Saturday, February 23, 2013

Osaka: Day 4 (February 23, 2013)

Okay, I think I'm caught up on my blog entries now...

Today's excursion: Koyasan, a popular Buddhist centre near Osaka. Now Calvin and I aren't really into temples for the purpose of sightseeing, and from our previous trips to Japan, we have not had the most fulfilling experiences visiting places like this, so I'm not sure why Calvin wanted to come here. 

Plus, when we were doing research on this place, we found out that it was still really cold in the area and that there would most likely still be snow on the ground. However, despite the cold forecast, we decided to take our chances and head out there.

Now, in our past 2 trips to Japan, Calvin and I have done more expensive excursions outside of the city, expensive because of the transportation. The Japanese do like their trains, but these train rides can get very expensive. A day trip to Koyasan is such an excursion. To take the Limited Express train to Koyasan, express meaning an hour and a half, was already over $30 one way, per person. Yeah, exactly what I said a few seconds ago, expensive. Good thing Jacob is free on train rides.

So after taking the train for an hour and a half (mind you, these train rides outside the city are always scenic), we still had to take a cable car up the mountain, and then a short bus ride to the town centre.

Koyasan is a large Buddhist centre and there are a lot of "attractions" to see. Of course, not being that interested in temples, Calvin and I just decided to walk randomly around the area and check out the scenery.

Here are some pictures of our time at Koyasan:


Okay, I will admit that the scenery was very beautiful with all the snow still on the ground and the structures are amazing. We got a lot of good shots with the camera. However, as you can guess, it was freezing!!! Jacob was already wearing 4 layers of clothing and we still had to cover him with a blanket and my scarf (albeit a thin scarf). My hands were frozen pushing his stroller around. And yes, we pushed that stroller through the snow and mud even though the wheels are so not meant for that kind of terrain. Thankfully, we (and the stroller) survived this "arctic" excursion.

When we got back to Osaka, we decided just to have dinner at one of the many malls at Namba station. We chose this restaurant that specialized in katsu dishes. Calvin and I both decided to have the pork katsu with curry and rice; however, what we thought was curry turned out to be some brown sweet sauce. The meal itself was alright, although our pieces of pork were quite fatty. When will I get my Japanese curry??

To be curry, or not to be curry? That is the question...

***Again, you can view more pictures that I've posted to my Instagram account (@thejjchan), here.

Until tomorrow! :)

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