Kyushu ( 2nd Trip )
First of all, why Kyushu? What is Kyushu? Where is it? Many people might have a puzzled face. But this is my second trip for this place. For my first time, I went there because I studied in Japan so long and have been to many places but the southern part. It would feel regret not going, so I must go!!! But for my second trip, I book the ticket unconsciously because it is a buy 1 get 1 free ticket!!! So I book without thinking, I book without knowing if I can take leaves or not. But if I didn't book, I might be unable to sleep for the whole year (now, it might get a bit exaggerated).
I want to review the second trip first because I just went last September (it's been a long time). What did I go to see? Sakura....No, it's not there, neither the changing color leaves. The weather...is also still hot. The day we went also has no fireworks. So... why did I go when there's nothing to see? Well, like I said, I can't resist with that kind of cheap tickets!!!
When there's no highlight, we will just focus on food, food, food. Whoever goes to Japan, I believe that you must try the highlighted food like, Sushi, Ramen, Barbecue, etc. Well, really, we also were born to eat anyway, so "eat to the most enjoyable time" is the mission for this trip.
When we have the tickets in hand, the next thing to do is 'planning' of where to go and what to do. And the one who have been asked the whole day of where he wants to go is my boyfriend (in fact, I love Japan so much that I could talk about it all day, I think he might get bored sometimes, haha). After having the plan, now it's time to think about expenses and how much we should bring as our pocket money.
Jetstar air ticket -5,500 THB/ Each (Promotion of buy 1 get 1 free)
Loaded Baggage on the returning flight -500 THB (I didn't load on the way there as I bring my 20 inches baggage on board).
Hotel (2-3 stars hotel and 1 night of Ryokan) for 4 nights - 3,070 THB/ Each
A 3 Days JR Pass on the North route to Kyushu- 2,340 THB (By H.I.S. with the promotion price at the travel fair.)
Exchange money, me - 40,000 JPY, my boyfriend - 80,000 JPY (the exchange rate is 0.2680.)
Travel Insurance – 510 THB/Each (MSIG, we got the Star Buck voucher of 100 THB.)
Pocket WiFi – 573 THB (1,145 THB/5 Days)
The hotel is cheap due to we choose to stay at the cheapest day. For example, we stay downtown on the working day and the expensive accommodation like Ryokan, we exchange the point in Agoda.
The exchange rate is also good because we exchange it with Japanese friends in our office (the Super Rich rate is 0.285.)
Overall, the expenses of this trip is 12,492+10,680(pocket money)=23,172 THB/each.
When travelling, whatever can be saved, we will find the way to save. But for food and activities, we will make sure it's the best we can have.
The tentative plan before we actually go (what we thought)....
And......this is what actually happened....
We have the 2 a.m. flight but we arrive at the airport since 11 p.m. Let's say we are very ready. After checking in, we have plenty of time to enjoy photography and duty free.
Me : So, after we arrive, we will go activate our train ticket, right? Where...where..is the train ticket!!! Why I completely forgot of where I put it? I started to get panic now....
At this time, I'm so nervous. I bought the ticket in a promotional price and everything is planned and booked but I couldn't recall where I put my train ticket?
I try to call to my elder brother to let him take a look. It's been 10 calls and he hasn't picked it up. And now it's already pass midnight. What should I do? I almost cry and think that I will have to buy it again. But finally, he picks up the call.
Me: Please help me take of look of where this ticket can be, in the drawer, desk, bag....
My Brother: I didn't see it, how does it look like?
Me: I asked, did you see any white envelope?
My Brother: Oh yeah...I found it.
This is like a heaven voice! At the point, my tear also drops. Well, 2 tickets are about 5,500 THB. I love my brother (Korean ascent).
So my kind brother drive in hurry to the Suvanabhumi airport and give me the tickets. I then ask the immigration officers to go out to receive the tickets. Luckily, I realize it fast. Almost leaving without it. This trip starts with such a thrilling beginning TT
After landing at the airport, we go to brush our teeth and wash our faces. After the whole night of sleep, it's time to refresh a bit. At first, I was thinking to take the train downtown, but I see the one day pass bus which is quite cheap. So we decide to go by bus.
It is not far, going from the airport to downtown. The train takes 15 minutes while the bus will take about 25-30 minutes.We are heading towards Hakata Station. The bus stops at both sides of the station. We choose to get down at the front. The first night hotel would require a 10 minutes walk from the station. While finding the hotel, the Google Maps takes us here and there for about half an hour. This is just a warm up #wipeoutthesweat
The first meal has to be Ramen. Hakata is considered to be the authentic place for this Ramen. It is my favorite Ramen shop. I love its taste the most among all the Ramen. It's called "Ichiran Ramen".
This is the basic dish.
