Tuesday, 19 December 2017

At Narita airport

The group has arrived at Narita airport with only a couple of last minute hitches.
The last instructions being issued before going through security.
The Japan economy is bound to do well this year. There was a real yen for shopping malls.
The children will no doubt be pleased to be home among friends and family.
This is the final post for Japan Trip 2017.

Monday, 18 December 2017

At Disneyland

A fine day but cool. The group has split into smaller parties to explore Tokyo Disneyland. There are a lot of Christmas themed Disney goods for sale and some of us are finding them hard to resist.
Not so crowded today but waiting times for popular rides are in excess of 60 minutes.


Kaoruko met us at Iidabashi station this morning and then the group went to Shibuya to visit the famous(small) Hachiko statue. It is well-used as a meeting place. "I will meet you at Hachiko". And that is where the group met Sasakia and Mr and Mrs Hyuga, among the crowds. Then the group experienced the Shibuya crossing though the crowd was not too big at 11:15. There was time for shopping for those who wanted. A small section took off with Mr Jones on an intellectual expedition to the Natural History Museum at Ueno and the others followed Mr and Mrs Hyuga  to the teen capital of Japan, Harajuku. Takeshita  Dori(street) was again crowded, but that is the best way to experience this iconic street. Those who were so inclined managed to snap up some bargains for their wardrobes or souvenir collections. The group returned early and then walked to the top of Kagurazaka for the last dinner together at a chain restaurant. At 8:00pm we gathered together for Mr Jones's trivia quiz and shared highlights as well as one thing they had learned. Bedtime was relatively early so as to recharge the batteries for Disneyland.


Sunday, 17 December 2017

From the side window of the YH

A couple of students were up early and got a clearer view of Mt Fuji this morning from the side window of the YH. The photo here was taken an hour later so it is not so clear but there may be other opportunities tomorrow and Tuesday if the weather stays fine. Today the group will go to Shibuya and surroundings with a choice of activities in the afternoon.

Saturday, 16 December 2017


The group went to Asakusa Temple this morning. We met Mr and Mrs Hyuga, who fund the Rika Scholarship for Chch students to study for a short time at a Tokyo school. The group's guides were Kaoruko who was at Cashmere in 2015 and Saskia who finished Cashmere in 2016, and is now studying at Tokyo University. From Asakusa, the group went to Ikebukuro  and Sunshine 60 for lunch. After lunch the group had free time with some Pokemon enthusiasts visiting the Pokemon Centre and generously contributing to the Japanese economy. Tonight's plan is to have dinner early somewhere near the Youth hostel, explore the local streets and shops and generally get an early night.
Today the group experienced quite large Tokyo crowds and some are beginning to realise the logistics of moving 23 people around this huge metropolis. Christchurch is beginning to feel very small to some of them.

Going to Sensouji

Off to the first activity Today, visiting Sensouji Temple at Asakusa. Taking the ChuoSobu line.

Saturday morning 6:47am

A very quiet time at the Youth Hostel. No sign or sound of anyone yet. The lobby  and a view out of the one side of the hostel which is on the 18th and 19th floors.

Friday, 15 December 2017

Moved to Tokyo

An early morning start from Hiroshima, taking two shinkansen with a change at Shin-Osaka and arriving mid-afternoon in Tokyo. The grouo then took two locsl trains to get to the Youth Hostel. Tokyo is a lot busoer than the other places the group have been in, an the increase in the nimbet of people moving was a surprise for some. After dropping bags off at the Youth Hostel we navigated out way to Tokyo Sky Tree. The group were able to got the top observation platform and took in the view of the city from 450 metres above ground.

Last night's dinner

The group went to the Aeon Mall at Tenjingawa for okonomiyaki, a famous Hiroshima dish. The initial ordering was a bit confusing. However, all managed to get something close to what they had requested abd enjoyed watching the restaurant staff do their thing.