Day 10: Tenjinbashi-suji Shopping Street
On our 10th day, we decided to go to Tenjinbashi-suji Shotengai, a 2.6km shopping street which is the longest of its kind in Japan. This part of the trip was mostly for the aunties. Ander and I originally had USJ in mind for this day but had to give it up so we can accompany them.
Yes, we walked the whole stretch — and back! We snagged just a few souvenirs. The aunties on the other hand shopped a lot that day. They were looking forward to this, after all.
We passed by Dotonbori at night (at this point it has kinda been like a mini-tradition to pass by at night since Dotonbori is so close to our hotel). We took a longer walk home and stumbled upon a cafe-restaurant called Cafe Grove that has this yozakura — a term for the cherry blossoms at night — view from the second floor. Something like this, which is even more beautiful at night. You get the picture. We wanted to dine but they only take reservations during high spring time, and for a reason.
Day 10 expenses:
Train/subway fare: P414
Day 11: Osaka Castle Park, Osaka Castle, Umeda Sky Building
The next day, we gave the aunties the whole day to relax (we later found out they went shopping again anyway). Ander and I went to Osaka Castle. There is a park in the front simply called Osaka Castle Park where a lot of plum blossoms were in bloom. Loved how vibrant they looked even on a gloomy day.
I love the minimalism of plum blossoms! I’m looking forward to our Taiwan trip early next year. I know the plum blossoms, and even the cherry blossoms in Taiwan don’t look as full as the ones in Japan or Korea, but from what I’ve seen in pictures, they sure are beautiful in their own way.
We decided not to get close to Osaka Castle and just walked around the grounds taking photos and footages.
Love how this shot represents all 4 seasons.
Back in Osaka Castle Park on the way out, I took more photos of sakura. Lovely, lovely sakura.
We next headed to Umeda Sky Building where we got an unobstructed 360-degree view of Osaka at night from the Floating Garden Observatory. The building itself was amazing but I don’t know why I didn’t take any pictures of it (LOL).
My family and friends know I just love ’em city lights. It felt so surreal, like every time.
Day 11 expenses:
Train/subway fare: P621
Entrance fees: P900
Day 12: Kyoto: Keage Incline, Lake Biwa Canal, Philosopher’s Path, Konchi-in Temple, Nanzen-ji Temple, Spiral Brick Tunnel, Uji River
Ander and I spent Day 12 on a daytrip back to Kyoto. I was looking forward to the sakura in Kyoto as they weren’t quite at peak yet when we first came. I made the right decision splitting our Kyoto daytrips. The blooms looked just right!
Tourists flocked the Keage Incline. It was really hard to get a shot any less busier.
The rain didn’t stop us from enjoying the sakura in Philosopher’s Path.
Ander covered me while I changed camera lenses and took these lovely close-up shots of cherry blossoms. The raindrops made everything better. So worth it.
We passed by a few temples, the most famous one being Nanzen-ji Temple, on the way back to Keage.
We had lunch at the train station. It didn’t really matter since both of us are not picky eaters (Also, cheap Japanese train station food = Philippine restaurant-quality food.)
On the way back, I asked Ander to drop by this “spot” I was talking about earlier. I just caught a quick glimpse of it from the fast train a few days back when we first went to Kyoto and just marked it on my map. Little did I know that there was more in store for us there. Turns out there was also a river along the abudant sakura trees. We got lucky.
It was raining and I literally danced under the shower of pink sakura petals — perhaps my favorite part of sakura.
Day 12 expenses:
Train/subway fare: P1,665
Entrance Fees: P387