This is the full course. Of how to most enjoy it, just go into the middle and life would be good, believe me :P
Basic Ramen is 980 JPY, for each additional topping is about 100-300 JPY. This meal for two people cost 2,260 JPY.
After we are full, we just hop on the bus with no clear destination. Whichever bus comes first, we just hop on. It's such a chilling time. We just take the bus and sightseeing the city while taking photos.
Until, until....until we got lost again. We have to ask the Google Maps again. Original plan was to go to the canal city, but now we are at the shrine. In fact, it's quite nice also, the freestyle trip, haha.
Let's stop for some ice-cream.
The luck drawing box
The Kushida Shrine or is known for "the Protecting Deity of Hakata".
This shrine though small but is quite famous as the tourists keep paying visit so then we also must come (isn't it that you got lost so you are here!!!??)
After wandering around, we get out at the back of the shine where the famous grilled Moji is located, so we must also try.
Coincidentally, isn't that a canal city??? Well, how perfect this is. So I smile and praise myself to my boyfriend while saying "well, in fact, I have planned all of this already".
In fact, we wanted to come here due to this Moonmin Stand, the store my boyfriend specially requested.
Moomin cafe is only available at two places in Japan, Tokyo and Fukuoka.
I think the menu is not that interesting. The price is also quite expensive and the taste is very ordinary. The Moomin smells a bit too. Overall, that we can take some cute photos, so the score is up to 5/10.
This meal is 1,700 JPY o_O!
After wandering up and down for several hours, we are hungry again. Dinner for tonight would be "Sushi". I'm very impressed with this restaurant since my last visit in which I also followed the review. It's fresh, delicious and with a friendly price. The only con is there's too many people. Once we get there, we still need to queue about 15-30 minutes depending on how many people are there. Now, let's try it out for a dinner.
Hyotan Sushi Restaruant ひょうたん寿司
Taraba crab leg and on top with Kanimizo (crab fat), sweet Hotate.
I'm really for real when coming to food. This is so delicious and happy.. 100/10 !!!!
This meal is 7,030 JPY, which is around 1,8xx THB. I think it's so worthy.
After getting full, let's go take a walk at the game center. I got one little Rilakkuma. It is 900 THB......That's right, it's THB not a JPY, wait, this is just the first day!!!! TT
And today cannot be completed without sweet.
Should I have roll cream or chu cream? Oh...... so difficult to choose.
Map: The first night stay, I would give it 4/5. It is clean, near the station but the room is a bit narrow. This price is excluding breakfast.
Hotel: APA Hotel Hakata-Ekimae : 2,020 THB (Agoda)
Day 2 Yufuin-Beppu
Our mission for today is to take the most romantic green line train and the delicious ice cream (like I said earlier, eating is our passion) YUFUIN NO MORI. The difficulty of taking this train is that it only run a few times a day and the timetable is subject to change. We need to get here and check the time again before booking at the counter. I think to arrive an hour early is the safest.
On the way to activate the JR Pass...
Since we come out so early and most of restaurants are still closed, so we go to eat something at the underground mall of the train station.
It is 580 JPY.
Then, we go to chill at the coffee shop. Well, we really have plenty of time.
We get on the 9.24 a.m. train and we will arrive at 11.30 a.m.
P.S. The ice-cream on this train is really delicious. The vanilla one is so soft. If you have a chance to come, you must not miss it for all reasons (this is very important).
Today I will meet a friend at Yufuin Station. It is such a coincident that she also visits Yufuin today. This is so nice. Once we arrive, we go to find something to eat first.
Ramen with eggs, corn and butter, smelling so good. No one is allowed to calculate the calories here, I think this dish goes over 1,000 (o_O)! It is 770 JPY, additional egg is 50 JPY.
This is a combo set with rice. Is this what a girl should be eating!???
It is average 850 JPY each for this meal. The Ramen in this price is considered inexpensive.
After the stomach is full, now it's time to explore the city! Yufuin is a small town with Kim Mick's everywhere, both at restaurant and delicatessen shop. Every store is cutely decorated. Whoever wants to enjoy and walk to every shop, 3-4 hours is required.
Oh well, coming to this city, I feel like 10+++ years younger!!!
Along the way, there's a lot of soft cream shop like that of our 7-11. From the left to the right, it's really everywhere and they are all looking so appetizing. But I really can't do it all.
From now all, I have to apologize in advance for those who are on diet for the below photos, I didn't mean to.....
Just by seeing all these shops, I'm already full. Anyhow, their soft cream taste really good.
After walking to almost every shops in every alleys. My boyfriend goes into the toy store and get lost into his world, so we miss the last express train....So we have to take the regular train for almost another hour. Then, we reach at Oita Station and take Sonic to Beppu in about 7 minutes drive, so fast.
