One day in Nara: Mt Yoshino and Nara Park

During my trip to Japan, Joanne and I had a homestay over at Nishi-san’s house! So glad to see Nishi-san, Yaemi-san and also Falcon after many years!!!^^

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Hello my sweet old friend!

We took a train early in the morning over from Osaka to Nara to meet Nishi-san! Nishi-san then sent us back to his house to unload our luggage then drove to Mt Yoshino!

Mount Yoshino (吉野山, Yoshinoyama), in Nara Prefecture, has been Japan’s most famous cherry blossom viewing spot for many centuries. It is said that the first trees were planted along its slopes more than 1300 years ago, and today the mountain is covered by approximately 30,000 cherry trees of many different varieties, especially of the Yamazakura variety.

~ http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e4152.html

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This super friendly shop owner treated us some hot drinks and shared with us his trips to various countries with his wife! They developed the photos and kept train tickets, coins from each country they visited with the dates! They visited Singapore in the 90s!!!

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Since we visited in Autumn, some trees are still red and beautiful!!! ^^

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Duck was a delcious duck meat Ramen!!!!!!!! XD

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Later that evening, we went to Nara Park!!!! Nara Park is definitely a must-go place to relax and take some cute photos of deer!!!!!

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After a yummy dinner prepared by Yaemi-san, Nishi-san brought us to Yurara no Yu for hot spring and relaxation!!!!! He is so cute to kept taking photos for us at the main entrance!!

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As per usual, more photos are available on my facebook! ^^

BIGBANG at Osaka

Hehehe, sorry for taking so long to update my Osaka Trip in November!!!! I want to share with you guys day 2 and 3 at Osaka! One of our main purposes of visiting Japan this time was actually to catch BIGBANG’s concert!!! LOL LOL!! Please ignore my fangirling because Mr T.O.P is gonna enlist in army so I just want to catch his performance! 😛

I think this was my 4th time to Osaka!!! I still really like the Kansai region a lot since I am most familiar with this area! I’ve visited Osaka Castle during Winter, and twice in Autumn! Haha, I am really glad that this time I managed to catch some beautiful colours instead of the naked trees in the previous autumn!

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Then we also met up with our Japanese friend who helped us a lot for the BIGBANG ticket and merchandises!! ❤ 12299194_10153633610347247_5001307041855807731_n

In Japan, you just have to eat icecream everyday and night!!!!! 12347742_10153633610122247_6729610384405041937_n12347896_10153633610362247_2228111677526237195_n12339075_10154452991612814_233562436351087675_o12322859_10154452991607814_7555867768614912976_o

For lunch, we had one of the must-eat in Osaka, Okonomiyaki!!!!! We ate at 福太郎本店 (Fukutarou) right in the heart of my favourite Namba!!!!! I LOVE NAMBA THE MOST IN JAPAN!! :PPP FOOD FOOD FOOD, and many affordable brands to shop!! ❤

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Did I mention we had ICECREAM every night too?? hahaahhahaha!! #letsgrowfatinJapanIMG_20151121_223801

Next up, all the UFO machines in the arcade in Japan!!!!!!! Do you know this cute blue bear? He is Krunk Bear from YG Entertainment!!!!! He was dressed up as BIGBANG this time and soooooooo many different kinds of outfits from their MVs!! SO CUTE!!!!!!!!!!

I have a few of the DOOM DADA Top bears, but I was going crazy over the MONSTER version TOP!!!! The one with the big hat and one red eye!!!!!!  SUPER CUTE and you can see on the first photo that all the TOPs were gone!

