Autumn Story In Japan 2013 – Arashiyama – 嵐山のTogetsukyo Bridge (渡月桥)

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Finally we are here at Togetsukyo Bridge! It is so crowded that I finally get a clean photo of me and the Togetsukyo Bridge signage. It’s called 渡月桥 in Chinese or Kanji. The view from the bridge is beautiful even though the photos look normal. You need to be there to know it!

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Togetsukyo Bridge is Arashiyama’s most iconic landmark. It was originally built during the Heian Period (794-1185) and most recently reconstructed in the 1930s. And I realise I did not take a photo of the bridge itself! *smacks head*

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It’s the perfect place for photos taking! 😀

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Once we crossed the bridge, we walk a bit around and spot this kawaii Pooh Bear!!! Cannot resist to kiss him. Lol.

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Selfies with the Bear! I bet he says ‘Stop Molesting Me!’ Heh.

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Fooling around because of the good weather, great sunshine, cool breeze, blue sky and mountainous view!

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More fooling around on Togetsukyo on the way back from the other side of the bridge. We are famished and started looking around for food. 😀

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Autumn Story In Japan 2013 – Nara – Higashimuki Shopping Street (東向き商店街)

Just next to the Kintetsu Nara Station is the Higashimuki Shopping Street (東向き商店街). It’s just like another typical shopping street in Japan but I just love walking along such street. We have our lunch here at some random restaurant because we are awed by the fake food display. 

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Claypot Udon! Udon is springy with a lovely soup base. Super comfort food in such a gloomy and cold weather. It is already late afternoon and we are famished!

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Hui Ping’s lunch set. The Soba is also springy and the tempura are fried to a crispy state. Good and yummy!

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After lunch, since we still have some time left before our train back to Kyoto, we shop around and I bought this. Guess guess, what is it? 😀

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Tada~~~~ it’s red tea ice cream!!! I super love and like this because the red tea taste is so original and fragrant and non sweet! It’s just like drinking red tea ne….!

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We continue shopping around and ended up buying many umbrellas because they are too pretty and cheap! Actually I bought only 2 but Hui Ping bought more for souvenirs. Heh. Almost could not make it back in time to train station but we did! Back to Kyoto ~~~~~ 😀

Autumn Story In Japan 2013 – Nara – Todaiji (東大寺, Great Eastern Temple)

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Many souvenir shops and roadside food stalls lined the pathway to Todaiji. Besides these, deer crossing the pathway or strolling on the pathway brushing against tourist is also a spectacular sight. The deer here are bigger, more active and brave. Brave, in the sense that they are not afraid of humans and humans, like me, is afraid of them. Haha!

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Bought Takoyaki at one of the roadside stalls and it’s so piping hot, big and yummy. But I did not eat with a peace of the mind because the deer are eyeing on my food! I even saw a deer approaching an auntie and poke at her butt. Opps!

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I am here at Todaiji! It is a gloomy day but did not stop the crowd because Todaiji is so jammed with locals and tourists!

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Todaiji is one of Japan’s most famous and historically significant temple and a landmark of Nara. It was constructed in 752 as the head temple of all provincial Buddhist temples of Japan and grew so powerful that the capital was moved from Nara to Nagaoka in 784 in order to lower the temple’s influence on government affairs.

Todaiji’s main hall, the Daibutsuden (Big Buddha Hall) is the world’s largest wooden building, despite the fact that the present reconstruction of 1692 is only two thirds of the original temple hall’s size. The massive building houses one of Japan’s largest bronze statues of Buddha (Daibutsu) of 15 meters tall!

I usually do not feel comfortable to take photos inside of the temple so no photos of the tall Buddha but I’ll say it was spectacular!

Another popular attractions is a pillar with a hole in its base that is the same size as the Daibutsu’s nostril. It is said that those who can squeeze through this opening will be granted enlightenment in their next life.

No, we did not gain enlightenment because we fear that we will be stuck in the hole and make a whole joke out of ourselves before we gain the enlightenment! Lol! Mostly are children who go through the hole. I saw a slim teenager almost get stuck in it, so….

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Close-up view of the wooden building. The designs are very detailed and beautiful, I would say. 😀

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There’s a neoprint machine just near the exit of the temple. Oh neoprint and temple, what a great combination. Hur.

But it is fun to take neoprints in Japan because there’s auto photo editing which makes my face sharp and eyes big. Ooh wah~~~. And I finally fulfil my wishes of taking a close-up selfie with deer. 😀

Autumn Story In Japan 2013 – The Breakfast Before Nara :)

20140226-122943.jpg I know I have been neglecting this blog for quite sometime because I’m just too lazy to start typing. Hur. Anyway, Day 3 (3 November) plan is to go for a Nara day trip. 🙂

Before we leave our cozy hotel for the train station, I have my egg roll which I bought at Nishiki Market the day before for breakfast.

20140226-123008.jpg The egg roll is good! So tender and egg-y plus not too sweet. Oh well I love this kind of egg so much that usually I can have it for breakfast almost everyday in Japan. Heh. Too bad I did not manage to buy the one with unagi wrap inside, I suppose it will be much more yummier!

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The Days in Tokyo – Lunch @ Aoi-Marushin

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I went to Tokyo with Mum and Dad in March 2013 and I know it’s been so many months that I am now beginning to blog it down. I hope I do remember most of the details. Heh. It is my first time doing a free and easy trip in Japan!  We took SQ midnight flight and touched down at Narita Airport around 7-ish in the morning.

After checking-out and collecting our luggage, we went to the airport limousine counter which can be easily spotted once you clear the custom, to purchase the limousine tickets to our hotel – Tokyo Metropolitan Hotel. It is 3000 Yen per pax but I suppose it is worth it since I do not have to lug the luggage to the hotel on my own. ^^

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The limousine tickets will indicate which bus stop number to board the limousine. So just walk to the bus stop and wait for the limousine to be here. It is very convenient as there will be a person-in-charge at every bus stop to assist you and also tag your luggage accordingly before placing them into the luggage area ‘under’ the bus.  While waiting for the limousine, I enjoyed the crisp morning air and cool weather, and sipping my favorite 伊藤园 green tea. 🙂

We arrived at the hotel around 10-ish. Since it was still too early for check-in, we left our luggage with the hotel concierge (definitely safe cos they kept it in a room and will give you a number tag), freshened up ourselves in the washroom and proceed to the first place on my itinerary – Asakusa!

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Our hotel is located within 3 minutes walking distance to Ikebukuro JR Station. To go to Asakusa, we need to take the JR from Ikebukuro Station to JR Ueno Station, exit the JR Station, follow the signage to walk to Ginza Subway Line and take the subway to Asakusa Station. It is very simple, just that there’s a lot of walking to do. Heh.

Oh and buy the Suica Card for more convenient travelling, it is something like our EZ Link Card. The card can either be purchased from the JR Office or from the ‘Black’ color machine in the JR Station. Once we reached Asakusa, we decided to go for lunch first. There were many restaurants lying on the streets around the Asakusa Kannon Temple and I spotted Aoi-Marushin which is famous for their tempura!

As it was lunch peak hour, we have to wait for 30 minutes before we could get a table. >.<

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The Tempura Don! Itadakimasu! You would have notice that their tempura is different from the usual tempura that we have seen in Japanese restaurants.  Theirs are coated with lots of bread crumbs and sweet sauce. It is very crispy and I really love the sweet sauce, together with the round and fat Japanese rice, this is just heavenly yummy! The prawns are huge, meaty and fresh too! This bowl cost around 1500 -1700 Yen.

After filling up our stomach, it is time to do some touristy stuff – Asakusa Kannon Temple!