Tag Archives: Shibuya

Long Walk into the Unknown

Exploring Idea

After having the coffee in Harajuku, I decided to explore the area. After coming out from Starbucks, I saw in the opposite side few department stores. I decided not to go inside them, instead I decided to walk a little bit and look at that ‘hidden’ area of Tokyo.

After coming out from Starbucks, instead than going back from the same way that I came from, the left and turn the corner, I decided to go right and follow my instinct. I crossed the road ignoring the department stores and kept going right. At the first big traffic light I turned left and walked along a long road.

Ginza Number 2

I could see straight away that the road I took was going to be a long one, but not that long. At first there was nothing really interesting that is worth writing in this blog. After about 10 minutes walk, on the left side of the road (my side) started appearing high end shops, the same sort of shops that I found earlier in the day at Ginza: Luis Vuitton, Armani and so on. And because I am not really into those kinds of ‘posh’ shops, I ignored them, I didn’t even take a single photo to them because I was not interested, even though I should have taken a couple just to put on this post (or page, whichever you are reading right now).

I Love the Adventure

Around half way of that road (I didn’t know at that point that I was half way through that road) I found a sign mentioning that by following that road I was going to reach Shibuya. I didn’t know about Shibuya, and looking at my train map that I had in my pocket, Shibuya was marked in bold and in bigger characters compared to those of most stations, indicating that it was one of the major areas in Tokyo.

Nearby I found a station, I really cannot remember right now the name, but it was going towards a different direction from the line that link all the major areas of Tokyo like a circle, it is similar as the Circle Line in London. Anyway,

“I was by myself in the middle of Tokyo and I couldn’t care less where I was going, the most important thing is that in which way I was going I would still find my way round and probably find places where tourists don’t go. I love the adventure.”

2nd Stop

I kept walking into the same direction, that road was actually long. After I completed 100% of that road (it took me more than 30 minutes), another sign was directing Shibuya on the right. It was another long big road, probably bigger than the other one that I just completed.

I crossed the road and went to Shibuya direction. After few minutes I had a very short break, guess what? I stopped for another cappuccino at a nearby Starbucks that was on the same side of the road where I was walking. After grabbing the coffee and leaving the coffee shop, I carried on walking.

UN Uni

I could see a large selection of restaurants on both sides of the road, the most of them were Japanese and a handful were American large chains such as Pizza Hut and so on. By that time, the sky was already getting dark and after about 30 minutes walk on the other side of the road I saw a the ‘University of the United Nations’!!! I didn’t know that the UN had universities. I learnt something new that day that is nothing to do with Japanese culture, but about the world security or safety or whatever you want to call it.

Reaching the Destination

Not far from the University of the United Nations the road started to divide in 2. Following my sense of orientation I kept walking on my side of the road rather than crossing the road and following the other path. The road soon after crossed with another one that if I was going left the road was going up-hill, however, I decided to go down-hill and few minutes later I reached the final destination: Shibuya Station. Yeahhhh!!!!!!!

Shibuya: The Busiest Crossing In The World

Light inside the tunnel
After the long walk I almost felt exhausted, however, my feelings were still exiting because I had reached another destination, another place where I could visit for the first time, a new adventure where I could tell the other people about. I managed to get there without asking anybody for any direction, just my common sense, sense of direction (if I have got any, but I think I have some) and the train map that has got nothing to do with the road map.
I knew that I had arrived at the destination because there was a sign that was pointing at the entrance of Shibuya station. I entered a stair case inside a building, went up the stairs and the first thing that I noticed was that there was the entrance of a shopping centre. There were different shops and an escalator that was going to the floors below.
Picture 1: Down the escalator
Picture 1: Down the escalator
Outside was already dark by at least 1 hour, however, the lights inside the shopping centre and those that were coming from the shops were illuminating the inside of the building in the same way that the lights illuminate the inside of the buildings when closer to Christmas, but without any of the Christmas decoration.
Shibuya Station
 
I kept walking tirelessly until I saw that the number of people were growing. I was entering a tunnel. That tunnel was narrow and had windows. I could see that this tunnel was actually a walking bridge and from the windows there was a beautiful view of tall buildings, the roads underneath and I could also see that the tunnel was going to have a left turn. After walking a few minutes, the tunnel started to get larger and the number of people increased by a large margin.
Businessmen, schoolgirls, schoolboys and people with shopping bags were filling the tunnel and I realised soon afterwards that I was inside the train station. This larger tunnel was leading to the train platforms. People were entering the platforms from left and right. I think the time was between 6-7. Tokyo Shibuya rush hours and there was a lot still to come.
Better than Piccadilly Circus
 
After I had passed all the platforms from the tunnel, the building took me to a staircase leading on the street level. Step by step I managed to reach the exit and another staircase that led me to Shibuya Hachiko Square. The square was crowded and I noticed that in the middle of the square there was a statue of a dog. A lot of people seemed very interested about that statue and were taking photos and selfies with the dog.
hachiko_square1
Picture 2: Dog in Hachiko Square (from http://www.yayanoctopus.com)
Dog's Statue in Hachiko Square (From http://youinjapan.net)
Picture 3: Dog’s Statue in Hachiko Square (From http://youinjapan.net)
In front of me I noticed a pedestrian crossing and I could see on the corners on the other side of the crossing some very interesting buildings, some of them with a very interesting shape. I took some photos of the buildings in front of me and then I walked closer to the pedestrian crossing and took more photos.
Picture 3: QFRONT building
Picture 4: QFRONT building

