Hanami in Japan : Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden

It was great experiencing hanami in Japan even at least once in your lifetime and one of the popular and best place to go is Shinjuku Gyoen in Tokyo.

Shinjuku Gyoen is home to a huge number of cherry trees of different varieties and has extended viewing season from mid March to late April. So other parks might not be in cherry blossom season anymore but Shinjuku Gyoen still is.

It is a 15-20 minute walk about 700m from JR Shinjuku station New South exit or 5-10 minute walk from Shinjukugyoenmae station on the Marunouchi Subway line. We took the JR Shinjuku station route when we went there and took the Shinjukugyoenmae station afterwards. The best tip I can give when in doubt, use Google maps. 🙂

Operating hours from 9 AM to 4:30 PM with last entry at 4 PM. Entrance fee is 400 YEN for adults and 50 YEN for children.

I hope to go back someday!

Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden

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Asakusa Kannon Temple

Also known as Sensoji is a Buddhist temple located in Asakusa, which is one of the most popular destination in Tokyo Japan.

I must admit that I am not fond of going to temples but I’m glad I did visit this place because I felt positive upon leaving Sensoji temple.

Aside from the souvenirs and unique cuisines that I can buy from Nakamise, I also went to pray and try my luck at Omikuji. I am a bit reluctant because Sensoji temple’s omikuji are known to have a high rate of misfortune but it is what it is.

There is no admission fee and the temple grounds is always open for people who wants to visit however, Sensoji temple’s main hall is only open from 6 AM to 5 PM.

Getting here is easy, alight at Asakusa station served by the Ginza Subway Line, Asakusa Subway Line and Tobu Railways. It is at least a 5-minute walk from the station.

I hope I can come back to see the temple’s main hall as we arrived already past 5 PM.

Asakusa Kannon Temple

Kaminarimon, the Thunder Gate.

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Things to See and Do in Odaiba

Odaiba originated from the word Daiba which means fort. It is a popular shopping area as well as an entertainment place.

Here you will find the famous Rainbow Bridge, Fuji TV building, Decks Tokyo Beach, Aquacity, Divercity Tokyo Plaza, Telecom Center, Museum of Maritime Science, National Museum of Emerging Science and Oedi Onsen Monogatari.

Palette Town is also a walking distance away where you can shop at the Venus Fort, see vintage cars at Toyota Mega Web, ride the Ferris Wheel and play at Leisureland.

There are several ways to get here. I was planning to take a bus but end up taking a train instead.

We rode the elevated train with rubber tires called Yurikamome that connects Shimbashi station of the Yamanote line with all of Odaiba’s attractions. Kindly note that Yurikamome is not covered by the Japan Rail Pass or JR Pass so you have to pay for a separate ticket worth 320 YEN per trip.

You can also take the Rinkai line which connects Osaki station on the JR Yamanote line with Shin-kiba station on the JR Keiyo line which stops at Tokyo Teleport and Kokusai Tenjijo underground stations or ride a boat from Hinode Pier for 20 minutes at 480 YEN. If you are really the adventurous type you can cross the Rainbow bridge by foot which takes about 30-45 minutes walk.

Odaiba Park

Rainbow Bridge at night.

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My ANA Experience

After years of planning to visit Japan, finally the time has come! And the first thing I know that I have to do is to search for a flight.

Since I preferred to have a direct flight which is by the way is still almost seven hours from Singapore, my choices were narrowed to ANA (All Nippon Airways) and SQ (Singapore Airlines) at that time.

Both were listed at the top 10 best economy airlines so I know whichever we end up choosing is good nonetheless. Finally, we went with ANA as it was cheaper though it really isn’t cheap because its a peak season!

Based on what I’ve read, they have comfortable seats even in economy class with good amount of leg room which I can attest. Food also tastes good with unlimited drinks plus friendly flight attendants.

You’ll get entertained with their personal monitors with lots of movies to choose from or if you want you can just listen to music. You can also play games on it whichever you prefer. Please note that some of their aircraft may not be equipped with this so better check their website.

Overall, it was a great experience and would do it all over again.

ANA Experience

My personal monitor.

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Legoland Malaysia Ninjago

Legoland’s newest attraction this year let’s you put your ninja skills to test!

Ninjago ride takes you to a mission to defeat the enemy by using your arms to create a lightning strike. In front of your seat were sensors that triggers when you extend your arm creating an illusion of you generating a lightning.

As per Legoland’s website there were four steps to master the lightning strike move :

Step 1 – Make your arm and hand as straight as a board
Step 2 – Bend your arm into a “V” shape
Step 3 – Karate chop downward like a bolt of lightning
Step 4 – Repeat

It was fun but I felt soreness in my arms afterwards. Maybe I did not do it correctly but hey, we came in second! Taking photos was not allowed inside so we just took advantage of the ninja statue made of Lego outside.

Legoland Malaysia Ninjago Continue reading

Legoland Water Park in Malaysia

Legoland Water Park is situated inside Legoland Malaysia Resort where you can also visit the theme park and stay at their Lego themed hotel.

We purchased a Two-Day Combo ticket together with our hotel booking for only 245 MYR per adult and 195 MYR per child. A regular Two Day Combo ticket were priced at 305 MYR per adult and 245 MYR per child and/or senior. All prices are inclusive of 6% GST.

If you are only visiting for a day, you can rent out cabanas or gazebos starting at 150 MYR for a half day. You can also use lockers at a more affordable price which is available for rent to put your belongings to fully enjoy the water park.

Regular ticket prices for a day were 125 MYR for adult and 105 MYR for child (3-11 years old) & senior (60+ years old). Children below 3 years old entrance ticket is 11 MYR per day which is only available at Legoland ticket counter. You may book seven days or more in advance online to enjoy 20% discount.

Operating hours is from 10 AM to 6 PM every day. Surely kids will enjoy!

Legoland Malaysia Water Park

Build-A-Raft River.

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Avengers S.T.A.T.I.O.N Exhibition in Singapore

Avengers Scientific Training and Tactical Intelligence Operative Network (S.T.A.T.I.O.N) exhibit held at The Annexe, Science Centre in Singapore was full of information and interactive technology.

If you are an Avengers fan then, you should not miss this one. The exhibit will only be here until 5th of March.

Admission fee is 30 SGD for Adult and 22 SGD for Children ages 3-12 years old. Singaporeans and PR can get it at a discounted rate while children ages 2 and below are free.

The exhibit is open from 10 am to 6 pm but last admission is at 5 pm. It will take an hour or two to complete the tour, depends if you will do the mission as well as queue for the flight simulation.

Avengers S.T.A.T.I.O.N Exhibition

Long queue to the entrance but the wait is not that long.

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