My most recent big trip was to check out Japan for the first time.
My boyfriend Alec spent a full month there, and I was able to swing two weeks away from my office job to join him. It was his fourth time in Tokyo – the most populous metropolitan area in the world. So by the time he met me at baggage claim in Haneda International Airport, even though I had barely planned past that moment, I felt unconcerned; Alec would be my tour guide, and he would show me the best of Tokyo in the coming days.
Although we might have gotten lost trying to navigate the subway that very night… We got lost trying to navigate the subway that very night.
I found myself not minding one bit. After a long two days of travel, I was still totally consumed by the incredible energy of the place, and curiosity of the unfamiliar culture. I barely felt tired anymore.
We used the blunder to indulge in our sense of adventure.
We wandered the streets, and actually found ourselves in the middle of Shibuya Crossing, on a Friday night. Shibuya crossing is a famous landmark intersection in Tokyo where hundreds of people, locals and tourists alike, swarm the street at once with every green light. You can check out a cool video that captures it well here!
It fills you with a sense of the enormous size and intensity of the place. There is a two-story Starbucks at one corner where it is nearly impossible to snag a table, all because people compete for a view of the bustling site. So an hour into my stay in Japan, I was already swept into Shibuya Crossing.
It may have been a subway blunder, but it worked out all for the better.
[…] If you won't have cell service, download offline maps of your destination. I do this using GoogleMaps and then use walking & driving directions as needed (However you can't download for all countries, like Japan!). […]