[kansai region] Himeji Castle
My previous post on USJ marked the last attraction I visited in Osaka itself. From this point onwards, I will be touching on the other within the Kansai Region that I went to during my trip.
Prior to our departure, Baby and I purchased the 4-Day JR West-Kansai passes from JTB, and each pass cost us SGD77. The pass covered the Kansai area, which consisted of the cities of Osaka, Kyoto, Kobe, Nara & Himeiji. With the pass, we were allowed unlimited rides to all these designated areas on all the JR Train services line. these include all 'Special Rapid Train' services, but do note that the pass does not cover the Shinkansen trains.
After having brekkie, we headed down to Osaka Station from Namba station to exchange our JR passes for the actual train passes. The traveling time from Osaka to Himeiji is usually an hour or so, but we took the special rapid train and that cut short our journey to only 40-45minutes.
Himeiji is famous for its magnificent white castle, and till-date Himeiji Castle is a both national treasure and a world heritage site.
To be honest, Himeiji Castle was way better than Osaka Castle, as it was the actual castle from antiquity, and not rebuilt like the one in Osaka. Naturally, there are no elevators within the castle, and one has to go up each floor via long and ancient steep stairs. The stairs were pretty scary!
We paid 1000JPY per pax to enter the castle which I found a bit hard to take, but Baby insisted we enter the castle as he is a history freak. Personally, I appreciate the authentic experience of stepping on the ancient Japanese wooden flooring, which gave me a feeling of wonder.
We concluded our Himeiji Castle with a nice bowl of hot tempura noodles, and after our lunch, we walked around the town area. The sky turned dark as early as 4pm due to the Winter season.
We went to Piole Shopping Mall which is located directly beside JR Himeiji Station. There were many shops in the mall, but I spent the most of my time in Tokyu Hands and the Seria 100 Yen Shop. I personally prefer Seria 100 Yen Shop to Daiso, but for some odd reason it is quite difficult to find Seria in Tokyo, whereas Seria was everywhere within the Kansai region! The selection is WAY better than Daiso. IMHO: Seria 100 Yen Shop FTW!
Our expenditure in Himeiji was slightly cheaper than in Osaka, so we decided to have dinner before back to Osaka/Namba. We had our meal at Don Don Tei which is located within the mall. The Tendon was delicious, and I wanted more!
Thanks for reading! Next up is Nara, the capital city of Nara Prefecture in Kansai region of Japan.