Lost in Little Tokyo

As you know I spent much of my time last week attempting the Weekend Sherpa Adventure Challenge. After hiking through the foothills of Glendale I decided my next task would be more urban and I headed off to explore Little Tokyo.

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Now, this would not be my first time in Little Tokyo – I’ve visited this corner of LA several times but always with a specific goal in mind and not to purely wander. Thanks to the route provided by Weekend Sherpa this visit would allow me to meander and discover the highlights of the area.

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Starting at the Higashi Honganji Temple I made my way to the Japanese American Culture and Community Center where I learned there would be a lovely Japanese garden to stroll in. Well…it was closed that day and I could only sneak a peak from above.

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Despite missing out on the garden I was still able to visit the onsite gallery where I saw a lovely exhibit of works by women printmakers.

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And I was able to view the exterior sculpture by famed sculptor, Isamu Noguchi.

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Continuing on my stomach began to growl so I decided to stop for lunch. I happened upon poke place called Snociety Urban Eatery and decided to give it a whirl.

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With a variety of customizable poke bowls it was hard to decide what to get. I opted for the Snociety Bowl with spicy mango, ahi tuna, shrimp and avocado and added a mint lemonade. The bowl had more spice than I expected but it was still delicious. Everything from the tuna to the shrimp to the avocado was super fresh and I loved it.

I continued into Little Tokyo Plaza where I came across Mikawaya. You may recognize the name from their boxes of mochi ice cream found in most supermarkets. Now, I’ve been to Mikawaya in the past and there was no way I was going to pass by without grabbing a sweet treat.

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I grabbed both a green tea and almond mochi and enjoyed them outside in the warm afternoon. Mmmm…I love mochi ice cream. In Little Tokyo Plaza I also came across a fun rockabilly shop called Kool where I scored some cute retro plates. Realizing I was starting to spend a bit too much I left the plaza and headed across 1st street.

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Here I found a row of beautiful historic buildings housing restaurants, bars and shops. I had to make a stop at Fugetsu-Do a 113 year old sweet shop.

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I grabbed a few goodies (what’s a few more cents?) and continued my walk. I headed down Astronaut Ellison Shoji Onizuka Street to pay my respects at the memorial for it’s namesake who was tragically killed in the Challenger disaster.

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After a moment of reflection I headed over the DoubleTree to visit their rooftop garden.

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This tranquil spot was a lovely way to wrap up my tour of Little Tokyo. I had a wonderful afternoon exploring this unique area.

 

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