Japan: Sakura no hanabiratachi

Tripoto
1st Dec 2013
Photo of Japan: Sakura no hanabiratachi by Kritika Parwal

Excuse the chic and the chickening! As promised, here’s a rhinestone studded travel idea… this time in thick Japanese accent!

This, the second in my series of plain-Dosa-and-curries-separate travel blog series… wiff in the heady smell and catch on my Sakura fever folks!

For a dreamy and sugary cotton candy island feel, visit sometime  in the Sakura season of late March, April & May.

Do-O-meter rating: 8/10 (The difficulties being surviving on mathri for vegetarians and getting used to Kanji.)

Dough in the pocket rating (from India): 4/10 (This means supra expensive, even with a train pass and no internal flying!)

Visa hassle rating: 8/10 (Fairly easy to obtain.)

Head straight to the Shibuya after your first Kanji encounter… this is the seat of the famous modern Japanese imagery… dive into some sushi, look around at the lit ups and listen to some ‘Sakura no hanabiratachi’ while jiving on the streets. The last to check off the list in Tokyo is the Iconic Kinkakuji Buddhist temple, take a picture here… to show your offsprings, the famous landmark engraved on the Yen.
Next, catch a graceful traditional Japanese wedding at the Meiji Jingu shrine… kimonos, the traditional Mai dance and some awesome Wasabi delicacies… bring it on, all here!
After some of the previous day’s Sake induced expletives… head to the Ueno national park. This, my dear, is my reason for Japan… one of the most famous sites for Sakura aka cherry blossom viewing… get all melodramatic with the sweet smelling pink in your life around the Shinubazu pond!
Oh, now some action after the melodrama! Visit the Akhihabaras, the famous ‘Maid cafes’ of Japan the next day… the entire street is laden with little cafes serving exotic food with exotic women dressed in maid costumes ushering you in!
Stay in a homestay, called the Ryokan… absorb in the local traditions and sip in home made tea… but make sure you look up Ryokan etiquettes before hand since the Japanese have an elaborate fancy to them! Then get your derriere into an Onsen (hot spring) and savour the awestriking glimpses of Mt. Fuji from the sultry habitat.
Photo of Kyoto, Japan by Kritika Parwal
Photo of Kyoto, Japan by Kritika Parwal
Photo of Kyoto, Japan by Kritika Parwal
Photo of Kyoto, Japan by Kritika Parwal
Photo of Kyoto, Japan by Kritika Parwal
Photo of Kyoto, Japan by Kritika Parwal
Photo of Kyoto, Japan by Kritika Parwal
Photo of Kyoto, Japan by Kritika Parwal
Photo of Kyoto, Japan by Kritika Parwal
Photo of Kyoto, Japan by Kritika Parwal
Visit the famous Golden pavillion temple, if you fancy. The highlight is the Gion geisha area, wherein you can watch a traditional Kabuki performace and some elegant Geisha dance… you can also catch a Geisha or two trotting down the streets and have them explain their outfits and/or teach you some hand movements. Do your quintessential purchase here… the kimono and the Geta (Japanese wooden slippers) and feed yourself some awesome street side Ramen gourmet.
check out the Peace atomic memorial dome and museum here for the love of history… and humanity
This is a totally hippie town, complete with jackass cafes, permanent art installations, ear bombing music and bohemian folks. Spend a day here to get all young… and electric again!
A completely surreal experience, stay a night in a temple amidst the multitude of Cedar woods, meditate sitting on a tatami mat, treat yourself to some simple and organic food and listen to the monk’s stories, smiling and gazing into a beautiful nowhere!
Jap on! A powder puff addition to this plan would be taking a two day sojourn from Tokyo to the northern Japanese Alps in the Hoikkado perfecture, before returning back to the capital. For a braveheart, skiing away in the harsh sub zero is a must do on the Japanese grail! And oh… record sake… below is how my Japanese romance started…walking down the ramp for the Kellogg Japan night!
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