All About My Trip To Japan 2018

Hi beautiful friends!

As many of you may know, recently I travelled to Japan for the first time, and it was without a doubt one of the greatest, most unforgettable, life-changing experiences of my life that my soul will cherish forever.

Japan has always been a place to visit on the top of my bucket list. And within that, there were also many places in Japan that I also desired to explore, such as Meiji Shrine, Senso-ji Temple, Fushimi Inari Shrine, Osaka Castle, and much, much more. Every day, I got to tick something off my bucket list for my own personal growth, and words simply cannot express how grateful I am for this whole opportunity.

This beautiful, sacred place really blew me away from the day that I arrived. Even though my body had never been to Japan before, I instantly felt so comfortable and happy, as if my soul had always had a connection here. In general, the atmosphere in Japan is very polite, friendly, with a huge focus on respect in the culture, and I was also taken aback by the cleanliness not only inside buildings, restaurants, accommodation and bathrooms, but also on the streets too. Greenery surrounds every area, the parks are abundant, and incredibly beautiful shrines can be found everywhere.

The place that resonated with me most would probably be the ancient city of Kyoto. While I absolutely loved Tokyo and Osaka, there was something extra special to me about Kyoto, and I also loved how at every turn you could find something culturally unique, such as a shrine, temple, or something else sacred. I fell in love with the Japanese-styled buildings, scenery, street food and markets, and for sure left a piece of my heart there.

It also surprised me how easy it was to eat as a vegan in Japan. There were plenty of vegan restaurants in Tokyo, Kyoto and Osaka, not to mention the abundance of street food that was also vegan- from mochi to rice cakes to fried sweet potatoes; there were so many choices. I also learned how to read food labels which made it a lot easier, and overall I had some seriously amazing vegan food in all places that was beyond delicious!

My trip to Japan was truly the experience I had always dreamed of. A main intention that I focused on during the trip was to completely surrender, to trust in the process, and to have faith in the divine timing of the universe. And I definitely learned just how wonderful life is when you let go of control and allow the universe to handle the details instead of the ego. I had created a brief itinerary prior, of course, to be prepared and organise everything that I desired to see, but ultimately I was not attached to the outcome, and things turned out even better than my mind had imagined. I got to meet so many beautiful viewers who I now consider my friends with a soul connection, eat the most incredible vegan food, walk under blue sunny skies, make new friends at hostels, and experience places that I didn’t think I would come across. This journey proved to me once and for all that the universe truly does have your back.

During my trip, I received a lot of questions from you on Youtube and Instagram about Japan, so I thought that I would make this post outlining the details which can hopefully answer most of your questions πŸ™‚ If you have any other questions that I didn’t get to answer in this post, you are more than welcome to comment them below!

Once again, I am eternally grateful for and humbled by this trip to Japan. The fact that it all happened, that it all manifested into my reality, still feels so surreal. I thank God every day. I felt so incredibly happy, so alive, so high in vibration, and now I understand why my soul was called to visit Japan. It was something I needed, and it happened at the perfect moment for the highest evolution of my soul. There was so much that I learned, not only about beautiful Japan and its culture, the language, but also about myself and my soul purpose. What I know for sure, is that I already consider Japan like a home to me, and I would love to visit again some day soon β™‘

Thank you wholeheartedly for your kind words and support during my trip, I appreciate it with all of my heart. This entire experience wouldn’t have been possible without you, so thank you endlessly.

Sending my love,

Jasmine

xxx


Overview

When: 3rd September 2018 – 11th September 2018

Weather: Warm and mostly humid. When I arrived, a strong typhoon just swept past Japan and there were strong winds in Tokyo, however that passed within a day. It was raining half the time and beautifully sunny during the other half.

Physical Activity: I did around 15,000- 20,000 steps daily as I enjoy walking and exploring, and some underground stations in Tokyo are really big too!

Flight

Melbourne to Tokyo: Qantas

Transport

JR Rail Pass: Before arriving in Japan, I calculated total transport costs of travelling between Narita, Tokyo, Kyoto and Osaka without a JR Pass, and it turned out that purchasing one would be more cost effective. I ordered one online a month before departing and exchanged the pass when I arrived at Narita Airport.

