From the 23rd of May to the 27th of June, Kathia and I are leaving to go visit Japan. We're really excited about this trip for we've carefully planned it since last fall and... this is going to be amazing. This Tumblr will serve as a photo dump and a casual blog to keep you guys updated on what we are up to, where we are going and what we're planning. Expect posts in English, French and Japanese.
Harajuku! Such a wonderful place. Mostly shopping. Saw some crazy fashion stores and very tasty food. I had my caramel/icecream/cheese cake/crepe and it was so good I couldn’t eat lunch. In Yoyogi park, we spotted some storm troopers and I brought out my very useful “shasshin o totte mo ii desu ka” (is it ok to take a picture?) and snapped one of the gang. They were small storm troopers °u°. 7th picture you can see that I have mastered levitation and you should all call me God from now on. We couldn’t get out of Yoyogi park until we saw some Rockabillies, so we did :).
Tokyo, Shinjuku. Shinjuku was where we first ate at a sushi treadmill restaurant and it was awesome. Everytime I saw a fish I had not tried before, I’d take the plate. I needed to be careful about the prices, though. But everything was so good. That day, we spent a great deal of our time looking for Square Enix’s Show Case store. It was well hidden, and we were tired of the bad weather. But we found it and Kathia scolded me for stepping on the glass of life-size Sephiroth. There were so many collectibles in this place… it was painful walking in.
Tokyo, Skytree, Tokyo Tower. Though we didn’t have any tickets to go up the elevator, we walked to the Skytree and took a look around all the boutiques. While heading for the Tokyo Tower, we walked through a temple and noticed all the memorials for children… it was kind of unsettling. Then we went to Roppongi Hills for supper and… I fangirled over a street name. Not sure how many people share my love for the Amusemen, but I remember clearly blinking a lot when I read the sign. I can’t say I loved Roppongi all that much (it’s mostly a noisy place with expensive bars and clubs), but we did find a good cheap ramen place and we went to this Don Quichotte super store.
Tokyo, Asakusa. One of the main touristic streets of Tokyo! And to top it off, it was 2 minutes away from our hostel. Lots of traditional goodies there. One of the first shops had so many different ice cream flavors… I remember I tried the soda pop one and it was light blue and the candy bits would pop in your mouth. Good times. I ate tripe for the first time that day (I’m not kidding). Last picture was taken on our hostel street. You can see the Asahi Beer weird looking building (the golden sperm, as they call it).
Tokyo, Ikebukuro, Otome Road. Ikebukuro, the first time we went, was very confusing. We had to walk a while through Sunshine city before finding our way to the actual Otome Road, but it was worth it. I think that’s where we spent most of our time while in Tokyo in fact. We went to the mandarake, Animate and K-Books of course :]. Though K-Books has a cosplay section, we really enjoyed this individual wig/boots shop that was right next to the mandarake. Ikebukuro at night is also a must-see because of all the lights! My photos don’t do it justice, but it was quite the experience.
Tokyo! We stayed one night at a capsule hotel (where women were in fact allowed to stay). It was loads of fun but I’m happy we only slept there once because being as tall as I was I couldn’t really stretch my legs °^°. Plus, the bath/shower system was really weird in the sense that you had to walk outside on the street in order to find them. Since we only arrived there in the afternoon, we spent some time at the karaoke and then ate at a small fastfood place. Can’t remember the name of my meal, but weird as it looked, it was very tasty. After supper, I dragged Kathia to a Neko Kissaten (cat caffé) where we made furry friends. When we came back to the capsule hotel and tried to use the wi fi, we were met with confusing instructions regarding the door.
Nikko ryokan, the Funari. This ryokan was our gift to ourselves after spending a month in hostels (some better than others, as you might have seen). This was pure luxury, and we had a blast staying in this place. We stayed two nights (supper and breakfast included) and were treated like royalty. We even had a foot massage machine in our room. Speaking of the room, it was so spacious we almost cried. The food served there was traditional and sometimes very strange to us. I must admit that eating miso soup or raw fish for breakfast is not my idea of an awesome day starter, but it was fun trying it out. At our second supper, the lady even served us a complete fish (and as you can see, Kathia’s fish didn’t quite agree with the whole “being cooked” process and it showed on its face). Though the meals weren’t served in our room, the concept was well thought out. They’d ask us when we wanted to eat, and then were invited to go to the ryokan’s restaurant at said hour. However, we were given a private room with a kotatsu and actual closing wall panels so we could chat in private. We had a beautiful view of the japanese garden outside and the mountain. There even was a phone inside the private room so we could call the kitchen and ask for more food (though I cannot believe a normal human being could eat more than what was offered as a basic meal). The food kept coming, dish after dish. Bigger than any Christmas dinner I’ve ever had. When we went back to our room, our kotatsu would be stored away to leave place for our futon. I’ve rarely slept this well °u°. We tried the onsen (both outdoors and indoors) two times because it was so calm and beautiful there. And the outdoor one was very similar to Love Hina’s so I was sort of ecstatic about it.
Exploring Nikko. I think this was one of the days where we walked the most. We saved money by not taking the bus to go see the waterfalls, but the mountain we had to climb didn’t quite agree with us. When we got to our destination, we were very exhausted. Nikko is, however, one of the most beautiful places I have ever seen in my life. Just being there and breathing the air makes you feel like you’re in a really special place. And it is special. I’d go back there in a heartbeat.
Nagoya garden and castle. We saw so much koi fish that day. And the sheer quality of the small restaurant that stood next to the garden was so amazing. The simple sandwiches they brought us were so tasy… some had avocado in them. Teach me how to make such amazing sandwiches please.