Tag Archives Japan

That Time I Hiked Up Mt Fuji (Kind Of)

That Time I Hiked Up Mt Fuji (Kind Of)

Hey cutie! How are you today? So the other weekend my husband and I climbed up Mt Fuji!!!!!

Haha, just kidding.

Yes, unfortunately, because of lockdown we have to put our Japan and South Korean travel plans on hold… But thank goodness Arigato Japan exists because we were able to go on a virtual tour of Mt Fuji with them! It was incredibly educational; Jordan, our guide, was so knowledgeable and incredibly patient (and I’m surprised he didn’t look at me strangely as I was basically a burrito in a blanket haha).

(BTW – I guess this is kind of a “gifted” post????? We did our tour for free in return to do a survey buuuut I wanted to write this blog post so I don’t know what the technicalities are for that haha soz).

Things I Wanna’ Tick Off My Japan Bucket List

Things I Wanna’ Tick Off My Japan Bucket List

Lately I’ve been missing Japan. A lot. It’s been over two years now since we travelled there and one of my biggest regrets was that I was really ill for almost half of our holiday there (due to not accounting for ‘rest’ days), and didn’t document it as much, including the time leading up to it. So today’s post is going to be a little different to my usual outfits as I’ve compiled my ultimate Japan bucket list – feel free to scroll to the bottom to see the simple checklist, or read on for more details…

Japan Bucket List
Top 10 Things to Do in Tokyo, Japan
Whimsical Wandering: Himeji Castle & Hello Kitty Café

Whimsical Wandering: Himeji Castle & Hello Kitty Café

Himeji castle

Most castles in England are in ruins, so you could imagine what it was like for me to see a fully-formed and beautiful Himeji castle in Japan. It was a real building – all standing proud on top of a hill, and it looked amazing. I had seen photos of it before but it didn’t really do it justice… The only downfall was that the cherry blossoms hadn’t bloomed yet, but nevertheless it was so pretty.

Todai-ji Temple and Butt-Biting Deer in Nara

Todai-ji Temple and Butt-Biting Deer in Nara

Todai-Ji Temple

While I did not enjoy getting my butt bit by a deer, it was an experience going to Nara. It was quite far from where we were staying in Kyoto so we made the decision to just visit the Todai-ji Temple and boy did we make a good choice. I had no idea just how harmoniously people could interact with nature, and it was amazing! Kudos to Japan for doing this, as it’s not the kind of thing I’ve ever seen in the U.K. especially when all of the deer were wild…

Roaming the Fushimi Inari-Taisha

Roaming the Fushimi Inari-Taisha

fushimi inari taisha torii gates walk

The Fushimi Inari-Taisha was everything I wanted it to be and more. It was absolutely beautiful, and as soon as I crossed over into its territory I wanted to run up the mountain and through the thousands of torii gates. I stopped in my tracks when my eyes slapped onto a sign for kimono rentals and within the hour I was wearing a light blue set with cranes flying across it and a flower in my done-up hair. It took a while to get used to wearing the wooden sandals but soon I was walking like a pro and followed the crowd through the food stalls and to the entrance of the grand shrine.

I Left My Heart in Tokyo: Gyaru Life in Shibuya!

I Left My Heart in Tokyo: Gyaru Life in Shibuya!

shibuya 109, gyaru, japan

I remember the excitement building as I stood grasping onto the train handles, counting down the stops on the Yamanote line to Shibuya. I have been waiting for this moment ever since I found out about gyaru – it is the birthplace of gyaru after all, and I couldn’t wait to be walking along Shibuya crossing in front of my beloved Shibuya 109. After we stepped off at Shibuya station I whizzed straight to see Hachiko, the world’s most loyal dog! The story about how he waited for his master years after his death at Shibuya station is one of my favourites, and struck several heartstrings when I finally saw the statue in person.

And then it was time to join the crowd of people at Shibuya crossing to walk towards the beacon of all things gyaru – Shibuya 109. And I was extremely disappointed.

Chasing Cherry Blossoms

Chasing Cherry Blossoms

cherry blossoms, gaijin gyaru, agejo

Cherry blossoms are my favourite flower; there’s just something so beautiful about their ephemeral state and it was the thing I was looking forward to the most during our stay in Japan. You could imagine my dismay when we arrived and it was too cold for them to bloom… It wasn’t until our very last few days here that they started to blossom, and so we went to the East Gardens of the Imperial Palace and it seemed like we weren’t the only ones, however, and soon all of the spots surrounding the trees were taken.

My Japan Haul – DaTuRa, MA*RS, Sanrio and Many More

My Japan Haul – DaTuRa, MA*RS, Sanrio and Many More

I’ve been to Japan and haven’t bought a thing… Said no one ever! And trust me, I am still on the road to financial recovery despite it being over a month since I’ve been in the magical land of Hello Kitty and matcha KitKat. It was so worth it, though, but when I look back at my Japan haul I wish I had bought more, but it was physically impossible to fit any more into my suitcase. My suitcase weighed 17kg before and then 23kg after. Oops. I’ve made the decision, however, to buy more things over from Japan. It might not be good economically but their clothes are just so much nicer and I want to keep supporting my gyaru brands from afar!

In the meantime, though, let’s delve into my Japan haul a.k.a the part where I sold my soul.

Donki

The very first part of my Japan haul was when I splurged on was some Hello Kitty and Sanrio goodies from Don Quiote (also known as Donki). I was just so happy to be surrounded by so many kawaii goodies so I didn’t hold back! I also bought some amazing 2-in-1 curlers and straighteners, and I’m pretty upset that I couldn’t fit it into my suitcase. Oh well, maybe next time.

Sanrio Items from Donki (Don Quiote)
Chilling with Hello Kitty – My Trip to Sanrio Puroland!

Chilling with Hello Kitty – My Trip to Sanrio Puroland!

I first fell in love with Hello Kitty when I was around 8 years old, sporting a little red and white t-shirt with her face emblazoned against it. But like all things do, I grew out of love with it, until it reappeared in my late teens and has stuck around ever since. So you can only imagine my excitement when I found myself walking down the pathway to Sanrio Puroland, the home of all of the Sanrio characters that you could ever think of. We followed all of the incredibly obvious signs on where to go (e.g. the Hello Kitty banners, Sanrio town map, Pompompurin signs at the train station… You couldn’t really miss it) and after taking the typical snap of me looking like an excitable puppy in front of Puroland, we went in. Cinnamoroll was the star of the show as it was his 15th anniversary and everything was so on point – from the staff to the benches to the decor in general.

Sanrio Puroland Puro Village