The Amazing City of Tokyo – Things to Do & Travel Guide
Tokyo is debatably one of the most popular cities for tourists and locals alike. It’s also one of the most coveted. With a soul that never sleeps, it’s not hard to see why it would climb several peoples’ lists. I was excited about visiting Tokyo but I didn’t think I would like it as much as I did. It’s probably my favourite place in Japan!
Tokyo actually doesn’t have much ancient history, like say its predecessor Kyoto does. Tokyo, formerly called Edo, was fortified in the 1100s and Edo Castle was built circa 1457 (at the site of … Continue reading
Tags: asia, japan, tokyo
The Ancient Japanese City of Kyoto – Things to Do & Travel Guide
Kyoto used to be the capital of Japan and now it’s one of the country’s largest and most visited cities. Since it wasn’t destroyed during WWII, it still retains a lot of its historic Japanese character, which draws people in from around the world. It’s a great city to visit in Japan and it is huge, with a tonne of things to see and do.
Even though Tokyo is now the capital of Japan, it’s only been that way since 1868. For over a thousand years before, it was Kyoto. Kyoto’s history goes back farther but it was … Continue reading
Tags: asia, japan, kyoto
A Quick Look at Osaka – Things to Do & Travel Guide
Osaka is one of Japan’s largest cities and is a popular tourist destination. As it is very near Kyoto and also has an international airport, it’s a good place to fly to for visiting central/southern Japan. It’s actually the gastronomical capital of Japan so since my brother’s a foodie, we decided to spend a day in Osaka and subsequently went almost every night for dinner.
Unfortunately, this Highlight post is a bit different from the others. I did not really want to go to Osaka so only reserved a day. My big mistake with Osaka was thinking I could see … Continue reading
Tags: asia, japan, osaka
The Splendor of Miyajima Island (Itsukushima) – Things to Do & Travel Guide
Miyajima is one of the most beautiful places in Japan according to locals, but it’s also someplace that a lot of tourists from abroad skip over. However if you have more time to spend in Japan, Miyajima is definitely worth a visit. It was personally one of my favourite stops in Japan.
A History of Miyajima
Miyajima has been a pilgrimage site for the Japanese for over 1000 years and is still seen as a pilgrimage today. The giant torii gate and the tall pagodas aren’t an incidental part of Miyajima’s architecture; the island is set up as a Shinto … Continue reading
Tags: asia, itsukushima, japan, miyajima
Seeing Deer & Temples in Nara – Things to Do & Travel Guide
Nara is one of the most popular day trips in Japan. It’s known for its deer park, where deer roam freely and aren’t afraid of humans. And actually, I wasn’t super interested in going. After doing some research and finding out about all the different temples Nara has, I decided to make it a day trip from Kyoto. So what did I think?
Well, I thought it was amazing!
The History of Nara
Kyoto is known as being the ancient capital of Japan since it served that position for over a thousand years. However, Nara served as the capital before … Continue reading
Tags: asia, japan, nara
The Ghibli Museum: What to Expect & How to Get Tickets
A visit to the Ghibli Museum was a must for my trip to Japan. I grew up watching Studio Ghibli and even took a class in college that covered some Ghibli films. My friend studied abroad in Japan a while back and got tickets several months ahead for the Ghibli Museum, which introduced me to the museum and the fact that it’s super exclusive (details at the end of this post). I went with my brother and a pair of friends to Mitaka and didn’t know what to expect. So, here’s a post to let you know what visiting … Continue reading
Tags: asia, japan, tokyo
A Visit to Himeji Castle, One of Japan’s Iconic Landmarks
Himeji Castle is one of the most popular tourist spots in Japan and the most popular Japanese castle. Himeji is one of the best (if not the best) examples of of Japanese castle architecture and it survived the bombing of Himeji during World War II, even though the entire city was bombed. It’s a popular day trip from Kyoto and since it’s been named one of the best sites in Japan, if not the world, I absolutely had to go.
A Brief History of Himeji Castle
The castle dates to the mid-14th century, but was heavily renovated two centuries later, … Continue reading
Tags: asia, himeji, japan
The Awe-Inspiring Town of Nikko – Things to Do & Travel Guide
Even though Nikko’s listed as a common day trip from Tokyo, it’s a little off the beaten path. This town, which revolves around its several temples and shrines, was founded in the 8th century, but its popularity grew in the Edo period as it became the burial spot for the Tokugawa Ieyasu, the founder of the famous Tokugawa Shogunate. Today, it’s a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
A Brief History of NikkoNikko was always a town of shrines. The town was established when a monk named Shodo established Nikkosan Rinnoji Temple at the site, which you can still visit… Continue reading
Tags: asia, japan, nikko, tochigi
Renting a Beautiful Kimono with Yumeyakata
Kimonos are a distinct piece of Japan’s culture and can still be seen today on people who like to keep up the tradition, with places like Yumeyakata renting out kimonos to wear. Unlike what a lot of people believe, kimonos actually have no religious significance and it’s actually a broad, old blanket term for clothing in general. Kimonos were created over a thousand years ago and were significant because they were easier to make and could be worn in all types of weather, and were worn by the Japanese for hundreds of years (though the styles of course evolved). Even … Continue reading
Okunoshima (Rabbit Island) in Japan: The Cutest Place on Earth!
Have you ever seen those videos on YouTube of people being covered in rabbits? Most likely, they’re on the island of Okunoshima, nicknamed Rabbit Island. Since rabbits are one of my favourite animals, it was something I absolutely needed to do and it’s one of the most unique and fun things to do in Japan (and the world).
Warning: Tonnes of cute bunny pics ahead!
What’s with the Rabbits on Rabbit Island?
Okunoshima has a fascinating backstory. It was used in the 20s-40s as a chemical weapon base and was actually kept in secrecy so other countries wouldn’t know of … Continue reading
Tags: asia, bunny island, japan, okunoshima