Narita - one day layover

We used to travel to Hawaii via mainland USA ,but for this (our 5th) time I chose to go the other way round - after all, since it's on the exact opposite side of the planet, it doesn't make much of a difference and the flight to Tokyo was cheaper than the one to San Francisco! 

When we arrived in the Narita airport on Friday morning after a 12 hours flight with little sleep and swollen anklles, I was actually glad to have a full day layover to get out a bit.
We were lucky to catch someone at the Korean Air check-in just before they wanted to close and gave them our suitcases. 

Just two train stations away is Narita, a suburb of Tokio. We saw that it has some temples and a big park which was just right for a little excursion.

The streets from the station to the park are clearly used to seeing a lot of tourists but it was just after 10 PM and half of the shops were still closed.
 Statue of a famous haiku poet who was born in Narita 
We soon noticed that one of the most typical dishes here is grilled eel. Here some men are cutting them and preparing them
You can hardly go to a famous sight in Japan without encountering at least one group of school children. This time there were dozens of students on a field trip, drawind the temples.

After the main entrance it goes further up.

A temple dedicated to foxes
After looking around for a bit we became hungry and went back to  the street with the restaurants.
One had a couy little backyard which looked so inviting, we simply had to go there. It turned out that they only served sweets, but who says you can't start your lunch with a dessert?
Sweet azuki beans
We then went to a different place for a hot, salty meal and Oli of course had the eel.

Back to the temple park we went, for more walking and posing.
Aren't we stylish? A flight attendant had even complimented us on our outfits.

The park is huge and has three connected ponds.
Such pretty sceneries
Over the bridge
We weren't sure just how natural that waterfall was...
After we had walked around the entire park, we suddenly felt very, very tired. So much that when we found some wooden benches, we lay down and took a 30 minutes nap.

On the way back to the train station it started to drizzle and we went ftom one little shop to the next to stay dry and because looking at Japanese souvenirs is a cultural experience in itself!

This is an especially big display of platic dishes, and it worked - we went into the restaurant, even if only for beverages.