Day 4 started at 4am for us. Both of us woke up at 4 and neither of us could get back to sleep. (Though no lack of trying) We managed to entertain ourselves until 7 when we finally got out of bed and had an early breakfast from the cafe downstairs. I managed to get my first cup of black tea since I got here and it was a welcome break from the mass of coffee we’ve been drinking.
We ventured out into Shinjuku for a little more exploring a bit too early though. Most of the shops were shut and were accepting deliveries.
You know when you stop for a coffee and see a picture of some food on the display and just want it? Here's my early morning avocado and cheese hot dog.
We did manage to explore one store at least where Dad finally bought something! (hurrah it’s not just me buying stuff anymore). He got a few presents and a little thing for himself while I bought Free! keychains, sweets and a Pokemon purse. (I needed the purse as my usual one is the same size as my new bag. Now I can actually fit things in my bag! Also its cute and has Pikachu on it!!).
We also bought Chick today. We didn't realise it at the time but Chick (the larger of the two bags in this set) would become our pack mule as the trip continued. Chick carried everything we bought from now on.
It was a lot sunnier and hotter today than it had been and although we are adjusting to the humidity more and more each day the sun made it just a bit too unbearable so it was back to the hotel for a rest. While Dad slept I watched Youtube videos.
I lured Dad out of the room with the promise of a cat cafe and onto Ikebukuro we went.
Though the journey wasn’t stressful finding Sunshine City was a lot harder than expected. We originally came out on the wrong side of the station and continued walking that way for a little while before we turned back.
We did stop at a Moss Burger though, which was delicious.
Indeed it was, and easy to order because the ordering counter has pictures of everything on it, in every size so you can just point to what you want or the staff can point to the options if you have a choice.
After trekking back and consulting many maps we managed to finally navigate our way through the station (all of Tokyo’s stations seem to be huge and have between 4 and 50 different exits in each) and found Sunshine City.
This isn't our first view of Sunshine City, this is actually one of the roof sections we found later, but it's got the sign in it. This area had, plants, seats and, thankfully because it was still blisteringly hot, vending machines.
Of course it was time for another break which this time involved anime cake! I had that strawberry cake that is in all the animes (or at least the ones I watch) so I feel like I have unlocked an achievement. Dad had a Lemony cake, it looked good.
We knew the shop sold 'anime cake' because, like many Japanese cafes and restaurants, it had a display of wax food outside.
Here are the actual cakes.
Finally we began looking through Sunshine City, we had kind of missed all the shops leading up to the shopping center as we were looking for somewhere to sit and eat, so we’ll probably go back to visit that street (you can see the street in the last video as we walked back through it). Sunshine City is really just a large shopping mall with two theme parks in it.
40 years of Hello Kitty, here's to the next 40!
We had a little shop in which I spent way too much on soft toys (Pen and the boys from the Sumikko Gurashi range of merchandise - The height of Japanese cool, it has to be said.)
and then happened to walk out of what we thought was very high up but seemed to just be street level (this was the roof area shown above). It was from here that I saw an Animate shop and insisted we went over to look.
Which is a good thing we did as while walking over we passed a park. A park with cats in it! We hadn’t actually seen where the Cat Cafe was during our walk to sunshine city but this was a much preferred option. (even if I did get scratched by one and probably have rabies). There were about 10 cats in the park and the atmosphere was just what we both needed after the long day. We are both cat people and are missing our three from home quite a lot so this was a nice alternative.
After the cats I got to have a look in Animate (Nothing there as its not their main store anymore just their cafe) and the other anime shops near it and bought a LoveLive figure and some other merch. It was much nicer looking around there then the shops in Akihabara as they were better spaced out and weren’t packed!
A shop with Durarara!!! stuff before I knew what it was. A missed opportunity I feel but Michaela said they didn't actually have much. Still, have you seen the eBay prices for this stuff?! Having said that, have you seen the eBay prices for the Sumikko Gurashi stuff? Next time we go I might book a cargo container.
Our final stop before we headed back we went back into Sunshine City to go to the observation level. 60 floors up, after a pretty cool elevator ride,
we had fantastic views of the city. I’m really hoping all my photos came out nicely so I can share it with you.
Here's a selection. Unfortunately the long exposures and the window glass made most of them too blurry or full of reflections to show the real magnificence of the view. Fear not, there are some spectacular day time shots later on in the trip.
After looking from all sides we began the journey back, our feet hurt quite a bit and we didn’t really move once we go to the hotel.
Bye bye Sunshine City...
Hello new friend!
Ikebukuro at night is pretty much my idea of what Japan was going to be like. I'm so happy my dreams weren't shattered by the reality :)
I would love to go back to Ikebukuro to have a look at the main street, visit the aquarium and hopefully go to the cat cafe (or just the park again!) before we leave.