Japan day 10 - bamboo, monkey, food tour, karaoke!



- Kyoto 

- Arashiyama 

- Sagano

Started  the day by taking a train to Arashiyama, where we walked through the magical bamboo forest. A little about Arashiyama Bamboo Grove: is one of Kyoto's most iconic sights, and a walk through this bamboo grove will be one of your most lasting impressions of this city. 

You can find more about the bamboo forest here: https://japan.travel/en/spot/1141/ 

Got to take some photos of the wonderful nature before we traveled to the bottom of the monkey mountain. 

The Bamboo forest:

Then those who wanted to continue went up to the monkey mountain, where the monkeys lived. One needs a ticket, but this was included in the package so that sorted the guide for us. I wanted to see monkeys so went up in bad shape, with both fitness and asthma but managed it! Went with someone called Helena, we went up slowly as I couldn't bear to go faster, and it was very hot. Went up, and up and started with the worst, stairs! Before it went uphill, there were some benches along the road and fans that sprayed water, luckily. When we were almost at the top, we entered a small building that was air-conditioned, as we needed to cool down a bit. I had also brought cold wet wipes, which are wet wipes you rub on your face, arms, legs, or where you are warmest, it takes two seconds and you feel an icy feeling and you get a little colder, works great. We then went on to the top of the mountain, saw some monkeys on the way too.

At the top there was a fantastic view of the city, we saw lots of monkeys here and there, on the way up there were various leaflets about facts and a, b and c questions if you wanted to answer this about the monkeys. There was a spring with fish that the monkeys bathed in. There was a room where you could go in to feed the monkeys. It cost 50yen (approx. NOK 4) to buy a bag of divided apples that we could give to the monkeys. I bought one and fed them, they took the food from me and ate it, was great! On this mountain, the monkeys could walk freely where they wanted, there was no fence, other than when we gave them food, but then we were the ones inside the fence or the premises. 

Below you can see pictures of the monkey mountain: 

A bit about the monkey mountain: Monkey Park Iwatayama is located in Arashiyama in Kyoto, Japan. At the top of Mount Arashiyama on the same side of the Oi River is a small park with close to 130 Japanese macaques, also known as snow monkeys. While they are wild and free to roam, you have the option to buy apples to feed them. Each one has a name and the baby monkeys are very cute. There are only three rules to follow: 1. Do not stare into the monkey's eyes. 2. Do not touch the monkeys. And 3. Don't feed them outside the designated cabin. Read more about this here: https://en.japantravel.com/kyoto/monkey-park-iwatayama/14359 

When we came down from the mountain I was completely done, my legs hurt a lot and I was exhausted, but that's how it is, it was worth it anyway. We were also going to rent a boat and look around, but it was way too hot so unfortunately we couldn't rent a boat.

In the picture above here you see us after we had been on the monkey mountain, some of us went up there and some stayed behind, we came back down at different times. Here you see me exhausted, incredibly hot and sore all over. The only one that looks like shit. Hehe

Then we went to Osaka to check into a hotel called Hotel WBF Namba Motomachi. Here I shared a room with my roommate from day 1, Samantha, it was a great hotel, with good beds, shower and bath, there was a breakfast buffet and more.

After this we went on a food tour with our guide. Here we got to taste, among other things, squid, fried chicken, fried prawns, teriyaki, pancakes made from vegetables or meat. The dessert tastes like sweet potato, it's the fish-like thing, we could choose between chocolate, sweet potato and red beans. 

We also visited the running man poster and took pictures outside there.

We ended the day with Karaoke! Here we had a soundproof room to ourselves, our whole group. That was all you could get of either soda or alcohol for the two hours we were here. Since we didn't get to go on the boat trip, we got 2 hours instead of one at karaoke. As most of those who know me know, I don't have a singing voice at all, but that didn't matter here as everyone sang and enjoyed themselves. Songs were on a Ipad, that we could writhe them in and pick the song, they were played and we sang into microphones. The last song was Mamma Mia, by Abba which just about everyone had heard, so we danced and sang before heading back to the hotel. 

All in all, a great day with nice photos in the bamboo forest, great monkeys on the monkey mountain, and not least karaoke. Wasn't too happy with the food on the food tour, and got really tired from walking the monkey mountain, but it was worth it in the long run, so it was a good day anyway. Very happy that I ended up in this particular group of people as well, because everyone could be with each other, and there was no arguing, something that should really only be missing since everyone is an adult, but still.