Suica Card: It’s best to also get this card so that you can travel easily without having to purchase separate tickets every time you travel on the other Japanese rail and subway lines (The JR Pass only covers the JR lines). You can get one at most stations or convenient stores and all that you need to do is top it up if the balance is low at the machines which are English friendly. (There is also a Pasmo card which is just about the same thing in Japan)

Accommodation

The Global Hotel Tokyo:Β Located in Shin-Osaka, a central location also known as ‘Korea Town’ in Tokyo, with easy access to the JR Yamanote Line. It was really clean, comfortable, and I enjoyed my stay here in the female only room πŸ™‚

Piece Hostel Kyoto: Located a short walk from Kyoto Station, this was my favourite hostel that I stayed at. They offer many services such as bike rentals, tours, and have very helpful and friendly staff. I stayed in the 6-bed female only room.

Ryokan Uemura: This was my first experience staying in a traditional Japanese house, and it was the most unforgettable stay during my time in Japan. Located in central Gion in Kyoto among other traditional housing in a quiet neighbourhood, this ryokan is run by a very sweet, kind and friendly elderly Japanese lady who also offered a homemade breakfast. It was really beautiful and a unique experience πŸ™‚

Hostel Rakutsuki: Located near Namba Station and the well-known Dotonbori in Osaka, this hostel had really friendly staff, and was very clean, quiet , and comfortable. I also really enjoyed my stay here in the female only level.

9 Hours Narita: Located inside Narita Airport Terminal 2, this accommodation was perfect for one night where I had to get an early flight the next day. It was really quiet, convenient, and my first capsule hotel experience which made it very fun πŸ™‚

Money

Japanese Yen: I had brought Australian dollars with me and exchanged around $600 AUD for Japanese Yen upon arrival. This was more than enough during my week stay in Japan as I only used money on transport, accommodation (some places I paid upfront), food, entry tickets, and little souvenirs.

Other

Wifi Rental: Before my trip, I had booked a wifi-device rental online to make my journey easier and safer, and collected it at a counter inside Narita Airport upon arriving.


ARRIVAL DAY

  • Landed: Narita Airport
  • Housekeeping:
    • Money exchange
    • Collect wifi
    • Activate JR Pass
    • Narita Express tickets
  • Narita Express to Shinjuku
  • JR Yamanote Line to Shin-Okubo
  • Accommodation: The Global Hotel Tokyo

DAY ONE

Tokyo

  • Meiji Shrine
  • Harajuku: Takeshita Dori Street
  • Lunch: Brown Rice by Neals’ Yard
  • Imperial Palace
  • Dinner: Ain Soph Shinjuku
  • Accommodation: The Global Hotel Tokyo

DAY TWO

Tokyo

  • Kaminarimon Gate
  • Nakamise Street
  • Senso-ji Temple
  • Lunch: 8tablish
  • Dessert: Elle Cafe
  • Nezu Shrine
  • Shibuya
  • Dinner: Nagi Shokudo
  • Accommodation: The Global Hotel Tokyo

DAY THREE

Tokyo to Kyoto

  • Tokyo Government Metropolitan Building: They had a free viewing deck with stunning 360 views of Tokyo.
  • Lunch: Ain Soph Ripple Shinjuku
  • Shinkansen from Shinagawa Station in Tokyo to Kyoto Station
  • Accommodation: Piece Hostel Kyoto

DAY FOUR

Kyoto

  • Fushimi Inari Shrine
  • Lunch: Vegans Cafe and Restaurant
  • Kiyomizu Temple
  • Gion District
  • Accommodation: Ryokan Uemura

DAY FIVE

Kyoto to Osaka

  • Kodaiji Temple
  • Yasaka Shrine
  • Lunch: Ain Soph Kyoto
  • Shinkansen from Kyoto Station to Shin Osaka
  • Subway from Shin Osaka to Namba Station
  • Dotonbori
  • Dinner: Shizen Bar Paprika Vegan
  • Accommodation: Hostel Rakutsuki

