A Dreamy Evening in Osaka: A Stunning Bookstore and Amazing Citrusy Chicken Ramen 大阪文青蔦屋書店輕旅行 + 柚子香雞白湯泡沫拉麵

When I travel to a new place, I always look for good food, cool architecture, and places to shoot. One of the evenings during our trip in Osaka had all the boxes checked. We visited a very Instagrammable bookstore during the blue hour right after sunset. Then we wrapped up the day with a bowl of foamy citrus-infused ramen that was incredible.



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Best Kyoto Experience: Stay in a Traditional Townhouse “Machiya” 京都包棟町家月輪こはく庵

Kyoto offers a wide range of accommodations – from chic capsule hostels to fancy hotels. I looked at a lot of options. Finally I decided that we would splurge a little and book a traditional townhouse! Staying in a rustic townhouse turned out to be a wonderful touch that made our trip complete.

You experience the charm of traditional Kyoto by walking around ancient temples during the day, and that experience doesn’t need to end when you head back to the hotel. Sleeping on Japanese futon on tatami floors in a traditional townhouse in a residential area is a unique experience you don’t want to miss. The fusion of old and new is fascinating. You would likely stay in a townhouse built a century ago while the fanciest gadget in the house is an overachieving toilet with a control panel as complicated as one for a space shuttle.


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Kyoto: Fall Foliage at the Serene Chishaku-in Temple 京都智積院遠離喧囂楓紅

Chishaku-in is a Buddhist temple in the Higashiyama district of Kyoto. This temple is relatively unknown and much less traveled. It is a quiet spot off the beaten path that allows you to take in the sights.



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Kyoto: Colorful Temple and Food Porn 京都:彩色布猴子八坂庚申堂和神級蛋包飯

After strolling through the historical Sannenzaka and Ninenzaka area and grabbing iconic shots of the Yasaka Pagoda, we kept walking down Yasaka Dori. One of the highlights of this day trip popped up on our left — the very colorful temple, Yasaka Kōshin-dō. It is one of the most instagrammable places in Kyoto.

去過清水寺、走過產寧坂和二年坂、又拍完八坂塔之後,繼續沿著松原通往下走,左手邊就是本日行程重點之一、Instagram熱門打卡景點八坂庚申堂 (Yasaka Kōshin-dō)。

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Kyoto: Strolling through the Historical Sannenzaka and Ninenzaka 清水寺坂坂區散步地圖

If you only had one day in Kyoto, the perfect itinerary would have to include a stroll through the historic districts of Higashiyama (東山). Start the day by paying a visit to Kiyomizu-dera where there is a 13-meter (43-foot) wooden temple constructed in the early 17th century without a single nail. Then walk through charming alleys of Sannenzaka and Ninenzaka where you can find a wide range of iconic Kyoto dishes and souvenirs. Along the way there are lots of temples with distinct features. And wrap up this day in Gion where the movie “Memoirs of a Geisha” was shot.



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Nara Travel Tips: World Heritage Landmarks and Soothing Deer 奈良療癒小鹿一日散策

Nara (奈良) was the highlight of my trip to Japan in November. It was so relaxing and decompressing. I melted when I saw those deer. Nara is a must-see if you are ever visiting Osaka or Kyoto. he city is very relaxed. You could stroll through a huge public park that is home to over a thousand charming deer and some of Japan’s oldest temples and shrines that were awarded UNESCO World Heritage status.

You could do a day trip from Osaka or Kyoto and focus on the Nara Park for a few World Heritage sites, chill with the deer, and visit this neighborhood of traditional townhouses in Naramachi (奈良町). Staying in Nara for a night or two will allow you to visit the deer and shrines early in the morning, see more World Heritage sites, and enjoy more iconic Nara dishes.


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Must-Eat Snacks and Iconic Souvenir in Old Town Nara 奈良町必吃甜點和文青散步

We spent the morning hanging out with deer at two World Heritage status sites — Tōdai-ji and Kasuga-taisha. Then the afternoon was filled with delicious food and leisurely strolls in cute souvenir shops and charming neighborhoods.


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