Friday, January 24, 2014

Kansai 10D9N Itinerary 关西十天行程

Hello readers!

Going to Kansai but don't know where to start?
You will be pleased to know that we are sharing our Kansai 10D9N itinerary!
We've covered 4 places namely Osaka, Kyoto, Mount Koya and Kurama. It might look simple but we have spent a lot of our time on our research. We can tell you what to do in Kansai if you have 10 days, where to go in Kansai and how we saved on our transportation.

If you love what you are reading, please help us to share our love around ;) 
Day 1
Arrive at Kansai International Airport (KIX). Got my Osaka Unlimited Pass & Kansai Thru Pass at the visitor counter.
Checked in at Osaka Hana Hostel.
The main idea was to travel around Osaka, using Osaka Unlimited Pass (OUP) on the first 2 days as I have to use the pass for 2 days consecutively. Due to time constrain, I only went to places with free admission:
Osaka Museum of Housing and Living
Cruise Ship Santa Maria
Tempozan Ferris Wheel
HEP 5 Ferries Wheel
Floating Garden Observatory
Tombori River Cruise

Day 2
Osaka Castle Museum
Osaka Castle Nishinomaru Garden
Osaka Museum of History
Shintennoji Temple
Tennoji Zoo
Natural Hot Spring Naniwa no Yu
Tsutenkaku Tower*

Additional place: Shinseikai and Shinsaibashi (Not included in OUP)

Day 3
Traveled out of the city for two interesting museum:
Instant Ramen Museum- you can make your own cup noodle for 300Y.
Asahi Beer Museum- you will be introduced to the whole beer process making and get 3 free drinks (alcoholic and non alcoholic beverages) at the end of the visit.

Explored Nanba Area

Day 4
Arashiyama & Takao
Tenjinbashisuji Walking Street

Mount Koya

Then traveled to Kyoto for the following 2 days.

Day 6
Fushimi Inari ,Tofukuji, Kiyomizudera Temple, Higashiyama Walking Tour, Gion

Philosopher Path Walking Tour, Nishiki Market,  Imohe Temple

Day 8
Back in Osaka
Kurama & Kibune

Day 9
Kuramon Market
Minoo Park
Shinseikai & Shinsaibashi area
Day 10
Back to Malaysia

*Didn't managed to go up as the queue was very long and the waiting time was 1 hour. You should make Tsutenkaku Tower the first thing to do in Osaka during weekends.

Details will be up soon!

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Travelling Solo

I never thought of doing solo backpacking this year.
However, after listening to my friend's experience in Japan, I have the courage to do the exactly same trip as her.
The opportunity came as MAS was having promotion and I booked the ticket on the very last day!
The trip won't be a success without the help of ryn and my friend.

So, how was it?
It was great! *Except that nobody will be there to help you take picture*

My friends were telling me how great it is to have the courage to travel alone. It wasn't difficult until you finally do it. Frankly speaking, I met a more girls  who travelled alone compared to guys during my trip. I think girls nowadays do have more courage than guys ;)

One thing about travelling alone is you have the flexibility of changing plans all the time. I don't know what will I be doing the next day until late evening when I have time to do some research about it. Moreover, you will find it easier to listen to the advice of other travelers and make changes to your plan. Anyway, the only person you need to ask is yourself.

Another thing which I enjoy very much about travelling alone is the absolute freedom. I get to follow my rhythm, desires and my pace.  I think I'm already addicted to the feeling of it. <3

Trust your gut feelings all the time! If you feel like going to the park today, you should just do it. I learned a lot about trusting myself and my gut feelings. I always find something awesome by trusting my gut feelings.

However, it is always good to take safety measure especially when you are a girl.  It's good to check out hostel reviews and some feedback from Trip Advisor beforehand. Imagine arriving in the city at late night without pre-book accommodation, it is always wiser to have a few backup plans in hand. I have learned my lesson well in Vietnam last week. If you are planning to visit during the peak season, always book your accommodation earlier.

Remember, always keep a low profile. You won't want to attract unnecessary attention from pickpockets and etc. Safety should come first before anything else.

Tell us why do you like about travelling solo!

P/S: If you are still thinking if you should travel alone, just do it! You will be glad that you make the decision =)

Friday, January 3, 2014

Trip planning 101

I'm not sure if this is something to do with age. But, I can't handle tedious planning anymore. I hate reading the same information again and again (because everyone is writing about the same thing) while hoping that someone has a totally different experience. It's nice to have their advice in mind but I would prefer to write my version of stories.

I tried to plan for my first solo backpacking trip but it didn't work. I managed to find some information about Kansai and book my accommodation. I didn't know where I was going until I reach Japan. One thing about travelling during peak season is that always pre-book your hotel beforehand unless you have extra cash to spend.

Here's one you can do to avoid disappointment
#1 Read and have a brief idea on places which you can go

#2 Talk to travelers at your guesthouse.
This is very useful if you are visiting during spring or autumn. They will tell you where are the places worth going.

#3 Talk to the tourist information center.
I meant the official one but not the tour agency. It's always better to refer to Trip Advisor compared to the tour agency.

#4 Read up blogs from people who has similar interest as you.
As for most people, they might think that visiting a tropical fruit plantation or the Orang Utan sanctuary is interesting because they don't have it in their country. As for a Malaysian like me, I have seen all of these since young and I don't really bother going to these places.

#5 Check the weather
It is very important to have the correct outfit especially the weather can be quite different throughout the country or region.

What are your planning tips?