While we’ve visited Japan numerous times now we’d yet to really experience the true heat and humidity of a Japanese summer. Technically it was the beginning of Autumn but the hot temperatures seemed to suggest otherwise. Shade offered little relief and we often spent as much time as we could indoors when possible. Most of our stay was in Tokyo but we also visited Nagano for a few days to escape the bustle of the city. Below are pictures from the main highlights of the trip.Read More
While I haven’t updated anything here for the last few months, I’ve been quietly working away on my backlog of videos from my past trips. I’ve actually written about these on the blog already but due to spreading them out over multiple posts, there didn’t seem to be any appropriate spot to include the accompanying videos.
So I’m just gonna put them both here! I’ll link to the related blog posts below each one that includes all the photos and story behind these videos.Read More
I’d been wanting to visit Hakone since our last trip to Japan, initially planning for it to be a day trip out of the city. After realising that travelling to and from would significantly limit our time, I decided to wait until our most recent trip to stay a couple of nights in the area.Read More
We knew as soon as we left Japan last time that we would be back and after two years we were landing in Tokyo once again. I consider visiting Japan as something of a ‘true holiday’ because the usual stresses of overseas travel have been replaced by familiar routines from previous trips. I’m able to really relax because I know how to get around on their public transport, where my favourite places are to eat, what I want to go see again. Everything is just easier and I can fully enjoy our time there.
In Tokyo we would visit our usual haunts like Akihabara and Nakano broadway to nerd out on figurines (two full suitcases of them in fact) and wander the streets of Harajuku for new clothes. We’d also visit Disneyland again, though it would end up being rained out, and hit up our favourite sushi train in Shibuya almost daily.
This trip would also see us exploring new places like our day out to Yokohama along with our first shrine festival – Kanda Matsuri and other sights like Roppongi Hills and the Salt and Tobacco Museum (way more interesting then it sounds). This would also be our first time visiting Hakone which we stayed at for a few days. I’ll write a full post on this later.
Enjoy this small collection of photos, all taken in or around the Tokyo area.Read More
The final days of our trip would be spent exploring just some of the many small niche museums scattered throughout the greater Tokyo region. Most are hidden gems within more suburban areas and usually require a bit of public transport know-how and a willingness to walk a fair distance but in my experience have always been worth it.Read More
After days of searching out cherry blossoms it was time to soak in some other Tokyo destinations. The second half of our trip would be spent exploring sights that we had never visited before, located in the more suburban outlying areas of the city.
While I’ve been to Tokyo Disneyland several times, I’d never taken much interest in its sister theme park DisneySea which is the considered more adult friendly park (a lot more thrilling rides and apparently they serve alcohol on the premises). After some convincing from the boyfriend we decided to go there instead of Disneyland. While we didn’t really get to fully enjoy the park due to arriving later in the day, I’m happy that I conceded and got to experience something new.Read More
Our next few days in Tokyo would be a lot calmer with no scooting across town to visit several different sights in one day. Instead we would be just taking time to enjoy a few select destinations that we had been meaning to visit from the beginning of our trip.
We dedicated a day to visiting one of our favourite places, Akihabara, in the hopes of finding new anime figurines for our collection. This involves walking slowly through stores scanning display cabinets, digging behind boxes that completely fill the shelves and crouching down low to peer behind items in the front row, hoping to find that elusive figure you want. It’s definitely one of our mild obsessions as we would come back time and time again to check for anything new over the course of our stay.Read More
Back in March the boyfriend and I were jet setting across the ocean again for our third trip (my fourth!) to Tokyo after finding a fortunately cheap airline deal. This trip would be special compared to our previous travels as we would be arriving just as the cherry blossoms were coming into season and would able to witness the beautiful floral display first hand.
While we slowly acclimatized to the much colder weather, we spent the first few days exploring some old haunts from our last trip. The first day we explored Ikebukuro’s many shops, restaurants and manga/anime otaku stores including hitting up Sunshine City to visit the Pokémon Center MEGA TOKYO store. The next morning we bought ourselves bentos from the local train station grocery before heading out to Yoyogi Park to enjoy our breakfast while people watching. This was also where we caught our first glimpses of the cherry blossoms, just beginning to bloom along the walkway.
Japan is a place that I know many designers and non-designers alike are fascinated by. Whether it’s the history, the culture and subsequent sub-cultures, the novelties or just the food, Japan has something to interest everybody. During my trip my May I couldn’t help but observe Japan’s approach to design and advertising. I also got to experience using some Japanese websites before the trip and noticed distinct differences in style and functionality.
Over the next two posts I will not only be looking at design of Japanese media but also Japan’s technology use and online behaviour in comparison to our own.Read More
With the Tokyo part of our trip over (see part 1), we now had six days in Osaka filled with local sightseeing and trips to nearby areas.
Despite the rainy weather, our first day included walking along Tenjinbashi-suji shopping street as well as seeing the Tenmangu shrine and the House and Living Museum. We also managed to squeeze in a trip to Osaka Aquarium that afternoon. We spent a day in Kyoto to visit Gion and the Higashiyama District along with a train ride south to the Fushimi Inari Shrine. Another day we travelled to Iga-Ueno and visited Iga Ninja Museum, a personal favourite of mine and worth the long trip out into the country. On our final free day, we went to Nara to see Todaiji Temple with the largest bronze Buddha statue and other shrines within Nara Park. Other highlights included a day at Universal Studios where we had a caricature drawn of us and the wonderful Yakiniku Rokko in Shinsaibashi with all its tasty barbecue meat.Read More