Shopping in Ginza and the Ghibli Museum!

Marisa Lewis
December 30, 2013

Me rejoicing on the walking street in Ginza!

I love fashion, and I love to shop. One of the reasons I was interested in coming to Japan was for its fashion, actually! Most people want to visit Japan to learn the language or its history — and I wanted to learn those things too — but I have always been intrigued by what I heard about Japan’s shopping districts and eclectic variations in style. My study abroad classmates joke that I am either always taking pictures or going shopping… hahaha. Anyway, when I heard about Ginza, I had to go. And I ended up going there at least four times after I first visited (the first signs of an addiction?). It is the most expensive fashion district in Japan, and is home to stores such as Louis Vuitton, Giorgio Armani, and Hermes. Sadly, I primarily window shopped while I was there. One of the best things about Ginza is that it has a huge walking street made so that pedestrians can safely walk up and down and marvel at the shops.

The many skyscrapers and beautiful stores of Ginza never fail to impress.

While I was there, I also just marveled at the grandeur of the skyscrapers and shops themselves. The buildings are so tall, and elicit a feeling of wonder and awe. There is no way you could explore them all in just one visit!

This is a caramel confection my friend and I enjoyed.

The food sold in Ginza is expensive, too — but it is really nice to treat yourself once in a while and feel fancy. You can easily find traditional Japanese pastries (though they are made to look as fancy as possible), and pretty coffee shops tempt you into spending far too much for a latte.

I almost couldn’t believe my eyes when I saw this snake light display!

The last time I went to Ginza, there were light displays everywhere since Christmas was approaching. It was chilly outside, but the lights gave a warm glow to the city. This picture on the left shows a beautiful and exquisite snake on the BVLGARI building. I had never seen such a fancy ornament before! Ginza really goes all out in its appearance and is a wonderfully luxurious place to visit.

This is one side of the Ghibli Museum, with flags and all.

Another place I have enjoyed going to was the Ghibli Museum, located in Mitaka. I have always loved Studio Ghibli Movies such as Spirited Away, Howl’s Moving Castle, and Princess Mononoke. The animation is stunning, and the morals of the stories are always good.

This is a Laputan robot statue from the Ghibli Movie Castle in the Sky.

I was prohibited from taking pictures inside the museum, but I can tell you that it was built a little like a castle! It would be a child’s dream to run around and explore inside. It also housed wonderful animation features, and we even got to see a special event short movie screening! It is hard to get tickets for this museum, but if you’re a Ghibli fan or an animation lover, I couldn’t recommend visiting enough.

Marisa Lewis

<p><span style="color: rgb(29, 29, 29); font-family: Arial, Verdana, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal; background-color: rgb(237, 237, 237);">Hello! My name is Marisa Lewis, and I am an East Asian International Relations Major/East Asian Studies Minor at the University of Virginia. I&rsquo;m originally from Alexandria, Virginia (though I&rsquo;ve got a lot of family in Thailand as well) and am super excited to be traveling to Japan! I&rsquo;ve only ever been to the Japanese airport before &ndash; their toilets are awesome, by the way &ndash; and have always wanted to experience Japanese culture ever since I first started watching Pokémon as a kid. Don&rsquo;t lie. You watched it, too! In my spare time I love to read, write short stories, bake, listen to music, and have adventures. I am looking forward to making new friends, stocking up on Japanese sweets, and experiencing all that Japan has to offer! But more importantly, stocking up on Japanese sweets. Where my mochi at?</span></p>

2013 Fall
Home University:
University of Virginia
International Relations
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