Sunday, December 31, 2017

Thank You 2017

Grateful for...
  • my source of income which is my sole source for travel funds: my job.
  • my manager for approving all my planned leaves.
  • no urgent tasks/deadlines scheduled when I was on leave.
  • God for keeping me safe and, when I was not in the pink of health, I was at least not totally down while on travel.
  • my good friend from highschool and her family for the hospitality when I visited Tandag (Surigao del Sur): for picking me up at the airport, feeding me, letting me stay at her house, showing me around, accompanying me to Cabgan Island in Barobo, and contacting her aunt's driver when I had to go to Butuan because my flight from Tandag to Cebu was cancelled and changed to Butuan to Cebu.
  • my friend's aunt's driver for picking me up at the bus terminal and finding me a cheap but clean transient hotel so late at night.
  • my friend and her family for taking me to Laswitan Lagoon. Unfortunately, there was no "laswit" at that time (late February). They say the best time to go for a higher chance of seeing the "laswit" is from November to January, and surely when there is a typhoon coming!
  • another friend for letting Baktin and me stay in his house in Toledo, for showing us around his city, and for taking us to Malubog Lake and the hidden local's hideout through the tunnel.
  • Centro Coron for sponsoring two nights stay.
  • Brennan of Baktin Corporation for striking a deal with Kawil Tours for the 30% discount.
  • my butt for not wanting a toilet while out at sea when it was battling a bad case of diarrhea.
  • girl/boy scout travel buddies for donating medicine for the above!
  • having a toilet on the islands of Malcapuya and Banana. Because diarrhea. Ugh.
  • PAL for providing free accommodation, meals, and airport transfers when they cancelled the flight back to Cebu.
  • my brother for volunteering to drive from San Remegio to Cebu City. Because I am a lazy ass driver.
  • my sister's friend for volunteering to take her car to Moalboal and driving to/from Basdiot for lunch/dinner so we could find something to eat.
  • the chance to try out Stand Up Paddleboard (SUP) with friends. I enjoyed it and SUPed thrice this year!
  • website translate tools. Though it doesn't do a perfect job, at least I get to find the information I need.
  • all the random strangers who answered my email inquiries when I was preparing for my trip to the Chubu region of Japan. I know it is their job, but I am amazed that they respond promptly (unlike in the Philippines where email addresses are provided but most of the time does not work or is not answered).
  • patience and keeping my cool when Cebu Pacific cancelled the second leg of my flight when I had already arrived in Manila.
  • my friend for adopting me for a night when I was stuck in Manila because of above.
  • those who have taken time to leave a comment.
  • passers-by, people who have taken the time to read one or two of my blogposts, and loyal readers (if there are any?)—forgive me for I have been very lazy in updating this blog this year. 

Saturday, December 30, 2017

What's in a (Business) Name? Sesenta y ocho

You'll have a relaxing time here. I am 200% positive!
Spotted along Rizal Avenue Ext., Puerto Princesa City, Palawan

For more amusing business names, please visit Go Random.

Friday, December 1, 2017

Wisdom from the Road #58

On walking
Advise from Mary Schmich:
"Be kind to your knees.
You'll miss them when they're gone."


Lately, there would be times I'd feel a pain in my knee or on the back of my knee. And I'd fervently pray that it would go away and not accompany me especially when I'm traveling. When traveling, I'd walk. A lot. Because:
  • I get to explore and see more of the place I am in.
  • If something catches my eye, I could stop and take photos. Lots of photos.
  • I might discover secret local hangouts.
  • I can observe the local life.
  • I get to burn more calories than sitting in a bus, taxi, car, or train.
  • And, ultimately, I get to save money. I am a cheapo like that.

Thursday, November 30, 2017

What's in a (Business) Name? Sesenta y siete

Have a cup of joe at 14°30'34.81"N, 121°0'48.12"E
Spotted in NAIA Terminal 2 by Zhequia of FTW! Food, Travel, and Whatevs
Thanks Zhequia!


For more amusing business names, please visit Go Random.

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Wisdom from the Road #57

On waking up early
They say: The early bird gets the worm.
I say: The early bird gets to avoid the crowd.

I probably won't make a good travel buddy because I wake up early (no matter how much I want to sleep in, I always wake up early) and go to wherever it is I am going before everyone else has had breakfast. The advantage of this is that I get to enjoy the place (especially if it's a touristy one) before the droves of people come.

