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Japan 2020 - The Idiot Returns

Noel Mugavin

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Joined
Sep 5, 2010
Messages
860
Bit of a wander before heading to the subway station and off to the Sapporo Olympic Museum and OkurayamaSki Jump.

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Stopped in a Family Mart to pick up a bottle of water and some fried chicken. Those of us that have visited Japan know that you accumulate coin fairly quickly and I was already in the practice of getting rid of as much of it as possible. The kindly shop assistant noticed my coins in my hand when paying, spoke something in Japanese, sifted through the money and swapped it for a 500 yen coin. Very kind but to my detriment in the near future.

On the subway then a change to a bus to get to the Ski Jump. Bus, as for the tram, enter the back, exit and pay the front. 220yen, unfortunately the 500 coin was the closest I had to the fair. Dropped it in the box, the driver nearly had a fit, pointing to the coin and saying something to me in Japanese. Just gave him 'Daijoubu, Daijoubu' and off I went.

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Matt_01

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.....Not a fish fan, there was some smoked salmon in one of the side dishes, had a crack and what do you know,I'm a fan. Probably wont be having a go at cod roe or squid intestines right at this time, but small steps....
Now you’r taking the small steps as a suggestion why not head over to the Nijo markets in the morning for fresh grilled scallops.

Also looking at the photos is the snow fall quite lite this season?
 

Noel Mugavin

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Joined
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There's a few simulation activities, had a crack at the bobsled and the ski jump. Enthusiastic assistant at the ski jump happily clapped you as had your turn, much like a mother happily encouraging a toddler during potty training.

Outside and on to the ski lift to the top of the ski jump.

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Unfortunately the weather was closing in, so not much of a view from the observatory
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What could have been seen
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No point spending any more time up here, so headed back to the chairlift
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Snow falling on the ride down
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Vending machine soup to warm up before heading back to the bus stop
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Bit of an unpleasant 20 minute wait at the bus stop as the snowfall intensified.
Easy transfer from bus to subway and soon back near the TV tower

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Noel Mugavin

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Joined
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A walk down the covered shopping street and a lunch of gyoza and ramen

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I had purchased the waterproof boots to be worn in Sapporo and made sure I walked them in a bit before the trip as I am a walker and blisters would have been disastrous for me. On the walk back to the hotel however, had a bit of a concerning bit of pain coming from my ankle area. Nothing too serious, but something to keep an eye on.

Bit of a rest in the hotel room for an hour or so, didn't want to get to my afternoon destination too early.
Otaru

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View from the station
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The reason I visited Otaru, photos of the canal and a little later night photos of the same
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Kept wandering and unfortunately the pain in my ankle was intensifying

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Down to the harbour, wind was picking up and extremely cold against my exposed face

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View pack up toward the train station

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Noel Mugavin

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Walking was proving a problem at this stage, having to stop every 5 or 6 steps. Found myself a coffee shop and able to get off the feet for half hour or so.
Sun had gone down by this stage so took a few photos and slowly made my way back to the station

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Took the underground walkway, in hindsight really should have jumped on a train, were a few places where I could stop and have a rest as the ankle was killing me now.
No interest in looking around for something to eat, so a simple sandwich and steamed bun from a konbini did the job. Made sure I satisfied my sweet tooth as well

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I scooped some snow up and threw it in my rubbish bag outside the hotel so I could put it on my ankle. Took the boot off to survey the damage, - nothing. No pain now, nor whenever I stopped walking. Further investigation needed the next morning.
 

Matt_01

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@Noel Mugavin I am enjoying your report as it brings back some memories when we were in Sapporo last year for the Snow Festival, stayed in Sapporo at same location, but not the same hotel, also when to Otaru but missed the light festival by a day or 2. I also recall being sent to 7/11 to get strawberry sandwich’s. Nice report.
 
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Noel Mugavin

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Bit of inspection of the boot in the morning and discovered a bit of a rigid piece that positioned itself across the ankle. Decided a bit of padding would do the trick and out I set. For about 15 steps it felt pretty good, then back to the discomfort of the day before. Couple of blocks more frustration took a hold and I ripped the padding out. Instant relief and a care free onward journey to the subway station.
Out of the subway and toward my destination and the pain was back.

Ishiya chocolate Factory
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Shiroi Kobito Park, no doubt would look great with the night lights
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Noel Mugavin

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Did the basic tour, pretty much a view of the factory floor, through to the restaurant area then down to the shops.

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Parfait for breakfast

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Gift shop and cafe to the right a the bottom of the stairs. Picked up some presents for the people back home.
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Outside, snow coming down and a bit of a musical going on
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offshore171

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Those of us that have visited Japan know that you accumulate coin fairly quickly and
Very true, you can end up with tons of shrapnel if you’re not careful.

A great solution to this is to load up your Suica card with cash, and tap the Suica for small purchases wherever possible.

The Suica is often thought of as just a transport card, but it’s accepted for payment at most convenience stores, taxis in major cities, and most of the ubiquitous vending machines.

This can be a great way to avoid the loose change nightmare.
 

