I’m so excited to talk about my most recent trip outside of the country– a vacation to Japan with my mum and dad! We had always been talking about visiting Tokyo and other cool places, and this year we were able to make that dream come true!
On our trip, we went to Tokyo, Kyoto and Osaka, three of the top cities for tourists to go to. We landed in Tokyo for the first part of our trip and stayed there for three days. Tokyo is a great example of the old and the new, since for every news skyscraper is an ancient temple that is still well looked after. As the capital of Japan, Tokyo is very busy and very crowded! But from our hotel window, the lights are truly an amazing sight. Definitely, if you’re an anime fan, Tokyo has an abundance of anime and manga shops on every street that it’s hard to choose. But since my dad is an architect, we spent a lot of time in the temples. We spent a whole day just in the Meiji Shinto shrine, one of the most beautiful religious buildings in the world, and of course we visited the Imperial Palace and its gardens. We have great pictures for all those locations, but I think my most memorable experience in the capital was going to the Tsukiji fish market, a must-visit for every tourist in Japan!
The next leg of our journey was in Kyoto. Kyoto used to be the capital of Japan and the seat of the Emperor, but on our holiday we learned that the capital was transferred to Tokyo during the 1st Meiji period in around 1860s. Kyoto remains a very charming place with a lot of preserved history and culture. My favorite aspect of it was the Geisha culture! The Gion district offers a lot of history about Geisha and their elaborate, fascinating lifestyles. Many Geisha still live in Gion, as a way of preserving the city’s heritage. Our last day was spent in Arashiyama’s bamboo grove to take a nice, long relaxing walk in the bamboo grove, which we capped off with afternoon tea at a wooden tea house (called Ochaya!)
Osaka was the last location on our trip, and even if we planned it to be the most relaxed, it ended up being the most exciting and exhausting! We visited Universal Studios Japan, hit up some more temples, and spent hours and hours shopping, returning home with lots of gifts for friends and families and souvenirs to add to our travel collection.
I loved Japan for the way it seemed to effortlessly let the past and the present coexist, with a lot of emphasis on preserving their culture from beyond the modern age. If you’re going to travel anywhere, make it Japan– make it any city in Japan!