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Jessica Goes to Nagoya, JAPAN!

Good day folks! I'm finally updating my blog about my TRIP TO JAPAN!! I know you guys have been expecting this post since forever; sorry for the long wait! I'm gonna keep it simple and sweet, just so you may refer to this post for a preset itinerary: so feel free to come back here anytime you're planning to visit Nagoya, Japan!! :D 

 I've always wanted to visit Japan and never would I thought that my dream would be coming true right this year!! A million thanks to Nuffnang and the Japan Tourism Organisation for unraveling the paths to one of my biggest dreams!!! You have no idea how freaking stoked I was the moment I received the invitation. C'mon, it's JAPAN, my dream country!!

Ok, excuse me while I calm myself down, BRB. 

...

Ok, back. 

So this was my first time visiting Japan and my mum tagged along! It was a 4D3N trip and I was actually planning to extend my trip... but reality hit me hard in my face (oh so harsh~) and I got to give in to the fact that I shouldn't skip too many classes and leave my work undone! T___T Although my getaway to Japan this time was rather short, I enjoyed every single bit of it and nothing like regret was left behind!! 

10.10.2014 
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We travelled to Nagoya by Airasia. The price for the return economy flight tickets is around RM766, which I think is relatively pretty afforda!!

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After 7 hours of flight, we finally reached our destination!!!

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First impression when I landed in Nagoya:
It's super CLEAN EVERYWHERE, especially the TOILET.
No foul odour. No puddles. No discomfort to any of the 5 senses.
I wonder when can Malaysians start maintaining cleanliness like the Japanese? :/

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There is this information counter in Chubu Airport so if you need any brochures or assistance, feel free to come over to this place!! 

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Baggage delivery service is provided (limited area only but still cool), whereby you can leave your baggage with them and they will send them to your hotel - while you can already hop right into your adventure in exploring Japan!!

If that isn't hospitality, I really don't know what is.

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Then we met up with the fellow bloggers from Taiwan, Hong Kong and also the friendly hosts from the Japan Tourism Organisation. I felt super lucky to be there, and I think it is such a great honour to be invited as one of the blogger representatives from Malaysia!!

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After a short briefing, we bought the Meitetsu train ticket which sends us directly to Nagoya from the airport within 20 minutes! (Either call Japan super small, or super efficient. I'd say the latter.) This ticket can be bought in the subway station (attached to the airport) and it costs about RM27.

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The transportation in Japan is really convenient. You can practically travel to anywhere you want in Nagoya with the subway - no other form of transportation needed!

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Right after we reached Nagoya station, we took the cab to our temporary home -
 RICHMOND HOTEL!

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Our room is relatively small but don't worry, it's super clean and well-furnished! The rate for a three-night-stay is about 18,000 yen (about RM558).
*Was it just me, or do you wanna hop onto the bed at first sight too?*

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After settling everything in the hotel, we were all invited to have a dinner together in a restaurant within a stone's throw.
*Happily trotting across the Japanese streets~*
*Insert 'horse galloping' sound effect*

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We got to try so many different kinds of famous dishes in Nagoya, i.e. The Cochin chicken wings, the Hitsumabushi (Eel rice) and a plethora of other palatable Japanese food such as Sashimi, Wagyu beef, scallops, sushi, etc!!

Everything couldn't have tasted any better. Shall I be dining alone with mummy, I would have licked all ten of my fingers.

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Halfway back to our hotel after dinner, we stumbled upon this super huge drugstore nearby our hotel. You can find almost EVERYTHING you can imagine here as they boast a wide range of cosmetics, food, beverages, personal items and, since it's a drugstore, medicine!

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I forgot to bring my makeup remover but fret not, I was saved by a few packers of BIFESTA MAKEUP WIPES bought from this drugstore!! 

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I was totally spoilt for choice by the products stacking high everywhere around me! I think I can already shop for a good few hours in the drugstore hahaha!

11.10.2014 
Osukannon, JR Takashimaya and Midland Square 

Nagoya is a such a beautiful city. Not only that the people are friendly, even the weather is perfect. Everything just feels so great. To be honest, waking up every day to calm blue skies with a warm sunshine is better than any medicine.

Come on, can anyone reject waking up in an atmosphere so soothing that it wakes your happy mood with you?

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Contrary to the quick pace in K.L, Nagoya takes a downshift of gears to a slow and steady cruise in a breezy park. I was totally d.i.g.g.i.n.g it. 

