi storey building devoted to manga.


Japan-Tokyo-Akihabara-Ueno - The pedo bear turned up and japanese people started going crazy with cameras. I wasnt sure what was more ridiculous so I moved around where I could ca

The pedo bear turned up and japanese people started going crazy with cameras. I wasnt sure what was more ridiculous so I moved around where I could capture both.


Japan-Tokyo-Akihabara-Ueno - The inside of a train on the Yamamote line, not particularly crowded, I would imagine you would feel a lot more crowded if you are small. As a fat whi

The inside of a train on the Yamamote line, not particularly crowded, I would imagine you would feel a lot more crowded if you are small. As a fat white Australian I am substantially bigger than the average Japanese person.


Japan-Tokyo-Akihabara-Ueno - So happy was I with my last vending machine coffee I decided to try another, this one came out ice cold, but was even better for it! Also these chocol

So happy was I with my last vending machine coffee I decided to try another, this one came out ice cold, but was even better for it! Also these chocolate coated almond things are really great. Each costs about $1 Australian. Whoever said I wouldnt be able to survive in Tokyo on $100 a day (again my mother, who lived in Japan for many years), is clearly very wrong.


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