Exhibit A: Arashiyama Bamboo Grove in Kyoto. The beautiful photos we see on the internet that had us putting the bamboo grove on our to–visit list is always a picture of tranquility. To catch this zen moment means arriving early.

There were only half a dozen souls at the bamboo grove at 830am.

I arrived at the grove around 830AM and there were only five or six other people there. When I passed by the grove again in the afternoon, around 2PM, it was flooded with people. It was an "expectation versus reality" moment, and not a smidgen of zen.

The 2pm crowd

I have no Exhibit B, but you get my drift.

Monday, October 30, 2017

What's in a (Business) Name? Sesenta y seis

Imagine all the people lemons, living for today...
only to end up in a plastic cup to quench your thirst.
Spotted in SM City Dasmarinas by Zhequia of FTW! Food, Travel, and Whatevs
Thanks Zhequia!

For more amusing business names, please visit Go Random.

Monday, October 23, 2017

Kansai Diaries, Day 9: Osaka, Over and Out

December 1, 2016

Ah, the ninth and last day of my solo Kansai trip. Today I will be visiting two museums, one of which is in Toyonaka City, north of Osaka City, and I start my day early wanting to arrive at the Open Air Museum of Old Japanese Farmhouses as it opens. I use the 1-Day Osaka Visitor's Ticket  (can be used on Osaka's municipal subway, tram, and buses) that I had bought for 550 yen at Kansai Airport on the day I arrived.

I take the red line to Esaka Station (the last stop) and transfer to the Kita-Osaka Kyuko Railway. The automatic gate bars me from entering. Oops. My pass is not valid in this railway and I ask for help from the station attendant. Without her uttering a word in English, she helps me at the machine where I have to pay 90 yen for fare adjustment.


Nearest Station: 4-minute walk from Ryokuchikoen Station

I arrive at Hattori Ryokuchi Park, where the Open Air Museum of Old Japanese Farmhouses is located. It's a huge park. The size overwhelms me; I have to gather my wits about. As I wend my way through the park in the general direction of the museum, I observe a man sleeping on a bench, flower beds abloom, and a bunch of kids on a school outing.



I finally reach the museum. Students clad in suits are lingering outside. I—we are a few minutes early. Good, I can eat my breakfast on a nearby bench. By the time I come back the students have disappeared.


日本民家集落博物館
Tuesday to Sunday 930AM to 5PM
Admission fee: 500 yen

Nearest Station: 10-minute walk from Ryokuchikoen Station

Even as I pay for my ticket, I am already transported to the Edo period—the ticket office is a structure that used to be a village master's house in Osaka in said period. I am given a map of the 3.6 hectare museum. The map has houses numbered 1 to 12 and I switch my OC mode on: I visit the houses in numerical order.

The open air museum consists of twelve houses from the 17th to 19th century (Edo period) from different prefectures of Japan. These are not replicas but the real thing. These have been moved and restored from as far as Iwate in northern Japan and Kagoshima in southern Japan!

Farmhouse with thick thatched walls. This farmhouse is from a mountainous area in Nagano.

 A narrow farmhouse with wooden boards under the eaves to protect the house from wind and rain. This farmhouse is from a valley in Nara.

 A farmhouse with thick solid beams built for the snowy region in Fukui. 

Tearoom from Osaka

Rural kabuki theater from Kagawa

An elevated storehouse to protect the stored grain from humidity and mice. This structure is from Kagoshima.

A farmhouse with a steep roof called gassho-zukuri as it resembles hands pressed together in prayer. This farmhouse is from Gifu.

Rice granary from Osaka

Most of the houses can be entered and explored, and I take my time doing so. Some houses have earthen floors, some houses have rooms that are elevated, some houses are L-shaped, etc. The design of each house is dependent on the area it was built in. Really interesting.

By the time I reach the fourth house, I see two local visitors. Like the students, they are also in suits...and I think to myself 'It must be nice to be able to take a break in between office hours and explore your local park.'

As I follow my map and visit houses, I find groups of students, those I had seen waiting outside the museum earlier, scattered about. Two or three are busy sketching, others are exploring the interiors, others are listening to a local guide, others are having a conversation with the two local visitors in suits I had seen at the fourth house.