HAHAHAH spent so much in the arcade to get the plushies~~~ I also got the limited edition Rilakkumeow cushion!!! SO CUTE!!!! *meowww*

So on the third day, it was BIGBANG concert day!!!!!!!!!!! I am so happy because the boys are clearly super happy, except GD who was ill!! Thank goodness he still put on his strong self and gave a great show!! ❤ TOP was really really cheeky and crazyyyyyyyy… LOL!!!! Then I was also really happy that Daesung finally spoke a lot since he knows Japanese!!! Such a cute boy too!! :)))))

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今回日本のVIPも会いました!嬉しかったです❣ @smile.yai いろいろありがとうございます!! またね♥♥♥♥(=^・^=) @choi_seung_hyun_tttop #bigbang #vip #bangbangbang #빅뱅 #lawson #madetour #madetourjapan #bigbangtop #choi_seung_hyun_tttop #choiseunghyun #gdragon #kyrjp #kyrkansai #kyrosaka #kyrwanderlust #travel #traveling #vacation #holiday #travelling #tourist #travelgram #travelingram #japan#kansai #日本#大阪 #関西 #秀桑 #秀チャン

A photo posted by 陳秀慧 🌸 堂本キヨラ 👑 최수희 🐈 (@xkiyora) on Nov 22, 2015 at 3:04pm PST

Then we had a great dinner with the rest of the Japanese VIPS!!! Thank you for taking care of us and it was great meeting new friends!! ^^

If you have been following my instagram, you will see that I updated my Japan trip while I was there thanks to HIS Singapore – your Japan Specialist!

For as low as $8 per day, and you can connect to up to 10 devices! 😘😘😘😘 HIS also provide services like Disney tickets, JR passes, Sanrio Puroland tickets and all varieties of Japan packages (free & easy, private group, customized). Check out www.his.com.sg for more information!

 

 

Japan Autumn Kobe – Himeji Castle and Namie Amuro Concert!

Hehehehe! So happy that I went to Japan for a second time last year! Hope you enjoyed my Kyushu posts! ❤ I will be visiting Hokkaido in March!! *SCREAMS* Hokkaido is also one of my dream places to visit!! LOL, Japan is just so addictive!!!! ^^ I am also looking forward to March to look for a new adventure and chapter of my life if you know what I mean! Wish me good luck!!!!!!! 😀

On 20th to 30th November 2015, I went over to Osaka-> Kobe-> Osaka-> Nara-> Kyoto-> Takayama-> Tokyo! Busy and super packed schedule! LOL!

Actually for the main purpose of this trip, Jochan and I wanted to catch BIGBANG’s concert in Japan!!! They were in Osaka from 20th to 22nd November! A big thanks to our sweet Japanese friend, Yayoi for helping us with the tickets and also many Krunk products!!! ❤ ❤  I also wanted to visit Kansai area properly again this time since I only went to Universal Studio in June. ^^

One of the main highlights was visiting Himeji Castle! There are many beautiful castles in Japan, but I fell in love with Himeji Castle when I first saw its photo! It looks so elegant with its white appearance! However, Himeji Castle was under a huge renovation for a few years and finally reopened in March 2015! ❤

Since we were staying in Osaka, we got a One-day Kansai JR Pass from Osaka to Kobe so because a single trip is also really expensive!

Himeji-jo is the finest surviving example of early 17th-century Japanese castle architecture, comprising 83 buildings with highly developed systems of defence and ingenious protection devices dating from the beginning of the Shogun period. It is a masterpiece of construction in wood, combining function with aesthetic appeal, both in its elegant appearance unified by the white plastered earthen walls and in the subtlety of the relationships between the building masses and the multiple roof layers.

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Himeji Castle is a National Treasure and was added to UNESCO World Heritage Sites in 1993! Also the fourth Japan’s UNESCO World Heritage Site I visited! ^^
Spotted a kitty rock climbing! *purrs*
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Super super huge size castle! Do be prepared to be squeezed with people and wear good walking shoes since you need to climb a lot of olden days steps which is super scary when coming down! Both Jochan and I got muscle ache the next day… LOL!!!!!
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I have been dreaming of visiting you for years and I finally see you, Himeji Castle!!!!! ❤ _ ❤ Himeji Castle is really beautiful and I highly recommend you to visit!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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It was a long walk but I am glad that the weather was really cooling which was just nice! ❤ Actually we felt that we wore too much! haha!!

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Hyogo’s scenery is so beautiful!!!!!!!!! ❤ Wish I can stay here!!!!

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Magnificent when closed up!!!!!!!!

