TRAVEL: Japan

Japan, was never on my bucket travel list until then. Japan with Tokyo as the capital city has a lot of stories to be told. The culture, foods, influential music industry, anime, video gaming and so many modern technologies come from Japan. Japan has four largest cities they are Honshu, Hokkaido, Kyushu and Shikoku. On my trip to Japan, I went to 3 different cities in Japan. They are Osaka, Kyoto, Tokyo and additionally Mt. Fuji Area.


Below, I have written a bit of my experience during my trip to Japan. Hope you enjoy reading it.
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Universal Studio Osaka


My day one in Japan, I went to Universal Studio Osaka. One of the biggest theme parks in Japan. Home for a lot of characters from famous movies such as Minions, Harry Potter, Terminator, Jurassic Park and many others.
My first spot was The Wizarding Harry Potter – one of the most favorite spot in Universal Studio. There, you can taste an iconic butter beer from the movie of Harry Potter. I bought it for ¥650; it tastes fine for me and its non-alcohol drink. The building in Harry Potter spot was amazing. It feels like winter, though it was spring when I was there. I went for the 4D attraction, and it took me for about an hour. Entering the building for 4D, they gave me a key locker to keep my things that doesn’t have to be brought during the ride. They will separate us into 4 people per ride. At that time, I went with my two cousins and we were screaming like crazy during the ride. I gives the Harry Potter ride as 5 out of 5 stars (it’s really fun. I am not lying).





My second spot was the Hollywood Dream. I took a backward roller coaster ride for the first time. After one and a half hour of waiting, we arrived at the near gate to the roller-coaster ride. They allow us to keep our things in the place that were given. But don’t worry, they lock it for us. We got to choose what song for the ride and I choose the Japanese song. I don’t know how many minutes the ride was, because I feel like flying from the beginning of the ride until the end. I rate this as 4 out of 5 stars.

My third spot was Minion Park. We waited for about an hour and took a 4D ride to become minions. Some people said this ride may cause dizziness. Lucky us, we got the backseat so we can lean on the back and lesser the cause. I give this ride as 3 out of 5 stars. So sorry, I think it kind of boring.

My fourth spot was Terminator 3D. This is my last spot in Universal Studio and this is the longest waited after all. I don’t even know how long I waited for this attraction. After a long lost waiting, we were given 3D glasses to watch Terminator. But before that, there will be a woman that talked everything in Japanese. I think she was giving a funny thought but I don’t get what she said. Entering the real theater for 3D Terminator, again it was all Japanese. Two of my cousins took their 30 minutes sleeping during the show and I forced myself to stay awake and watched the movie (guess, I still didn’t get what they were doing until now) LOL. I rate this attraction 2 out of 5 stars.

WHAT I EAT:
There are plenty of restaurants here in Universal Studio and we bought our churros on our way. I bought the Chocolate Churros (¥480). It was chewy inside and crunchy outside, super delicious!






Arashiyama Bamboo Forest


The lake near Arashiyama

Day 2 in Japan, we went to Arashiyama Bamboo Forest – the second most important sightseeing district in Kyoto. On my way to Arashiyama Bamboo Forest, I saw a Rickshaws or human cab. It is a ride where there are maximum of 2-3 passengers and getting carried by human. I feel how tired they were when working as human cab. Another things you can see in Arashiyama Bamboo Forest was the people who wearing the traditional Japanese clothes. There were also places to rent it. Our guide said it took 1 hour to prepare for wearing Kimono.

WHAT I EAT:
I bought my first ice cream in Japan. The double flavors ice cream. Pink for the Sakura and green for the Matcha. It tastes super delicious and it melts fast.


And, we went to one of the store near the train rail. I bought my Strawberry Mochi filled with red beans (450¥). The strawberry was bigger than the normal size I ate and it taste sweet. A very nice combination of the red beans, chewy Mochi and sweet strawberry. Yum!


   

Fushimi Inari Taisha


Sakura

Fushimi Inari is another Japan iconic place to go, famous for its 1800 of vermillion torii gates. We took a walk through the vermillion torii gates and found a place where there was a lot of people washing their hands with water and drank it. We took our chance to do it so. Not much to see here, just thousands of vermillion torii gates.



I bought this Peach Water from vending machine

Gion District


Gion is the Kyoto’s most famous *Geisha district located around Shijo Avenue between Yasaka Shrine in the east and the Kamo River in the west. Gion is where you can see the old houses of Japan. The colors of the wood were nearly black. I don’t have enough time during my trip to Gion. I think I should get more hours to stroll around the Gion District.

*Geisha are highly skilled entertainers who appear at high-end dinners, private parties and special events to add a special touch to the proceedings. Some people believe that geisha are prostitutes, this however is false.

Motosu Highland (Shiba – Sakura Festival)



Hundred thousands of Shiba sakura or “moss phlox” bloom neatly and peacefully on an expansive site at the base of Mt. Fuji. It feels refreshing seeing a lot of gorgeous flowers here, I saw small store selling the special Mt. Fuji mochi and I saw the Japanese street attractions during my walk.

