Here's some slightly belated photos from my Japan trip. Last October me and the then-gf, now fiancée went to japan, Kyoto, and Kinosakionsen. This is a very pruned-down selection of photos:
Here's a spot near Akihabara, not too far from the first place we stayed at. That area is a very iconic bit of metropolitan Tokyo. Everything is shopping, games, or themed cafes, and it all has 5+ stories.
pushing back the dark
There are many cat cafes (we stopped at one too, also a maid cafe) but there are also owl cafes.
Obligatory Japanese toilet controls. Not at all confusing the first time.
We went to Ueno Park one day, which was massive and a very nice change from the urban cacophony of the surrounding area. There was a cool market going on, and various shrines. Shrines are dispersed all throughout the city actually. You'll turn the corner in a dense skyscraper-filled block and see a shrine.
Odaiba has it's own statue of liberty.
We also went up into the Fuji buidilng ball
Next we took the bullet train to Kyoto.
The hostel/hotel we stayed at there was great. You could get a $4 glass of Hibiki Whiskey at the lobby. They also had an elaborate self-grind and pour-over coffee and tea bar and small public bath. It was super close to the Kyoto train station which was a very cool center of activity.
Nishiki market in Kyoto
Fushimi Inari Taisha, thousands of red tori gates all the way up the mountain
We also took a tram up to nearby Enryakuji, which was a very cool day trip. The temple itself was encased in a large secondary structure for preservation, so it was hard to get anything of the exterior. The tram operator was a Disney princess.
The view up there was amazing
On a side note, at the end of a long day walking around we stopped at CoCo Curry House and I had probably the best curry of my life. At this point we were thoroughly shrined and templed-out.
Then we took a train to Kinosakionsen. There they have hotsprings and traditional bath houses. We stayed in a ryokan. Probably one of the most relaxing and memorable points in the trip. The town itself was very enchanting and quite small. Here was the view from our room:
Part of the Ryokan service was elaborate, traditional Japanese Kaiseki which was both great and challenging at times. One of the dinners was a strange sea snail thing?
This was breakfast:
After that we went back to Tokyo before departing. I'm already itching to go back again.
I'd like to visit Japan. I had thought about going next summer, until I realized the Olympics are taking place in Tokyo around that time, all the extra people and increased prices makes me hesitate. Were there any particularly helpful resources you used to plan your trip?