Bowie's Tokyo Itinerary 2016 #1

August 03, 2016

Hello August! Time flies~~~ Finally i managed to blog about my Sakura Trip on April this year LOL!
I was struggled with this because i have no idea that where should i start to blog about it. My Japan Vlog was uploaded few weeks ago, this is my first travel Vlog and not the professional one since i got no mood to take my camera walk and talk in Japan while my right hand is carrying shopping bag and left hand was busy searching GPS. But i really put a lot of effort to editing the video, hope you will like it la! *check my Vlog at the bottom of this post*
I went to Japan for 2 weeks, i was so nervous because i don't know to speak/understand Japanese, i felt so damn stress because i got to plan itinerary -> book hotel -> study rail map -> check visitor must-go place all these things by myself *one leg kick*一脚踢
Especially the rail map, OMG! rainbow color railway lines make me go crazy! But when i reached there, i found that is quite easy.
If you plan to go Japan free & easy trip, you can take this as a reference. 
Here is my route in Japan : Osaka -> Tokyo -> Kyoto -> Osaka
Before go Japan
1. As i want to travel few cities, JR pass is a must to buy if travel to/from Osaka to/from Tokyo. Definitely save a lot a lot of money! What is the most expensive expenses in Japan? the answer is TRANSPORTATION!!!
JR Pass (Japan Rail Pass) - a special fare ticket that is ONLY available to travellers visiting Japan from foreign countries for sightseeing. There are two types of JAPAN RAIL PASS: Green (for superior-class Green cars), and Ordinary. Each of these types is available as a 7-day, 14-day, or 21-day PASS. The validity period of a JAPAN RAIL PASS is the consecutive 7, 14, or 21 days period beginning on the date the PASS is first used, so think carefully and plan the prefect itinerary. 
* JAPAN RAIL PASS is also valid for the certain railways, buses, and ferry boats, please check their website for more info. 
* JAPAN RAIL PASS cannot be used for travel on NOZOMI and MIZUHO trains on the Tokaido, Sanyo, and Kyushu Shinkansen lines.
* JAPAN RAIL PASS cannot be purchased in Japan. You must purchase an Exchange Order at an authorized sales agent or sales office before going to Japan. *Don't cry if you don't listen to me, hahaha!* As i need to travel from Osaka->Tokyo->Kyoto, so i bought 7 days pass at Matta Fair, RM1038/pax. *Ouch! heart pain! but no choice haiz....*

2. Rent pocket-wifi. 
It's not gonna to let you unlimited upload your selfie but use it for Japan rail apps and google map. You will "die" if you don't want spend on this and get lost in Japan city, LOL! 
3. Bring along hand-carry bag if your itinerary similar with mine.
Trust me, you will very very very pity to carry your luggage moving around on vacation. I have to mentioned to you :Unfortunately there are a lot of smaller stations without any escalators or elevators, you couldn't find elevators easily. Dragging a heavy suitcase was a pain. Beside to carried my biggest luggage up and down from staircase, i still have to help my mum too! (worst thing is her luggage size also the biggest one). But the good news is you are in JAPAN! Their door-to-door services are especially fast, secure and cheap, you can moving around on vacation without a problem. When i travelled from Tokyo to Kyoto, i shipped all luggages to the final destination (Osaka hotel) by using Yamato. We only bring small hand-carry bag to stay at Kyoto for 2 nights. It takes the hassle out of carting your bags through stations, streets and worrying about finding compartment space on the train. Luggage shipping in Japan is an amazing convenience and very easy, especially if you are staying at a hotel. 
* Note: Not all hotels are affiliated with a shipping company, please check is this service available in your hotel. *
4. Must buy travel insurance. 
Get a policy that covers medical care, lost luggage, cancelled flights and hotel, damage or stolen gear. FYI, medical charges is hell expensive in Japan. Personally thought that Japan could be described as a country located at the "center point" for natural disasters, so i need a cover in case flight cancelled due to natural disaster.

5. Download Japan Rail apps. I would recommended this apps to you - Navitime for Japan Travel.
The app can navigates you from your preferred point of departure to your destination with details (time, fees, walking distance all in), i can't survive without this.
TOKYO
Day 1 | Osaka - Tokyo
Ok, i know you must be wondering why i buy KL to Osaka flight ticket instead of KL to Tokyo flight ticket. Because... my sister was too smart, didn't think twice before buy it, she thought we will stay at Osaka for 14 days trip. Don't silly ok! So end up, we are in trouble.
It was an early morning 6am when i reached Kansai airport, after we stuck in superb long queue at Custom (queue for 2 hours OMG!) and pick up luggage. We were heading to JR Office (level 2) to exchange JR pass, why??? When you buy JR pass in Malaysia, it is a receipt to let you exchange the JR pass in Japan. 
How to go from KIX to Tokyo 
From Kansai Airport take the Haruka Express to Shin-Osaka, (30-45 minutes), transfer to the Shinkansen and get directly to Tokyo in under 160 minutes.

