We’re going to Japan!

It’s true! The flights and (most of) the hotels are booked. I’ll be heading to Japan with my wonderful uni friend Oana at the end of March next year, so you can expect lots of blog content post-trip next year. In the meantime, I thought I’d turn to the internet for a bit of travel inspiration. We know where we’re going but not exactly what we’re doing, as there are a few places neither of us have been to before. So, here’s a list of the places we’re going to next year. Inspire us!



You can’t go to Japan without going to Tokyo! I’m lucky enough to have been before, so have a good idea of the main places to visit and have also identified a few new things to do:

The new Final Fantasy cafe

– A cat cafe!

– Odaiba and the giant Gundam!

Also on the list are the Ghibli Museum, Akihabara, Ikebukuro, Shinjuku, Shibuya, Asakusa and Ueno!



We’re having one day in Sendai, one of the cities I’ve been wanting to go to for years. Of course, that’s just because it’s the hometown of one of my favourite samurai – Date Masamune. On the list for this one is to try gyutan, the local ‘beef tongue’ speciality, Aoba Castle and catching the Date re-enactment troupe if we’re lucky. We don’t really know what to expect here, so pop your suggestions below!



I’ve been told Kyoto doesn’t have much of a night life, so most of our activities will be done during the day here. Temples, restaurants and shopping are on the list here. We’re staying in a ryokan with a cat and a dog here right next to the Fushimi Inari shrine! We’ll also be having a day trip to Nara, home of the deer!



All we know about Osaka is that it’s amazing, exciting and massive. We’re staying near Osaka Castle here, so right in the tourist heartland, and will also be venturing out to the beautiful Minoo Park. Tips for night life much appreciated!



We hope we’ll be getting another taste of traditional Japanese culture here. We’ll be staying in another ryokan here near the Higashiyama Walk, a walking route through the temple town. There’s also a morning market to visit and side-trip to the beautiful Shirakawa-go, another place I’ve always wanted to go to.

So, we’re both saving up to go to Japan next year and are really looking forward to it! We’re both looking around for trip ideas but if you have any off-the-beaten track suggestions, post them below!

Image sources: Japan Guide


4 thoughts on “We’re going to Japan!

  1. So glad to hear that you will be visiting my part of Japan with Hida Takayama and Shirakawa-go. If you have time also add in Gujo Hachiman, often called “Little Kyoto” which is on the way to Hida Takayama, as well as Hida Furukawa, which is a short 10-15 minute train ride from Hida Takayama.

  2. I wouldn’t worry unduly about booking the Ghibli Museum early (although do so if you can!) You can buy them from the machines at any Lawsons store (and they’ve even got an English language option specifically for Ghibli). It’s pretty much the most charming place I’ve ever been to.

    Giant Gundam is cool, and Kamakura’s worth a half-day trip if you haven’t been, although it’s mega-touristy. Really enjoyed my quick day trip to Hakone, even though the mists often obscure the view of Mr Fuji (as it did in my case). Jealous you get to visit the FF cafe! Oh, and the Tokyo Metropolitan Museum of Photography is ace if you’re into that sort of thing, with really good provision for English speakers.

    As for Kyoto: GO TO ARASHIYAMA (especially if it’s a sunny day). Also loved Kiyomizu-dera, Kinka-ji, Nijo-jo and the market at To-ji (although I think that only happens once a month). If you’re getting the train from Kyoto to Nara, consider a quick stop-off at Uji (it’s en-route) and visit the Byodo-in Temple- it’s one of the finest Buddhist temples in Japan.

    Also, even if you’re not particularly interested in fishes and the like, Osaka Aquarium is definitely worth a visit. It’s open until 8pm, so it’s good for killing time before exploring the city’s night life.

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