Happy Boxing Day! It’s day 5 of our Japan trip today and time seems to fly by so fast when we’re having so much fun.
Read about Day 1-4 here:
- #mitsuekitravels | 19D18N Japan Travelogue 2022 (Day 1): Singapore-Taipei-Tokyo x Fish Ramen x Asakusa x Sensoji Temple x Tokyo SkyTree – 22 Dec 2022
- #mitsuekitravels | 19D18N Japan Travelogue 2022 (Day 2): Tokyo-Kanazawa-Osaka x Kuromon Market x Jiyuken Curry x Namba x Dotonburi x Umeda – 23 Dec 2022
- #mitsuekitravels | 19D18N Japan Travelogue 2022 (Day 3): Super Nintendo World with NO Express Pass x Universal Studios Osaka x Ramen Dinner – 24 Dec 2022
- #mitsuekitravels | 19D18N Japan Travelogue 2022 (Day 4): Kimono Girl Adventures x Nara x Ootoro x Sightseeing Limited Express Aoniyoshi x Kyoto – 25 Dec 2022
All that aside, beyond fun, not everything during the trip was picture perfect cos I was having a really bad winter eczema outbreak since Day 3 onwards. Since there’s nothing much that can be done..I can only try to calm it down with OTC medication and creams plus double layers of moisturiser/lotion for my skin etc. Basically different ways to try to at least maintain it..
Other than that, the trip so far has been good. Here’s to enjoying brekkie indoors once again having my own me time while the mister was out having his coffee and his own me time too. Then we were off to our kimono rental place to drop off our kimono rentals from the day before before taking the train to Kobe for our boxing day lunch at the famous Steakland!
Do remember to take a queue number from the machine before joining the queue or you’ll realize that you have ended up waiting in vain for nothing. There were approx 10+ people in front of us and that was around a 30-40 mins wait before our turn was called. You just need to be there no later than 10 mins PAST your queue number being called..so you can either wait there, or walk around and quickly come back.
You’ll be called in batches of different groups at a go to be seated and the turnaround can be rather fast tbh. Swift and efficient, you’ll be led to the counter seats at either level 1 or 2 to place your order and it comes out pretty swiftly at a go with your chef cooking your steak in front of your eyes. Don’t forget to go for the Kobe steak set at 3500 yen, not the original steak which is cheaper okay? I went for medium rare in this case while the mister went for medium.
The first course will be a salad dish followed by the cooking of the garlic clips and steak deftly sliced into 8 equal pieces per person. Added to that, you’ll have another generous serving of beansprouts and some veggies alongside Japanese pickles, miso soup and served with two types of steak dipping sauces.
It was oishi and definitely one of my favourite meals in Japan so far! Savouring each bite was just heavenly.. and you also send off with either orange juice or coffee to round up your 3500 yen ($35) lunch meal at Steakland.
We were honestly pretty full after this meal, but it didn’t stop us from heading over to our next stop – Kitano Meister Garden, an ex-elementary school turned into a tourist attraction. Having said that, it still retained photos of their past era as an elementary school and even classroom tables and chairs! What you can find here are a selection of Kobe’s branded products, handicrafts and craft/cooking lessons.
What we were here for wasn’t all that. Instead, it was for this – Kobekitano Ashiya Meat shop known for their 30 year wait for a delivery of their famous Kobe beef Croquette. You can read more in the news about them here.
Why wait when you can come to their shop to have one of their Croquettes directly right? And that’s what we did / why we were here.
We had a selection to choose from and ended up going for the Kobe Kitano aging premium TOR road for 497 yen which was easily one of the BEST beef croquette we’ve ever had in our lives. The outside batter was crispy while the inside was filled with simple ingredients of potatoes, onions and pieces of Kobe beef and it was absolutely delicious.
I’ll definitely be back here and will also highly recommend you include a trip here during your visit to Kobe for Steakland. It’s approximately 10-15 mins walking distance from the restaurant for reference.
Our last stop at Kobe before leaving is to Izumi Bakery to pick up some bread because Kobe is known for their beef, bread and chocolate and you should definitely give them a try.
Suffice to say that I was absolutely spoiled for choice and ended up with a huge bread loot HAHAHAHA. And then I was at the station where I saw this unique egg tart croissant known as crogg from a random Taiwanese bakery.
Next up was a train ride back to Osaka, specifically this time to my favourite place in Osaka city, Shinsekai, a retro downtown area with alot of charm, heart and R21 capsule toys and games.
Make that ALOT of games, old school games to be exact plus the famous Tsutenkaku tower landmark.
Not forgetting my favourite mascot, billiken – the god of as it is (things as they). The irony is wearing the same skirt I was wearing during my last trip to Osaka to take with billiken as well hahhaa!!
Onwards walking towards Den Den Town and Namba area for Dotonburi. It’s just a straight road down from Shinseikai – just walk straight for 30-40 mins straight and you should reach Namba. Den Den Town is touted to be like the Akihabara of Osaka but honestly it wasn’t that impressive for us. We had ice cream later too.
In the end, we didn’t visit Dotonburi due to the lack of time and only went to the Ghibli Store to get their newly launched Totoro capsule toys that I wanted. It was super super cute!
Next up is a visit to Kuchu Teien Observatory at the iconic Umeda Sky Building. Note that its not located directly at the train station – you’ll need to walk around 10-15 mins to reach the building. We bought discounted tickets from Klook to enter here!
It comprises of an indoor deck and a rooftop level to have a bird’s eye view of the Osaka skyline. Very nice and it’s a romantic place to bring your partner especially because of the love locks in the air.
This is where the mister surprised me with his laser engraved love padlock that he brought specially for this trip. Yep, it usually costs 1200 yen to purchase the padlock in advance but ours is free hohoho. And we also spotted about 3-4 couples who put in their own personal locks here like us! We decided to leave it here as a time capsule lock..let’s return again in a few years time to see if the lock has remained / or if we’re even still together (lol).
It was also just our luck when we saw an eclipse (?) of the moon on this day 26/12/22 and watched the moon pretty much disappear in front of our eyes. Cool.
Finally, this is the last stop for today – dinner at Hokkyokusei, famous for being the creator of the first omu-rice in Japan. Their original outlet is at Shinsaibashi but they do have a few outlets in Osaka including this one at LUCUA FOOD HALL at Osaka Station.
Be sure to order their ketchup flavored omu rice with demi glace sauce and an assortment of their fried items (Ebi/croquette/chicken kaarage) like what we did and it was absolutely enjoyable to end off the night well!
Most importantly, thanks always for reading and see you in our next post as we continue our Japan trip travelogue!
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