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Trip to Japan : Day 9

And here we are at Day 9.
Time flies by so fast when you’re having fun.

BTW, do you know I’m going back to Japan soon?!? In May.
My mum’s heading over cause of work issue and she pulled me in cause I’m apparently very useful to have in Japan. And since I’m there, she pulled my dad in to make it a family trip instead. My brother is out cause of school. TOO BAD.

Day 9 Agenda : Kyoto

We are going to Kyoto today!!
There’s 2 places on our itinerary : Toei Kyoto Studio Park & Fushimi Inari Taisha/Shine.

So let’s start with our 1st stop : TOEI KYOTO STUDIO PARK

The Toei Uzumasa Eigamura (東映太秦映画村, Tōei Uzumasa Eigamura; also known as Kyoto Studio Park or Movie Land) is a film set and theme park in one. Essentially a small town from the Edo Period, the park features a collection of various traditional buildings which are occasionally used as a backdrop for filming historical movies and television dramas.

Now you know. I’ve always wanted to soak in the edo-mess thus this attraction! Besides, I kept seeing this film set in Kamen Rider!

We took a train to Kyoto and when we’re at the exchanged stop, we brought bentos to eat on the train, thinking that it would be a shinkansen … Who knew it’s only 15mins ride in a normal train. Fail.

So we can only eat our breakfast in the station. Bet the station master was thinking that we are a bunch of weirdos.

Bento
BP & Mine.

Bento
KK’s.

Food
Mine.

food
BP’s.

So there we sat, munching on our bentos, getting surprised by how good it actually is. We are so damn lucky that we were not kicked out of the station making such a racket.

Bicycle Bikepark
And look! They have a bikepark for bicycles!

So after that fulfilling breakfast, we were on our way to Toei Studio. To make it easier, I’m going to call it Edomura from now on even though there is a real Nikko Edomura park.

It’s a short 5~6 mins walk and there are signs all over so you don’t have to worry about being lost.

on the way over
On the way over.

huge sign pointing the way
Huge sign pointing the way.

Here
And we are here!

Empty
Look at how empty this place is.

The reason might be because it was a weekday + we are there quite early.

Signboard

We got our tickets when the attendant only noticed that we are foreigners when we started talking among ourselves. Yes, another successful attempt in blending in.

Tip : There’s a toilet near the ticketing counter so you can relive yourselves if necessary.

no see me
I’m not here…

So after that bit of fun with our ninja, we head inside.
To our delight it’s empty of people! It’s just a long path leading into another area to the park.

Path

It’s also littered with many carts. And it’s pre-decorated with items that you can play and pose around!

gate
The Entrance.

Behind the scene
Behind the scene.

welcome
Irasshai! Irasshai!

Drink up!
Drink up!

My Shop
I proudly presents to you my little food cart. Mine.

This is made possible by having no one around except us. We can play and laugh and do a million jumping shots and photo bombs. I love this place.

After all that playing around, we continue forward and bump into attendant. He volunteer to take a picture of all 3 of us so we took it.

rawr

” My goodness. Your poses are all so much like the guys! ” We laughed and took a few more shoots. Then KK managed to dislodged the ‘rock’ from the wall. !!!!!!!!

Fixing...
Trying hard to fix it back.

roof
Look at some of the stuff lying around.

So after that long winding path, it opens up to a big area where yes, you will get to see people for the 1st time since entering.

We spotted a sign on the wooden house nearest to us.

maze
The amazing/interesting manor where you’ll get lost!

Sounds fun. Besides, the attendants are trying hard to pull us in.
Now.
There would be an entrance fee to enter the park. However, attractions like these cost additional $$.
This is ¥500 I think. We paid, took our shoes off, stuff them in a locker and started the maze.

This is a trick house. Where illusions come out and play.

You would be blinded by spirals of colors or being unable to stand up straight.

Like this.
Like this.

Or get into a room full of mirrors or even slide down the room.

Anyway, we had loads of fun in there.

Training to be a Ninja
Ninja House of Training.

