This is my 5th visit to Japan. It is also one that I had the most number of days there; and making the most number of moves around the country on its public transport. Appreciate Chai Noi for initiating the trip and making the transport arrangements such as the Flight and JR Ticket, and being the accommodating room mate. Thanks to Teck Siew for her thoughtful and thorough planning and travelling tips that allowed me to venture into new places without the need to do much pre-trip planning. Grateful to Juejing, for his patience and for being a very reliable human GPS (at times, even better than GoogleMap)! Of course, a big thank you to the great company of the Wong and Koh families, too :)


Each of the following links (text in bold) leads to the page containing photos taken at these places.
  • (D3/D4/D6) Kanazawa 金沢 
    • Kenrokuen Garden (兼六園) & Kanazawa Castle Park (金沢城)
    • Myoryuji Temple (妙立寺), also known as Ninjadera (Ninja Temple) 
    • Nishi Chaya District & Higashi Chaya District
    • Omicho Market (近江町市場) 
    • 21st Century Museum

Eat | Live | Move
Each links to the post that documents our accommodation and meals for the day. For some, it includes movement from one location to another.
Alternatively, one can continue to scroll down this page to see the posts (click at "see older posts" at the end of the page to view what's in the following page(s)).

(D1) Arriving at Tokyo, Japan

Getting Ready

Being connected is getting more and more important (?). Indeed, I guess its ease of availability has created greater dependency, hence a greater "want" rather than the actual need.

This is something extra that I brought along with me this time... the wifi router (
It has certainly improved my connectivity to the world when away from home. 
I'm no longer in the mercy of the hotel's provision.

Another important thing to pack is medication! In fact, the number of items that go into the pack has increased over time as the need increases :(  Hm... should I attribute this to old age?
While it's always best to keep these items untouched during the trip; unfortunately, they came in extremely handy during the trip!

Here's another "old school" not-so-cool item that I'll bring with me for overseas trips - in particular in trips that I know I would be buying some things. Many would say that the smartphone would do a much better job (with an even more accurate conversion). Nevertheless, the estimation from this list helped! Moreover, it is independent on the power availability of the phone!

Ready for boarding

Just read about the security advice of not posting photos of the boarding pass.
Well, after examining what I had posted,  I think it should be quite safe!
(LINK: Boarding pass photo experiment that should make every traveller nervous)

In flight...

Something different that gave a Japanese taste :)
Oh yes, it came with a mini ice cream tub, too :)

Caught up with the latest Doraemon movie.
I was trying to catch up with my sleep... anyway, watched the first 20 min and last 20 min of the movie - roughly, I knew what's happening :)
Apart from this, also caught up with 4 episodes of the Doraemon cartoon sequel. 
Basically, my air time was devoted to my idol :) 


Upon Arrival....

An essential cost-saver when travelling on our own in Japan is certainly the JR Rail Pass!
Thanks to TS who did the estimation and CN who made all the arrangements to purchase and even showing me where to get the JR Rail pass activated!
(Just learnt that JR Rail Pass is also available at Changi Airport! See LINK)

From this point, this 'evergreen' railway map becomes extremely handy :)

We got our JR Pass activated and made our way to the hotel @ Ueno.
While it's not the first time I travel with a JR Pass, I was initially confused after receiving the reserved seat ticket and thought that the JR Pass would entitle us reserve a seat in all trains! (regardless of type). Soon, I learn that seat reservation is only available in shinkansen and limited express (which we can also choose to go without reserving a seat). As for local trains, well - it's the same treatment for all unless we bought the ticket with "Green Car".

Dinner @ Yoshinoya, Ueno

Our dinner after exiting from the station, before making our way to the hotel.

Checking in @ Hotel MYSTAYS Ueno Iriyaguchi

Thanks to Google, we found the Hotel despite the fact that we left by the wrong exit.
This is a no-frill hotel that does not provide room service (such as daily cleaning up of the rooms). Coincidentally, we were given in the same room (Room 312) when returned to Tokyo towards the end of the trip. Indeed, we were more prepared when putting up in this hotel for the last 3 nights, in terms of maintaining the cleanliness and tidiness of the room.

(D2) Tokyo

Breakfast @ Humming Cafe, Ueno JR Station

Lunch @ Yoshinoya, Haneda Airport

Dinner @ Ueno Night Market

One can ask for more noodles, which is free of charge.

(D3) Kanazawa

Heading Kanazawa

Meet up with the Wong and Koh Families at the Ueno Station before heading Kanazawa via the shinkansen.

Lunch @ Kanazawa JR Station

Fresh nice sushi - immediate difference observed (compared to the usual sushi belt in Singapore):
The sushi chef added the wasabi to the sushi instead of giving us the wasabi paste separately.

This item caught my attention... I don't recall seeing sushi with such big 'lump' of meat - yes, it looked more like meat than seafood. Well, it's actually tuna!

Dinner @ Dining Resort at Kuugo, Kanazawa

We went into a restaurant that was still empty. The way the ramen was presented looked interesting, isn't it?

I asked for a 'upsize' for the chashu (stew pork) but not for the noodle.
Hm... I still prefer the noodle ate the night before.

Coincidentally, we met Timothy at the same restaurant.
(Click HERE to see Timothy's Facebook post)

Checking in to HOTEL MYSTAYS PREMIER Kanazawa

Compared to the previous hotel, this is about 1.5 times larger.

Made my very first attempt to use the free laundry service in the hotel. By right it should be a hassle free exercise; however it turned out to be a nightmare. I guess I took for granted that Japan is a safe and orderly place. As a result, I forgot to guard my stuff and it turned out to be a mess. In addition, probably I should have asked how to set the dryer should that it would really tumble dry the clothes rather than leaving them damp and made me busy for almost 2 hours to iron my clothes dry. First time having the need to ask for an iron and ironing board :(

(D4) Kanazawa

Breakfast @ Travel Cafe in Hotel

Nice half-sandwich with shrimp salad.

Lunch @ Omicho Market

My impression was soba comes in cold (冷面)🍜. Here, hot soba is common here!


Yeah! Cooking our own dinner - Hot plate cooking, Okonomiyaki!

It's ready! Yummy!

The maneki-neko (Japanese: 招き猫 , literally "beckoning cat") 招财猫 is a common Japanese figurine (lucky charm, talisman) which is often believed to bring good luck to the owner. In modern times, they are usually made of ceramic or plastic.

The white is one is most common. However, the black one caught my attention!
According to wikipedia, black is meant to lure away evil spirits.

Moving around in Kanawaza is made easy with the well networked bus services; and plenty of information is available - as long as one is patient enough to read and plan.

With the JR Pass, we can take the JR bus services without additional payment.

The one-day pass brought us to the major attractions in Kanazawa city.

It is interesting to note that the passengers will board the bus from the middle entrance (door) and alight at the front door. Being the pass holder, we simply need to show our card to the driver as we alight at the front door.

(D5) Shirakawa-go

Ticket to Shirakawa-go

Snacking along the way
 Barbecuing Hida beef stick

Tasty! (though oily... drip, drip, drip)


Lunch @ Shirakawa-go

Dinner @ Kanazawa

Rolling the slice of fish (with threads of spring onions) in the leave like wrapping the 'Peking Duck' before dipping it into the steamboat to cook.

Wow! A collection of wild vegetables for the steamboat!

The next part is about adding noodles and egg into the tasty soup to cook and eat.

Last but not least, add some soup to the rice to conclude the course - nice!