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Day 11 : Tuesday 20th March 2007

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Back to the heat...

I had decided to try and get up earlier today in order to make the most of the half day I would have before flying to Singapore later in the day. However I didn't get going quite as quickly as I hoped and eventually was ready for the off at about 10am.

I dropped by the concierge on the way out to determine the best way to get back to the airport. Unfortunately the best timed Limo bus was at 2:10pm (for a 7pm flight) but I decided to go with this as it was the easy option, it would give me plenty of lee-way if anything should go wrong, it was definitely the least stressful and the other alternative (the Narita Express) would probably only have saved me an extra hour.

However this did mean that I only had about 3 hours or so, before I had to head back to pack and check out. I decided to head over to the Odaiba area, which is located across the bay from the main part of Tokyo. Luckily the monorail station is right outside the hotel and I much more successfully purchased a ticket and in no time was making my way over the wonderful Rainbow bridge that I could see from my hotel room and alighting at the Daiba station, which is right in the heart of this newly developed area.

After a brief stop at the Statue of Liberty (a smaller copy of the New York one!), I headed up the Fuji Television Centre where there is an observation point inside a huge titanium ball at the top of the tower. The view back over Tokyo was amazing (it was another perfect day weather-wise) and today even Mt Fuji was visible, not obscured by haze as it had been the previous day from the Tokyo Tower.

After this I headed on a long walk via the Flame of Liberty and a giant Ferris wheel at a theme park called Palette Town to the International Exhibition Centre, otherwise known as Tokyo Big Sight - a huge inverted pyramid shaped building. Luckily another monorail station was outside this building and it took me all the way back to right outside the hotel in a matter of 10 minutes or so.

Check-out was completed without fuss and despite a small 10 minute delay I was soon aboard the Limousine bus. This took about 1h 30m to get to Narita, but was almost completely empty so a very relaxing journey all in all. As I stepped out of the bus and collected my luggage, I turned toward the terminal building with a spring in my step - ready to experience something I had long waited for - my first flight in Singapore Airlines first class - often held as being the best scheduled flight experience in the world!

SQ11 Tokyo Narita International (NRT) - Singapore Changi International (SIN)

Despite parking at the furthest possible gate from the immigration hall, I was soon through to the baggage hall where my suitcase came straight out. I was through customs and in a taxi in a matter of minutes and, indeed, at the hotel shortly afterwards. I think the total time from arriving at the gate to being in bed with lights out was about 45 minutes!!! As I fell asleep, I kept repeating in my head - I love Singapore Airlines, I love Changi airport, I love Singapore Airlines, I love Changi airport...

Statue of Liberty

Fuji Centre Observation Sphere

Odaiba walk

Tokyo Big Sight