Tuesday, August 06, 2013

15 Days Central Japan Spring Trip 2013 Day4-5 (Osaka, Tango Peninsula,and Kyoto)

Day 4:
Today we went to Osaka Aquarium before we set off to Kyoto - Tango Peninsula. 

Osaka Aquarium is also known as Kaiyukan (海遊館). It exhibits various forms of life inhabiting the Pacific Rim. Some of the impressive exhibits includes the Yu-chan the Whale Shark, sea otters, etc

Tadaaa~~!! Reached Osaka Aquarium..
Here are some photos :))

Osaka Aquarium

Sea Otters Feeding time(≧∇≦)

Hmm... Seems to be a Capybara

Pacific Whitesided Dolphins

This is one of the many marine life that amazes me.
Trails of light running through the side of its body

Harbor Seal giving the nani (what)? Look hehehe

Finally~~ Yu chan the whale shark!!
The photo might not do it justice, as it is alot bigger than how the photo portray it to be..
Just imagine the fish (below Yu chan) from head to tail is probably around 1.6m-1.7m

Bought some souvenirs.
As we were not very hungry, we bought a penguin nikuman (meat bread) for our lunch 

Head toward Kyoto - Tango Peninsula
It's a 2-3hour journey from either Osaka or Kyoto

Distance between Kyotango, Osaka and Kyoto

So why did we choose this place?
There's no other reason than the fact that our itchy hands clicked the "booking" button *accidently* after going into http://www.taiza.jp/  while surfing for Kyoto ryokan. (Yes, we are suckers for good photography...)
If you are interested in staying in kyoto ryokan, you can try going to
View it at your own risk. ;)

Anyway as I was saying, the Tango Peninsula is at the Sea of Japan. The place that we went to is basically a harbor town called Tango, the closest train station is Amino and it is said to be a popular tourist sport amongst Japanese. 
Habor=Fishing=Fresh/Cheap Seafood
So we booked ourselves a 1 day stay with a mid range dinnerset meal (which includes crabs, beef and sashimi) + standard breakfast included at 28,000yen for 2 person

Here are some photos taken along the way:

Students making their way home

Beautiful country side in Kyotango

Stretch of pink flowers greeted when we finally arrived at Amino

The ryokan that we stayed was 15-20mins car ride away from Amino train station.
Good thing they provide free transport service to fetch us from the station.

Gorgeous view from my room :)

Highlight of the day: FoOOooodddd~!

(Top right photo was taken from their website but.. Pretty much the same as what we saw 😁)

Verdict: いちばん + Super 美味しい (Ichiban + Super Oishii)

The food was exactly what we expected it would be.. Maybe even better since some of the dishes we have not tried before~ *happy desu~*

Day 5:
We woke up early today for our breakfast and morning walk, as in the afternoon we would be heading to Kyoto.

Breakfast - Love everything about it

From fresh sashimi to boiled tofu, everything is just so delicious :D~~~
(Close up photos are available on fb page)

After breakfast, we decided to head out to explore.
Knowing that we were foreigners, the hotel staff generously offered to bring us around. Yay~~~~ Super happy. I must say they really provide very good service from the minute they picked us up :) 
Heard of stories that  ryokans, etc located in foreigner tourist spot like tokyo/kyoto areas tend to be more commercialized, hence losing their friendliness/warm welcoming feeling towards their customers... 
Although all the hotels/ryokans I've stayed have good service. But none like this.. I guess this area hasn't been "polluted" by foreign tourists yet... 
Then again... this is one of the most expensive ryokan we had stayed.. Maybe it's more of "what you pay is what you get" kind of service *shrug*
(Note to self: Probably another trip to japan might give me a better idea on this matter lol :p)

Here are some photos:

Peace + Quietness along rivier side

The wind was blowing so strong that my umberlla "flipped" the other side... Seems as though a thunder storm was coming

Challenge the storm!!!
And failed miserably... _| ̄|o

Scenery along the harbor

View from the top

Underneath the cherry blossom

Head towards Kyoto

After checking into the hostel, we went to Kyoto tourism board at kyoto station to search for info on sakura viewing 

Sadly.. as mentioned on my previous post, this year's sakura bloomed much earlier than past years.. (the earliest in the history compared to past years sakura blooming record).
From the board, most of the sakura has started falling except for Hirano shrine (平野神社). What's more was that Ohkasai (cherry blossom festival) was on :)) 
Without much thought we set off to Hirano shrine.

We took train to Kitanihakubaicho, and walked towards the red dot indicated on the google map.. Along the way, we were lost in the "jungle" couple of times as some of the roads were blocked. However, when we finally "reached" the shrine, the place looked small and deserted.... And it seems as though there was no festival at all.  
Since it was not the first time we were cheated by the google map...plus the fact that we were so exhausted, we gave up looking for help and went back to the train station.

Soooo... where the hell was that festival ??
We only found that out while we were writing this blog post... 

Picture says a 1000words... (Yellow pointer is the main enterance.. And the white pointer is where we think we were..)
Enough said..

After leaving Hirano Shrine empty handed, we decided to go to Nijo castle (二条城)as it was said that there was night sakura viewing available that day...

Here are some of the photos for the day :)

Head back to Kyoto station, to look for food and found ourselves at Dai-ichi Asahi Ramen store as it was one of the only few stores open than 7-11 that was open at that time. At almost 11pm the shop was still very crowded.

Dai-ichi Asahi serves Kyoto-style ramen which is known for its thick shoyu-based soup. Apart from that, their noodles turn out to be straight noodles and slightly thicker than regular noodles. 
We ordered Standard Ramen (650yen) and Bamboo Shoot Ramen (700yen).  Overall, we find the food to be quite good, and definitely a place to drop by for late night supper if you are around Kyoto station. 

Honke Dai-ichi-asahi
5:00~26:00 ※木曜日定休

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