Saturday, 24 February 2018

My Geeky Japanese Adventure

Towards the end of last year I went on holiday to Japan with my boyfriend - something we had been planning to do for a long time. We stayed in Tokyo and had the most amazing time. While I was there I learnt so much about Japanese culture and tradition, but what I also learnt is that Tokyo is like Disneyland for geeks!

Obviously Tokyo is the capital of the world for gaming fans. So many of the worlds most iconic games originated in Japan. Mario may be an Italian plumber but he was created in this wonderful Asian country. While in Tokyo, I saw so many different arcades and had great fun exploring them and trying my best to play the games despite the obvious language barrier and the insane difficulty levels of Japanese arcade games. We spent most evenings roaming around the arcades in awe of the vast number of machines/consoles, the variety of games and the skills of the people playing them. We spotted people tactically taking on the claw machines and taking home great prizes and others playing reaction speed games where there hands were a blur. One particular place we visited was a part of Tokyo known as Electric Town. It was an area full of incredible arcades and shops. We even found a vintage gaming cafe where you could play some retro classics. It was a gamers dream and I absolutely loved it.

It’s not just the arcades that were geek galore though. The city had some incredible hidden gems for film fans. At night time the city looks so futuristic when the buildings are all lit up and it feels like you’re walking through a scene from Blade Runner. There are also numerous sights you can see from the film Lost in Translation. But without a doubt our favourite film related sight was Godzilla Street. At the end of this street was a skyscraper with the famous Kaiju on top and as if that wasn’t cool enough, at certain times of the day the statue lit up and Godzilla shot lasers out of his mouth. It was a hilarious sight to see when you weren’t expecting it! One evening we actually stumbled across a Godzilla festival - it was apparently the 75th anniversary of Godzilla. At the festival there were lots of statues of the iconic creature, Godzilla themed games and you could even try some Godzilla Beer!

Speaking of films, a geeky trip to Japan wouldn’t be complete without a visit to the Studio Ghibli Museum. We knew we wanted to visit the museum so we booked it three months in advance to ensure we didn’t miss out. It’s hidden away next to a small forest (extremely ghibli-esk) and it was a wonderfully colourful and creatively designed building as if it was plucked straight out of an anime. The museum was actually far bigger than we expected and gave us such a fantastic insight into how Miyazaki's beautiful films were made. We explored every corner of the quirky building and learnt so many secrets from our favourite Ghibli animations.

Back to gaming - Pokemon is obviously a huge thing in Japan. Merchandise from the hugely popular game and tv series was sold in almost every shop and you could even buy Pokemon themed food and drink. But the best Pokemon themed experience was visiting the Tokyo Pokemon centre. It was basically a massive shop that sold everything from Pikachu plushies to Charizard chopsticks - it was brilliant!

Another geeky stop on our trip was Tokyo Disneyland. Just like any other Disney park it was full of great rides and magical experiences. The funniest thing though was the bizarre but delicious Japanese Disney food. The pizza had seafood on it, there was soy sauce flavoured popcorn, you could get fish burgers and steamed dumplings - all with a Disney twist of course. They even had Storm Trooper dumplings... what more could you want?!

So those are some of my favourite geeky moments from my trip to Japan. Obviously I did lots more on my travels, including seeing some incredible temples and shrines and experiencing traditional Japanese culture. I really would recommend visiting this amazing country as I have so many incredible memories from my trip that will stay with me forever.

If you want to see more of my photos from Japan then check out my instagram @glamandgeek 
Have any of you been to Japan or would love to go? Let me know in the comments!


1 comment:

  1. Ahhhh it sounds like you had a fantastic time I recently visited Tokyo to and it's such a great city there's something there for everyone and so many fun geeky things to do, I always go a little bit crazy in Harajuku and Akihabara with all the amazing things they have for sale haha! xoxo