Beppu is the city of hot spring. It is so famous for Onsen, let it be hell pond, mud pond and many more. Let's say Beppu is the original place for the famous mineral water in Japan. We come to this city for this purpose "to enjoy Onsen". We arrive here around 5.30 p.m. which is not dark yet but it's very quiet. It is such a hipster city. Even though we walk to main shopping road or the main road, it's still very quiet. It's like that scene in the Spirit Away where the family is lost into the ghost town. After checking in to the Ryokan that we booked, we can book a private Onsen time an hour for each room without additional cost. There are 3 rooms altogether and we choose the room that most people book (we thought that it would be the best room).
Map : Ryokan Nogami Hongan : 1,334 THB (Exchanging for the Agoda Points)
Each room has a private restroom. Inside the Ryokan also offers 3 types of private Onzen rooms free of charge for you (photo is not allowed).
P.S. Usually this price at the Ryokan is very rare and in couple with private Onsen, it's just superb. The food is excluded.
While waiting, we are so hungry. We ask the hotel of where we can eat. We really want to eat some barbecue, so be it.
I like it like this so much #oysterlover
This meal is about 3,000 JPY. We also have Karubi meat and cold draft beer that I didn't get to take photo.
P.S. The waiter is great (at the barbecue shop, the chef is awesome! I've found many already)
Once we get back to Ryokan, we change clothes and get more than ready for Onsen time. Let's go!!!
Japanese Onsen like we all know, we must firstly take off all our clothes, wash our body before we can go in. The water is so hot that we can easily make a cup of tea. It is really hot. In couple with hot weather in Japan, it's a double hot. Usually, I have Onsen in winter and it's really enjoyable. This is my first time having Onsen in summer. We need to slowly pour the hot water to our body, so our body is adjusted. Once the body is used to, we can slowly move in. The Japanese has a nice skin due to they like to put themselves in the mineral water like this. It also helps with the soreness, so relaxing...Tonight we are going to have a great sleep...
Day 3 Kumamoto
From early morning, we leave from Beppu to Kumamoto. It takes about 3 hours as we need to change the train at Hakata Station again, so it wastes sometimes (at first, we were thinking to change the train at Kokura Station which will only takes 2 hours but our JR Pass cannot use at this station). After arriving at Kumamoto, let's get photo with Kuma Mong first.
Then, we buy a one day pass for Tram as we will go to several places.
We can buy it here.
Tonight we stay at APA. Every time I come to Kumamoto, I choose to stay here. I highly recommend it.
1. Convenient to go around, very close to Tram station 2.Close to several attractions 3. Quite clean and newer than many other branches
Personally, I like to stay at APA more than Toyoko Inn because the price is not that much different with similar good location but newer.
Map : APA Hotel Kumamoto Kotsu Center Minami : 2,340 THB (booking.com) without breakfast.
The famous food in this bear city includes Ramen, horse meat, Kurobuta and something like this. After putting our luggage at the hotel, travel is a secondary option at this point as we need to eat ASAP!!! And the must not miss restaurant is the famous Tong Katsu at the Sun Road shopping mall.
Location: Take the A-Line of Tram to Karashimacho Station and you will find the road to Sun Road Shin-Shigai on your right hand side.
Walking straight and you will see a lot of shops, turn right on the small alley and you will see this kind of sign.
If you see many people there, it means you have come to the right place already. I recommend you to get there before 15.00 p.m. (lunch time offers lunch set which is cheaper than dinner).
I order less fat dish.
He orders more fat dish.
It is so delicious. It's so worth for the wait. I can say wholeheartedly that this is the most delicious deep fried pork with rice dish that I ever have (this one is not exaggerated). Even my boyfriend who doesn't like deep fried pork, he also agree that this is a must recommended dish!!! 1000/10
When you take a bite, it is crispy but not greasy. The meat is juicy inside and with the hidden fat, but with a bit sour sauce, it is a perfect cut. Also, you have a good smell of sesame. It's just superb!!!!!!!!!!!!! Incredibly delicious. Here, I'm typing and mouth watering.
This meal costs...
Well, we should take a break from food and go out to have some fun. The landmark of this bear city is the Kumamoto Castle which is the third largest in Japan.
Along the way....
Yes! We are here. Let's get the entrance ticket first, it is 200 JPY each.
Today the weather is quite hot, not so many people are here.
After that, we walk to the shopping road from the castle. We can keep walking until we reach the Sun Road. The shopping road in Japan is similar with the gate like this and shops that look like this. It's just right, I think I have to spend some more money now :P I like to go in second hand shop or the old style shops as I often come across an antique or collectible that we have seen as a child. It is really an enjoyable walk.
The bear is everywhere.
