Tokyo Travels: Day 6 (Part 1)

On our sixth day in Tokyo, we spent the first part of the day in Asakusa and the last part of the day in Akihabara! It was an eventful day, which started with us terpusing pusing around Shinjuku Station macam headless chickens hahahaha. Sebab termasuk salah entrance lepas tu tak tau which part nak masuk balek haha

Somehow we just couldn't figure out the correct entrance, even though we went to every entry/exit and walked all round! FOR AN HOUR!!!!! I mean, we knew how it felt like to be overwhelmed by the train lines in Tokyo (we experienced it during the first 2 days) but travelling by public trains in Tokyo had been relatively easy after we familiarized ourselves with the system. So for us to get perplexed by the train lines on our sixth day in Tokyo, it just added to the confusion la :/

In the end, a very frustrated Saliheen sighed and said "Naik taxi sudah la". Haha. 

Terus run out to the road and flagged one! Also took a picture of the taxi fare breakdown, in case anyone's interested:


When we planned to go to Tokyo, we kept hearing that taxis in Tokyo are super expensive bla bla bla, so we tried as much as possible not to take one. But kita tak boleh angkat our exhaustion on one of the nights so we flagged one down from Shibuya back to our hotel and it cost us about S$20.00? Which was reasonable to us??? Kita ingatkan mahal sampai S$50 per cab ride ke apa. We went on to take 3 more taxi rides in Tokyo after that because we thought the costs was worth the comfort and time spent, lagi lagi bila dah penat at end of the day.

Okay, now back to blogging pasal our sixth day in Tokyo! We were lapar gila by the time we arrived in Asakusa because we wasted so much time trying to figure out the train!!! So our first priority was to cari Naritaya, which is a tempat makan in Asakusa serving halal ramen, amongst other things like fried chicken.

It took us another 20 minutes to look for the kedai makan, even though we had pictures to its shopfront to refer to (we saved pictures from the Internet) - probably because it was lorong after lorong of kedai kedai with the same blue curtain exterior haha. Turns out to be the unit located at almost the end of one of the lorong! Friendly staff who greeted us at the front was a Japanese who just embraced Islam a month back, Alhamdullilah.


Naritaya differs from other makan establishments in Tokyo, due to the fact that it does not serve alcohol at its premises at all. The people behind this restaurant are Malaysians too (macam Ippin)! You do you, Malaysians, particularly when it comes to bringing halal food to Japan!


We quickly discovered that the person behind the counter was a abang melayu from Malaysia! Saliheen became sooooo chatty (more than usual) that I teased him about missing being able to speak in Malay to another person other than me haha. He said it was true ok, and that it was refreshing to ask questions and receive answers in fluent Malay after days of interacting with others in broken English campur Japanese. He became so kamchengho with the abang sampai keluar hisap rokok sama sama belakang kedai, amboi amboi sedara.....

Anyway, something else that was refreshing in the kedai was the ramen! It tasted nice, and I felt so puas eating a hot meal after days of eating cold sushi and sashimi (which I still love, but sometimes you just want your perut dalam to terbakar a little bit, you know). 

The only thing that could be better was the eggs? They served the ramen with telur with yolk yang masak habis. Dah macam telur dalam mee rebus la pulak haha, kan eggs in ramen selalu half cooked and still wobbly! But that's ok la, I tak discriminate telur ok, I still like all of them in whatever forms, even in Gudetama form hehe.


This was when we walked from Naritaya to Senso-ji Temple (it's nearby, walking distance of one to two minutes)... we saw Tokyo Skytree in the distance! We didn't go up the tower because we read that there will be lots of tour groups causing long waiting lines *shudders* Maybe we'll check it out next time we're in Tokyo, and at a timing when there wouldn't be such an insane crowd.

Senso-ji Temple was pretty crowded too, but it was nice to walk amongst the locals, tourists and worshippers from all over Asia who came to gawk and/or pray at the temple.



By the way, if you want to take pictures at the Kaminarimon entrance, please do it quick because nanti ada je orang yang tak sabar tunggu you to finish your photo-taking and will stand in your frame. Macam dekni:


Ah tu la dia, mata orang yang tak sabar sabar suruh kau cepat sikit HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA


Should probably mention that this was also where we bought some of the souveniers for our families and friends! There are rows of shops that sell souveniers and snacks leading to Sensoji Temple, which was where we got some souveniers for family and friends. Oh, remember I said jangan beli souveniers kat Tsukiji Market?! We really should've known better! Saliheen got chopsticks for his colleagues at S$12.00 per 5-set pack at Tsukiji Market when it only costs S$6.00 here!!! 50% lesser seh. Luckily we only got a few packs from Tsukiji Market.

[Note: There are three places which I recommend getting souveniers from: Either from Nakamise Dori (which is the stretch of shops leading into Sensoji Temple), from any Don Quijote outlet (we went to the one in Kabukicho, it's right beside the main road and has a Mustafa Centre feel and layout) or from the AKKY II tax-free shop in Akihabara. These places sell various things for cheap, ranging from facial masks, chopsticks, tea sets, green tea packs, t-shirts, fans, terompah, chocolates, novelty gifts, etc.]

Anyway, after we visited Sensoji Temple, we had some free time so we did a quick Google search for a cat cafe in Asakusa and the first hit result was Cat Cafe Asakusa Nekoen. It's the unit on the sixth floor and costs ¥800 (S$10.00) for one hour per person.


This is a picture of me after I bribe belanja the cats with treats hehehehe

The owner was a polite but firm lady, and I don't know whether I was just uncomfortable with her gaze but I didn't really play much with the cats or enjoy my time there. Might also be because we went at the wrong timing because most of the cats were sleeping, hiding and refusing to budge from their positions (typical stubborn cat behaviour hah). And I guess I expected a traditional cafe setting but it felt more like a house with many rescued cats...? (Which it probably is) Saliheen and I had a pleasant time la, but I don't think I'll return nor recommend this place if you're looking for something with a traditionally known cat cafe setting.

After our one hour was up, we walked to Ippin for our dinner. This is the one in Asakusa that serves ramen!!! (Remember our confusion from the day before?) You can find directions on Google maps, it's pretty accurate.


THIS WAS WHERE WE HAD THE BEST, MOST DELICIOUS CHICKEN RAMEN EVER!!!!! 

I don't think the noises of pleasure, satisfaction and gratitude that came out of Saliheen and I while we slurped the noodles and soup sounded very appropriate HAHAHAHA. 

Very hot, very hearty and they weren't kidding when they said we'll get to savour the "deep rich taste of the chicken" hahahaha. We've never tasted ramen soup that rich before ok! And the best part, the egg yolk is the wet and wobbly kind that you expect from Japanese dishes hehehe. I think this is my next favourite meal after our first night dinner at Gyumon, honestly - Saliheen and I couldn't stop talking about it for days after that... 

Each ramen bowl cost about ¥750 (S$9.30) and the kedai has two levels - the 2nd level is the usual restaurant seating format whereas the first level (where we sat) was a bar seating format (smoking allowed). They also serve other stuff like fried chicken and curry sets (which we didn't really like).

Anyway, if you really, really, really can only afford time to eat at only one place in Asakusa that serves halal food, I highly recommend Ippin! Naritaya wins with their warm and friendly service whereas Ippin wins with the taste of their ramen. But if you can go for both joints like (gelojoh) us then that will be the best, of course! 

Okay, that'll be all for Asakusa! It was off to Akihabara pulak, known as an otaku culture hub!

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