It’s time for the third and final part of the story about my trip to the Land of the Rising Sun. The final part of the trip was less eventful and much more full of complete failures. However, there was still no time to be despondent, and I got the best (and most expensive) complete rest of my life during this part of the trip.
Visiting Enoshima in honor of my favorite anime brought with it a strong desire to personally swim in the ocean due to seeing too many people swimming in the ocean along the way. Of course, I didn’t want to go to Enoshichi again for swimming, so other options were found online, and the next morning I set off towards Onjuku. The journey took almost two hours, but was completely covered by JRPass. If I didn’t have a travel card, I would have to pay about 3 thousand yen.
The relative compactness of Japan in this case shows its best side, and therefore in these two hours I arrived from a huge metropolis to a small town with palm trees and direct access to the ocean.
As for the beach itself, there is nothing unusual here: there is sand, there is water and there are waves. Until 17:00, there are also lifeguards on the beach who warn everyone about this before leaving. Surfers, by the way, are as indifferent as possible to these warnings from rescuers.
The road back from the beach no longer forced me to rush anywhere, and therefore I had an excellent opportunity to explore the surroundings. In general, I wouldn’t refuse to live in a place like this, it’s comfortable here.
Taking 25-35 thousand steps every day is, of course, good, but it won’t hurt to take a break from such a rest either. Where is the best place to relax in Japan? That’s right, at the hot springs. I had a pre-booked room at a traditional ryokan with a beautiful rotenburo (open-air bathhouse) and a view of Ito city. On the way there, I realized that my trip to the ocean from the previous day could have been combined with the ryokan, but it was too late.
The stay at the ryokan was paid according to the standard Japanese scheme: check-in in the afternoon of one day and check-out in the morning of the next. Dinner and breakfast were also included in the total price. Is it expensive? Yes. Was it worth it? Very!
As I said in the first part of my “blog”, the service staff in Japan are literally the nicest people you will ever meet, and the ryokan where I was to spend just under 24 hours was certainly no exception. It was also interesting that even after my “Nihongo daijebu” (I can speak Japanese/understand Japanese) to give me a tour of the building, an English-speaking Japanese woman still came out for me. In general, they found out the preferred time for dinner and breakfast, showed me my room and gave me directions to where I could find the hot springs themselves. The number, by the way, looks like this.
The most interesting thing here, of course, is the hot springs themselves, and not the traditional style room with tatami, but for photos of rotenburo we had to wait until night. The reason is simple – taking photographs there in the presence of other people is simply prohibited, but if some naked stranger does not get into the frame, then there will be no questions.
In total, during my stay at this ryokan, I soaked in this particular rotenburo for about three hours. Now I want one for myself at home. And this is what breakfast looked like.
For some reason I don’t have a photo of the outside of the ryokan, so I can only show the inside.
It was extremely pleasant to sit on a bench or in a chair next to the foot massager at night and watch the carp in the pond behind the glass.
In general, the ryokan turned out to be just a great way to have a good rest after 10 days of constant walking, but all good things come to an end, so after breakfast I visited the rotenburo again, packed my things and checked out. The staff offered free delivery for the rested me to the train station, but I refused because I wanted to explore the surrounding area.
Next, according to the plan, was a trip to another locality in order to look at Fuji. The weather forecast at that moment did not foretell any problems, but upon arrival I realized that Google and Gismeteo had deceived me, to put it mildly. Not only was Fuji ultimately not visible behind the clouds, but it was also pouring rain for the kit, and therefore the situation turned out to be a complete bummer for me (photo in the album above). However, the most offensive thing here was not even this, but the fact that on the same day the Shimokitazawa Awa-odori festival was taking place in Tokyo, which now I had no chance of catching.
Since the trip to Kyoto was carried out in one day by shinkansen with a morning departure from Tokyo and an evening departure from Kyoto, I initially had round-trip tickets in hand, and therefore I was additionally limited in time. It goes without saying that I had a few of the most important places to visit beforehand, namely the bamboo forest, Kinkaku-ji and the Fushimi Inari Shrine. The list initially consisted of eight points, but visiting them all in one day is physically very difficult, and in practice it is completely impossible.
