I’ve always loved taking a stroll through a garden, particularly a Japanese garden. It always just feels so peaceful. It’s not surprising that, when I finally made it to Japan, I spent a great deal of time exploring the many parks and gardens of Japan. Without any further ado, here are the parks and gardens that made the top of my list.
I went bowling at Round1 Entertainment for the first when I was studying abroad in Japan. I lucked out that there was a Round1 close to my dorm and close to my university, so I found myself there quite frequently. Despite my troubles trying to convert American shoe sizes to Japanese shoe sizes so I could rent the correct bowling shoes, I thoroughly enjoyed bowling at Round1 because of their unique Moonlight Strike Game.
I’ll be the first to admit that I have no idea how to read a traditional paper map. There’s no point when I can have all the same information and more in the palm of my hand! If you are planning on traveling to Japan, there are a lot of apps out there that can help you not only navigate the train system, but also find where to eat, learn some survival phrases, and more! Before you go, make sure you download these essential apps for your trip!
Are you planning to take a trip to Japan? Do you find Japan’s extensive public transportation system more than just a little intimidating? No need to fear! Japan’s public transportation system can be a little overwhelming at first, but once you get the hang of it, it’s actually incredibly convenient and easy to use!
Kyoto, Japan is full of rich culture and history. It was largely untouched during the World Wars, meaning many of the traditional architecture remains. If you are looking to experience the traditional styles and culture Japan is famous for, you’ll definitely want to check out these shrines and temples in Kyoto.
If you are not Japanese, you will never be Japanese. This may seem like such an obvious statement. Duh, of course if I’m not born Japanese, I won’t magically become Japanese. To most people, that’s not a big deal. However, it is a fact you have to learn to accept if you intend to live in Japan, because it will come up again and again even after you’ve lived there for 20 years. You can walk like a duck, quack like a duck, but you still won’t be a duck. Sorry.
The day I left my dorm, I said goodbye to many of my friends, and spent a good part of the train ride in tears. However, I was on my way to Chiba with one of my friends, so I had that to hold onto. I spent the day with his family as he showed me around his hometown, and he and his family took me to the airport when it was finally time to board my plane.
The other day one of my friends invited me to go hiking at Mt. Takao. Then yesterday I went to Kawagoe with my Rikkyo buddy. He also invited me back to his hometown in Chiba to stay with his family since my flight will be leaving from Narita airport, which is only a few minutes from his hometown.
Today, I was off to see Himeji Castle and Kokoen, but before I did that, I also stopped at Kyoto Tower since it was closed the first time I went. I’ll admit that when I learned about Himeji castle in my Japanese classes, I wasn’t overly interested in it, but I ended up deciding to go mostly because it isn’t that far from Kyoto and because it’s such a popular place. In the end, I’m super glad I went. I think it’s my favorite out of all the castles I’ve been to.
Yesterday I decided to take a break from traveling. When coming back from Sendai, I arrived at my dorm around 6:00am. Since I didn’t get very much sleep, I decided to push my travel plans back and take a day to simply catch up on my sleep. Now that I’m all rested up, I’m off to Nagoya.
Back at my home university in my Japanese classes, we learned about the word “chikan”, which refers to public, unwanted molestation. In general, it’s often used to refer to perverted Japanese men. I’d heard stories about Japan having problems with men that would grope women, usually while on trains. Yet, it was never anything I took seriously, because I’d also heard that these types of men usually avoided foreigners. Foreigners usually weren’t afraid to retaliate, while Japanese women, especially the girls, were less likely to speak up. Since arriving in Japan I’ve seen some women only trains, but other than that, I hadn’t thought much about it.
On Tuesday me and a few friends went to Yokohama for the day and went to Chinatown and the bay area. Then, on Saturday our dorm held a farewell party. We still have a few weeks before people start leaving, but with finals starting this coming week, they figured now would be the best time. It’s hard to believe it’s already time to say farewell.