In November last year, my elder sister mentioned she was planning a trip to Japan with her family. Since Japan has been in my travel bucket list for years, I jumped at the idea of joining her. After requesting her flight details, I immediately made a booking from Kuala Lumpur to Osaka with Malaysia Airlines.
Next stop is the planning. I’ve travelled so many times around the world before but usually alone or with friends. The last trip I went with my elder sister is in 2008 to Bali, Indonesia. I don’t usually make detailed planning when I travel, more of a get-there-and-decide-then type. Since this is a family trip, I have to turn my lone traveller mode off, especially since my mother also had decided to come along.
8 days and 8 nights. Technically it’s 9 days but since our flight home on the last day is at 11am, I don’t consider it part of the main trip. Places to visit will include Nara, Kyoto, Osaka, Tokyo and Hakone. To cover the train rides I purchased a 7-days Japan Rail Pass at cost €194 from Japan Experience.
My sister first suggested we book hotel rooms throughout our stay, even made an initial booking to Chisun Inn Umeda. I scratched the idea straight away, suggesting we find accommodation through AirBnB site. Her first question, “What’s a BnB?”. Oh, we do have different travel styles. I normally would stay at hostel instead, but since this is a 7-people trip, with an age range from 1 year to 60 years old, a B&B is more suitable. I doubt the rest of my family has ever stayed in hostel before.
We made bookings in 3 places, Habikino House in Osaka, Yayoicho Apartment in Tokyo and Nikko Kansai Airport Hotel. 3 different accommodation types,
Our trip plan now consists as follow:
Day 1: Nara, Tempozan Harbour Village
Day 2: Kyoto
Day 3: Arashiyama and Osaka city
Day 4: Osaka in the morning and travel to Tokyo in the afternoon.
Day 5: Shinjuku, Shibuya, Harajuku, Akihabara
Day 6: Tsukiji, Ikebukuro, Asakusa, Odaiba
Day 7: Hakone and Mount Fuji viewing
Day 8: Travel back to Osaka (time split between Tokyo/Osaka)
Day 9: return to Malaysia
So far, everything has been paid for apart from the hotel. Flights, train and houses are all paid in advance. So at times, I’m saving for food, tours, intracity travel and souvenirs. Looking forward to May 2014!
Great call, Japan is a must on any travel bucket list