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Autumn colours is also really beautiful!!!!!!
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Missing the beautiful scenery, cooling fresh air ❤
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 We had dinner at Zipang and this pork rice was just so oishii~~~~ I want to eat it again!!!!! ❤

Then finally we ended the night with Namie-chan’s concert!!!! OMG!! I liked her since I was in my teens and she previously came to Singapore for a concert but cancelled in the end! Therefore, I was totally overwhelmed when I finally saw her singing and dancing in person!!!!!!!! Tears just rolled down my eyes when I see her beautiful and cute face!!!! *blush* Hahahahha! I admit I teared a couple of times during the concert!!! hahahahah!!!!! She is even cuter and prettier in person!!!! She sang and danced so well!!!! I cannot believe that she is already 38 years old!!!!

 

 

If you have been following my instagram, you will see that I updated my Japan trip while I was there thanks to HIS Singapore – your Japan Specialist!
 For as low as $8 per day, and you can connect to up to 10 devices! 😘😘😘😘 HIS also provide services like Disney tickets, JR passes, Sanrio Puroland tickets and all varieties of Japan packages (free & easy, private group, customized). Check out www.his.com.sg for more information!

 

As per usual, more photos can be found over at my facebook!!!!!!!! Be back soon with more of my Japan wanderlust!!!

Kagurame Lake + Shidaka Lake + Hell of Beppu

We went to Beppu for 1 night and went to Yufuin on the second night! Let me continue sharing about day 2 of Beppu! Do read about Day 1 if you haven’t!

First thing first, you must get the Beppu 1 Day Mini Free Passport from the train station! ^^ They have an English Speaking Customer Service to help! 😀 I visited Kagurame Lake for Iris viewing, Lake Shidaka and Hells of Beppu!12030547_10154303192872814_4566219030035000208_o

Depending on the days, the timing of the buses defer and stopped at some places only! It should stop at Kagurame Lake during weekend. You can visit Kagurame Lake on the right, and Shidaka Lake on th right. Since I love flowers viewing, we decided to visit Kagurame Lake first.  We kind of chose the wrong way…. lol. We walked on the side of the misty road for about 15 minutes with cars just beside us. LOL!!!!!!!!!!!!! And from Kagurame Lake to Shidaka Lake, we can go through a short cut via the hill. However, the mountain was so steep I had to stop 2 times to catch my breath. LOL!!!!!!!!!! Serve me right for wearing Heeled Sneakers. =X

I will recommend  you to visit Shidaka Lake first and cut through the hill~~ lol. Shidaka Lake’s side was not that high as compared to Kagurame Lake. *MEHHHH*

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However, it was worth all the walking and hiking to Kagurame Lake!!!!!!

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The view is simply… breath-taking!!!!!!! Japan is just so so so so beautiful!!!!!!!!!!!! *CRIES* I can still feel the cooling morning wind and fresh air!!!!!!!!!

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Kagurame Lake is surrounded by the Tsurumi Mountains. It is shrouded in legend to say that a female dancer of Tsurumi shrine lived near the lake in the Heian period. Irises of eighty different kinds from fifteen thousand roots dye the lake in light purple color and provide a scene of mysterious beauty. On the festival day, you can enjoy a music performance, Japanese tea and Kagurame dango (dumpling) for free.

You can see many kinds of Irises and here are some that are 1 year old, 2 year old and 3 year old!

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You can see many kinds of Irises and here are some that are 1 year old, 2 year old and 3 year old!

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Also, time for some full view picture of Kagurame Lake! 😀

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Next we went to beautiful Shidaka Lake!

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About 1000 cherry trees are now in full bloom around Lake Shidaka. It is a small lake with 2 kms around, which belongs to Aso-Kuju national park and located 600 meters above sea level.

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So calming to just stand there and soak in the essence of nature! *BREATHES IN*P1250446

Saw probably only 3 Japanese couple! Caught one couple throwing stones up the tori gate.. how sweet is this scene? 🙂P1250447

Towards the end of Shidaka Lake, there are a few beautiful swan and caught one of them on camera! *waves hello*P1250450

There are many beautiful Hydrangea of different colours!!!

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This pinkish purple  colour looks so beautiful!!!!!!!!! ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤P1250460 P1250461 P1250462 P1250466

Next up, we visited the very famous Hells of Beppu!!!!

