HARAJUKU Vintage SHOPMAP is a simple guide for good quality vintage stores around Harajuku area. If you like FRUiTS magazine style / Japanese street fashion in general, this guide by FUNKTIQUE Tokyo is a must when exploring Harajuku for the best curated fashion pieces. You can visit Funktique store (Opening Hours: 12:00-20:00) to get a free copy before embarking on your vintage shopping journey in Harajuku. Or you can download the the PDF file from here!
If you want to explore an area in Tokyo for around 4-5 hours, I would recommend Ueno because it is such a hugeee place to roam around. You can have time for nature (and ZOOO), museums, shopping, eating and so much more. And you can walk to Akihabara (Tokyo’s Electric Town) if you get bored too, haha.
When my friend Abbey arrived from airport, we only had the rest of the afternoon to go exploring. I didn’t drag her to go to Shibuya / Harajuku / and the like because I know that for a first-timer, she would definitely want to spend a whole day in Harajuku + Shibuya area. You could say that “Ueno” is a good starter for a Tokyo trip.
Fresh from Narita, we decided to stop by Ueno first. There are lockers inside the train stations and we decided to leave Abbey’s luggage inside the Keisei station area. (From Narita, we took the “regular” train because it’s cheaper. More info about this here.)
Ueno is part of the historical Shitamachi (literally “low city”) district of Japan, a working class area rather than where the aristocrats and rich merchants lived. Today the immediate area, due to its close proximity to a major transportation hub, retains high land value but just a short walk away to the east or north reveals some of the less glitzy architecture of Tokyo.
Ueno Park and Ueno Station are also home to a large percentage of Tokyo’s homeless population. Though nearly invisible in other parts of Tokyo, the homeless population in Ueno can be found sleeping or communing in large numbers around the “ike” (ponds) of this district.