Hello to part 2 of a special Cherry Post where I talk about Bonfirecherry’s recently #BCHoliday to Japan!
Read Part 1 here if you haven’t already. In this post we will be talking about visiting the rest of Takayama & more of Tokyo before heading home back to the UK!
Something that attracted me to Takayama was that it had a mixture of new and old Japan and on Thursday morning we decided to visit the “old” side of Takayama and we were not disappointed.
You come to “old” Takayama by crossing over a clean and bright bridge which goes over such a beautiful clean river, so clear that you can see the fishes from a distance, the pictures above do not give it justice.
We didn’t really have a plan so we looked what was around and the closet thing was Takayama’s Morning Market so we decided to go there first. Sadly didn’t take a lot of pictures as I’ve produced a youtube video that will be live soon, try to play the video above and it will tell you when it goes live.
The morning market was just beside the river, items and food produced by locals alongside a beautiful clean river, what’s not to love? I did buy a few handmade wood items & some yummy food (did regret having breakfast just before as this was not planned haha).
After having a good time at the morning market, we had a good walk through “old town” a preserved area of Takayama that has been around since the edo period.
We reached the area for the Sakurayama Hachiman Shrine, according to my research it’s the oldest shrine in Takayama being around since the 4th century, how cool is that?
It’s beautiful getting closer and closer to it with some of the buildings around it having unpainted wood and the main shrine was surrounded by large trees that you can see from small distance.
This is the second time I’ve been to such a beautiful shrine & there was really no one around it was pretty quiet. Takayama is most busy in October for it’s Autumn Festival so I’m guessing it would be really busy then (according to research, it attracts 1 million people to the shrine during the festival, crazy!)
1000% I will be doing a print of it, most likely an A3 to do it justice, similar to the pics I took, you just have to be there and just soak in it’s beauty.
There was a smaller shrine nearby up some steps (there is a lot stone steps around Japan, good if you want exercise haha) which was nice to come across. These small shrines are really inspirational.
We came across the Karakuri Museum, which showed off 5 different types of performances done by karakuri dolls that are used during the autumn festival that I mentioned earlier but here you were able to get a more close up look of them, sadly wasn’t able to record or take any pictures of the performances which was a shame as they were interesting.
Karakuri dolls are mechanical dolls shaped like humans installed inside stalls, and they are controlled by various methods such as yarn and shrine. I talk about them in an upcoming youtube video!
We spent the rest of the day walking up and down steps and looking at other shrines that were around the area before finding the touristy streets that we somehow missed up to now.
On the way back to the hostel, we came across a cute small stationery shop, of course I had to buy something, you have to wait and see what I bought!
For the last night in Takayama, we just chilled out and I got my luggage ready to take over to Tokyo for the last 2 days of the trip!
Woke up the early hours of the morning eg around 4am to check out and head off to Tokyo!
The previous time we travelled to Tokyo (read part 1 to find out) we travelled south to Nagoya then Tokyo.
This time we headed north, we first arrived at Inotani. This was a very small station near the mountains, while it was cold (and it was, really really cold) it was interesting to stop there for our train to Toyama!
See the journey to Toyama in the pics above!
We were in Toyama for while as we couldn’t get on the first bullet train that arrived at the station. Gave us time to get our first bento to take on the train with us, have you ever tried a bento before? Comment below!
Enjoy the pictures from the journey to Tokyo via Toyama in the pics above!
When we arrived in Tokyo, we first walked a few minutes down the road from Tokyo train station to a restaurant where I could ditch my luggage til late Sunday night so I don’t have to drag it around everywhere.
After all of that, we headed back to Akihabara to first head to the maid café which Dene wanted to go to. It was an experience for sure!
We spent the rest of day shopping and looking around the area. One of my favourite shops was a shop just full of Gatcha machines, maybe a possible print idea?!
We spent the last day of being in Japan by having a drink at a Gundam Café in Akihabara, I just loved the non-alcoholic cocktail I had, so cute!
Caught the train to Shibuya, famous for it’s crossing as you can see above. There was sooo many people but we managed to cross a few times!
The highlight of the visit to Shibuya, wasn’t the crossing, it was all this amazing art that was decorated around the stairs of a department store we went in to get a good view of the crossing from above. 6 floors of amazing art!
Just before we went to Japan, during my research for the trip I found about a video game arcade based on a creepy looking warehouse was going to close the following Monday there, so we decided to go there next!
We travelled from Shibuya to Kawasaki which took us about 30 minutes to get to by train. It took us about a 10 minute walk from the station there and well you couldn’t miss it. It was looking really nice especially the time we got there, the sun was setting!
The arcade was decorated in such a cool way inside, it was massive, living up to the warehouse name it had. I will think about doing a print based on this soon to be closed arcade, enjoy the pictures above!
After enjoying the arcade, we headed back to Tokyo towards where I left my luggage the day before. We first found the Godzilla statue, it was smaller than I imagined but it was still cool to come across!
It was great going through the streets of central Tokyo late in the evening, I got a vibe of something that I was hoping on getting in the evening all the trip, I can’t really explain it, it was something that the bold Japanese signs were giving off to me if you get what I mean.
We came across a small bar out in a middle of a street that opened about 3 and a half years ago from what I remember the owner saying, we tried some hot premium sake, it was a great way to end the trip as this was on the way to college my luggage and then travelled to Haneda Airport where me and Dene went our separate ways due to I was going back to the UK while Dene was going to the Philippines a few hours later than me.
Got to Haneda Airport around 8pm, the flight back to the UK was at 2.45am. I just thought while I was going near the check-in counters to see if I could check in via the online check-in booths and to my surprise/relief it worked. It was great to get the check-in & security process early, get it out of the way and get some sleep.
Something which was cool and great as I didn’t want to spend much money was that midnight/2 hours before my flight I was able to visit a flight lounge which I never been into before a flight, comfy seats & free food/drink!
It was about a 13 hour flight back to Heathrow, London and that’s where this blog post ends!
Hope you enjoyed my journey in Japan, give it 2/3 years and I will be going back for sure!
Normal Cherry Post returns next Friday, thanks for reading!