Osaka. Last week, my colleagues and I had the chance to visit Osaka. I’ve never been to Japan, but the moment I got off the plane I fell in love with the country. Call it love at first sight. Everything was so orderly. Everyone so polite. We were in Osaka for a few days. Here are some of the pictures from our trip!
On the Plane
On our way to Japan, I specifically requested for a window seat. 😀 I love gazing at the clouds! That morning’s cloud formations was particularly beautiful.
Patterns in the Sky
Can I tell you a secret? I always look forward to airplane food. 😀 I know some people hate it, but I quite look forward to what’s in store. I guess the key is to have no expectations whatsoever so you’re not disappointed. Haha!
Japanese Food in the Plane
I don’t recall what this was — some beef dish — but it was good. The food was just whetting my appetite for Japan even more!
One of magical parts of traveling — seeing the country you’re visiting closer and closer…
The Kansai-Osaka airport was so organized and orderly… and so quiet! That was one of the big differences I observed about Japan. We in Manila love our loud giggles and laughter… in Japan they were pretty much reserved. For introvert me, I was just loving it.
We stayed at the Hotel Plaza Osaka. The staff was friendly, the room comfortable, and one of the surprises I had was the hotel room’s bathroom. It was so tiny! A capsule bathroom, perhaps. No space was wasted. It was a little uncomfortable at first but after a few days I got used to the small space.
Step up into the loo!
Quite cramped at first but we got used to how everything was placed quite efficiently.
Cozy shower nook
Shiseido products? How awesome.
Patterns and Lines
I was telling my friends that Japan is an OC’s dream. I loved the patterns and lines, and how organized everything was. Here are bits and pieces of pics from various days during our stay.
City Blocks. Doesn’t it look so organized?
Simple, Streamlined Buildings
This spiral staircase caught my attention.
Clean and orderly street crossings.
A bike path or walking path just above the city road. It made for a good place for a morning walk!
Fresh air in the city? Oh yes!
Attention to detail: Even the manhole covers are pretty.
Pretty flowers. Contained in one area but blooming like crazy.
Flowers all a-bloom on one of the streets. They were contained in a small area but were bursting with pretty blooms.
Organized to a T!
One of the pretty buildings I saw on the street.
The trees look so healthy and plump. Can you use the word plump to describe a tree? Okay, maybe fluffy.
I *think* this was Plum Grove at the Osaka Castle Park. So pretty.
A crow and a pretty fence pattern at the Osaka Castle park.
Orderly kids on a field trip at the Osaka Castle park.
Wishes and greetings.
Foxes as messengers.
Symmetry at the temple. Cleansing ourselves before we set foot in the temple.
More than a thousand cranes
Wishes and Cranes
More symmetry. Me at a tunnel of Torii gates.
Great Buddha. Todai-ji Temple.
At the Todai-ji temple. There’s a pillar there — when a kid goes through it, it’s said they come out stronger, smarter. :)
Water dippers to cleanse yourself.
Such a pretty view. Everything’s so clean and proper.
Peeking out of the Todai-ji Temple.
What will you wish for?
Lit a candle and wished for… :)
Wishes and prayers. At the Todai-ji Temple.
Incense and Dreams.
Why did the deer cross the road? At Nara Deer Park.
Even the deer are behaving properly here.
We stayed on the 13th floor. I kid you not.
Wow, even my bowl of Miso Soup looks so organized!
Drink Dispenser at the Breakfast Buffet
Soy sauce fish all contained in a bowl.
Sugar cubes look so organized too.
What’s more organized than a bento meal?
Organized Bread, Butter and Jam.
Bikes of Osaka
There were a lot of people on bikes in the city. Perhaps that’s one reason why the air is crisp and fresh — no pollution! Young and old, Moms with babies, yuppies on their way home from work, rain or shine… there were lots of bikes! Some of my colleagues rented a couple of bikes from the hotel and cycled around the city one morning. Pretty cool!
Pretty in Pink.
Old Man Biker.
More wheels in the city.
A river, lines and wheels.
A Peek at the Streets
We walked around the streets and rode a bus around the streets… here are some of the things that caught my eye. We saw an arcade and couldn’t help but go in. The toys were AWESOME.
Just riding by.
I wonder what’s in there.
The Way to the Train Station. (And is that a kid tinkling?)
Pretty picture, but the street was (we think) a little friendlier than we had expected…
Loved the road signs.
An arcade! We have to go in!
Look at those toys!
Cute wall at the arcade.
A busy street but everyone was so chill.
Shopping at Shinsaibashi.
Dotonburi by Day…
… Dotonburi by Night.
Really loved this place.
Oh, the Toilet!
Japan is so organized, and well, their toilets are quite hi-tech. I just had to take a few pics.
Clean before sitting.
No worries about running out of toilet paper! So efficient.
You can play music while you use it. Well, the music is the sound of flushing “to absorb the sound of the toilet while in use.” :D
Smiles All Around
Interesting characters, good company… our brief stay in Japan was made memorable by wonderful smiles and warm folks.
Hajime, our tour guide, was so charming and thoughtful. He loved telling stories about Osaka, and he was so endearing.
One of my favorite parts of the trip was hanging out with old friends and making new ones. At the Todai-ji Temple, we (old and new friends!) wrote our wishes on a tile which is to be set on a temple roof. :)
Wishes and dreams of old friends and new.
Tourists in Kimonos.
Cute little one!
A Bruce-Lee like tour guide at Shinsaibashi. Should I tell him crack kills? :P
Aww, no customers for him, even if he was doing all sorts of martial arts moves.
Tourists and locals. Everyone pretty much minded their own business. Oh, can you see me? :D
My shopping buddies on our last day – Wilma and Rea.
I love Japanese food and couldn’t wait to try authentic dishes once we landed! Here are pics of some of the food I loved.
Takoyaki Guy at Osaka Castle grounds.
My first Takoyaki in Japan! It was okay. :D
I was happy happy! :)
Best sashimi I’ve tried so far! At Koganko. So good.
Sushi at Koganko. So yummmmy.
Matcha Cream Puff at Kyoto. OMG. This was so good.
Crab on a Stick. Whut. 500 yen for a stick. It smelled so good!
I enjoyed every bite of this crab on a stick!
Osaka Ohsho at Dotonburi District. Best gyoza ever! Isn’t it obvious by the sign? ;)
12 pieces of gyoza shared by 3 hungry women. 😀 It was so yummy! Crisp on the outside and perfectly steamed on the inside.
Fried Octopus. It tasted so fresh! Yummy.
My officemate Rea and I getting a picker-upper at Dotonburi. Coffee was much needed after our filling lunch!
Quiet time at the hotel. The night before we left, I cozied up in our hotel room with a cup of green tea and some Matcha Cream Puffs I bought from Family Mart. I was still dreaming of the Matcha Cream Puff I had back in Kyoto, so this was okay. It was a simple, quiet way to wrap up my Japan trip. Loved it! Arigato Japan!
I super loved Japan and can’t wait to go back. Next time, I’ll bring my family. It’s a wonderful place and there’s so much more to explore.
Arigato, Japan! We’ll see you again soon!