More than just a path to this amazing temple, Omote-Sando Road in Narita City, Japan is an attraction in itself. With buildings dating back to the Edo period and shops frequented by locals and tourists alike, we had a blast shopping, gawking and eating our way down the street.
You’ll find plenty of specialty food shops, as well as local crafts. We really could have done almost all of our souvenir shopping here (well, here and the Cup Noodle Museum) and saved the trouble earlier in our trip.
Ok, so not everything is approriate as a souvenir (and good luck getting these through customs), but fun browsing nonetheless.
Not sure what these are. But I really like their packaging design.
There’s even a grocery, if you’re like me and have just as much fun at the grocery store as the tourist spots when you visit a new country.
Some shops clearly cater to tourists, though the overall area has a much less touristy vibe than the streets surrounding temples in Kyoto.
I just like this little guy. He’s a tanuki statue, based on folklore surrounding the Japanese raccoon dog. These statues are common in Japan, symbolizing luck and prosperity.
Narita City is famous for its local specialty, unagi, which is barbequed eel. There’s no shortage of restaurants offering the dish, and we lingered over all the window displays before finally choosing one.
If you’ve never had unagi before, eel might not sound very appetizing. It’s actually really fantastic and one of the more accessible dishes to even picky palates. The fish itself is mild in flavor, with a touch of sweetness from the sauce, and done right, it nearly melts in your mouth!
I opted for the unagi lunch set with cold dipping noodles, divine in hot weather (and much pined for now that I’m back in the US).
Before this trip, I didn’t know that I like sake! Whatever swill I’d been fed previously turned me off of it until I sampled good Japanese sake. Luckily there’s plenty available to bring home at the sake shop, and you can even pick up a gift set with the Narita City airplane logo.
If you’re thinking of visiting, Narita City has resources for planning your stay here.
(this post sponsored by Narita City. as always, all opinions are my own)