{  Tokyo Disney Sea  }

Tokyo Disney Sea
Tokyo Disney Sea
Tokyo Disney Sea
Tokyo Disney Sea
Tokyo Disney Sea

This was my 2nd time visiting Tokyo Disney Sea. I feel like I can say I’ve finally mastered this park as I got to go on all the rides I didn’t get to go on last time and I also discovered my favorite ride!

It is currently Tokyo Disneyland’s 30th Anniversary so the park is filled with lots of 30th anniversary items and special decorations have also made their way over to Disney Sea. I previously posted a 3-part post on Disney Sea, but here is an update post based on my latest experience!

I just can’t say enough about how beautiful this park is and how well it’s maintained. I mean it’s the most expensive theme park ever made and you can see why. I think it’s so cute/creative how some people in Japan get so dressed up just to visit the park. Some couples, students, or families really know how to stand out!

Click the link below to see what we ate and my favorite ride at Disney Sea!

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{  Taiwan Diary: Jiufen  }

Taiwan Diary: Jiufen
Taiwan Diary: Jiufen
Taiwan Diary: Jiufen
Taiwan Diary: Jiufen
Taiwan Diary: Jiufen

Have you ever seen the movie “Spirited Away” by Hayao Miyazaki?

Jiufen (九份), a small little town in the Taipei country side (about an hour away from Taipei by car), is breathtaking and has an aura of serene beauty. Jiufen has a very calm and nostalgic feeling to it, it’s easy to spot bits and pieces of inspiration & resemblance from the movie.

As you might expect, it’s a very popular tourist destination (especially for Japanese tourists like myself :p) but since it rained in the AM and cleared up by the afternoon on the day we went, we got very lucky and were able to experience it with fewer crowds than usual. According to my friend, Jiufen is known to be the most beautiful right after the rain so it was definitely the perfect timing for us as it sure was beauuutiful. We actually purposefully visited towards the late afternoon so that we could experience both the daytime and the early evening to savor the two different atmospheres. When it started getting darker and all the red lanterns turned on, it created such a magical atmosphere and we were very glad we stayed for both times. I personally LOVED the evening atmosphere more.

We tea-ed at 阿妹茶酒館 aka Yubaaba’s Tea House (湯婆婆の屋敷) and since we had a party of 9, we were seated upstairs where they had the larger tables. Our friends ordered some traditional dishes that go well with tea and we enjoyed chilling here while looking out at the city landscape. Some people say this place is over-rated but this was one of my favorite places we visited during our trip :)

This concludes my “Taiwan Diary” posts. Hope you enjoyed seeing some photos from my trip!

01. Jiufen from the top
02. The inspiration for the tunnel scene that connects to the ‘other side’ in the movie of Spirited Away.
03. Tea time at 阿妹茶酒館 aka Yubaaba’s Tea House (湯婆婆の屋敷)
04. Look who we found! lol A fan dressed as ‘Kaonashi’. 「カオナシ」に遭遇(笑)

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Taiwan Diary: Taipei
Taiwan Diary: Night Markets
Taiwan Diary: Ice Monster
Taiwan Diary: Jiufen
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{  Taiwan Diary: Night Markets  }

Taiwan Diary: Night Markets
Taiwan Diary: Night Markets
Taiwan Diary: Night Markets
Taiwan Diary: Night Markets
Taiwan Diary: Night Markets

Taipei, Taiwan is well known for their amazing night markets and the most famous/popular one is called “Shilin Night Market (士林夜市)”. It is so lively and filled with locals and tourists. However, our friends gave us some insider info and told us that the locals think “Keelung Night Market (基隆廟口夜市)” has the best food so we made it a point to visit both of them. All of the photos above (except the last one) are from Keelung Night Market since we spent more time there.

Keelung Night Market is located slightly in the outskirts of the city center and it’s a little difficult to get to (we went there by car). Our friends told us to pace ourselves but it sure was hard to since there were so many delicious looking foods. As soon as we saw something we were interested in, we bought it and ate it. We were literally stuffed but the funny thing is, our friends didn’t even think we ate that much because they easily ate twice as much as we did…sigh*

There were some hits and misses in what we tried but the most memorable for me was the “nutritious sandwich” and the gyoza-like little dumpling cakes only for NT$10 (USD$0.33 cents). I knew Taipei street markets were cheap but that was really cheap!

The major difference between the Shilin and Keelung night markets was that Shilin was much larger in size and had more clothing/souvenir shops and less food. Keelung was mainly focused on the food vendors with a little bit of shopping. Although we didn’t get to try everything, I’d say we got a good taste of Taiwan’s night market scene :)

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Taiwan Diary: Taipei
Taiwan Diary: Ice Monster
Taiwan Diary: Night Markets
Taiwan Diary: Jiufen
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{  Kawagoe: Part 2  }

A Day Trip to Kawagoe: Part 2
A Day Trip to Kawagoe: Part 2
A Day Trip to Kawagoe: Part 2
A Day Trip to Kawagoe: Part 2
A Day Trip to Kawagoe: Part 2

In case you missed my post on Part 1, Kawagoe is located in Saitama prefecture which is only an hour away from Shibuya via the Fukutoshin Line. Here are some things we ate during our day trip at the Kurazukuri-zone. I recommend coming here hungry as there are just too many goodies to eat and we got so full that we couldn’t try everything we wanted to.

I also highly recommend stopping by at KOEDO KURARI which is located on your way to the Kurazukuri-zone. They have so many souvenirs and goodies to buy as gifts, a cafe, restaurant, sake bar, and even an osozai bento shop!

PS: 皆さま、素敵なゴールデンウィークをお過ごし下さい★




{  Kawagoe: Part 1  }

A Day Trip to Kawagoe: Part 1
A Day Trip to Kawagoe: Part 1
A Day Trip to Kawagoe: Part 1
A Day Trip to Kawagoe: Part 1

Kawagoe is located in the Saitama prefecture only 1 hour away from Shibuya. I probably would have never thought of visiting Kawagoe before, but with the new Fukutoshin and Toyoko line connection, it made it so easy to get there that we had to give it a try. If you want to experience a traditional Japanese historical town near Tokyo, definitely come check this place out!

We left Shibuya around 11am and got to Kawagoe by noon. From the train station, you have to walk through the shotengai and it takes about 15-20min to reach this historic area named “Kurazukuri – zone”. The walk is not bad at all and you might get distracted at the shops along the way before you reach the old town (as we did…)

As soon as we reached the historic area though – wow, how awesome is this place? We had so much fun exploring this area. So many options of food & snacks to eat, traditional items/souvenirs to buy, people dressed in Kimonos, and just an overall great atmosphere. The main street is pretty busy with cars which kind of ruins the historic feeling but overall we enjoyed visiting here and got back to Tokyo just in time for dinner. My next post (Part 2) will share some of the foods/snacks we ate during our trip to Kawagoe.

Here’s a link to how to get to Kurazukuri-zone from Kawagoe-station. It’s in Japanese but hopefully the visual will give you an idea on how to get there. Kawagoe Sansaku