Wednesday, March 4, 2020

Osaka Kyoto Ishikawa trip with the JR West Rail Pass!

Finally took a trip with my family & little Momo - 
we went to Osaka/Kyoto/Ishikawa and a bit of Okayama/Kobe 
with the 7-day Kansai Hokuriku Area pass!



We made the booking at JTB
(You can book at NTA, HIS, and any other travel agency in Singapore)
and upon arrival at Osaka Kansai Airport
we exchanged for our passes right at the
JR Ticketing Office at the Airport Station.



Everyone is familiar with Osaka & Kyoto 
but for the lesser known parts of Japan, 
we had Irene So help to plan and recommend our itinerary.

You can consult her for trip planning, 
as she is an expert in lesser known parts of Japan!
If you find JR West Rail Pass confusing, 
she can also advise you on that.

We checked out Universal Studios on our very first day!













We caught the Hello Kitty Haruka train to Nara Deer Park!
There's free bicycle rental at Nara Station with certain JR West Rail Passes!



 




We stopped by City Bakery Japan at Osaka Station for fusion jap-western fare!
Super yummy and the small tapas servings meant more variety!




Headed to Arashiyama Bamboo Forest 
at the JR Saga-Arashiyama Station


had the best tofu hotpot at Sagano Yutofu!



Managed to catch a glimpse of Bamboo Forest before sunset, 
and even caught the lightup as well!




Ended the day with buffet at JR Kyoto Isetan!


We had a family shoot with kimono rental at Yumeyakata, 
which was a really fun experience!

We could use our JR West Rail Pass for 10% off kimono rental!
(Check if your pass is eligible for discount as it's not applicable for all passes)
it's about $35 per pax, and hairstyling is only about $20
(makeup services not provided)

These indoor shots are taken by the Yumeyakata Studio, 
check in with them for their photography session!











We also engaged Sweet Escapes to shoot for us outdoors, 
and the local photographer recommended we head to this traditional street
near the Yasaka Pagoda.

I love using this photoshoot service for every trip I make!
So we get good family photos :)

You can use my referral code via
for $10 off your booking!






We had one of the best dinners at Kyoto Nakanokoan recommended by Irene,
It's just next to a shopping street,
it is 13 min by train or 10 min by cab from JR Kyoto Station, and 7 min walk from Kyoto Kawaramachi.


We next headed to Ishikawa, Kanazawa for a 2d1n stay,
it's about a 2.5 hour ride from Osaka Station.



We stayed at this hipster heaven of a hotel called Kumu_ The Share Hotel
and I loved it!


And also experienced their tradition of gold foil pasting.



We visited Kenrokuen, one of the top 3 Japanese Gardens... 
the protective structure is their signature look!



We had traditional chado (sado) here as well.



And also Wakura Onsen, one of the best onsen ryokans in Japan,
by taking the Hanayomenoren sightseeing train! 


This Hanayomenoren is a traditionally decorated train 
with gold-leaf gilded walls,
and reservations are needed from JR West Online Train Reservation
since it has limited trips! 





We also visited the Notojima Aquarium and 
the penguin march was definitely a highlight of the visit!



 


We also took the Hello Kitty Shinkansen to Okayama from Osaka,
and no additional cost is needed!
Note that it's limited timing only as it only makes 1 round trip per day.






and visited the Okayama Castle, for a ride in the Momo (peach) boat!

 


And headed to Kobe for the Anpanman Children's Museum.



Highly recommend it for young toddlers! 










If you'd like a detailed itinerary, 
and recommendations on what you can do 
according to your travel group 
(be it family-friendly or just for friends!)
do look for Irene So
who is an expert on inner Japan travel.



Her itinerary is very detailed and she would let you know exactly which train to take,
at what time and from where.
She won't be following you on the trip
but you can also whatsapp her anytime to check with her 
just in case you get lost!


Here's a video summary of IG Stories relating to JR West Rail Pass 
for this trip -




Happy researching! 
Hope this was useful in helping you plan for your trip :)





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