July 14, 2011

Waiting for the New Year at Odaiba

Few hours to go before the New Year, so I was looking for a place to hang out. I assumed that every city has a countdown event to celebrate the coming new year. I asked some Japanese where I can go, and they all pointed out to Odaiba. They said that "young people" go there to celebrate the new year. So we we went to Odaiba.
Tokyo Rainbow Bridge while Riding Yurikamome Elevated Train

We took the JR line and went to ride the Yurikamome Elevated Train, which way expensive compared to regular trains. The Yurikamome line is considered as an attraction itself because you would have a great view of the Tokyo Rainbow Bridge and will pass through the Bridge on our way to Odaiba Station.
Riding the Yurikamome Elevated Train
Passing through the Rainbow Bridge via Yurikamome Line
Walking Around Odaiba
We were only able to go to shopping malls near the station. We were tired coming from our Mount Fuji Tour. There was a huge open area beside Aqua City where you would see one of the best views of the Rainbow Bridge and Tokyo Skyline in Odaiba. They even have a miniature Statue of Liberty.
Happy Parents at Odaiba with a Great Tokyo Background
Miniature Statue of Liberty at Odaiba
Aqua City Shopping Mall at Odaiba, Tokyo
Inside Odaiba Shopping Malls
Inside Aqua City there was a display of weirdly shaped fish tanks. The shops were closed when we got there so we just walked around. The arcade was still open so I tried to play a claw machine, and I won. I just had to try one because Tokyo has tons of claw machines in arcades. Wasn't able to take pictures of the malls but I think we passed by Aqua City, Decks and Seaside Park. Sadly all were closed early so we just looked around.
Stage with Various Fish Tank

Weirdly Shaped Fish Tank

Cute Doraimon
Claw Machine in an Arcade
I Won Key-chains in a Claw Machine!
New Year Countdown at Odaiba
I was really disappointed when it struck midnight. All the people I asked said that Odaiba is the place to be to celebrate the New Year and there will be little fireworks. But sadly there was no fireworks and no celebration whatsoever. Few minutes before midnight people are piling up outside Seaside Park. So we assumed there something would happen. When the countdown began, I was really excited and was looking left and right. When it was midnight everybody shouted and the Christmas tree in front lighted up and there was music for a while. And that was it! What a way to celebrate the New Year right? I asked some people at the hotel and they said that the usual practice for Japanese during new year is to go home, clean their house and spend time with their family. So I guess they prefer staying at home or I was just at the wrong place. Here's the video of the Christmas tree.

Lame New Year Countdown Celebration at Odaiba

How to get to Odaiba, Tokyo
Inside Odaiba Station Yurikamome Line
Outside Odaiba Station Yurikamome Line
We went to Odaiba via the Yurikamome Line, which is an elevated train that have access to all Odaiba attractions. The Yurikamome Line costs more than the regular trains but the train itself is an attraction. It offers a breathtaking view of Tokyo's Rainbow Bridge and Tokyo Harbor. You can access the Yurikamome Line via Shimbashi Station on the JR Yamanote Line.

More details on our 2010 Japan Christmas and New Year Tour
More details on our 2010 Japan Itinerary

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