Japan Day 8 – Part 2 – Zoo, Castle and another Tower

(This post is part of a series, you can start here or the view the previous post. You can also checkout the Google Photos album, which has all the pictures I took, as well as those of Mikel and Jesse.)

After the park, we went to the zoo, which was super cheap – less than $20 for all three of us. For the most part, I’m not impressed with the zoo pictures and my view on the zoo overall, after everything, is it seems really unethical for all the larger animals (monkey size and up) to be kept in such small spaces. So rather than show a bunch of zoo pictures, I’m going to talk about other stuff – if you really want the pictures, they’re in the album.

When we got there I was really hungry so we headed to the “restaurant”. It turned out to be a truck which sold french friends and ice cream:

I felt silly for getting an American thing, but it was the only food available
They didn’t get them from long potatoes, our best guess is that they take something like mashed potatoes and then press them into this shape; the structural integrity wasn’t great

The three of us shared two orders of fries, but I got sick of them quickly. We threw away nearly half of what we bought. Jesse and I also got ice cream, and was good at least (though a bit pricey).

Ok so the bird enclosure was actually a little cool and I didn’t feel as bad about it (perhaps out of ignorance):

Mikel got some ice cream:

And here’s a lion with his junk pointed up, can’t not post this:

After the zoo, we wanted to grab a proper lunch. Jesse looked up a highly rated sushi place and we started walking. On our way, he realized he didn’t double check it for non-smoking so he sent me the link and I checked it – they allow smoking, bummer. So we checked a second place, same problem. Checked a third place, no mention of smoking, went there, found out it was smoking. UGH.

While we were walking around, we smelled a Vietnamese place which seemed appealing. So we headed back that way, saw it was non-smoking, and were psyched. It turned out to be to-go so we bought three sandwiches and headed toward the castle, planning to eat after the train. I should also mention Mikel forgot his hat, and they ran out to return it to him. The sandwiches were AWESOME! I loved that place. Would totally eat there again.

Ok now, castle time:

I was kinda disappointed inside. I was expecting a castle vibe, but it was definitely a museum vibe. The view from up top was pretty good though:

The biggest benefit was I was looking for a shotglass for my mom, have not been able to find one the whole trip, but the castle had them! Jesse is the one that actually found them, I wasn’t being mindful and probably would have missed them. Anyway, they’re bundled up so no pictures (and I forgot to snap one of the display glasses) but it was a success.

After the castle, we headed over to a big tower. Here it is from a distance:

When we were almost there, we saw this weird thing:

They had a nice garden downstairs:

And a nice view toward the top:

The tower itself was kinda crummy. It was super crowded, and they had chairs at the windows people were hanging out at so it was hard to get pictures. The ones I’m posting here are from the open top, which was nice but it was windy and cold so we didn’t want to stay there long.

They did have a pretty cool Nanoblock display:

And they had a cool escalator:

And a colorful water feature:

And then it was dinnertime. The basement of the tower was supposed to have nice food (not as sketch as “basement” makes it sound). We wanted sushi, since we hadn’t had any yet, but it turned out that place was closed (even though there was a sign with the hours implying it was open). Super annoying.

On the plus side, Jesse wanted to checkout these savory pancakes anyway:

Jesse thought they were great but Mikel and I thought they were pretty meh. Was glad to try something new though! (Though sushi would have been great / better.)

That was pretty much it for the day. It was a lot of walking and we were exhausted, we were out around 12 hours and most of that was standing or walking.

Fitbit step count for the day: 28,208

Next: day 9 (part 1)

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