First of all, I went to look at the bamboo forest, which, as it turned out, leads to two roads, one of which is toll and runs through a beautiful garden. I didn’t really want to pay, but there’s a small pond there… In general, yes.
Apparently, it is virtually impossible to take a photo in a bamboo forest without a couple of dozen other people’s faces in the frame, and the extent of this “forest” turned out to be extremely modest.
Next up is Kinkaku-ji. It looks, of course, extremely beautiful, but, to be honest, I liked the ticket there more.
A whole alley of jido hanbaiki with drinks and ice cream was immediately discovered.
A little bit of Kyoto in between the attractions.
Someone once asked someone how many torii gates the Fushimi Inari Shrine needed. In response, of course, he received the most succinct “Yes!”
And yes, there are fewer chanterelles here than gates, but there are still a lot of chanterelles. After climbing the mountain through all these gates, the realization came to me that I wouldn’t have time to go anywhere else, but there was still time before the shinkansen, and therefore I moved towards Kiyomizu-dera in the hope of catching the temple with the lights on. And this was the first bummer of that day.
But the streets nearby are quite beautiful, and some shops were still open, so I brought a magnet from there.
It was a bummer, but there was still quite a bit of time before the train, so an hour’s walk around the city from Kiyomizu-dera to Kyoto Station seemed like a great idea. Actually, I didn’t regret the decision in the end, it’s beautiful all around.
I left Kyoto on the Hikari 666 train, and for some reason AC/DC was playing in my headphones the whole way. Next, a day of rest from trains and shopping for souvenirs and items requested by friends was planned, and therefore the penultimate day of our stay in Japan was spent in Tokyo shopping. This is what the AmiAmi offline store looks like, by the way. There are two floors of such beauty.
The last day before heading home was devoted to visiting Hiroshima, which had to travel from Tokyo for almost 5 hours with a transfer in Osaka. There are, of course, Tokyo-Hiroshima shinkansen, but they are not covered by the JRPass, and the time difference is only 20 or 30 minutes. To be honest, I didn’t have much interest in this city and it was more for a tick on my list to visit, so I’ll just share an album of photos from there without any special comments.
However, I really liked okonomiyaki and the place where I tried it.
And in Hiroshima I noticed something extremely ironic. Write in the comments if you found what I noticed in the photo.
What about Eleanor? Only 550,000 yen.
It’s funny, by the way, that this is the city where I heard the word “gaijin” addressed to me for the first and only time, and even in the combination “jama”. The boy from the trio of young Japanese decided to use the words “gaijin, you’re in the way” to show his alpha maleness, but clearly did not expect that the twice larger citizen to whom this was addressed would decide in response to ask: “What exactly?” There will be no story about the victory over too arrogant youth; the alpha male significantly changed his skin color and retreated.
This is how the last day of my stay in Japan came to an end. Next, it was necessary to do a little cleaning in the apartment, pack things into two suitcases and a large briefcase and go to the airport. By the way, this is what I found at the airport.
There were no shops open at night at the airport, and even the usually 24-hour konbini here were closed at night, so I brought a small amount of Japanese cash with me to Russia. I decided to accept this and consider them trophies.
Did I like it in Japan? Undoubtedly. Yes, there were some oddities and inconveniences, and the cost of the trip was very high, but it was definitely worth it. For the next trip, which will definitely happen in the near (universe scale) future, I will be a little better prepared in terms of equipment (shoes in particular), organize myself at least twice as much time in the country and divide it between different cities.
I decided to go in August simply to see if I could survive in Japan during the hottest season. This year, the period of my residence in the country was also accompanied by record temperatures over the past few years, and therefore I am now sure that the Japanese climate is quite comfortable for me.
This concludes the series of stories about my adventures in the Land of the Rising Sun and I highly recommend everyone to visit there at least once. Yes, it is expensive and yes, this is a country in which very few people understand at least a little English, but I hasten to note that there will be no unsolvable problems because of this, people will try to explain everything literally and help you get where you need to go .
For this reason I take my leave, and I wish you not to get sick and not be beeches.