World Travel 2013-2014, Japan Wrap Up

So it’s finally time to write the wrap up for our time in Japan. Its been a little while so here we go…

    • Overall what we did: 49 (!) days split into: 36 days in Osaka, 2 days in Wakayama and Kyoto, 1 day each in Kobe, Koya-san, and 7 days in Tokyo from 18 December 2013 to 4 February 2014.
    • Favourite part of Japan: Spending time with family in Osaka – you can’t beat that!
    • Key tip: Have fun and eat lots of food, especially super delicious home cooked meals if you’re lucky enough to be able to enjoy them… we enjoyed every meal and it was so yummy!
    • Cultural points:
      • Food: Did you know that the rice is set to the left, main dish in the middle and soup at the top when serving food? I didn’t. Level up in Japanese food etiquette!
    • Highlights: Wandering around Tokyo, seeing a sumo grand tournament, experiencing a live Bunraku performance and visiting Kyoto again. I also completed the major achievement of finally being able to eat my okonomiyaki with chopsticks, without making a mess. Ooh yeah!
    • Best Experience: Spending New Years with family and getting to experience the crowds at one of the biggest temples in Osaka (crazy!)
    • Worst Experience: Getting sick… a lot. I think I spent the majority of our time in Japan with some form of illness which is really not fun when you can’t eat all of the delicious food, especially when it’s super delicious home cooked meals
    • Must See Attraction: Ginkaku-ji. It was definitely a stand out and exceeded my expectations. The gardens were incredibly beautiful even in winter, and it was very peaceful and relaxing to walk around
    Walking around Ginkaku-ji, Kyoto, Japan

    Walking around Ginkaku-ji, Kyoto, Japan

    • Most Over-hyped Attraction: Most places met my expectations and there wasn’t a single regret. That said, not all temples or castles are the same and it pays to do your research on what you’re interested in. Ultimately though, it will depend on what you want to visit which attractions may be over hyped
    • Would I go back? Absolutely. This is my second time in Japan, and I still love visiting the country. This is definitely a place that I think I could visit countless times and still want to visit again. Next time though I think I’ll head back in summer to see some of the festivals.. and maybe even attempt to climb Mount Fuji!

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