Newfangled Odaiba

Day 17 · Odaiba, Tokyo Scroll down

After the previous failed attempt to visit Odaiba, the afternoon was dedicated to wander around the huge artificial island in Tokyo Bay, while the evening was topped off with a delicious sushi meal.

Following lunch, we hopped on the Yurikamome automated guideway train to Odaiba, a giant artificial island right on Tokyo Bay, with beautiful views of the city. The JR Pass wasn’t valid for this line, so we had to use some of our Suica card credits. The train ride is amazing, as you slowly start to rotate around the bay area and see Tokyo from the outside.

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Odaiba feels fresh and exciting, with the waterfront, green parks, a few shopping centers, company buildings, Tokyo International Exhibition Center, and even an entertainment complex with a ferris wheel. The most impressive thing, though, is the real life Gundam — we weren’t expecting anything special, but it really feels like it was alive/active before it was placed there, when replaced with a newer version.

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After a heavy day of walking we got back to Ginza and found ourselves a nice sushi place. Sushi is not a typical normal meal in Japan, as one might think due to its western counterpart. Sushi is supposed to be fully enjoyed, with colleagues, business partners or family. It was the only real social Japanese meal we experienced — we could see them talking and laughing and drinking, and speaking out loud, fully enjoying their time and their meal, and taking much longer than we did actually. Otherwise they will seat alone, eat and leave.

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We got seats at the counter and ordered drinks and a 14 set piece of sushi. The sushi master was cutting the fish right in front of our eyes, and making the nigiri with the precision and perfection of a master, and we got his art served. Sweet sticky rice, with delicious and fresh pieces of fish, roe, crab, sea urchin, clams and others, with a lot of spicy wasabi pulling it together. It was our most expensive meal, but totally worth it. Very different from its western spin-offs that we seem to enjoy so much back at home.

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