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Mum and I decided to visit Osukannon today! We bought a pair of ONE-DAY passes (600yen for one) in the subway station, which grant us unlimited rides for that particular day.

In case you're interested to learn more about the tickets, you may visit THIS website!!

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Getting around in Nagoya couldn't be any easier with the convenience of their subway! Spend a few minutes to understand the map of the subway routes, aaaand you are good to go!

Here's a clearer version of the subway line map for your reference: MAP

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Osukannon station is just one stop away from the Fushimi station (where our hotel is located!)

Alighting then coming back to the surface, we couldn't find the Osukannon temple at first. Then, we bumped into an elderly Japanese man who could speak a bit of English, and he was kind enough to bring us to the temple and even volunteered to take pictures for my mum and I.
A few simple gestures can go a long way, and I felt so, so thankful for his kindness.

Little did he realise, the man is one walking example of, once again, one of the many reasons why I love Japan so much. :')  

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Gosh, this place really smells like Japan!!! 

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Behind us was the famous and majestic Osukannon Buddhist temple! Admission is FREE and what's even better, they are open 24/7!

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Food stalls serving authentic Japanese food and snacks along the street! 

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The Osu shopping district is a must-go, and I only need to present you one reason for saying that:

THERE ARE MORE THAN 1,200 SHOPS AND RESTAURANTS IN THERE!!!

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I WANT!! 

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We walked into a random restaurant in the Osu Shopping District for breakfast. 

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We couldn't read the Japanese menu but luckily, there was a Caucasian dude beside us who could speak Japanese. He translated the menu and also helped us place our order as well!!
SO MANY KIND PEOPLE IN JAPAN *touched* T_T

So what we ordered was the "all-you-can-eat" set, which allows you to take as much pastries as you want, and it costs only 490yen!!!

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After breakfast, we shopped in the Osu Shopping District!! I mean, of course!!

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Gorgeous creepers everywhere!!! 

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I wanna grab all of them home omg! 

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There was a festive roadshow going on, so we also got to witness some forms of the Japanese culture, right at its origin! This is why I love Osukannon!!

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If you want to experience the Japanese culture, I would strongly recommend you to visit Osukannon - because you just might not find any other place which gives you the "Oh, this is Japan!" kind of feeling as much as Osukannon does! 

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Leaving Osukannon, we took the subway to Nagoya station, which is one of the largest railway stations in Nagoya. It also houses the twelve-floor shopping mall, JR Takashimaya!!

 
We spent a few good hours shopping in the cosmetics department alone!! I couldn't seem to decide which brand I should go for because there are too many of them already! Anyway, good news for tourists: you can shop for duty-free items in JR Takashimaya. You just have to show them your passport!! :) 

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Another reason I love shopping in Japan is due to the top-notch customer service. The assistants always have a smile on their face and are always ready to serve you! Their presence already made me feel so welcomed and warm! 

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Quick lunch - tempura!!! Super delicious and crispy! 

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Whenever it comes to fashion, it's impossible for us not to acknowledge the fact that Japanese do have an incredible sense of style!

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After some shopping, we walked to Midland Square, which was just a 5-minute walk from JR Takashimaya. FYI, Midland Square is the tallest building in Nagoya, boasting an intimidating height of 47 floors! From the 1st to the 4th floor, you will be able to find renowned international luxury brands as well as urbane shops and restaurants. On the highest floor sits the SKY PROMENADE, which offers visitors a breathtaking panorama view of the beautiful city. 

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Admission fees will be charged if you wish to visit the Sky Promenade, but trust me - it's worth every single cent (or Yen LOL)!!

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The view was magnificent. I felt as if I could just stand there and feast on the scenery for hours.

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Before leaving, we stepped into the Moncher Cafe for some desserts!! 

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They are super well-known for their cakes, so it's a must-try!! 

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12.10.2014
Sakae: Matsuzakaya, PARCO, Mitsukoshi, Nagoya TV Tower, Oasis 21 

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Heading to Sakae from Fushimi~! This time around, we didn't purchase the one-day pass because we planned to linger within Sakae for the entire day. So instead, we bought a one-way pass to Sakae, which costs only 200yen. 

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The shopping malls were not opened yet by the time we reached (they open at 10am), so we decided to have a light breakfast before removing the shopping-shackles off our hands!

