Osaka Japan


Japan日本, Nihon or Nippon?, officially 日本国 Nippon-koku or Nihon-koku) is an island nation in East Asia. Located in the Pacific Ocean, it lies to the east of the Sea of Japan, People's Republic of China, North Korea, South Korea and Russia, stretching from the Sea of Okhotsk in the north to the East China Sea and Taiwan in the south. The characters which make up Japan's name mean "sun-origin", which is why Japan is sometimes identified as the "Land of the Rising Sun".
(source: wikipedia).


Japan is less than 5 hours away from Manila. Compared to the other neighboring Asian countries, Filipinos need a visa to enter Japan, and you have to present quite lot of documents before being given a visa, which makes it quite difficult to obtain (if you apply from the Philippines), but the good thing is it is free of charge (gratis). I got my Japanese visa here in Dubai. Unlike in the Philippines, I just presented my employment certificate, bank statement and hotel booking and itinerary and got my visa after 7 days.

My Trip. After 10 hours of flying from Dubai to Osaka, we arrived in Kansai International Airport at 1700 hrs and took the JR line to our hotel. Signage were all written in Japanese and you hardly find someone who speaks English in Osaka. The weather was still so cold. People were still wearing winter jackets paired with short skirts and knee high socks! They were all so cute in their get ups. Exactly same as that of Japanese manga. Even there school uniform were oh so short-pleated skirt! There were so many shops selling socks in different styles and color. Noticeably, Japanese people are very disciplined. Whenever we take the escalator or stairs anywhere in the City, even if there is no sign to keep right, everybody walks to the right and stands on the left. So if you are in a hurry, there is always a free space to walk or run. If you do not like to walk, then stand on the left side of the escalator and never block the walk way.

-------------------------Arrival in Kansai International Airport, Osaka, Japan

----------------------------------------JR Railway Station, connected from the Airport --------------------------------------------------------------------------The Japanese Yen

JPY 1 is equal to PHP 0.50/ JPY 1=uSD 0.01
Japan is regarded as an expensive country. Travelling to Japan can indeed be very costly but as in any other cities in the world, there are always ways for traveling on a budget specially if you plan ahead. First on the list of course is to book for budget hotels. There are available hostels and guesthouses in Japan, from traditional ryokan or western style.

A ryokan (旅館?) is a type of traditional Japanese inn dating from the Edo period (1603–1868), when they served travelers along Japan's highways. They typically feature tatami-matted rooms, communal baths, and other public areas where visitors may wear yukata and talk with the owner. (wikipedia)

The Weekly Mansion Otamae.

Through the recommendation of my colleague, we booked a 3-night stay for 17600 yen at The Weekly Mansion and didn't regret it. The room though old is spacious by Japanese standard, with 1 double bed and a single bed good for the 3 of us. Its a studio room with kitchenette complete with cooking pans and utensils. There is a sitting area, a balcony and tv. in the room. The toilet was tiny and looked like the one you see in a cabin and flush was a bit noisy too, but for the cheap price we paid, and the good location, it was good enough. There were plenty of restaurants around, a convenience store and the Osaka Castle was a walking distance away as well as the subway station. Front desk closes at 8pm. (review also posted on trip advisory.com)
---------------------------------------------------------https://meandmyitchyfeet.blogspot.com/2009/06/japan-in-spring.html---------Yummy Japanese Food!

------------------------------Hot Ramen, perfect for a very cold first night in Osaka!

On our first night in Osaka, we ate a hefty bowl of ramen in restaurant near our hostel which cost us 800 yen. In Japan they don't ask you what you want for drinks, instead gives you a glass of water before serving the food. Then followed by tea. The average price we pay for one order of meal (like that in the picture) is 800-1500 yen and food models are usually displayed outside the restaurant which is very helpful for us since we just have to point whichever we like.

(since menus are mostly written in Japanese or the server doesn't speak English). Note: It is considered bad manner to eat while walking on the streets of Japan.

------------------------------------------Mingling with the locals at Namba Market

We planned to go to Universal Studios which is also in Osaka but we spent so
much time in Namba, a crowded shopping street in Osaka and before we knew it, it was already late(grrr). We spent a lot of time looking for a jacket since my friend didn't bring one because she was expecting that it won't be cold anymore at this time of the year. Finally, my friend got a non-branded leather-like jacket at 15000 yen. I don't advice shopping in japan as it is very expensive.
----------------------------------------------------The Osaka Castle

-------------Passing through the NHK Building on our way to Osaka Castle

--We chanced upon some Japanese girls in Japanese Kimono on our way back. The next morning after visiting the Osaka Castle, we checked out of the Weekly Mansion and headed back to Kansai International Airport via the Airport limousine which is parked at the Sheraton Hotel Osaka and flew to TOKYO via JAL!

Tokyo! Tokyo

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