okay.. now let’s go to the second part of my big trip : Kansai
ah.. before that, I want to share my curiosity a little bit.. about Kanto and Kansai..
it’s well known (at least here in Japan) that Kanto and Kansai people have a little bit ‘unique’ relationship..
Kansai people tend to do the opposite of Kanto people..
little example is when you are in Kanto region, and you are riding escalator, you will stand on left side, while walking people are on right side.. but in Kansai, it’s opposite one..
one thing that make me curious is the name..
Kansai and Kanto have a same letter (or in Kanji, it means same word) of ‘Kan’ that is 関 which means ‘connection’ or ‘gateway’.. and the last letter is whether ‘Sai’ 西 which means ‘west’ and ‘Tou’ 東 which means ‘east’
so, basically their name means ‘gateway of west’ or ‘gateway of east’
but Kanto (if we don’t refer to the Kanjis) also can separate to ‘Kan’ from ‘Kanagawa’ and ‘Tou’ from ‘Tokyo’
I don’t know if it is possible or not .__. but yeah.. I said I just wanna share my curiosity
okay.. let’s move to the Kansai trip!!
there are some way that you can take to get you to Kansai region from Tokyo :
1. plane.. of course, this is the most expensive way.. you can take a flight whether from Haneda or Narita to Kansai Airport
2. shinkansen.. the well known bullet train from Japan.. only takes you 2 hours, but you had to pay about 14,000 JPY for a trip from Tokyo Station to Shin-Osaka Station
3. night train.. cheaper than shinkansen, but takes more time.. but of course you can sleep in the journey
4. Seishun 18 Ticket.. a special ticket sold by JR, costs 11,500 JPY, seasonally available, and you will get 5 tickets.. each tickets can be used to enter all JR trains (excluding the reserved seat one) for a day.. so, basically you have 5 days JR pass.. further information here
5. bus.. as for me which have little time for travel (7 March can depart from Tokyo but 11 March morning have to be prepare for flight to Seoul), night bus is the cheapest and the safest option.. there are many bus companies that you can choose in the internet.. make a reservation online.. and you can pay the fare in the convenient store
I used Willer Express from Shinjuku Station to Osaka-Umeda Station
back and forth about 10,000 JPY (5,000 JPY each trip) and if I reserve more than a week before, I might get cheaper
this bus company let you reserve online by English.. and has a comfortable waiting room in the departure station
you can get more information here
I am sorry I don’t have the information about accommodation since I slept in my friends house
he is my senior in high school
he is integrated (master and Ph.D) student of Handai (Osaka University)
and his house is in Onohara.. which is 210 JPY to Kita Senri (nearest) Station by bus
from Kita Senri to Umeda (one of the central part of Osaka) costs 260 JPY, and from Umeda to another places costs about 200-300 JPY..
I am so thankful that I have friends in Osaka.. so I didn’t have to pay the hotel (I heard it’s more than 2,000 JPY per night in average hostel)
Place to Visit
there is one day (or two days) free pass for Osaka trip
but you have to bring your passport
and for two days ticket, your visa should be a travel visa with validity of 90 days
the pass is 2,000 JPY for one day and 2,500 JPY for two days
it could be retrieved from the information in Osaka (JR) Station
the coverage of this ticket are :
1. free pass for one day in subways (most of) and some private railways which are connected to subways (not coverage all area).. it can’t be used for JR trains
2. free pass for some tourism areas like Santa Maria Ship, Giant Ferris Wheel, Umeda Sky Building, or museums (including Osaka Castle)
3. discount for pass for some tourism areas like Aquarium or Aqua Liner
4. discount for some restaurants
so, basically the worth of this ticket is in the free pass of tourism places
if you don’t own this ticket, you have to pay 700 JPY for entering the Osaka Castle.. if you own.. it’s free
1. Osaka Castle
it’s the icon of Osaka
Osaka-jou or Osaka Castle lies in south-east-center part of Osaka
nearest station is Tanimachi Yonchome Station
unfortunately, I was late to be there (after 4.30 PM) so the castle was closed..
but still, I could get some outside photo of the castle
2. Osaka Museum of History
a museum located near Osaka Castle
you can buy double ticket for entering Osaka Castle then Osaka Museum of History for 900 JPY.. but again, if you buy the day pass, it’s free of charge
this museum has a collection of artifacts from very ancient Osaka, the Kingdom period, until 1970’s Osaka
it’s worth to go up to 10th floor by elevator then go down while enjoying the artifacts
3. Universal Studio Japan (USJ)
theme park? yes, Osaka has
it’s Universal Studio
it has the ‘Backwards-Roller Coaster’.. and it is big one..