Part of the Ninja house

We skipped this as it’s full of children inside which made us had the misconception that it’s only for kids. We’re wrong. What this place does is to ‘train’ you to be a Ninja. So you get to climb up robes, throw shirikens and all that. Damn.

Mascot
This black crow here is the park’s mascot.

Oh?
Oh?

Ice
Oh yes.

We then went our separate ways as KK and I wanted to try their Ninja Maze while BP wanted to go into their Hunted house. KK and I wouldn’t even touch that place with a 10 foot pole if possible. So we queue up for the maze while BP went by her lonesome self to scare herself silly.

… Well, to see the Horror house as she isn’t someone who would be scared.

Horror House
Their Hunted House. The scariest in history.

Not surprisingly, she’s the only one who entered. According to her, the attendant ‘warned’ all others inside that that she’s by herself. So they can scare her all the more with I guess. She said that there was a part where the ‘ghosts’ would chased you and you’ll have to find the door to get out. She couldn’t locate the door and with the ‘ghosts’ chasing and hounding her, she got irritated and told them to back off her a little. LOL. Who would scold ghost one??

Anyway, when she’s out, we’re still queuing as it’s a 30mins wait, batch by batch.

” WAH. I come out liao. you all still haven’t go in yet arh? ”
” WAH. Why your haunted house so fast one?!? ”
” No one mah, me only. I still stroll through some more. ”
” You siao one. Go play with the Ninja. ”

Nin Nin
NIN NIN.

She did. And then proceed to mock him.

Short
” So short. “

Wah. Not I say one arh.

Anyway, our turn came and we had too take off our shoes again before going into a tatami-styled room. There, the instructor will teach, in Japanese, how the trick doors work. There’s even one where you take off a part of the ceiling and it’s actually a ladder!

Man, KK and I can’t wait to explore the maze!!

………….. It’s a bore. It’s all hidden sliding doors. Basically all we do is to enter one room after another through slightly hidden doors. Man, the illusion maze is so much better. Wish we haven’t spend money on this.

Kung Fu
To practice your Ninja skills on.

carts
More carts around.

carts

mask cart
Ooh, masks.

Fire Station
This is what Edo fire station looks like.

creepy
Looks creepy doesn’t it? Like someone or something will crawl out of that well…

sakura tree
A sakura tree we spotted.

sakura
Yep, I think you get it by now. Most sakura is this pale pinkish but mostly white version.

Bridge
View from a bridge.

It’s a highly arc bridge so it’s quite high up when you’re standing at the middle of it. We then went into an ‘inn’ to try some Japanese sweets.

Warabi Mochi
KK’s Warabi Mochi.

Senzai
My Shirotama Zanzai.

View
Our window seat view. Pretty isn’t it?

Ninja
Can you see what I see?

There’s a Ninja that would always be climbing from 1 end to another. As he’s quite high up, it’s rather easy to miss him.

Continuing along…

Houses
Some of the houses.

houses

Pony

We then spotted this… pony (?) in one of the stable. Children can ride on it to take a picture for ¥200.

Another Street.
Another Street.

houses

brushes
Get your top quality brushes here!!

houses.

path

We then reached an open path where a samurai is strolling. He seems to be a guide though as he’s explaining something to a bunch of people behind him.

area
THIS AREA.

1 thing. There’s this take-it-slow atmosphere in Kyoto that hits us full in the face once we step out of the train station. So throughout the entire time, we’re feeling really sleepy and lazy. Now, this area sells food. Titbits that KK & BP both were interested in.

tsukune

Me? I plonked my head on the table and dozed off, unable to fight it off any longer. Apparently, while I’m sleeping, they brought more food cause they’re too lazy to leave.

Store dino
The deco of the food stalls were adorable.

There’s also filming on the set ahead of us and the film set workers are all around this area, holding up fans with ” Please be quiet. ” words on it. So polite. Kinda meaningless if no one bother to read it though.

After I woke up from my short nap, we proceed to go off to our 2nd destination. As we walk back through the winding path, we met the same attendant that took our pictures.