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The “hells” (地獄, jigoku) of Beppu are eight spectacular hot springs for viewing rather than bathing. They are presented to visitors in a rather touristy fashion, which might not appeal to everybody. Six of the hells are located in the Kannawa district and two in the more remote Shibaseki district.

We first went to the Kannawa district!

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Yama Jigoku

The “mountain hell” features small ponds of steaming hot water and a mini zoo! I went a little crazy over the countless rabbits!! 😀

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SO SO CUTE!!!!!!!

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So fluffy~~ I can’t take it!!!!!!!!P1250474

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The baby bunnies are soooooo poor thing! I was feeding them carrot halfway and the big bunny will come and push them away.. 😦

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Next it is the Umi Jigoku!

The “sea hell” features a pond of boiling blue hell. In its gardens, there are a few orange colored hells and a large, clear water pond with lotus flowers which are big enough to support small children. Also, there is a hot spring for us to soak our tired feet! ^^

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Oniishibozu Jigoku

This hell is named after the mud bubbles, which emerge from boiling mud pools and look like the shaven heads of monks.  DSCN1381

Looks so funny!!!! 😀DSCN1382

Kamado Jigoku

The “cooking pot hell” features several boiling ponds and a flashy demon statue as cook. On the grounds, visitors can drink the hot spring water, enjoy hand and foot baths, inhale the hot spring steam and try various snacks cooked or steamed by the hot spring.

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Don’t mind me… i am  just trying to turn myself pretty! LOL!DSCN1396

Oniyama Kagurama

A large number of crocodiles are bred and kept on the grounds of the “monster mountain hell”.

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The baby crocodiles are quite cute!! They are mostly motionless… unlike those in Singapore Zoo!! DSCN1403

Shiraike Jigoku

The “white pond hell” features a pond of hot milky water. The pond is surrounded by a garden and a small aquarium.

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Chinoike Jigoku

The “blood pond hell” features a pond of hot, red water! I got my Christmas Fuchiko and other stuffs in this souvenir shop. 😛

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Tatsumaki Jigoku

The “spout hell” features a boiling hot geyser, which erupts every 30-40 minutes for about 6-10 minutes. A stone plate above the geyser hinders it to reach its full height.

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Lol, while waiting for the geyser to shoot every 30-40min… We tried the handmade ice cream! Pumpkin and potato flavor which I’ve never tried before! Pumpkin is really yummy!!!! ❤
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After a very fun day at Beppu, we left for Yufuin picturesque!!!!! I still need time to choose the photos! ^^ Meanwhile, you can take a look at my Beppu photos in my facebook 😀

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OMG, I want to live in Yufuin too!! LOL!!!!!!!!!!! I really wish I can stay in Japan for like two years! I want to live one year in Hokkaido, and another year just traveling around Japan!!!!!!!!!!!!!! *LOA ACTIVATED*

Beppu – Japan’s Most Famous Hot Spring Resorts

On my day 3 of my Japan’s Trip, we traveled from Nagasaki back to Hakata and then to Beppu!!

I bought almost everything that I see mentaiko!! lol!!!

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We had Sasebo Burger at our hotel before we set off for Beppu!

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SUPER HUGE SASEBO BURGER!!!!!!

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Passed by Hakata Station and saw my favourite Rilakkuma! BOUGHT truckloads when I was back to stay in Hakata. 😛

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Beppu (別府) is one of Japan’s most famous hot spring resorts, producing more hot spring water than any other resort in the country.

Beppu offers an unmatched range of baths to be enjoyed, including ordinary hot water baths, mud baths, sand baths and steam baths. In addition, the Hells of Beppu are several spectacular hot springs for viewing rather than bathing.

Welcomed to pamper my hands just outside Beppu Station! ^

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Saw this statue of Mr Kumahachi Aburaya just outside the station. He is the “father of Beppu tourism” ! Thank you for beautiful Beppu! 😀 P1250324

What I really like about Kyushu is that there really isn’t much people walking around. I LOVE!! 😛 I feel so relaxed without the need to walk fast and squeeze with people!P1250327

You really hardly see people walking around! I should have taken more OOTDS. LOL!  P1250330

In Beppu, you will just see many many Onsens and don’t even look like one. HAHA! I wish I stay here so I can visit all the onsens!!!