I cross paths with them several times and as I leave the open air museum, I think 'Will our paths ever cross again?' And I laugh at the absurdity of it. Osaka is too large.


大阪くらしの今昔館
Wednesday to Monday 10AM to 5PM
Admission fee: 600 yen

Nearest Station: Tenjimbashisuji6-chome Station

Exit 3 of Tenjimbashisuji6-chome Station goes straight to the building where the Osaka Museum of Housing and Living is. The museum entrance is on the 8th floor. I am given a 100-yen discount thanks to my Osaka Visitor's Ticket, and a free audio guide (regular price of 100 yen) and a museum map thanks to my Kansai One Pass. But first I have to leave my backpack in a locker.

After stuffing my bag in a locker, I am told to go to the 10th floor where I see rooftops through a glass window. These aren't rooftops of the buildings outside, but rooftops of the buildings inside the museum.

Rooftops seen from the 10th floor

The buildings on the 9th floor are what one would find in Osaka in the 1830's: a bath house, a town meeting hall, an apothecary, shops selling dolls, books, fabrics, etc, and tenement houses. There are visitors in kimono adding to the ambience of the museum.

Visitors can explore any which way they like (some areas have printouts visitors can read and keep), but with my audio guide and map, I again turn on my OC mode and follow the map. The audio guide gives me insight about life in Osaka in the 1800s. As I go from bath house to shop to town hall to house, the museum lighting changes from day to night and back to day—time inside the museum moves faster than my watch.

1830s Osaka

Doll shop

Bookshop

Inside the bookshop

A kitchen

Apothecary

Drinking well shared by tenement houses

The museum route leads me back to the 8th floor where there are dioramas showing how Osaka evolved from 1868 to 1950. I am fascinated by the teeny tiny details of the dioramas.



 Festival

Osaka had trailer homes!

Barber shop

Luna Park, an amusement park in Osaka in 1912

My trip through time ends and I go back to the bank of lockers to take out my backpack. I shut the locker door and spot a large group of students in suits. Seems like it's a popular day for field trips. And then I see a familiar face: one of the two men in suits I had seen at the open air museum. It dawns on me: they are teachers out on a school trip with their students. He does a double take as he recognizes my face. I could see he wants to laugh. I hold my laughter in. Instead, I grin, say hello, and hurry into the empty elevator where I laugh out loud.


黒門市場

Nearest Station: Nippombashi Station

It's past lunch time and I am hungry. Not a good idea to visit a market, but I go to Kuromon Market (Kuromon Ichiba), six stops away, anyway. I am sure I won't see them again. This place has nothing to do with houses. But has everything to do with food! (If I do see them again, I am sure I will burst into laughter right in their faces.)

I enjoy looking at food. I especially enjoy tasting food. But not now. I just take a stroll around the market and check out the displays of fresh seafood, vegetables, and fruits (I want to try the white strawberries but it is wayyyy too expensive!).






3-8-25 Nihonbashi, Naniwa-ku, Osaka
11AM to 8PM

The fresh but all too expensive seafood I saw in the market was making my stomach rumble. I leave the market and check out my pinned places on my Google map. Aha! I see Cafe Gram a few minutes walk away! Those facebook videos of fluffy pancakes I will now see (and eat!) for myself!

Cafe Gram is on the second floor. It is quiet; only one table is occupied. A sign on the counter says the Premium Pancakes (yup, the fluffy pancakes) are limited. Luckily, it is available and I order it despite it being too expensive in my opinion (950 yen for pancakes!). It's my last day in Osaka anyway.


Premium Pancakes


Japan
Know Before You Go
Single Entry Tourist Visa for Japan
Roam Around Japan with a Swagger
An Ignoramus in Japan: Vending Machines
An Ignoramus in Japan: Bathrooms and Toilets
An Ignoramus in Japan: Manhole Covers
I Spy With My Little Eye: Japan's Fashion Contradictions
I Spy With My Little Eye: On the Go in Japan

