Posted: May 2015
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Did you know that the 2021 Travel and Tourism Competitiveness Report ranked Japan first in the world out of 117 countries? For good reason – as it is one of those special places where locals don’t understand your question but spends 10 minutes trying to understand you, followed by another 10 minutes to walk you to your destination. We love this country of lovely people, food and sights!



This was our alone time with our first Bean way back in 2015 – with 2 adults to a kid, we were adventurous to explore various cities as we travelled on trains and switched between AirBnbs. We started in Tokyo with the hustle and bustle of bright lights, to the neighbourhood around Mount Fiji to cycle under Sakura trees, then Osaka and Kyoto for cultural and history, before Hitachi Seaside Park for the most beautiful flower landscape we’ve ever seen!

Main Highlights

Tokyo: Capital of Japan – we took a joyride on one of the fastest trains in the world! Then, we slowed our pace to a kneel at the gardens to sip tea – before exploring giant lanterns and free flowing alcohol at Asakusa

Mount Fiji: Day trip from Tokyo, we cycled around the lake before Mount Fiji. We visited in May and were greeted by the beautiful pink Sakura trees along the streets!

Osaka: This is a bustling city and is host to Universal Studios (which we didn’t visit on our trip – but Harry Potter World will likely be a highlight for our Beans now that they are older). We visited the city’s landmarks including Osaka Castle and Dōtonbori where giant octopus and crabs hang from the shopfront

Kyoto: Considered the cultural capital of Japan, Kyoto is home to your IG-worthy spots including Red Torii, bamboo forest and endless Buddhist temples and Shinto shrines. It was a pity we spent only 2 days here!

Hitachi Seaside Park: Beautiful flowers in well-kept, large gardens all around the year, we took a day trip out to this park and was greeted with all sorts of colours and flowers. We hopped on a bicycle to explore as much as we could but there was just too much to cover (recommended to go early in the morning and avoid our mistake of rushing through this beautiful park)

Photo Reel

Hitachi Seaside Park Tokyo Kyoto Mount Fiji Osaka
Hitachi Seaside Park Tokyo Kyoto Mount Fiji Osaka

First time on a bullet train


Starting our little Beans when they are young

Tea house at Hamarikyu Gardens:

Watching to learn how to kneel with grace

Asakusa by night:

With a lantern a hundred times my size

Bicycle Tour:

Little Bean giving instructions on where to go

Mount Fiji:

Beautiful mountain across Lake Kawaguchiko


Mount Fiji captured within the heart

First Time:

Eating horse sashimi – a local delicacy

Welcome to Osaka:

Cutie face beside another cutie face

Giant Crab:

Walking the Dotonbori


A new world indeed – with this little Bean in our lives

Day trip to Nara:

Couldn’t tell which was cuter – the deer in front, or the couple behind

Arashiyama Bamboo Grove:

Beautiful lady in red

Changing rooms for little Beans:

Signs are truly idiot proof in Japan


“Castle on the hill”

Blue as the sky:

Photo first, tears later!

Sea of flowers:

Lost among the blues

Mama little girl:

Scared of getting lost

Biking around the park:

Cycling from one flower paradise to another


Fleeting smiles among the orangey sunshines