Azaleas at Nezu Shrine Tokyo

This Week in Tokyo – 13 April 2021

Welcome to ‘This Week in Tokyo’, a review of the Maction Planet week that was and a look ahead to what’s coming up in the city. Hosted by Mac, our Founder and Lead Guide, you can check out photos from our tours and read insights into our explorations as we get under the skin of the World’s Greatest Metropolis, and beyond! This week: Azale-yeah; Thunderbolts, Lightning and Victory; Hipanda; Final call for Omurice and 5 TIPS to INSTANTLY up your JAPANESE SAKE GAME.

Featured image – Azale-yeah: I was able to catch the Azaleas (Tsutsuji in Japanese) at the Nezu Shrine. Behind me is the 6,600 square-metre azalea garden where about 3,000 azaleas of 100 different types are in full bloom. A majestic sight, and a lovely follow-up to Cherry Blossom season!

Tokyo Yakult Swallows Jingu Stadium Thursday 8 April 2021 Mac and Tsubakuro Enpowerment uniform

Thunderbolts, Lightning and Victory: Sometimes two photos are needed to tell a ‘This Week in Tokyo’ story. On Thursday 8 April I went to Jingu Stadium to watch the Tokyo Yakult Swallows (my team, if this happens to be your first ever visit to our website) take on the Hiroshima Toyo Carp. The photo above was taken as I entered the stadium. Club Mascot Tsubakuro is wearing this years ‘Enpowerment’ uniform. One of these was given free as you entered the stadium – the team played in green and even the scoreboard was green.

Proceedings commenced at 17:30. After one inning the game was tied at 4-4. At this point, the heavens opened up for a epic storm, as evidenced by the snapshot below. If you look closely you can see me, roughly in the centre of the photo.

Tokyo Yakult Swallows Jingu Stadium Thursday 8 April 2021 storm at Jingu

Play resumed after a 75-minute rain, thunder and lightning delay. At 20:00, food and drink sales ceased, part of the COVID prevention measures currently in place. By this time, we were only in the fifth inning. Thankfully, come the end of the game at 22:00, the wet, thirsty, hungry and emotionally drained masses that endured this 4.5-hour epic were rewarded with an 11-7 Swallows victory.

Needless to say, I rewarded myself with a cab home. Now let us never speak of it again.

Hipanda Omotesando

Hipanda: Hipanda’s flagship store in Omotesando was designed by Tokyo-based design and architecture office Curiosity. Hipanda’s “ghost house” features an AR interactive experience, bringing the space and Hipanda T-shirts to life. These certainly are not the cute pandas made by our online cooking class guests during our Panda Bento cooking class!

Maction Planet At Home with Nahoko Omurice Online Interactive Cooking Class

Final call for Omurice: It’s the last chance to sign up for our online Omurice Cooking Class on 18 April 2021 (JST)!

Here’s me about to enjoy Chef Nahoko’s Omurice as we put the finishing touches to the class. I can tell you that that plate did not look like that for long. Absolutely delicious.

We run two classes so you can join at a convenient time wherever you are in the world! Check out more details about the class then email to sign up!

5 TIPS to INSTANTLY up your JAPANESE SAKE GAME: Japanese sake is taking the world by storm. Wanna up your sake game? Watch the latest Kanpai Planet video for 5 tips to easily and instantly help you improve your knowledge and enjoyment of Japanese Sake!

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Maction Planet runs bespoke Private Tours and Experiences in Tokyo, and beyond. To book yours, or to purchase a gift card, contact us at

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