Kansai Diaries (2016)
9D/9N | Wakayama, Nara, Kyoto, Osaka
UNESCO World Heritage Sites in the Kansai Region
Osaka: Day 0: Arrival
Osaka Accommodations: Hotel Raizan, Hotel Mikado
Wakayama: Day 1: Going to, Sleeping in, and Eating in Koyasan
Wakayama: Day 1.5: West Side of Koya Town
Wakayama: Days 1.75~2: Okunoin, Three Times
Nara: Sleep, Eat, and Explore Nara City
Nara: Day 3: Horyuji, Hokkiji, and some Japanecdotes in Ikaruga Town
Nara: Day 3.5: Yakushiji, Toshodaiji, and Heijo Palace Site in Nara City
Nara: Day 4: Early Morning at Nara Park
Nara: Day 4.25: Naramachi Walking Tour
Nara: Day 4.5: Yoshiki-en, Todaiji, and Kofukuji in Nara Park
Kyoto Accommodations: Guesthouse Wind Villa, Shiori Yado
Kyoto: Day 5: Rainy Day in Uji City
Kyoto: Day 5.5: Tofukuji, Kawai Jinja, Shimogamo Jinja
Kyoto: Day 6: Ginkakuji, Ryoan-ji, Ninna-ji, Gion
Kyoto: Day 7: All Day in Arashiyama
Kyoto: Day 8: Last Day in Kyoto
Osaka: Day 8.75: Dizzying Dotonbori
Osaka: Day 9: Osaka, Over and Out (you're here!)

Saturday, October 21, 2017

Kansai Diaries, Day 8.75: Dizzying Dotonbori

November 30, 2016
Around 7pm, maybe

After checking in and settling in my room in Hotel Mikado, I debated with myself whether to grab dinner from a nearby convenience store or to go to Osaka's kitchen: Dotonbori. The thought of it being my last night in Osaka, thus the last chance to see Dotonbori at night, propelled me to the nearest subway station.

It was just a 4-minute ride from Dobutsuen-mae Station to Namba Station, but when I stumbled out of Namba Station, I was dizzy with hunger. Exacerbated by the wall of people that greeted me when I turned the corner to Dotonbori. I almost did a 180-degree turn and marched away. But the lights beyond the 100-deep people magnetized me and I squeezed my way through.

Upon seeing this, I almost made a 180-degree turn and marched away

The lights and the giant signboards all around gave me a jolt of energy and I momentarily forgot about my hunger, and did not mind weaving and dodging the human obstacles around me. There was a giant crab, humongous gyoza, a big floating pufferfish, a massive scallop, etc.


 Giant crab

 
 Humongous gyoza, and a large, pink octopus

 
 Big floating pufferfish, and a massive scallop

But then the medley of smells wafting from all directions reminded me that I was here to eat. I know I should find a busy restaurant with a queue of customers because that means the food is good, but I was too hungry to wait in line. I veered to the right, to a less busy street, and found myself entering Hanamaruken. The ramen is supposed to be really good here, but I decided to order just chahan (Japanese fried rice) and gyoza (dumplings).

Hanamaruken

Chahan, gyoza, and soup

After dinner, I got out into the chilly night to find the Glico Man for an obligatory tourist photo, and then walked off my dinner along Dotonbori River.

 Glico Man

Dotonbori River



Japan
Know Before You Go
Single Entry Tourist Visa for Japan
Roam Around Japan with a Swagger
An Ignoramus in Japan: Vending Machines
An Ignoramus in Japan: Bathrooms and Toilets
An Ignoramus in Japan: Manhole Covers
I Spy With My Little Eye: Japan's Fashion Contradictions
I Spy With My Little Eye: On the Go in Japan

Kansai Diaries (2016)
9D/9N | Wakayama, Nara, Kyoto, Osaka
UNESCO World Heritage Sites in the Kansai Region
Osaka: Day 0: Arrival
Osaka Accommodations: Hotel Raizan, Hotel Mikado
Wakayama: Day 1: Going to, Sleeping in, and Eating in Koyasan
Wakayama: Day 1.5: West Side of Koya Town
Wakayama: Days 1.75~2: Okunoin, Three Times
Nara: Sleep, Eat, and Explore Nara City
Nara: Day 3: Horyuji, Hokkiji, and some Japanecdotes in Ikaruga Town
Nara: Day 3.5: Yakushiji, Toshodaiji, and Heijo Palace Site in Nara City
Nara: Day 4: Early Morning at Nara Park
Nara: Day 4.25: Naramachi Walking Tour
Nara: Day 4.5: Yoshiki-en, Todaiji, and Kofukuji in Nara Park
Kyoto Accommodations: Guesthouse Wind Villa, Shiori Yado
Kyoto: Day 5: Rainy Day in Uji City
Kyoto: Day 5.5: Tofukuji, Kawai Jinja, Shimogamo Jinja
Kyoto: Day 6: Ginkakuji, Ryoan-ji, Ninna-ji, Gion (soon)
Kyoto: Day 7: All Day in Arashiyama (soon)
Kyoto: Day 8: Last Day in Kyoto
Osaka: Day 8.75: Dizzying Dotonbori (you're here!)
Osaka: Day 9: Osaka, Over and Out

