After Hiroshima, it was time to head east. The trip had been good thus far — the weather had been mostly cooperative and we had checked off a lot major tourist spot off of the list. From here on out, the destinations chosen to squeeze into our itinerary were the subject of much debate. Eventually, Kobe, Shirakawa-go and Takayama made the cut for various reasons, and here’s my account of our time there.
After four full days in the Kansai region, we packed up our bags and rode the bullet train to Hiroshima. I really didn’t know that much about the region besides the food, Itsukushima Shrine, the atomic bombing, and the general consensus that it’s worth the visit. It is perhaps thanks to this general ignorance that this brief stay became the most pleasant surprise, yielding the most vivid experiences of the entire trip.
Having been satisfied with out extensive tour of Tokyo on our previous trip, Kyoto is naturally my most anticipated destination on this trip. Yet despite the reputation of the city as a cultural gem, I was a little worried about temple fatigue. The wife is not known for her great appreciation of historical buildings, of which is there is a seemingly endless list of in Kyoto.
Thankfully, these concerns proved to be overblown. One does not need an appreciation of history to be wowed by these sites. Without further ado, here’s a ranked report of the four we visited on our trip.
Even though our stint in the Kansai region was based in Osaka, we didn’t actually do that much here. It all boils down to two places: the Namba district (where Dotonbori and Shinsaibashi shopping arcade meets) and the Osaka Aquarium.