Kyushu, Day 6: More of Takachiho Tour

After lunch, we visited Takachiho Shrine. The shrine is surrounded by Japanese cedar trees with the oldest estimated to be 1000 years old.

MARCH 9, 2020

After lunch, we visited TAKACHIHO SHRINE. The shrine is surrounded by Japanese cedar trees with the oldest estimated to be 1000 years old.

Helen showed us the Meoto Sugi, believed to be a male and a female tree growing side by side and married to each other. She shared that walking around the two trees 3x clockwise with your partner will ensure happiness.

As usual, I was fascinated with the ema designs…

Helen led us to the back area of the shrine and shared a story on how a god cut a demon’s body part to teach it a lesson never to come back. We also visited the theater where Kagura dance is performed every night.

Our last stop was in Iwato, to visit the shrine and cave associated with Amaterasu, the sun goddess and Japan’s most revered kami. We went first to AMANO IWATO SHRINE.

Helen shared the folklore on how Amaterasu became the most important kami in Shintoism – not gonna spoil it though! 😉 After visiting the shrine, we had a bit of a trek to reach AMANO YASUKAWARA CAVE.

Helen asked us to pick up a stone from the shrine entrance before going here, and the custom was for us to place the stone on top of any pile of stones in the cave. In this way, our prayers may be answered. We had to be careful not to knock down the pile because each pile contains prayers from different people.

We went back to Higo-Ozu Station and bid goodbye to everyone. Back at Kumamoto city, we had dinner at COCO ICHIBANYA and I got my favorite cheese hamburg with omelet.

Japan, Day 4: Osu & Sakae

Finally the day to explore Nagoya – hello Day 4! This was more of a shopping day though so don’t expect cultural or technological tours. 🙂

In the morning, I went to Osu Shopping District and went around different anime shops such as Geepress, Mandarake, and Yellow Submarine.

Finally the day to explore Nagoya – hello Day 4! This was more of a shopping day though so don’t expect cultural or technological tours. 🙂

NOVEMBER 24, 2018

In the morning, I went to OSU SHOPPING DISTRICT and went around different anime shops such as Geepress, Mandarake, and Yellow Submarine. My only purchase was the earphone plugs I badly wanted ever since losing my Luffy plug 2 years ago. I also tried looking for a Sailormoon action figure for a friend but oddly enough, I didn’t find any.

When it was lunch time, I went to Maidreamin which is one of the popular maid cafes in Japan. It was my first time to visit one and it was interesting. I had the omurice with curry sauce but I didn’t know that they will draw on the omurice using catsup… uhm, talk about a weird combination with my curry sauce. I couldn’t say no because it might offend them so I just said the first animal I could think of – neko (cat). Good thing the taste of the curry overpowered the catsup!

Some of the customers ordered the set menu which included a dance performance from the maid of their choice. It was like watching a good solo JPop act (but I still have my own reservations on this).

Near Maidreamin was the giant maneki-neko, the landmark of Fureai Plaza. At different times of the day, there were different performers like this guy who was doing different balloon artworks.

Next order of business was to find Ocha no Kakien for my fix of green tea! It wasn’t far from the maneki-neko and they were having a free taste when we got there. I was supposed to buy matcha but they had it in powdered form – which I had no idea how to mix. ☹ I ended up getting a genmaicha+matcha combination of tea leaves for ¥600 (already tried it back home and I super love this!!!).

I forgot what I was trying to look for during this time but I remember seeing so many shops that cater to different shopping needs – shoes, clothes, caps, bags, food… you name it! Be prepared to have tired feet and empty wallets.

I saw a shop selling Cremia while finding the road going to Sakae. So even if it was autumn season, I still bought ice cream. I looove Cremia’s signature langue de chat cone.

I was also supposed to try Gaburi Chicken but still full from lunch so that visit was postponed.

Last stop for the day was SAKAE, which is the popular shopping and entertainment district of Nagoya. I went to PARCO to visit animate and try to find my sister’s Nyanko-sensei plushie request. It was a surprise not to see this in any of the anime shops we visited in Osu, especially since it had a recent movie release in Japan. Anyway, luck was on my side because I found two different plushies!

I also dropped by Tower Records. I initially planned not to buy anything but out of curiosity, I asked the staff for the CD shelf of LUCK LIFE and Kenshi Yonezu. Lo and behold, their shelves were facing each other.

I bought LUCK LIFE’S latest EP (Naru) and Kenshi Yonezu’s Lemon EP with DVD. So happy for Kenshi Yonezu because he has two whole shelves dedicated for his music. ❤

Spot flumpool – they’re on hiatus though ☹

No pictures anymore but after PARCO, I shopped for new coats in GU then spent a lot on food souvenirs in DonKi / Don Quijote (mostly Kitkat and instant noodles). Sad wallet but happy heart.

Back at the area of the hotel, I followed the staff’s instructions on where to find the nearest money changer. It was a surprise to find out that Kintetsu Nagoya Station a fifteen-minute walk. Perfect discovery because it would be an important train station for the next 2 days. Initially, I was thinking of boarding the train from Fushimi to Nagoya then walk to Kintetsu Nagoya. What a nice discovery!

Dinner was at CoCo Ichibanya where I got the hamburger curry with cheese. I liked that they have options on the serving size for rice since I don’t eat much rice.

That’s it for the first exploration of Nagoya!