I've been meaning to do this for a while now but didn't get to from all of the holiday travels/time spent catching up with family.
But I'm here and ready to start sharing about my trip to Japan as many of you have asked me about it.
Side note: The Japan Rail Pass (JR) was awesome. We got around almost everywhere with it for a flat week fee of close to $300. But based on all the places we traveled between the Tokyo and Kyoto area, it was well worth the investment. Any rails/buses that we could not access with the JR were additional costs but all under $3 (300 yen) a ride.
Akihabara was lit up like New York City, but their bright tall billboards and ads were covered with anime characters! Along every block or 20-30 feet would be a women (sometimes a man) dressed up in a cute anime costume handing out flyers for us to go check out their maid cafe. Needless to say, but we never ended up making it to one. They are full of claw machine shops too!
As we were tired from our night, we went to check in our bags and look for dinner.
The unfortunate thing about my trip was that I could not read anything... so most of the restaurants I went to will remain nameless.
Way down the street, going away the river and train station was a hidden little ramen shop.
There, I had the hottest, most savory bowl of ramen I have ever tasted.
It was amazing.
A few logistics/tips worth sharing for future travelers:
I spent $400 (including some Christmas gifts and souvenirs) during my 7 day trip to Japan. Most of my travel was covered by the JR pass and this does not include airfare/hotel. Food in Japan is fairly cheap ($5-10 a meal - 500-1000 yen) and no tip is required.
Make sure to bring a small water bottle with you to stay hydrated. I didn't come across many water fountains and didn't want to constantly spend money buying water bottles. The water bottle came in handy.