Noel Mugavin

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Messages
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A slow and painful walk back to the subway station. During the train ride looked on maps to make sure I had the right directions to get to the Sapporo Beer Museum, bit of a concern when it was saying closed today. Checked on the official website and trip advisor, nothing showing it was closed.
Back to the hotel, grabbed a curry bun on the way and a bit of re-engineering on the padding in my boot. This time went for a bit of an uplift of the heel and sole of the foot.
Walk to the train station, bit of an improvement, but still not ideal.
Off the train, bit of a slow walk to the beer museum

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Bit of activity around, maps ended up being sort of right, museum, gift shop and garden restaurant were open, tasting and beer garden closed.
Don't know about these ones

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The museum was small, but quite interesting and no charge to have a look.

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Bit of a rest area behind the gift shop, so once again had another crack at the padding in the boot. This time everything under the heel to raise the ankle, and what do you know - Bingo! No more pain when walking.
Celebrating my new found freedom, went for a bit of a wander around the grounds

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Walked back tot he station, bit of a spring in the step now. off at the TV tower and in to the restaurant at the ticket office level.
Nice view from the table

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Soup curry, very nice and some much needed vegetables

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Noel Mugavin

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Headed up to the observation deck
Mt Moiwa

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Odori Park
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And then the penny dropped. The hill I'd been looking at and intrigued by for the last 3 days was in fact Okurayama Ski Jump

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Telebi Tosan, the tower mascot
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Back to the hotel for a bit of a rest
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More wandering after sunset

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Noel Mugavin

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Early rise, taxi to Sapporo Station then a local train to New Chitose Airport.
Was scheduled on a 777, however a nice surprise when an A350 rolled in. My first flight on one of these.

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Flew into Haneda, Monorail, then a transfer to the Yamanote Line to Tokyo Station. Short walk to my hotel, APA Ginza. Dropped my bags, then off to Shinbashi Station.

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Lunch was a Buta Don from Buta Daiguku, off a Mikey Chen video.
Sensational.
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Rain had started falling, so grabbed an umbrella from a nearby chemist, then back on the Yamanote line to Harajuku and Takeshita Street.

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Quite crowded, so just a quick up and down. The rain and danger of copping an umbrella spoke in the eye wasn't helping matters.

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This sort of thing did keep me interested however
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I succumbed and it was delicious.
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Back to the hotel and checked in. Hotel receptionist tried to give me a horrible Tully coffee, gave him the daijoubu, and off I went. Noticed in the lift a laundry room was listed, so able to do some washing before I headed out again.

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Noel Mugavin

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After the dryer finally finished doing it's thing, jumped on the Asakusa Line and headed to Asakusa. Let about 4 trains go by before I finally jumped on one. 7.30pm and still crammed in like sardines.

Kaminarimon
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A deserted Nakamise

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Side street
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Get to see some of the art on the shutters of the closed shops

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Hozo gate and pagoda

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Noel Mugavin

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A stroll down Shin-Nakamise

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Was headed to Ippudo for a ramen dinner for a bot of a comparison with Ichiran. Maps was heaving a little trouble zeroing in on the store, signs on the store board were a little confusing. I even memorised the kanji characters so I could find it. Then stumbled across the store, huge storefront sign in English, I'd walked straight passed it 5 minutes prior.
Very nice, however still rate Ichiran a bit better

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Noel Mugavin

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8.03am Hikari to Kyoto. In planning a day in Hakone was on the cards, however following the typhoon one of the forms of transport was out of action so turned me off a bit. As it turned out was quite drizzly and low cloud, so would have had no chance of seeing Fuji from the lake, nor was their any sight of it from the shinkansen.
Empty seat next to me until Nagoya.

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Arrival into Kyoto Station and a bit of noise form a procession going through

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Bag into a coin locker then on to a bus to the head of the Philosopher's Walk

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The start of the Philosopher's Walk is close to Ginkakuji, strolled as far as I could before I had to pay. Not interested at looking at the temple, so couple of snaps of the surrounds and back to walk the path.

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Had wanted to walk the Philosopher's Path 4 years previous, however was unable to due to my knee. Good to get it done today and even nicer to get away from hordes of people for a little while

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craven morehead

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8.03am Hikari to Kyoto. In planning a day in Hakone was on the cards, however following the typhoon one of the forms of transport was out of action so turned me off a bit. As it turned out was quite drizzly and low cloud, so would have had no chance of seeing Fuji from the lake, nor was their any sight of it from the shinkansen.
Empty seat next to me until Nagoya.

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Arrival into Kyoto Station and a bit of noise form a procession going through

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Bag into a coin locker then on to a bus to the head of the Philosopher's Walk

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The start of the Philosopher's Walk is close to Ginkakuji, strolled as far as I could before I had to pay. Not interested at looking at the temple, so couple of snaps of the surrounds and back to walk the path.

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Had wanted to walk the Philosopher's Path 4 years previous, however was unable to due to my knee. Good to get it done today and even nicer to get away from hordes of people for a little while

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Looks like it would have been a nice peaceful walk 😌
 

tgh

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Thanks for the pics
We have less than 2 days in Kyoto but have decided the philosophers walk is a must do
 

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