Hanami in Osaka

"Hanami (lit. "flower viewing") is the Japanese traditional custom of enjoying the beauty of flowers, "flower" in this case almost always meaning cherry blossoms ("sakura") or (less often) plum blossoms ("ume")." (More info here.)

Japan's famous cherry blossoms don't show up 'til late March or early April.  So when we went there during the first week of March, I decided to look for the next best thing--plum blossoms.  A friend who's been frequenting Japan suggested that I check out Expo '70 Commemorative Park in Suita, a city located in the Northern part of Osaka.

So during my and my travel companions' self-imposed "free day" (a day where we each followed our own itineraries), I decided to go there.  It was bound to be an adventure, what with me being geographically-challenged and all haha.  But this sight was definitely worth almost getting lost and boarding the wrong train!

The Tower of the Sun.

What every girl should have...

(Photo taken by Direk Jimmy Dasal during our taping.)

A PAIR OF TRUSTY CHUCKS!

Yes, I absolutely love all those girly ballet flats and kitten-heeled shoes (look inside my trunk cum mobile closet and you'll agree!).  But I believe every girl should have at least a pair of comfy, go-anywhere, trusty Chucks.

I wear mine whenever I'm out in the field, I'm traveling backpacker style, or I just wanna let loose the funky girl in me.

I've had mine for years now and I'm absolutely loving it!  And I love it even more when it's all dirtied up ;)

Foodgasm in Japan!

There are two things every traveler should know about the food in Japan:

One, they're expensive, and 
two, they're worth spending for.

It's like the Japanese is not in the business of cooking anything less than a gastronomic masterpiece.  Everything tasted sooooo good I'm surprised I only gained a couple of pounds from the trip!  My only regret is that I couldn't take home every dish, drink, and dessert we tried when we were there. 

Anyway, get ready 'coz here are some of the must-try food in the Land of the Rising Sun!  

Ramen
Of course, we just had to eat ramen on our first night in Osaka.  We could have just settled for hotel food but we braved the cold and searched for this popular ramen stall in Namba.


And man, the honest-to-goodness authentic bowl of beef ramen I had was worth the long walk!


Price : Y900 (USD9.44)

The geishas of Kyoto: A sneak peek

900 photos and counting.  That's how trigger-happy I was during my recent trip to Japan.  I doubt I'd finish sorting and editing them soon (you know, the works) what with work, post-vacation errands, blah blah blah. In the meantime, I give you a glimpse of one of the most thrilling experience I had during the trip--seeing Geishas!

And  while they were so elusive, I wasn't gonna leave Kyoto without at least a single decent photo of these mysterious women entertainers.  And here's one of them.