DAY SIX

Osaka

  • Osaka Castle
  • Lunch: Alt Cafe and Bar
  • Shinsekai
  • Accommodation: Hostel Rakutsuki

DAY SEVEN

Osaka to Tokyo

  • Train from JR Osaka Station to JR Nara Station
  • Nara Deer Park
  • Todaiji Temple
  • Lunch: Kuppila Vegan Restaurant
  • Train from JR Nara Station to Namba Station
  • Kuromon Market
  • Shinkansen from Shin Osaka Station to Shinagawa Station in Tokyo
  • Narita Express from Shinagawa Station to Narita Airport Terminal 2
  • Accommodation: 9 Hours Narita

TIPS

  • Learn some basic Japanese:
    While the train/subway stations and popular tourist areas are very English friendly, as a traveller to another country where English isn’t the main language, it’s always best to learn some basic phrases for convenience and out of pure respect, as we can’t expect someone to automatically be able to speak English. These can be phrases such as ‘thank you’, ‘excuse me’, ‘where is…?’, etc.
  • Take shoes off before entering homes and accommodation:
    The Japanese culture is very big on respect, and part of this includes remembering to take off your shoes upon entering homes, other rooms, and some seating areas in restaurants. In the hostels I stayed at, they all provided slippers and lockers for storing shoes.
  • Clothing:
    During the time I went, it was still very hot and humid in Japan, so I would recommend packing lightly and bringing just one or two jackets. Definitely bring comfortable shoes to walk in too πŸ™‚
  • Carry cash:
    While most of Japan is very modern and developed, not all places accept card payments, so it’s always best to have cash with you. Most markets use cash only, and I also came across some restaurants which also only accept cash.
  • Bring an umbrella:
    September is also the beginning/peak of typhoon season in Japan, so it rained or drizzled nearly every day, and having a small foldable umbrella in your bag already with you is very convenient.
  • Use Google maps:
    This was my saviour and best friend in Japan. When I searched up how to get from one place to another, it would provide me with really accurate and detailed ways of how to travel between the places, such as directions for walking or taking the train. If I had to take the train, it would also tell me which line to get, from which platform, length of time, and how much it would cost!
  • Reserve seats on the Shinkansen:
    If you get the JR Pass, it also includes free seat reservation, so upon arriving to the shinkansen station, I highly recommend reserving your seat at the JR service counter, especially during peak hours.

 

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9 thoughts on “All About My Trip To Japan 2018

  1. Thank you for your hard work and always posting and keeping us updated. I love your videos, I love your blog and I love your instagram stories so much that I always check them and wouldn’t wanna miss your insta story updates. You are so inspiring Jas, as I always say. I’ve become a better human being and am a lot more happy and content with everything which gives me so much peace. And thank you again for sharing this. Would love to visit Japan one day and I’d probably do all the things you did cause ill be so lost 😁 thank you so much again ❀ God bless you always

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Claire, wow, thank you SO much for your kind words, I appreciate it wholeheartedly! I’m truly so happy to know that this could inspire you, and that you are shining more brightly than ever. You’re most welcome, and thank you again. Sending all of my love xxx

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  2. Hi Jasmine! This is so helpful–your travels are always so inspiring. I’ll be referencing this post whenever I next go to Japan, and I’m looking forward to your post about Poland! Just wanted to let you know that you’re my favorite Youtuber/ blogger. I’d been going through a hard time this summer, but your videos helped me so much. You also inspired me to create my own blog! We share so many interests–plant based food, learning Chinese and Korean, yoga, traveling…you’re so inspiring and I’m grateful for you and your advice. Love from Seattle!

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  3. Thank you Jasmine for your blog and sharing your experiences with us. I truly love your YouTube videos and the inspiring messages that you always relay to us. Being the same age as you and seeing you do all these things traveling and being out of your comfort zone really pushes me to do better and have more confidence in myself. You are truly an amazing person , and I thank you for everything continue to do what your doing because you are doing something amazing.

    Like

  4. Hi Jasmine, the kind hearted soul in the world. I wish you all the very best in all what you do and a healthy & a happy life as always. Thanks for making people happy and sending good vibes all around.❀️

    Liked by 1 person

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