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Narita - more than just an Airport

On our way to the Netherlands we did a quick stop over to visit Rob.

We had 1 day to do something in Japan.

Rob suggested to stay in Narita and visit this city...and yes it is a city! We arrived late in the evening so chose to stay in an Airport Hotel and by catching a quick courtesy bus we were in our hotel in 15min and did not have to do the long and complicated journey into Tokyo.

The next day we went off to Narita City. Most Airport hotels provides you with a courtesy bus into Narita running every hour so this makes the travel straightforward and at most a 15min ride.

Narita city is quite a pretty city with centuries-old Temples, a Buddhist complex with gilded pagodas and peaceful gardens that are beautiful any time of the year. From the station to the Naritasan Shinshoji Temple, there is a lovely narrow street (Omotesando Rd) in the style of Japan's Edo period which is lined with colourful shops and restaurants. Here you will find many restaurants preparing the famous Unagi (Eel) right in front of your eyes. This can be quite confronting for some and mesmerising for others! Also along this street you will also see many small stone statues of cute animals like the pig, dog, rabbit, monkey and dragon. These are stones statues represent the 60 year zodiac cycle.

When you reach the Temple you will see a complex of buildings reminiscent of on the Edo Period based on a 1000 year history. If you visiting at the right time of the day, you can hear the drums and chanting from afar and you are able to witness the monks performing the Goma prayer. This prayer has been preformed at Naritasan Shinshoji Temple for over 1000 year. All the buildings are able to be explored and you are able to continue to venture into the garden complex. The Garden complex is vast and several ponds and small meandering creeks are scattered around. It is very tranquil and I am sure beautiful any part of the year.

What we visited in Narita city is but the tip of the iceberg, so next time you have a transit or stop-over in Narita Airport...don't forget that Narita is a city and it has a whole lot to offer.

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