Minato Touring

I decided to go on a walking tour of Minato, a part of town with a surprising number of gems.

The first stop was a shrine hidden within a busy business district, Atago Jinja. It was quiet and peaceful, with a gorgeous pond, and it appeared to be a convenient spot for businessmen to stop by on their breaks.

On the way to my next destination I happened upon a temple just a few blocks away from the last stop... I don't even know the name of it! But it's very common to stumble upon beautiful temples here in Japan. 

Finally, I was at Tokyo Tower. Inside are many shops and restaurants and I stopped for a rest and a coffee before moving on. I am saving a trip to the top for when guests arrive!

Nearby was the grand Zojo-ji Temple.

One very touching part of this temple was the collection of jizo statues, tiny models that each represent a baby gone too soon. Grieving parents place them and dress them. I'm sure that seeing that they are not alone in their loss brings some comfort.

Kyu Shiba-rikyu Garden instantly became my favorite Tokyo garden. It was created in the Edo period and fastidiously maintained since. Amazingly, this all used to be waterfront. Now the Tokyo coastline has been so built up that the water is nowhere in sight. I love the mix of old world greenery and new world skyscrapers.