Finally settled down and enjoy our bento lunch in Shinkansen. HoHoHo~~ i wish to do this long long time ago, act like a Japanese. ^^
Yum Yum! 
Reached at Shinjuku in the evening, so we only able to have our dinner and walk around. 
Honestly, i didn't do any research about the famous foods in Japan. So lucky that we choose this restaurant, the seafoods are so fresh and tasty! Isomaru Suisan is one of the famous seafood restaurant in Japan, open 24 hours!

Isomaru Suisan 磯丸水產
Address: 1 Chome-14-3 Kabukicho, 新宿区 Tokyo 160-0021, Japan
Day 2 | Shinjuku - Hakone
Bring a hand-carry bag and heading to the heaven of Onsen!!!!
Hakone Hotel : Sengokuhara Onsen Hotel Green Plaza Hakone 
Address : 1244-2 Sengokuhara Hakone-machi Ashigarashimo-gun Kanagawa-ken 250-0631 

How to go : 
By Shinkansen [Approx. 100 minutes / 3,530yen] *If you have JR Pass 
Shinjuku Station → (JR Yamanote Line : Approx. 18 minutes) → Shinagawa Station → (JR Shinkansen "Kodama" or "Hikari") : Approx. 27 minutes → Odawara Station → (Hakone Tozan Line : Approx. 16 minutes / 310yen) → Hakone-Yumoto Station→ Ubako Bus Stop(Hakone Tozan Line : Approx. 45 minutes / 980yen) -> (5 minutes on foot) -> Hotel 
It was so hard to find a hotel with reasonable price during super peak season. During Sakura season, all hotel rate rise up in a dizzy way, also suffer as drastic a shortage of hotels. Hence I came upon HotelsCombined, it is not a booking site, but a research tool to help you make the right accommodation decisions, easily helps to find the best price online from all the top travel sites (such as Booking.com, Expedia, Hotels.com, etc). Finally I booked this onsen hotel because of Fuji Mountain view!!! This hotel is the only one with reasonable price in Sakura season, RM600/pax per night included onsen and meals (dinner & breakfast).
We are the lucky one, the sky is clear and blue. You can't see any scenery and the Fuji mountain on cloudy day.
Day 3 | Hakone - Shinjuku
Before leaving, we went to the Hakone's landmark - Hakone Shrine.

Sakura flavour ice cream taste not good. =(
It's a must to take picture here. 
Hakone Shrine.
Tokyo Tower
Day 4 | Tsukiji Market - Tokyo Sky Tree - Harajuku
Breakfast at Tsukiji Market.
Compare with Kuromon Market at Osaka, i prefer Tsukiji Market as their seafoods / sashimi are very fresh and cheapest! 
This is ONLY 2000 Yen!!! 
 Tsukiji Market 

Address: 5 Chome-2-1 Tsukiji, Chuo, Tokyo 104-0045.
How to go : 
The closest JR station is Shimbashi, from where you can walk to the market in about 15 minutes.
HOURS : typically 5:00 to 14:00 

Wholesale Area: open to visitors after 9:00am 
CLOSED Sundays, national holidays and some Wednesdays

Tokyo Sky Tree.

How to go : 
Tokyo Metro Ginza Line
5 minutes from Ueno Station (Tokyo Metro Ginza Line), a 15-minute walk to TOKYO SKYTREE.

Finally I managed to try this famous matcha dessert but in Japan, LOL!
Gion Tsujiri at Tokyo Sky Tree.
Anyone watch TVB show "do姐有问题"? They introduced this one, sugar made gold fish, so real so beautiful! Cost 3000¥+

Omurice (Japanese Rice Omelette) dinner at Harajuku. 
Japanese crepe, you can see this everywhere in Harajuku shopping street, but it is not delicious at all! Try imagine when your mouth filled in with warm whipping cream and not crispy crepe, so..... > <
Transportation in Tokyo : Yamanote Line 山手線 is Tokyo's most important train line. It is a circular line which connects Tokyo's major city centers and the famous destinations. I took this line most of the time in Tokyo, simple and easy!
Next post will be "Hanami"! 
I hope my information is helpful to you. Last, please enjoy my Japan Vlog and subscribe me at Youtube, Arigatō gozaimashita =)

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