Sunday, November 25, 2012

Toyoko Line Love: Motomachi Chukagai

I feel that Yokohama is somewhat overlooked. Although a 30 minute train ride from Shibuya will get you there, somehow it has been submerged, taken for granted as a part of the sprawl that is Tokyo.

Admittedly, to some extent I am also guilty of this. A lot of my time is spent around Tokyo, with occasional side trips. To remedy this on a fine day we went off to explore the Motomachi/Yamate area, with its air of Meiji nostalgia and opportunities for walkies.

The old houses of diplomats and other of Japan's first non-Japanese residents sit upon a hill, brilliant in paint and copper, interspersed with fancy tea houses and the Foreign Cemetary, a testament to Japan's evolution towards being a more cosmopolitan nation. I was pleasantly surprised to see that many non-Japanese women were buried with their Japanese husbands, which gives me yet more ammo for when people say that the 'gyaku-kokusai couple' is a recent phenomenon.
The Motomachi shopping street is full of expensive stores, fine for window shopping but obviously mainly targeting an older, more monied set than myself... although the store with the oversized chair in front of it was a hit!


  1. That area looks lovely! I've only been to Chinatown in Yokohama! And lovely outfit. An allround good day by the looks of it.

    1. Hiya! Yokohama actually has a lot to offer, although things can be harder to find ^_−☆

  2. One of the schools I teach at is in Motomachi and on the same road as the graveyard and those houses... so you were on the same road I travel twice a week to go to work. Cool. :)

  3. Hi Lauren! Do you mean YIS?
    It really is a lovely area, lucky you!