Arakurayama Sengen Park


The view


Arakurayama Sengen Park was located in Fuji Yoshida City in Yamanashi. Took us a (not so) short walk from the bus park to the Park. We took 400 steps of stairs and finally arrived at the iconic vermillion 5 story pagodas which were built as a monument for all those who had died in battle during World War I. From there, you can see the whole city in front of Mt. Fuji and feel the breeze and fresh air from it.



Oshinohakkai


A touristy set of eight of ponds in Oshino. A small village in the Fuji Five Lake region, located between Lake Kawaguchiko and Lake Yamanakako on the site of a former sixth lake that dried out several hundred years ago.



From here, you can see the view of Mt. Fuji very clear. Lucky us, we had a chance to see the top of the Mt. Fuji clearly without fog. 
Here, you can take a picture with famous Sakura trees and you can have a taste of the real Mt.Fuji water from the dragon mouth and the very clear water.

WHAT TO EAT:
There you can buy some goods related to Mt. Fuji in one of the shop there and I bought the Matcha things (I don’t know the name of this food). It tastes a bit weird and it again filled with red beans. 


Ushiku Daibutsu



Last day in Japan we went to Ushiku Daibutsu. Ushiku Daibutsu is located in south east of the city of Tsukuba in Ibaraki Prefecture and was recorded in the Guinness Book of Records as the tallest 
Buddhist statue in the world at 120 meters (38-story building).
We had a chance to go inside the Ushiku Daibutsu building. Let me tell you what’s inside. 
The first floor, we were given a minute to keep silent and peace our mind, soul and heart. 
The second floor, this is the place where you copy the sutra with your heart for Amitabha Buddha. 
The third floor, is the golden world that surrounded by approximately 3,400 images of Buddha. 
The fourth and fifth floor, is the Room of Mt. Grdhrakuta – a name of the Indian Place remembered in connection with Buddha. There are windows at every four directions and you can look out East, West, South and North. But we didn’t go to this fourth and fifth floor.




WHAT TO EAT:
After finished strolling around Ushiku Daibutsu, we bought Japanese red bean bakpao (again I don’t know the name of the food). It tastes delicious. Yummy!




What to eat in Japan?



There are a lot of delicious foods in Japan and of course healthy. Japanese people really care about their health so they didn’t use any 'MSG' on their foods. My favorite food was sushi. The crab there was served cold and it has a lot of meat inside. I taste the raw salmon and unexpectedly it tastes soft and delicious.

Where to stay?

VISCHIO OSAKA HOTEL

This hotel is located in Osaka and is situated 1,1 Km from Billboard Live Osaka. I recommend you to stay here during your holiday in Osaka. The room was clean and neat. We stayed for two nights here in Vischio Hotel. About their breakfast, they have anything you need (i think). There are plenty of foods you can choose for your breakfast. But, limited seat for breakfast. We waited a bit for our breakfast because there was not enough space for us to eat. But, it will not take a long time. I ate sushi and onion rings there. Oh, the mashed potatoes taste so delicious too. But overall i gave this hotel as 5 out of 5.

TATSUKI


This hotel is situated in Gamagori, 10 Km from Laguna Gamagori. My second stay in Japan was in Tatsuki. This hotel provides you with a sea view and Onsen (hot spring bath). They differentiate the toilet and washroom. They have a small tub in the washroom. You will not sleep in the usual modern bed but you will sleep using a futon (Japanese traditional style of bedding). This is my first time slept by using futon and I like it! Tatsuki gives you a large room that feels like home. We had our dinner here in our hotel. Everything looks pretty and neat but I don’t like the taste. See the foods below. 


TOMINOKO

Tominoko is a distinct addition to the city’s skyline. This hotel is in the vicinity of popular city attractions such as Kawaguchiko Herb Hall, Kawaguchiko Tenjoyama Park, Mt. Kachi Ropeway and Kawaguchiko Music Forest.



We had our dinner in hotel and we ate crab, sushi and a lot of things. Oh, this hotel also provides you with Onsen. But they said the previous hotel had a better onsen. We went walking during our night in Tominoko. The weather was so clear and cold. We had a great time sleeping in Tominoko but the room was a bit small and again, they differentiate the toilet and washroom.

VILLA FONTAINE


This is our last hotel in Japan. It located in Tokyo and situated an 8 minute walk from both JR Tamachi Station and Mita Subway Station. This hotel has a great view from the hotel room and we went a bit walk to the drugstore and Watson. We went walking at night and enjoying the night view while eating the yogurt. In the morning, they change their lobby into breakfast place. They didn’t serve much food for the breakfast. I ended up eating bread and cake only.

So these are my schedule during my days in Japan. I hope you like my writings and thanks for reading.

xoxo,
Gaya



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