Blogs from Japan, Asia - page 8


Asia » Japan » Tokyo April 10th 2014

As I mentioned in my last entry, Japan has been an elusive place for me. When I touched down with no noticeable seismic activity, I was relieved, albeit exhausted from almost no sleep on the 10 hour flight. I hopped on the train without issue which was my first introduction to Tokyo's intricate yet efficient and impressive metro train system. Train lines are everywhere and looking at the metro map initially was dizzying, but the helpful staff at the station pointed me in the right direction. I was happy that the little Japanese I remembered at least made me seem polite as I was able to ask where to go and thank the attendant even though I'm sure I made 4 year olds all across Japan sound elegant in comparison. I found my way to my ... read more
Asakusa in the day
Shibuya Crossing
Tsujiki Fish Market

Asia » Japan » Hyogo » Kobe April 10th 2014

Kobe city is the provincial capital of Hyogo; it is the 5th largest city in Japan. Hyogo province is located in western part of Japan, near the second largest town, Osaka. Kobe city is located in southeastern Hyogo, which faces to Osaka Bay (which is part of Seto Island Sea) to the south. There are Rokko Mts. from about 3km north the seashore, and this long and narrow area from west to east is the center of this city. The reclamation of the foreshore is promoting for recent years to expand the city area and harbor facilities. There are various tourism destinations such as museums on the island which draw many tourists. The climate in Kobe city is moderate, so it’s good for tourism. As for the public transportation, overseas tourists can’t get to Kobe directly ... read more
Arima Hot Springs
Harbor Land

Asia » Japan » Shizuoka » Ito April 8th 2014

Our last few days in Japan were intended as a bit of R&R before heading home and back to work. We booked ourselves into a ryokan, albeit a hostel ryokan, with onsen right next to the river. We had one big day trip planned and a few other little things we’d found in the guide book Ito is a nice town, but I can see that piece of coast being packed in summer. We had the beach to ourselves, but it was chilly! Our hostel, K’s House Ito Onsen, was right in the middle of town, a short walk from the train and bus station. The railway was a small line going down the peninsula and certain trains were scenic ones, with the seats facing sideways out big picture windows to enjoy the view. The train ... read more
Jogasaki Coast
Around our room
On the train to Ito

Asia » Japan » Hiroshima » Onomichi April 7th 2014

Sakura Season, the Onomichi Trip, and the Return Home Well, I returned from Japan on Tuesday, April 1, and have been meaning to finish up the blog with one last post. It’s a bit late, but here it is now. Towards the end of my last week in Japan, the cherry blossoms came out, and so I was able to do some flower viewing. The pink ume blossoms had been out for a while, and they were beautiful, so I didn’t fully appreciate why people kept anticipating the cherry blossoms. When they came out, it was spectacular. Lining the Nikokawa (river) in Kure, a formerly bleak winter scene, rows of cherry blossoms exploded with life, and with the blossoms, people began returning from their winter hideaways. The river banks were lined with old men ... read more
View of Onomichi Straight
Temple Architecture
Town of History

Asia » Japan » Tokyo » Shibuya April 7th 2014

It was eight years since our last trip to Japan and this time we were here in the season of cherry blossom and clement weather. Having lost most of our photos from the last trip we were back to see what had changed and what was as crazy as ever. The flight with Japan Airlines was great, too many new films to watch as well as fit in some sleep but we did our best. Having arrived at Haneda airport we exchanged our vouchers for Japan Rail passes which allows us unlimited use for most of the train network in Japan and set off into Tokyo. The monorail was plastered with pictures of Pokemon and sped us into the centre as the warm afternoon sun flickered between the tall suburban buildings. Our first hotel was in ... read more
Shinjuku Robots
Uobei Genki Sushi


Asia » Japan » Osaka » Osaka April 5th 2014

Day 2 - Osaka to Kyoto, 5th April 2014 I woke up for the first time in Japan nice and early, refreshed after a good sleep with a positive attitude and ready to go exploring ! I only had till checkout time, which was 12 lunchtime (loving that) and due to the short nature of my trip it was then off to the old capital of Kyoto. I had found a really cool app called Triposo which is a tourist kind of guide type thing, basically you dictate how long you have to explore and it works out a map for a walking tour of the city to see all the highlights, genius. Thanks to Vodafones new overseas option I only have to pay $5 a day and I have access ... read more
City Backstreets

Asia » Japan » Osaka » Osaka April 4th 2014

So I have never written anything like this however my first solo travel was all about stepping outside my comfort zone so I figured why not go to the next level and write about it :) I lost my father (my best friend) a couple of years ago and it taught me a lot about life and how much we take it for granted, I learnt that you have to take advantage of it because ultimately we are here for a good time not a long time. Travelling to a foreign country by myself that I know nothing about and don't speak any of the language was a challenge I wanted to take on. Solo. Maybe I would learn something about myself, who I am, what I am really made of and what kinda strength I ... read more
Food Arcade
Osaka Ferris Wheel

Asia » Japan » Nagano » Matsumoto April 3rd 2014

Takayama We had planned two stops in the alps region. Due to hostels (again!) we could only stay one night in Takayama. There seemed like a lot to see and do in and around Takayama so it was a bit of a shame, but we had a lovely time there. It was also our first time in ‘real’ beds for a while! We had a family room with bunks. Our hostel was only a short walk from the two ‘traditional buildings preservation areas’ so our first afternoon was spent wandering around the Sanmachi-suji (district). We wandered a few streets of restored/preserved merchant shops and private houses. There were several sake breweries (breweries closed, shop open) and plenty of tourist type shops. It was lovely wandering around. The next morning we headed out again on foot starting ... read more
hot and cold drinks, snacks, ice cream
Matsumoto castle at night
the Alps

Asia » Japan » Tokyo March 31st 2014

Japan. The country has been in my mind for years. To be honest, Japan has probably been the reason why I got interested in Asia in the first place. When I had the chance to visit Singapore and Indonesia during my Master studies I did not have a clear idea about either of the countries but Japan... yes, Japan has always been there, its rising sun deeply burned into my mind and its Ninjas jumping through my video games since the late 80's. Since I live in Asia, Japan had anyhow become somewhat of a fata morgana for me. I knew it was there, I knew it was near, but something deep inside of me always opted for other destinations first. Was it the reputation of Japan being an expensive country that kept me away for ... read more

Asia » Japan » Chiba » Narita March 31st 2014

I awoke suddenly, I’m normally a light sleeper and I’m able to account for any abstract noises within my general proximity. In the presence of a Ninja however I fear that this skill becomes inept and amateurish, which must have been what the guy was of whom was sat down next to me watching me sleep. The scenario was exactly weird, very exactly weird actually. Obviously the guy had the right to be there, it was a public shelter, but why would he be there? Just…looking. I can only speak for myself here but if I was to see a bum homeless person sleeping rough in a shelter I’d avoid that shelter….because they are homeless and therefore they are stranger danger. In fact I feel it almost natural in everyday life to avoid the homeless, I ... read more
Sawara, Narita
Mt. Tsukuba from Lake Kasumigaura, Ibaraki
Cutesy Narita Shrine

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