Pictures 5,6,7,8: different buildings and different designs

Pictures 5 and 6: Beauty of the buildings
Pictures 5 and 6: Beauty of the buildings

SAMSUNG

Pictures 7 and 8: More from Shibuya
Pictures 7 and 8: More from Shibuya
The buildings were magnificent, especially at that time, when the sky was dark and the lights were standing out beautifully.
One of the corners of the crossing reminded me of Piccadilly Circus in London, a better version of Piccadilly. It had a screen with a video showing an advert and other LED adverts on the building. Almost everything was in Japanese characters.
Picture 4: Sibuya's Piccadilly Circus style
Picture 9: Sibuya’s Piccadilly Circus style
Another of the building had a Starbucks on the first floor (or second floor if you live in an Asian country). The tallest of the building was the most unique of the buildings. The bottom part was looking like that it had cubes with glass windows one on top of the other. The cubes were not parallel to each other, one was moved towards this direction and others moved towards other directions.
Picture 5: Cube Building
Picture 10: Cube Building
Wow!!!
 
After taking a number of pictures, I moved to the edge of the pedestrian crossing.
  • Wow!
I thought to myself.
  • Wow! Wow!! Wow!!!
What has fascinated me was to see all the pedestrian traffic lights going green all at the same time and hundreds/thousands of people crossing the road all at the same time. In pictures it looks beautiful, but for real, watching the reaction of that large number of people crossing the road live it really gave me a wonderful impression of the place. Something that I have never seen before – ever. It was just fantastic.
Picture 6: Shibuya's famous pedestrian crossing
Picture 11: Shibuya’s famous pedestrian crossing
My experience in Tokyo was just getting better and better. The only thing I felt sorry was for not crossing the road alongside all those people. Everyone is an individual, however, at that crossing everyone looks the same. I wondered what was the proportion of people crossing the road just because they needed to cross it and the people that were crossing the road just to try the feeling, maybe once in a lifetime.
Next adventures
I wasn’t feeling hungry yet, so I decided to go back to Shibuya train station. Jump on a train and then go back to Harajuku because I felt that I had to take some photos (which I had posted in ‘Cosplay Hunting in Harajuku‘). After that I felt hungry and decided to go to eat in Shinjuku.

Long Walk into the Unknown

Exploring Idea

After having the coffee in Harajuku, I decided to explore the area. After coming out from Starbucks, I saw in the opposite side few department stores. I decided not to go inside them, instead I decided to walk a little bit and look at that ‘hidden’ area of Tokyo.

After coming out from Starbucks, instead than going back from the same way that I came from, the left and turn the corner, I decided to go right and follow my instinct. I crossed the road ignoring the department stores and kept going right. At the first big traffic light I turned left and walked along a long road.

Ginza Number 2

I could see straight away that the road I took was going to be a long one, but not that long. At first there was nothing really interesting that is worth writing in this blog. After about 10 minutes walk, on the left side of the road (my side) started appearing high end shops, the same sort of shops that I found earlier in the day at Ginza: Luis Vuitton, Armani and so on. And because I am not really into those kinds of ‘posh’ shops, I ignored them, I didn’t even take a single photo to them because I was not interested, even though I should have taken a couple just to put on this post (or page, whichever you are reading right now).

I Love the Adventure

Around half way of that road (I didn’t know at that point that I was half way through that road) I found a sign mentioning that by following that road I was going to reach Shibuya. I didn’t know about Shibuya, and looking at my train map that I had in my pocket, Shibuya was marked in bold and in bigger characters compared to those of most stations, indicating that it was one of the major areas in Tokyo.

Nearby I found a station, I really cannot remember right now the name, but it was going towards a different direction from the line that link all the major areas of Tokyo like a circle, it is similar as the Circle Line in London. Anyway,

“I was by myself in the middle of Tokyo and I couldn’t care less where I was going, the most important thing is that in which way I was going I would still find my way round and probably find places where tourists don’t go. I love the adventure.”

2nd Stop

I kept walking into the same direction, that road was actually long. After I completed 100% of that road (it took me more than 30 minutes), another sign was directing Shibuya on the right. It was another long big road, probably bigger than the other one that I just completed.

I crossed the road and went to Shibuya direction. After few minutes I had a very short break, guess what? I stopped for another cappuccino at a nearby Starbucks that was on the same side of the road where I was walking. After grabbing the coffee and leaving the coffee shop, I carried on walking.

UN Uni

I could see a large selection of restaurants on both sides of the road, the most of them were Japanese and a handful were American large chains such as Pizza Hut and so on. By that time, the sky was already getting dark and after about 30 minutes walk on the other side of the road I saw a the ‘University of the United Nations’!!! I didn’t know that the UN had universities. I learnt something new that day that is nothing to do with Japanese culture, but about the world security or safety or whatever you want to call it.

Reaching the Destination

Not far from the University of the United Nations the road started to divide in 2. Following my sense of orientation I kept walking on my side of the road rather than crossing the road and following the other path. The road soon after crossed with another one that if I was going left the road was going up-hill, however, I decided to go down-hill and few minutes later I reached the final destination: Shibuya Station. Yeahhhh!!!!!!!