I didn’t enter the USJ because it costs 6,600 JPY.. and for real.. I can’t ride thrilling attraction because of my health condition..
but still.. again, I took some photos
Near the USJ, there is a shopping area which has ‘Takoyaki Museum’ inside it
it’s a cluster of takoyaki seller
unfortunately, I was too early to get inside, but I think it is worth to try if you have time
4. Giant Ferris Wheel and Aquarium
this is considered as the biggest Ferris Wheel in Japan
without the pass, you had to pay 700 JPY
there are two cars with transparent floor and needs 30 mins waiting for those cars
it is a good place for couple
near the Giant Ferris Wheel, there is biggest Aquarium in Asia
but the pass only give you discount, not a free pass.. 10% discount from 2,000 JPY
the nearest station is Osakako Station
5. Umeda Sky Building
this building has a Floating Garden Observatory
this observatory is very good place for couples.. yea couples and I was there alone .__.
you can sit, enjoying the scenery of Osaka city from 173 m above sea level observatory
inside, there is cafe with some coffee options
and, the climax is.. there is a photo booth with a form of heart and has the date of the day
this building is about 10 mins walking from Umeda Station
6. Dotonbori Street
for me who live near Tokyo, this street is just like a mix of Asakusa and Harajuku
because it has both side-street shops with the souvenirs and place for youth to hanging around
one addition is there is a street with all kinds of food (Japanese foods I mean) are sold
this is the place where you can buy souvenirs while having your lunch or dinner.. and maybe you can enjoy the crowd of Osaka’s youth
the nearest station is Namba Station
Osaka is well known with the ‘strong’ taste of foods
based on my knowledge, famous foods from Osaka is Okonomiyaki and Takoyaki..
although you can find those two around Japan, but it really tastes different with other place.. at least with Tokyo..
and since Kansai people said ‘the best okonomiyaki shop is the nearest to your house’, basically, all okonomiyaki and takoyaki shops are worth to try
okonomiyaki worth about 700-1,000 JPY while takoyaki could be sold as low as 300 JPY for 6 balls or more than 1,000 for about 10 or 12 balls
but again, Dotonbori has a place where all kinds of food are sold, so if you confused where to buy, just go there..
old capital of Japan
holds many old places.. nice temples.. and of course castle
but my bad, I woke up late so I just could depart from Osaka by 12 am, and since Osaka-Umeda to Kyoto-Kawaramachi is 1 hour by limited express train, I just could explore two places in Kyoto
another blunder is : Kyoto has only a few railways.. the main transportation here is bus
buy a day pass bus
only 500 JPY
you could buy in convenient store with banner of the pass inside the station
and since I only had a little time, I couldn’t even try a single food here 😦
1. Fushimi Inari
it’s actually a temple
with all of the gate from all places of Japan are gathered together
the famous photo spot here is in the front of those gates
you could have your body in the front of hundreds of orange gates
pretty cool though
the admission fee to this temple is free
and, I suggest you to use train from Kyoto Station to Inari Station because the bus is.. ummm a little bit annoying (only once an hour)
2. Kinkakuji Temple
as this temple’s name is Kinkakuji 金閣寺 which literally means ‘Temple of Golden Pavilion’, this temple has gold-embossed body..
this site is very far from Fushimi Inari, but near to Kawaramachi Station (so, basically I took wrong path by passing Fushimi Inari first)
it was a relief that I still could enter the temple (that time was near 5 PM, and temple close at 5 PM)
the temple is located in the middle of a lake
it is a good place to have a profile picture of your SNS 😛
Kobe is one of the port of Japan
the literally means of 神戸 is ‘Gate of god’ because Kobe was one of eastern countries gate into Japan
as for me.. the situation of Kobe is nearly the same as Yokohama.. since they are both are ports..
Kobe is famous with its Kobe Beef that could cost more than 10,000 JPY (more than 100 USD!!) a plate .___.
I heard that the cows there are getting special treatment such as a massage and wine drink
as for me, a student, of course I couldn’t try that beef.. not yet I hope
but there, I met my senior from high school and eat together in Fishermen’s Market, a place of Seafood Buffet with 2,000 JPY cost
the food was incredible.. worth to give a try
also, the scenery from that buffet restaurant is sea.. so it was nice to eat while watching a night-black sea
the nearest station is Kosokukobe that can be reached with Hankyu Line from Juuso Station
that’s all folks.. the story of my Kansai Trip
not as informative as Tokyo Trip.. of course.. that I am not native there (actually I am not a Tokyo native either .__.)
see you on the next post.. the last post about my Big Trip : Seoul
thanks for reading ^^