I was extremely lucky to have been invited to a yakatabune dinner by two of the nicest people on this planet. Yakatabune is a boat ride in traditional Japanese style that cruises along the Sumida River and Tokyo Bay. Inside the boat are traditional tatami mats that allow you to sit comfortably on the floor. Back in the day, the upper class would use the boats to entertain or view cherry blossoms. These days, they are used for all sorts of parties and even for viewing fireworks.
Our group went on the perfect evening. The weather was warm, but the breeze was just right. It was an all-you-can-eat type dinner with the food coming to the table in courses. We started off with sashimi-funamori, basically a boat filled with sashimi, and some appetizers.
The next course was tempura. We enjoyed shrimp, fish, mushroom, and pumpkin tempura. If you ever get a chance to have it, I highly recommend pumpkin tempura. Lastly, we had soba noodles. The entire time, unlimited drinks were flowing for those who wished to partake.
And of course right when I start thinking things were winding down, lo and behold an ice cream boat glides up. Yes, you heard correctly folks, an ice cream boat. It was a tiny little thing with only enough space for the ice cream man, who I might add was quite happy to see all the revelry inside our boat. He passed out ice cream through the windows and then sped of to the next boat before I could snap a picture of him.
Again, as I thought the evening was starting to winding down, the karaoke began! We had some really talented singers in the group. Overall, this was one of the best experiences in Tokyo and one that I will never forget.
Please enjoy the pictures below.