The popular tourist trap of Asakusa is an interesting area to visit. On the one hand there is the famous Senso-ji Temple, along with all the shops selling tat that go with such places. Basically a fun and somewhat cultural spot to meet friends and take a few photos.
But Asakusa is also surrounded by some of Tokyo’s less well-to-do districts, giving it another, very different dimension. One that some people take note of, and others choose to ignore, but either way it’s always there, on the fringes.
Dan Ryan says
Tokyo’s worst subway station entrance. Excellent.
Yes. The worst, and best.
For such a major tourist attraction it’s amazing how bad all the subway entrances are. There is also the added bonus of the giant t*** across the river on the Asahi building.
Greg Irvine says
On my several visits there I have never been confident enough to visit any of the little bars in the labyrinth before leaving Asakusa station… But they look splendidly seedy – in a good ‘local’ way.
They do, don’t they? Next time you visit, give them a try. You’ll be perfectly fine. Probaby very welcome too.
A Former Expat says
Guess you weren’t as incognito as you thought; noticed the woman waving at you from the bottom of the stairs 🙂
Haha, I wish I did prompt people to wave and smile!
But no, they were saying goodbye to another couple next to me at the top of the stairs. The contrast of their happy parting and the fella in the photo was what caught my eye.
I’m sure if I was wandering up or down that subway entrance, with the old bloke ‘n’ all.. I would feel like the world was a bit generally dishevelled. I often wonder how the dwellers of the big Tokyo metropolis are able to get through one day to the next. It seems such a miasma of a kind of ‘resultant civilization’ in many ways…always found the place a bit hard to swallow…but I guess there are those that love it. Not hard to do via your pics Lee.. Hats off!
Thank you very much, Willy.
Yeah, I know what you mean. The bright lights and fancy shops mask an awful lot. Tokyo ain’t all cuteness fashionistas that’s for sure. But there again, that’s probably why I like it so much.
spent an afternoon in this neighborhood with my elderly (Japanese) mom . We hung in a coffee shop near Sensoji while my mom and the proprietor (aproned and smoking a cig) came out to chat with her sharing memories of how the neighborhood has changed since the late 1950s (!!). An incredible “fly on the wall” experience, along with watching the passers-by. I must return to this neighborhood, and neighborhoods like this in Tokyo next year. thank you as always for your evocative photos.
You are welcome. Happy to hear you enjoy them.
Yes, areas like Asakusa are fascinating places to visit. So much character and plenty of characters. I can only imagine how much it has changed since the 50s.