My trip to Japan

So I finally completed my three year Bachelor degree in Amsterdam, and now I have decided to take over the world! I mean travel. My first target country is Japan, the mysterious island known for their automated toilets, vending machines, and other eccentricities.

Arriving in Kansai Airport, I booked a room in Hotel Toyo of the Nishinari District. Although this part of town is notoriously known for their homeless population and petty crime rates, I personally did not find it so intimidating at all. The infamous image of this area generally owes to the scene in the early decades before the 1990s, before they cleaned this place up. So for me I had no trouble at all with people here, even when I got lost. Generally, people here are very nice in Japan, and helpful with giving directions. You just have to be careful about where you are, and who to approach. To play safe just stick to the main road, and stay away from alleys if you are in this district!

The backpacker hotel I stayed in was awesome! For their price they offer a very homey environment especially for lone travelers like myself.  They have a common area with a kitchen, couches, bean bags,TV and playstation. I met many interesting people here, and learned a lot about the new country I’m in from other fellow traveler’s experiences. Cooking food is also possible here at Hotel Toyo, which is great if you are on a budget. Eating out in JP can be quite pricey, especially in malls, underground subway roads, and other touristy places. In Nishinari, there are several cheap food stores and restaurants. However, often times you may need to refer to pictorial ordering because they do not always speak English.

Tsūtenkaku Tower. Copied after the Eiffel Tower, it is now an eight-sided tower with a restaurant/observatory thingy at the top (91m)

A close walk from the hotel you can find the iconic Tsūtenkaku Tower. A landmark of Osaka, it is located in center of the Shinsekai district.

Shinsekai is popular for their street food.  The area surrounding the tower is covered with restaurants and vendors selling all sorts of dishes. Of course, the main things to get here are Takoyakis, bbq octopus, Yakitoris, and other various greasy grilled beer-coupling dishes.  These are highly recommended dishes, as told by the various travelers I encountered, but I haven’t gotten the time to try them myself since I was not in the mood nor was it the right time of the day. But next time that in Osaka, it’ll be something I will try and do to check-off my bucket list!


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