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Saturday, April 7, 2012

Japan Day 5 - Nara

Day 5 (don't worry if you are wondering why this is described as a blog about Vietnam and it's all been about Japan...we only stayed 7!) took us yet again to the subway to board a train to Nara, about 40 minutes away.  Hard to describe the enormity of this underground world.  It is seriously huge.
Not unlike these guys who are also, seriously huge.
Even Sumo wrestlers need to buy a train ticket like us mere mortals.

It must take quite a lot of skill to balance those huge frames on those fabulous wooden thongs.  It's funny, it's almost like when you see the sumo wrestlers on the street, it's like spotting wildlife in their own environment.  So exciting and unexpected.
And just look at the food on offer down there.  
As take away should be.

By this stage of our trip the kids were feeling the pinch.  Scarlett took the chance to take forty winks on the train.  Why take a photo of it?  Well, those who know us know I have the only 2 children in the world who do not sleep in moving vehicles.  Planes, trains, buses, cars....never.  EVER.

Arrived at Nara and immediately it had a great feel about it.  There seemed to be a lot less tourists and from what we could gather, things seemed a lot closer together.

Very much a walking city, our first stop was a mere block away.  With the gorgeous blue sky shining down on us, you could not help but be excited as the day unfolded before us.

The extraordinary thing about Nara Park is the sight of 1200 Silka Deer that roam freely there.  The kids LOVED it.  You can buy "deer biscuits" and feed them.

Or you can not be paying attention and have one of the naughty little things come and eat your map. (It was of course the part we were using too!)

The sign says it all but let me say this, put the name Scarlett under the little girl on the bottom left and you may get the idea.  They kind of get p****d off when you are out of biscuits and Scarlett found out the hard way.  On a brighter note, it does serve to remind you the lengths you will go to protect your children (yes, I threw myself in front of said wild deer!)  It wan't too bad, just a love tap really but she got a bit of a fright.

Guess who had the biscuits?

A very wary Quiddy.

These statues were stunning.  They were enormous protectors.  Unfortunately they were screened in which spoilt the effect some what.

This was my favourite temple that we visited on the whole trip.  There was just something about it that made it feel really special.  Here the kids are swinging the prayer flags onto the gong at the top.

Quiddy took this one!  I love the the colours.

This one was just for Tina.

Lunch was good!

Yep, we sure do love our ridiculous Jetstar jump!

We visited a stunning Japanese garden on the walk back toward the station.

The rooms where the tea ceremonies are held.  Did not get a chance this time but maybe next time without the kids.

Through the moss garden.

Back to Osaka where we were too tired to find a new place so went back to our favourite Japanese Italian restaurant as we had promised the kids.

Where Nick had a Voltaren for dinner.
Followed by what we both unequivocally agree was the best pizza we have ever had in our lives...and we have eaten a lot of pizza!

The waiters and chef remembered us and were once again so welcoming.  Now THIS is what I call a glass of wine!

He was very excited that we had been to Nara to see the deer that day.

Another great day.  Travelling with children of course has its challenges but days like today make up for it.  The kids really enjoyed the cultural side and also lapped up the fun parts like feeding the deer.  I find that in general people all around the world have a bit of a soft spot for little travellers (as long as they are well behaved) and it really creates a unique travel experience that would not be possible without them.


  1. Fab photos, makes me want to visit. What camera do you have as you take great pics? Shirl

  2. Hi Shirl. It's a cannon G11. It's not an SLR or anything but easy to use for novices like me. Can highly recommend a visit to Japan!

  3. Thanks, will check it out. Always wanted to visit Japan as a child.....maybe one day. NY next year for my 50th!
    BTW showed my parents your posting on the xom food tour, think they'll give it ago (if they can get in). They arrive 23 April

    1. Fantastic! Get my details off Tan and flick me a line. Happy to help. Can call Tung to book them in if they know what night they want to do it. Can also recommend some restaurants and shopping etc.


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