” Are you going off now? But the Ninja show is starting! ”

We politely declined and told him we’re on a schedule.

2nd stop : FUSHIMI INARI TAISHA

Now this place is famous for it’s rows and rows and rows and rows of Tori gates, stacked together along a path so we’re obviously going to see it!

gate
Here we are!

gate

Fushimi Inari Shrine is the the head shrine of Inari, the god of rice, patron of business. Inari’s familiars / messengers are often foxes which explains all the fox status around.

fox


We did not wash our hands though.

business
Hanshin Tigers!!

shrine
Notice the horse on the lantern?

There’s this small shrine that is a Shrine that honour a horse or something.

What is this?
Hmm? What’s this?

Ah..
Don’t tell me it’s...

Senbazuru
Senbazuru!! Thousand Folded Origami Cranes!

An ancient Japanese legend promises that anyone who folds a thousand origami cranes will be granted a wish by a crane. Some stories believe you are granted eternal good luck, instead of just one wish, such as long life or recovery from illness or injury. The crane in Japan is one of the mystical or holy creatures (others include the dragon and the tortoise) and is said to live for a thousand years: That is why 1000 cranes are made, one for each year. In some stories it is believed that the 1000 cranes must be completed within one year and they must all be made by the person who is to make the wish at the end.

From Wikipedia.

Ema
Ema 絵馬. Small wooden plates to write your prayers or wishes. The art usually corresponds with the shrine.

Pictures.

Tori Gates Ema
Tori Gates Ema for sale.

tri gate ema
This is how you write on it.

Nearer
We’re getting nearer.

Now, Inari Shrine is a place where you’ll climb up and up and up and up. To reach all the way to the top, around 2 ~ 3 hrs is needed. Of course, I am not going to climb. I hate climbing. But at least till I reached the famous Tori gates path.

shops
Selling talisman and fortunes.

bad fortunes

This is where, if you get a bad fortune, you tied it up here so it wouldn’t follow you or to not let it happen.

Inari Ema
Inari Ema.

We spend sometime here cause it was very interesting to see all the different faces drawn by people on the Ema. Believe me, I saw numerous Narutos.

Map
Map of the area. Now you know why I said you’ll have to keep on climbing (stairs)?

gate
Finally! I see the gates!!

sidview of the path
Side view of the path.

THE path
WE’RE IN.

I can’t tell you how difficult it is to get a picture without too many people in it as the place is crowded! But the place is otherworldly isn’t it? Beautiful!

Business
Each of the torii at Fushimi Inari Taisha is donated by a Japanese business and the date states when.

Not every Tori gates is beautiful though, some of it is old and worn out and waits for a new donor to donate money for repair.

The path is not on-going. In this beginning, there are many breaks between the path but the more you climb, the longer the path is. And it’s all stairs, not road. Basically you just keep climbing up stairs.

KK & BP both wanna go to the 2nd stage where you’ll need to climb for about 1 and a half hour and I strongly disagreed. I really hate climbing. In the end they won so I’m very grumpy on the entire climb. Luckily I can crush my water bottle to nothingness to de-stress. In the end, I need even BP’s water bottle to crush for it to be enough for my temper.

Yes, I have a bad temper. Sorry about it.

More pictures.

gates

It was then we spotted a small path leading to somewhere so we took that out of curiosity.

Small path

Tied to a tree

path

Another Shrine
A hidden Shrine.

This is where we ended up. A hidden shrine tuck in a corner covered by Sakuras.

Like this
Like this.

Close up
Close up.

Ema
Emas.

Items
Their items for sale is really the cutest.

Just when I took the shot, someone came out scolding that no photo is allowed. I quickly apologised and ran off.

Reentrance
Re-entrance after a break.

That was it really. After all that climbing up we have to climb down again. There are many other pictures but they are all of the same Tori gates that you’ve seen so I’ll skipped them.

So if you fancy a climb, do head over here.

After that, we took the train back home and crashed. What a day!

And that’s day 9 gone!

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