Narita: June 25th-June 29th

First stop — second time.

I just finished my second trip to Narita! Although I’ve passed through here before, I’ve only ever stayed in Narita on Leigh’s trips. It’s unfortunate that it’s often skipped over, because it’s quite a nice town in itself. Although it has quite a lot of area devoted to industrialism, an equal amount of the town is covered in shrines and parks.

While in Narita, we stayed at Kirinoya Ryokan, a ryokan (inn) which can be traced back 50 generations of the same family operating it. We also visited Narita-San and the plethora of temples located in its vicinity. Afterwards, the vast majority of our tour group got their first taste of a Japanese shopping mall. Although it was one of the smaller chains in the country (Aeon), these can be find pretty much anywhere and was a good place to go for our first experience of shopping in Japan.

Of course, prior to the tour starting on June 27th, William, James, Cassie, Lin and I arrived on the 25th. On the 26th, I helped all of us get into Tokyo since it was all their first time in Japan. From there, William and I split off and enjoyed a pretty usual tourist circuit around Tokyo, with the exception being a spontaneous train trip into Saitama because we couldn’t find anywhere to sit in Tokyo (the train trip was free because we didn’t exit the station).

Later that night, William and I met up with Oliver, Taketo and Rena, as well as Oliver’s girlfriend Rena (yes, there was two). A beautiful moment of irony took place as Oliver booked a seafood restaurant because he forgot I’m allergic. And then showed up late. Needless to say, that night could’ve gone better, but hopefully there will be no hard feelings.

Here are the photos from the last few days with accompanying captions.

June 26th, evening: Our dinner in Tokyo.
June 27th, evening: Our first dinner together as a tour group. I couldn’t get a proper photo, so I just went with it (took a few photos like this).
June 28th, morning: It still surprises me every time I come back that savoury food such as meat is served for breakfast.
June 28th, morning: Yes, you sit down in the shower in Japan. (And sometimes wear fancy rubber slippers which you might be able to see in the corner of the photo)
June 28th, morning: I stayed in Room 1, which is the biggest room in this ryokan. It features paintings on the ceiling as well as wood panels in some parts of the room.
June 28th, day: During our visit to Narita-san and associated shrines. At Japanese temples, you ‘fan’ the incense towards yourself to purify yourself.
June 29th, day: My N’EX (Narita Express) ticket and Japan Rail Pass.

Written by Jack Fetter for 1024LAL on June 29th, 2015.

See you in Hakodate!

If you missed my pre-trip post, please click here!

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