A few weeks ago I posted this throwback collage on Instagram. 

It was 2 years since my husband and I visited Japan and we have been obsessed ever since. (I was actually obsessed since about the age of 14, it just took a while to push that obsession into actual travel plans and corral someone else to be as enthused as I was!)

At the end of last year, we were deciding where to travel to in 2017 for a new adventure. A few ideas were on the table, New Zealand, San Francisco and New York, Seoul, Vietnam... But there was one question that we kept coming back to: will anything be as good as Japan?! 

We decided to bite the bullet and return to the land of the rising sun. Our flights are booked and in October we'll be spending two and a half weeks in our favourite place. 

I thought this would be a good time to get myself into check and actually organise what we did last time. I never really got around to it and now that we are returning, I regret it so much! I plan to make photo-albums from our 2015 trip and use this blog as a place to document what we do, where we go and what we love this year. 

Because who knows, we might even return for a third trip! 

When we went

May, 2015. It was very humid and we experienced a couple of thunderstorms(huge-terrifying-middle-of-the-night-events)that broke the humidity for a few hours tops. This time, we are going in Autumn, mainly because I saw a picture of Kyoto in full autumnal glory but also to try and explore a little more without sweating buckets. 

Where we stayed

After quite a bit of research, we settled for Shibuya and found a little air bnb in between Harajuku and Shibuya. It was an ideal base and location, with a supermarket and tube stop just around the corner. Along with places to eat, drink and explore on the doorstep. The flat was rented out already when we looked for our 2017 trip, so we found an alternate in the same location. As we are staying for longer in Kyoto this time around (during the middle of our stay) we also have a second air bnb apartment in Tokyo, closer to Shinjuku.

Favourite parts

1. The crazy hustle and bustle of Shibuya

2. The gaming district, Akihabara

3. Every single shrine

4. All the different trains (I realise how much of a geek that makes me seem and I don't even care - they were really cool!)

5. Kawaii cuteness on every corner

6. Loft Store - the sheer array of washi, stamps, paper and pens was a stationery dream

7. Being utterly lost in translation. For some people I know this is scary but I just love immersing myself in a new culture and Japan was unlike anything I had ever experienced before. 

Missed opportunities / Ideas for 2017

1. Art museums... any museums! The Tokyo Kite Museum, SCAI The Bathhouse, Mori Art Museum, ADMT Advertising Museum and the MOMAT are all on the list for October

2. Seeing the city from a view. I have a real fear of heights and literally ran away whilst in the queue for the Tokyo sky tree. This time I'm determined to go up to the top and experience the city from above 

3. Shinjuku Gardens. We allocated to see this on a Monday - the gardens close all day on Mondays!

4. The stationery heaven that is Itoya!

5. Relax a little. I suffer from serious FOMO when I travel, which menas I often burn myself out quickly and sometimes find it hard to just be still and in the moment. This time around I really want to soak up being in Japan. Take it slower, easier and not worry so much about what might be around the next corner. This will also coincide nicely with number 6...

6. Go out. Out out. Drinking out. Karaoke out. Ahhh!

Last time we visited, we also had a few days in Kyoto, and will be spending a bit more time in the old city this Autumn. 
I will dedicate another blog post to all things Kyoto in the next few weeks. 

If you have ever been to Tokyo, please leave advice and tips below!


  1. ITOYA!!!

    Right next to Itoya is Akomeda the most beautiful 'all about rice' store ever.

    Asakusa temple is my favourite for the street food and the cute shops around it including Kuredaya a washi paper store.

    I have never been but it seems Tokyu Hands is a must!

    Oh and there is a chance my husband and I may go for a weekend...late early Oct/Nov...

    1. YES ITOYA!!!!!

      Putting all your recommendations into my google doc right now :) I also went to Tokyu Hands, but it was nothing compared to Loft (IMO).

      P.S I'm hoping that's a high chance of a weekend visit!! :D