Very early start leaving the house at 5am to catch an 8am flight from Kuala Lumpur to Kansai to start our 2 weeks skiing and Christmas holiday in Japan.
Landing in Kansai we proceeded to hire a Nissan X-Trail. A lot of pre-planning was required for this as you must have an international drivers license. The plan is to spend a few days driving up to the ski village, 3 days skiing and then a few days driving to Kyoto for Christmas.
Our flight arrived around 3pm – immigration and customs were no problem but even though it was a Saturday driving through Kansai and Osaka was slow. Traffic was not that heavy but it just seems to move very slowly. It was well over an hour and half to travel 32km’s to the other side of Osaka for our first nights sleep at the U-Community Hotel, Higashi-Osaka. The GPS was brilliant, one of the best we have seen as directions are spot on and plenty of indication when to turn and which lanes to be in.
1-3-30, Mikuriya-sakaemachi, Higashi-Osaka-shi, 577-0036 Japan
We strolled around Higashi-Osaka in light rain trying to find a place for dinner. A lot of places would turn us away saying they were full but we were not sure if this was really the case or if they just didn’t want to be bothered with non Japanese speaking people. Where we are staying for the night is on the outskirts of Osaka and so no other tourists.
Driving through Osaka was a bit of a surprise. We expected a glitzy Neon city but it was much more a concrete low-rise jungle. With so any people riding bikes it felt a lot like the newer parts of Holland, especially with the concrete building and architecture.
Two Tier Bike Rack
As we walked around we were all enjoying the cold. It would have been around 10 Degree Celsius and with the light rain felt like being back home in Melbourne. We all had hats and scarfs and it’s been a few years since we have been rugged up this way.
Emily Enjoying and Ice Cream in the Cold
In the end a simple dinner of Sushi and Tempura was thoroughly enjoyed. The Sushi was so soft and the Tempura Chicken was outstanding. Even Emily had a good feed.
The hotel room is small but well designed. Most things are designed for people slightly shorter than us but all is still OK. The quality of things is welcomed by a family like us who live in South East Asia. Little surprises like the heated toilet seat (which we expected) but also the bathroom mirror has a heated section so it did not fog up.
The next day, Sunday morning, the sun was out and although chilly we strolled over the Franks Patisserie for breakfast. Was a great chance to take some photos of the area, Higashi-Osaka, before hoping in the car for our drive to Kanazawa.
Franks Patisserie for breakfast – had to eat here for my God Son.