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Their toasts were awesome! 

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While walking to the PARCO mall, we saw people forming a beeline in front of fashion stores, and Forever 21 was one of them! I had no clue what was going on, but I'm guessing there was a super-sale or grand opening or something of that sort.

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I swear, Forever 21 in Japan is 10x better than Malaysia's lol. The garments are up to today's fashion trends and what's even better: the PRICE IS CHEAPER!!! My mum and I spent a good few hours shopping for our lives here LOL!

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Lunch at Cat's Garden, located in PARCO shopping mall!

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We ordered Set B, which consisted of a main course, soup, a bowl of salad and dessert!! 

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I didn't want something too creamy or savoury, so this plate of pasta was just on point!!! 

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This ice-cream is just one of its kind... it has a unique taste that I've never laid my tongue on before.
The cream is velvety smooth and it in overall, it was freaking awesome!! 

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If you're planning to visit Japan, never ever forget to try their ice-cream, because you can be sure that you will be amazed! 

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If you love Japanese fashion, PARCO is definitely the ideal place for you. Taking every step in here, you will be slowly drown in waves of internationally-renowned Japanese fashion brands, such as Majestic Legon, Jouetie, SLY, etc!

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Moving on to Matsuzakaya, which is situated nearby PARCO!

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Visiting the cosmetics department again because a girl can never have enough cosmetics! *screams*
Again, I couldn't help but be impressed by how affable and helpful the beauty assistants are to every visitor, but not only to tourists.

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Night view of a beautiful city! :') 

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After strolling around in all the shopping malls, we headed to Nagoya TV tower and Oasis 21! Both of the buildings are significant landmarks in Nagoya - you must never miss them out!

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You can actually purchase tickets to get on the observation deck at the highest floor of Nagoya TV Tower, but we decided to save up the money for better stuffs, since we have already experienced enjoying the city-overview scenery at Midland Square! 

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Sakae's new landmark - the futuristic-looking Oasis 21! The roof alone already had me awestruck! 

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Besides sightseeing, you may also dine or *once again* go shopping in the ground floor of Oasis 21!

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Omg, found this fashion boutique in Oasis 21 and I feel like taking home everything I saw!

13.10.2014 (Last day) 
Komeda Coffee, Chubu International Airport


 I was so reluctant to go home! 

It started drizzling in the early morning and our initial plan of heading to Atsusa Shrine park got cancelled. Since we couldn't extend anywhere far, we decided to walk to Komeda's Coffee, which is located in a few streets away from our hotel, for some good ol' breakfast!

We had no idea where the cafe was, but luckily for us...
we happened to have met a local passerby, who volunteered to bring us there!
*gosh, just how nice can the Japanese be?*

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Breakfast at one of the famous coffee shops in Nagoya, Komeda's Coffee!! 

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The illustrations are super appealing and tempting omg!
Can I have everything in the menu? *glittering-eyes*

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Buttery thick-toast and eggs. The toast tasted awesome!

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A cup of hot tea with milk kept us really warm and comfortable on the rainy morning. 

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Oh my god, this one is beyond the descriptive powers of words...
IT WAS A GIFT FROM THE HIGH HEAVENS!
*bunnies please, try this out if you're gonna visit Japan!*

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At 11am, we headed back to the hotel, picked up our luggage and left to the airport!

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There are all sorts of restaurants in Chubu International Airport, ranging from western cuisine to Japanese cuisine! *all the way from the east to the west yo LOL!*

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Craving for a last taste of Tempura, Ramen, Chicken Teriyaki, Cochin Chicken and all kinds of sushi?
Don't worry, they are all available in Chubu International Airport!! 

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Had a small bowl of Ramen to fill the tummy up, and it was really delicious and satisfying!

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How could we leave Japan without having sushi, right?! 

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The Unagi was super long haahahah 

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Shopped in the Hello Kitty Souvenir Shop and everything was just too cute to resist!!!

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That day, our flight was cancelled due to the typhoon.

However, it wasn't a bad thing for us at all! If it wasn't for the typhoon, we wouldn't be able to catch a glimpse of this beautiful sunrise in Nagoya before heading home. 

I've learned a lot about the Japanese culture, albeit the short time spent in Japan. I promised myself that I'll visit Nagoya again very soon, because a part of me was left there, ready for my wanderlust soul to pick it up again anytime.

Thank you for the good times, lovely Japan ♥ 



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