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Kansai Diaries, Day 8: Last Day in Kyoto

November 30, 2016

It is my last day in Kyoto and I really don't have any planned route. All I know is that I want to visit Shosei-en Garden next to where I am staying, and the Honganji Temples.

It is not even 7am yet and I am ready to go. Shosei-en Garden is still closed (it opens at 9am) and I decide to head west to Nishi Honganji Temple and drop by the garden on my way back to the guesthouse to pick up my luggage.

Koshoji
興正寺

As I near Nishi Honganji on Horikawa Street, I spot a quiet temple (quiet probably because it is too early) and step through the gate to take a look around. I breathe in the cool quite morning scene. Nothing is astir. After a few clicks of my camera, I leave Koshoji and go next door.




西本願寺
March, April, September, October 530AM to 530PM
May to August 530AM to 6PM
November to February 530AM to 5PM

Nishi Honganji or West Honganji, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, was built in 1591. The first thing I do as I enter Nishi Hongaji's gate is to turn left, where the ground near the bell tower is blanketed in bright yellow ginkgo leaves. Ahh, autumn. How I love autumn. But this morning is cold. Too cold. I go to the rest area near the gate and find something warm to drink from the vending machine. Once my fingers and my stomach thaw, I look inside the two large wooden halls (Goeido Hall is dedicated to the sect's founder; Amidado Hall is dedicated to Amida Buddha), and explore the temple grounds where I find some small buildings, two large ginkgo trees, and an intricately designed gate (Karamon Gate, designated as a national treasure). I mentally check Nishi Honganji off my UNESCO to-visit list.


Nishi Honganji

Inside Nishi Honganji's Goeido Hall


Details on the Karamon Gate

I love autumn!


東本願寺
March to October 550AM to 530PM
November to February 620AM to 430PM

Wondering what's the difference between the two Honganji temples, I visit Higashi Honganji or East Honganji next. I learn Higashi Honganji was built 11 years after Nishi Honganji. Both temples have a Goeido Hall and an Amidado Hall. Higashi Honganji's Goeido Hall is said to be Kyoto's largest wooden structure.


Higashi Honganji's Goeido Hall

The dragons of the east are associated with water,
while western ones are associated with fire


街かど屋 
418 Gojo-dori, Karasuma Higashiirimachuya-cho, Shimogyo-ku, Kyoto
Open 24 hours daily

My stomach is rumbling. I need breakfast. I command my feet to go in the direction of my guesthouse and, after a few blocks, find myself in a familiar area—it's the street where my friends had rented a kimono the year before! I remember we ate at a fastfood place near a station exit and I go there. Hello, food! (I can't read the name of the restaurant. It looks different. But I am sure this is the same spot.)

Yum, karaage set!

After breakfast, I wander farther along the road and stumble upon a 100-yen shop. I buy some snacks and bitty things before heading back to the guesthouse to drop off my goodies. Shosei-en Garden is still closed: it's not yet 9am. Now where should I go? I decide to visit my favorite area in Kyoto.

Higashiyama
東山

I love Higashiyama District with its old-town feel. I am glad it's still early and there are not too many tourists around. I admire the houses, I check out the shop displays, and I watch the people. I count one, two, seven people in traditional garb. Ahhh, Kyoto! But soon I find myself at the northern limits of the area, and I rack my brain for another destination.






Gion
祇園

Well, why not visit Gion? Yes, I have been to Gion. Twice. First was the year before (I don't think I wrote about it, but we visited quite late at night and didn't see much but old buildings in shadow), second was just two nights ago when I joined a night walking tour. Go a third time? Yes, I reason with myself: this time it'll be in the daytime. And so I go. I visit the places I have been to before. Tea houses are still closed. I don't see any geisha or maiko, but I see a newly wed couple having their photos taken, the bride in a very pretty white kimono and the groom in a hakama and haori.