After walking for a while, we are hungry again. Well, this trip is all about food. Our pocket is also getting thinner after several expensive and good meal, so today we must find cheap and good food to eat. Finally, I find my another favorite Sushi shop ever since when I was a student. Whenever we have money, we would go downtown for it. Why do I like "Sushi Sanmai(寿司さんまい)" ?
1. Raw materials are fresh. The owner win the annual fish auction at Tsukiji fish market almost every year if I remember it correctly.
2. The price is not too expensive and good quality.
3. They regularly have promotional events.
Full and delicious, this meal for two people is about 2,000 JPY. We also got the draft beer, delicious....
Before going back, let's stop at Donkey a bit.
Late night eating, delicious.....
We really will go back now.
Day 4 Fukuoka
We take the early morning train back to Fukuoka. It would take about an hour. My boyfriend rush to buy Bento to eat on the train while I run to book the ticket. Everything happens so fast. And this is what he got.
Kuma Mong Bento, so cute.
Once we arrive at Hakata station, our stomach is crying again. So we go straight to this Ramen shop that everyone said it's one of the famous shops that we should try. Again, the Google Maps take us round and round. We get so hungry already when we find it. Lucky that we arrive here before 11 a.m., so there's not yet many people. It is about 10 minutes walk from the station.
The Hakata Ikkousha Ramen
This shop is famous for black soup and crispy fried dumpling.... so mouth watering..
Personally, I like small Ramen like this. Once we come to Kyushu, getting to eat the authentic soup and small Ramen like this makes me really happy. The soup is so good and tasty (if you like Ichiran, you should try this one also). My boyfriend said it's a bit salty but when I look at him again, he finishes before me. So I give it 8.5/10. In fact, there's many more shops that I want to try. But for these 5 days, 3 meals are Ramen. Perhaps, we should take some break....
Tonight accommodation is also at APA. This branch is not located close to train station but bus station. I choose here because we can take the bus straight to the airport. It is quite convenient so that we don't have to carry luggage up and down stairs.
Map : APA Hotel Fukuoka-Watanabedori : 400 THB (Exchange the Agoda Point)
400 THB for a hotel in Japan is cheaper than eating barbecue. It's like this is for free. It is so cheap that I want to call and thank Agoda.
Thank you so much -/\-
Today is a shopping and chilling day in downtown. We left our luggage at the hotel and walk out. After the first turn, we find this! 100 JPY store.
Well... at this point, the money is spent so fast. In my mind, I was just thinking "today is our last day, wow, this is so cute, this is so cheap" while my hands are taking this and that. From the initial intention of not buying anything, now, that intention is far gone.
The peak of today is "I run out of money" T^T I can just keep walking and cannot buy anything. The last 3,00 JPY would not be enough for anything (as I eat a lot).
It's like I was hypnotized to go put in the coin, spin and unwrap the eggs, put in the coin, spin and unwrap the eggs.....
I love it so much!!!!
Then, we keep wandering while the rain is also there. So we have to hide from it here and there.
Finally, he can be so content now after getting this green man from the box in a price of 2,000 JPY.
I still think that eating is everything.... so...
This is a famous shop that you need to queue in every branch. I've never got to eat in Tokyo as I really can't queue that long. So since we already find it here, let's try it out.
It is 1,150 JPY.
The cream is great, the pancake smells good. It is so delicious and now I understand why they have such a long queue. This dish is so full even having by two people...but wait.. the girl next table just order one each.... I think I've met the master of eating now........
Now that it's dark, ...........Oh Ark Oak............what's that sound? Hehe, I'm hungry again. And this meal is his treat.
I wanted to have Sashimi squid which is the highlight menu here... Once we find the shop, we order it immediately... But.....it.......sold......out.........The last one was just served to the next table.... crying....crying....
So we got this one as a replacement.
Last day TT
We wake up early to pack. The location of this hotel is great where we can just go across and find the bus station to the airport. But we need to have at least an hour time for it since it's a slow bus not the express one. I like taking bus to the airport as we don't have to carry our baggage up and down which we could have forgotten something along the way. The bus is so great as you just need to put your luggage one time and everything will be with you until you reach the airport.
At the airport, right before we check in, we take the bag to have the staff check for duty free items first. They just take a quick look. We just show the paper attached to our passport and point to that things to them and they will stamp for us.
This trip is full, fun and very happy and makes me love Japan even more. If you have never been to Kyushu yet or have been here already, I still want you to visit again.
I'd like to give some definition for this island, “beautiful nature, delicious Ramen, sweet Sashimi, great black pork, and....don't forget the train ticket."
Good bye! End of the trip!
#Eating until You Crushed at 【Kyushu】have to go now, see you later, Sawaddee Kha!
Whereto Tabi Tabi
Wednesday, March 23, 2016 10:45 AM