Japan

Mount Fuji Fall Colors Trip Report – Day 1

After wanting to visit Mount Fuji many times over the course of our last several trips to Japan, we finally decided to make it happen this time. The key considerations were Fuji Five Lakes region versus Hakone (Lake Ashi) and whether to do a day-trip or spend a couple of nights at Mount Fuji. There […]

Tokyo Fall Trip Report – Day 3

Our last full day in Tokyo was to be our most ambitious. Our original itinerary included Meiji Jingu, Robot Restaurant, Hedgehog Cafe Harry, Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden, Fire Museum, Samurai Museum, Hanazono Shrine, and Himawari Zushi Shintoshin. If you haven’t read Day 2 of our Tokyo trip yet, you can catch up here. For Day […]

Tokyo Fall Trip Report – Day 2

Following our first full day in Tokyo, we were up bright and early the next morning for tickets to Tsuta, another ramen restaurant. Actually, not just “another” ramen restaurant—the first Michelin-starred ramen restaurant. Luckily for us, it was only 15 minutes from our place. The process of getting the tickets was much more straightforward than […]

Tokyo Fall Trip Report – Day 1

The opening leg of our Japan odyssey was a long holiday weekend in Tokyo bookended by visits to Tokyo Disneyland and DisneySea for Halloween and Christmas. Our plan was do space those visits out with 5 days in the city, and we’ll cover those days in condensed fashion, along with some photos and video, here. […]

Bon Voyage!

Greetings from the Windy City! As I write this, Sarah and I are waiting to board our flight to Asia for a two month trip exploring Hong Kong and Japan (…but mostly Japan). Traveling for an extended period of time is an idea that has been percolating for a while for us. At the end […]

Kamakura Great Buddha & Kotokuin Temple Review

An hour south of Tokyo lies the seaside town of Kamakura, which is a popular side trip for visitors to Japan thanks to its “Daibutsu” Great Buddha of Kamakura statue and gorgeous Kotokuin Temple, among other things. In this post, we’ll share some thoughts and photos from our visit to Kamakura (namely, these two sites). […]

Odaiba Illumination Tips & Info

Odaiba is a manmade island on Tokyo Bay, located just outside of the city. Its year-round lighting, known as Odaiba Illumination YAKEI is a popular tourist draw, and one of the main reasons people make the trek to the outskirts of Tokyo. Winter Illuminations are popular throughout Tokyo November through December, and there are some […]

Cool Japanese Vending Machines: Drink 2

In a previous post, I shared my odd infatuation with Japan’s ubiquitous vending machines. I wrote that back in this blog’s infancy after a couple of trips to Tokyo and Kyoto, during which I obsessed over finding and buying the oddest/coolest drinks I could find from Japan’s vending machines. Here we are 4 years and […]

Todaiji Temple Review & Tips

Todaiji Temple (東大寺, Tōdai-ji) in Nara is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Japan, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and houses several National Treasures of Japan. In this post, we’ll share photos of Todaiji, tips for visiting this important temple, and our experience in visiting. Thanks to its huge bronze Buddha, Todaiji Temple is a […]

Senso-ji Temple Photos & Tips

Senso-ji is an ancient Buddhist temple in Tokyo. It is a popular destination for both the Japanese and foreign tourists, and can be very crowded at times. This article will provide photos of some highlights of Senso-ji, along with tips those considering a visit. According to legend, in the year 628, two brothers, Hinokuma Hamanari […]