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Simple small Cinema Theater that doesn’t look like those fancy ones in Singapore!P1250331

Saw a Tengu Shrine in the market street.

Tengu were often described as protectors of freedom and sovereignity in Japan. In 1688 there was a huge fire in Beppu, and this has led to the construction of many shrines to protect the villagers from further grief.

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Tsunami evacuation area.

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Japan = World No.1 Vending Machines Country!

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A peek of olden days Japan: Old poster, signboard..

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Not to forget, my favourite beer Kirin!!! Endorsed by ARASHI, Arashi for dream~~ 😛 *spams some Arashi*

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Hello my sis!

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Saw beautiful flowers at a car park entrance!

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I am so amazed by Japan that I even took photo of their manhole.  How cute and colourful is this manhole! Japan!!!!!

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After exploring a little, it is time for the main highlight of our trip to Beppu. ONSEN!!!!!!!!!

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There are many famous Onsens but the one we chose is Takegawra Onsen!

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Built in 1879, Takegawara Spa is Beppu’s oldest and most famous bath house, offering sand and regular baths in an atmosphere of the old days! The entrance fee is just 100yen! P1250356

We managed to small talk with some kind Obaasan. (^_^) The onsen is super hot.. Omgosh… Haha!!! By the way, it is situated just next a red light district~

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After onsen, we were shocked that the shopping mall closes at 7pm!! OMG. haha!

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Must eat dish at Beppu! Chicken Karage!!! I WONDER HOW JAPANESE stay so slim eating all these…..

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Our hotel for the night is Beppu Daiichi Hotel which is a few minutes walk from the station! Love how cozy, clean, and cute the yukatas are 😛

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I love how Japanese hotels provide Shiseido bath sets~~~ These of course can’t be brought home. LOL!2015-06-23-20-46-06_photo
As per my previous post about Kushu Trip, you can view more photos of my Beppu in my facebook if you are interested!

Beppu Day 1 and 2 in Facebook

Kept this entry short to day 1, but I will share about day 2 soon! ^^

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After looking at my Japan’s trip photo, I can’t wait for my next Japan Trip in November!!!!!!!

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Recently, I received  a customized Passport with my name and add-on charm from The Vintage Stash !!!<3 ❤ ❤ I love the vintage leather look and can’t wait to bring it overseas!!!!!

Enter “Kiyora” to enjoy 10% OFF from now till 31 Dec 2015! 😀

Nagasaki: Lesson for World Peace – 22.6.2015

Hello! Sorry that I took such a long time to update about day 2 of my Kyushu Trip! I miss Kyushu so much! Basically I miss Japan so much! I know how most people will be like I love Tokyo the most! 😛 I used to love Tokyo the most when I first fell in love with Japan, but I also fell in love with Kansai Region (Osaka, Nara, Kyoto) when I visited Japan! I also fell in love with Kyushu due to its beautiful nature and less crowded places. ^^ Definitely going back again soon!!!!!! Japan is just somewhere that one will visit again and again!! Too beautiful to describe~~ ^^ So glad that my sister brought me around Kyushu for my fifth Trip to Japan!! Can’t wait for the sixth trip in November! 😀 DSCN1232

For the second day, we traveled to Nagasaki from Huis Ten Bosch Station, Limited Express Huis Ten Bosch, which took about 75min.
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We reached Nagasaki Main Station, and walked around to hunt for our lunch!

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Continue reading

Rainy Seasion (Tsuyu) in Nagasaki Huis Ten Bosch – 21.6.2015

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haha, so everything is related to SG50 since it is Singapore’s Jubilee 50 year old celebration! We came a long way and I love Singapore more and more as I grow older! Thank you for a safe, beautiful and clean garden city!!!! Come to Singapore and have a feast with our local yummy food such as Chilli Crab and Satay!!! 😍😍😍 2015-06-21-00-08-50_photo Screen shot 2015-07-28 at PM 04.26.02 Reached Fukuoka safely in the morning! Thank you Singapore Airlines! It takes only 5hr 55min from Singapore to Fukuoda!! I think Fukuoka will be the next place I will visit for short trip! Continue reading