東寺
8AM to 5PM
Admission fee: 500 yen (800 yen during special openings of the pagoda)

Where to next? There is another UNESCO World Heritage Site just southwest of Kyoto Station: Toji Temple. I would have thought by now I'd be up to my ears in temples, but no. I am determined to cross off one more. But this, I promise, will be the last UNESCO site I visit. On this trip.

According to the brochure, when the capital of Japan was transferred from Nara to Kyoto in 794, guardian temples were built on the east (Toji or East Temple) and on the west (the temple on the west no longer exists). Toji Temple was given to the monk Kukai (or Kobo Daishi) in 823. Kukai? Sounds familiar. He established a monastery in Koyasan, the first place I visited on this trip!

Like other temples, Toji also has several halls: Kondo (Main Hall), Kodo (Lecture Hall), Miedo (Residence of Kukai), and a pagoda. Toji is known for its five-storied pagoda, measuring 55m (187 feet)—the tallest pagoda in Japan.

I am glad I decided to go to Toji. There is something about the place that I really like. (I guess it also helps that there are only a few visitors here.)





Nishiki Ichiba
錦市場

I have a few more hours to kill and Nishiki Market comes to mind. I know I am all over the place (remember, I did not plan my route today), but I think it's too early to go back to the guesthouse. I have not been to a Japanese market anyway. In Nishiki Market, I find a variety of edibles on display: fresh vegetables, fresh seafood, pickled stuff, dried stuff, candies, and a growling stomach.





598 Uraderacho Higashiiru Takoyakushidori Nakagyo-ku Kyoto
Open 24 hours daily

I stumble out of Nishiki Market with a growling stomach, and boom, I see Ichiran. The ubiquitous Ichiran—it is scattered all over Japan (and has even found its way to other countries). Lucky me, this Ichiran has no long line of hungry customers (it is already 2pm). So I go in, place my order on the machine, get my ticket, and venture further in to look for a table. Only to find a long line inside. Ugh. No choice but to wait and find out why a lot of people are raving about this ramen. And I do find out. It's because you can choose the strength of the flavor, the noodle texture, etc. If you don't like your ramen, then blame it on yourself.


I walk out of the shop not wowed, but full, and I go back to the guesthouse with a plan to stop by Shosei-en Garden. But by the time I arrive at the garden it is almost closing time and they are not accepting guests anymore. I enjoyed my last day in Kyoto so much that I did not notice the time!


Japan
Know Before You Go
Single Entry Tourist Visa for Japan
Roam Around Japan with a Swagger
An Ignoramus in Japan: Vending Machines
An Ignoramus in Japan: Bathrooms and Toilets
An Ignoramus in Japan: Manhole Covers
I Spy With My Little Eye: Japan's Fashion Contradictions
I Spy With My Little Eye: On the Go in Japan

Kansai Diaries (2016)
9D/9N | Wakayama, Nara, Kyoto, Osaka
UNESCO World Heritage Sites in the Kansai Region
Osaka: Day 0: Arrival
Osaka Accommodations: Hotel Raizan, Hotel Mikado
Wakayama: Day 1: Going to, Sleeping in, and Eating in Koyasan
Wakayama: Day 1.5: West Side of Koya Town
Wakayama: Days 1.75~2: Okunoin, Three Times
Nara: Sleep, Eat, and Explore Nara City
Nara: Day 3: Horyuji, Hokkiji, and some Japanecdotes in Ikaruga Town
Nara: Day 3.5: Yakushiji, Toshodaiji, and Heijo Palace Site in Nara City
Nara: Day 4: Early Morning at Nara Park
Nara: Day 4.25: Naramachi Walking Tour
Nara: Day 4.5: Yoshiki-en, Todaiji, and Kofukuji in Nara Park
Kyoto Accommodations: Guesthouse Wind Villa, Shiori Yado
Kyoto: Day 5: Rainy Day in Uji City
Kyoto: Day 5.5: Tofukuji, Kawai Jinja, Shimogamo Jinja
Kyoto: Day 6: Ginkakuji, Ryoan-ji, Ninna-ji, Gion
Kyoto: Day 7: All Day in Arashiyama
Kyoto: Day 8: Last Day in Kyoto (you're here!)
Osaka: Day 8.75: Dizzying Dotonbori
Osaka: Day 9: Osaka, Over and Out