Sunday, January 24, 2016

Asia Trip Day 5 - Ghibli Museum (October 2015)

Thursday 10/29

One of the must-do things on the itinerary was to visit Ghibli Museum. Studio Ghibli is famous for producing animated films such as My Neighbor Totoro, Spirited Away, Princess Mononoke, and many others. Almost every list of top animated movies contains several Ghibli films, most directed by Hayao Miyazaki. I probably have all his movies on DVD.

The museum is actually in Mitaka, which is about 25 km from Tokyo Station on the JR Chūō Line. To get tickets outside of Japan, I went to JTB Travel in Torrance 4 months before the trip and pay $5/ticket extra for handling. Reading online forums, overseas tickets usually sell out quickly since they only reserve 100 per day worldwide. In Japan, you can go to any Lawsons and buy tickets from a vending machine.

Since it was going to be a long day, we stopped by a few convenience stores to get snacks. Here is a spaghetti bun (that we did not get).

To save a few yen, we walked from our apartment to Ueno Station to keep the trip all-JR. The green train is the famous Yamanote Line which loops around Tokyo. We took the Keihin-Tōhoku Line instead to Kanda Station and transferred to the Chūō Line express.

Instead of Mitaka, we got off the train one stop before at Kichijōji Station. This was the street right outside the station. Ghibli Museum is about a 20 minute walk from either train station.

Totoro in the ticket booth

I heard they were very strict about enforcing the no photography rule inside the museum so I only have photos from the outside. This is from the rooftop garden.

Large robot statue from Laputa (my favorite Miyakazi film) on the rooftop

On the way back from Ghibli Museum, we stopped by Akihabara (electronics and otaku/anime/cosplay) and Ginza (shopping area). We stopped by the Sony company store and they had lots of cool stuff, including a $50 HD projection TV that projected from the ground up. There was a hi-res audio system (CAS-1) that was interesting but still not sold in the US yet. I also tried on a pair of MDR-1A headphones and ended up getting it back home for $300.

We were supposed to meet up with an ex-coworker who was also traveling in Tokyo but we were too tired. For dinner, we ate at Jonathan's, which is like a Japanese version of Denny's, that was next to our apartment. I had a hamberger steak... it was just ok. We also had to get up super early for our Mt. Fuji tour the next day so we didn't want to spend hours looking for a place to eat.

No comments: