On Friday, when I got back home from work, Barış said “Let’s go to Oslo!” We packed a small bag, booked a hotel online quickly, then left by car. It all happened very quickly and I realized that we were about to spend a weekend in a city that we had never been to before.
Saturday was one of the few really warm days in Sweden. This allowed me to wear a real summer dress and spend all day outdoors in the city.
We had two days left in Tokyo before we got back to Sweden. We wanted to stay in a memorable place this time, so we booked New Otani Tokyo, which is a very old and famous hotel in Tokyo. It had a beautiful garden and beautiful old rooms.
Gion is the most attractive region in Kyoto. The beautiful small streets of Gion have traditional Japanese houses on both sides. I mentioned before that it is the traditional region which is famous for Geishas. It is actually the region that inspired the famous novel “Memoirs of a Geisha” (1997). [Read more]
We took the train from Kyoto and spent half a day in Osaka. It is the third largest city in Japan; very different from Kyoto, and I think it’s more like a smaller version of Tokyo.
Kyoto has a good location that makes it possible to see the many other cities around it by short train trips. Nara was on the first place on my to-see list. This city was the capital of Japan between 710-784 and celebrated its 1300th birthday on 2010. This information made me expect to see a hilarious city with a rich culture and beautiful nature. I was not disappointed at all!
We took a train from Kyoto and headed to Arashiyama to see the bamboo forest. This region was like a small summer town with random streets, relaxed people around and the humidity. We walked around houses, picking any street that took our attention, and eventually reached the forest.
Nijo Castle is one of the most interesting places to see in Kyoto. It was completed in 1626 and designated a UNESCO world heritage site. We walked around in the big garden and visited Ninomaru palace inside it. Since it has very well-preserved parquet on the floor, we needed to take our shoes off before entering the palace. [Read more]