Blog 41 (Vlog) | Kansai Trip (Nara/Osaka), Day 6 - 8

[ July 17 (Thur) ]
A day in Nara & Rinku Premium Outlets

Link to the YouTube Vlog is at the end of this blog posting

Originally we were going to go to Universal Studios since Harry Potter land just opened! But it is really crowded, I’m feeling sick still, plus the entry tickets are expensive and not guaranteed, so we decided not to go. To go to Harry Potter land, you need to pay to enter Universal Studios first ¥6,400, and then go line up for Harry Potter land tickets after you get in. There are quotas for entry each day, so once quotas run out you’re out of luck.

From Osaka to Nara, the best way is to take the Kintetsu from Namba station to Kintatsu Nara station. If you take the JR to the JR Nara station, it’s around a 1km walk to the main attractions. Kintetsu express from Namba to Nara takes around 35 min with 11 stops, ¥540. There’s also a rapid express with 9 stops and Limited Express with 7 stops. From the Kintetsu Namba station, you’ll first run into the Nara Deer Park! There’s lots of deers roaming freely in park, chilling under the shade, or eating grass. They aren’t scared or hostile towards humans at all. You can buy deer cookies for ¥150 everywhere. The moment you unwrap the cookies, deers will crowd around you and try to grab them from you. They might be a bit excited, but they’re not violent at all. The most I got was a deer tugging on my dress lightly to get my attention from behind (it’s super cute!)

Say Cheese! (In Nara)

If you continue straight for another 500m or so, on the left hand side you will see Todaiji, which is a Buddhist temple. The entry fee is ¥500, but the temple is huge and definitely worth the visit. There is a gigantic Buddha statue that is 15m tall in the main temple, and other really cool looking guardian statues as well. Further from Todaiji (probably another 700m), there’s also Kasuga Taisha which is another famous Temple.

In this picture I'm praying to see if my grandfather is well. He passed away around 10 years ago. He was very involved in the Lion's club and frequently flew to Japan to visit his friends there. Every time I'm in Japan I think of him.

Large statue, apparently he's a god that has very good eyesight? 

Lantern festival held on August 15th this year, you can get a lantern for 1,000 - 3,000 yen and can wish for various things, like home safety, health.. etc

This is an Ema wall especially for those who want to pray for passing exams


These different deer products are so cute!!

Afterwards, we went back to Osaka area, and took the airport express train from Namba to Rinku Park to go to the Premium Outlets. A lot of people go before they board their flights, but wheeling around luggage in this huge shopping area isn’t ideal. 

When you first get out of Rinku Park station, you’ll walk through a mall with a Ferris Wheel. It’s full of local Japanese brands at affordable prices. There’s also a kid’s section with lots of baby clothing, good for families with young children. Pass the Ferris Wheel, you’ll get to Rinku Premium Outlets, which is the best outlet with most brands in the Kansai area. There’s Kate Spade, Michael Kors, Coach, Celine, Anna Sui, Burberry, Samantha Thavasa, and all the major sport brands. On the Seaside, there are more Japanese brands like Cecil McBee and Egoist. If you like shoes, definitely visit Nuovo. It’s a Japanese brand that sells a lot of really pretty shoes around the price range of ¥4,000.

I got these wedge sandals that are super comfy at Nuovo for 4,700 yen

[ July 18 (Fri) ]

On the last day, we spent most of the day shopping. But first, breakfast at St. Marc Cafe again!

There’s a Shibuya 109 at Tenoji Station! Although it’s only 1 floor, it’s still worth going if you don’t have the chance to go to the original one in Tokyo. Also, there is a massive OPA mall at Shinsaibashi Station with 8/F of inexpensive Japanese branded women’s clothing. I also went to EST and Hep5 again near Umeda station. I found a really nice red bag for only ¥3,500 in Hep5. Its style is similar to Samantha Thavasa (which is super pricey even at the outlet). 

Got this handbag at Hep 5 for only ¥3,500! 
The Coach card holder was around ¥4,000 from Mitsui Outlet

Inside Hep 5. The mall is massive!

If you’re not really into shopping for clothes, Yodobashi Umeda is a good place to go. It’s an electronics shop that’s 8/F tall. You can get anything from laptops, TVs, gaming consoles, cameras, phone accessories, home electronics… basically anything you can think of, all in one building. There’s also 5 aisles of iPhone5 cases!

Kansai Airport Bound Express train

Our flight was at 9pm, but we left Osaka nice and early around 5:30pm so we wouldn’t need to rush. But we found out that our flight was delayed until 5am the next day! That’s 8hrs! And the reason was that there is a typhoon near Hong Kong (actually nowhere near, when we actually checked). The plane we’re supposed to be on is stuck in Hong Kong, so there are no planes to fly us back. Throughout this whole process, Peach Air’s service was very poor. But I will discuss this in the Peach air review blog.

Instead of waiting and betting on a flight not guaranteed, we decided to just book a flight for the next day (Hong Kong Express at 3pm) and stayed at the Hotel right beside terminal 1. Thank god there was still rooms because we thought a lot of people would rush to the hotel. But since the hotel is a bit pricy, a lot of people choose to wait at terminal 2 for the 5am flight.

(Jul 19, Sat, 1 extra day)

We woke up at around 10am and went to Rinku Premium Outlet to shop again since it’s only 1 stop away from the airport. Then we returned to the Airport around lunch time to grab some food, then was finally on the way home. The flight was very bumpy, and the flight attendants weren’t very nice on Hong Kong Express… I guess it’s also a budget airline, and customer service standards in Hong Kong are very different from Japan. The way they talked was very rude and direct. At least we got back to Hong Kong safely.

Cecil McBee is a very common brand in Japanese magazines. Their clothes are so cute!! It can be worn to work or for casual days and is affordable!

Just at Nike, wearing my new sandals

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