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Shibuya Crossing in Tokyo, Japan

Shibuya Crossing in Tokyo, Japan

Entertainment, Features, Japan, Leisure, Shopping, Style, Tokyo, Tourism, Travel
It’s the most frantic pedestrian crossing in the entire world. Movies like “The Fast and the Furious” and “Lost in Translation” have featured this very busy, famous intersection. The Shibuya Crossing, also referred to as “The Scramble,” is located in Shibuya, one of Tokyo, Japan’s special wards. The Shibuya Crossing is where pedestrians cross from virtually every direction all at the same time. It’s a crazy scene at this busy junction, I tell you! As soon as the traffic lights turn red, hundreds upon hundreds of people cross. Mind you, however, while everything looks busy and disorderly, you won’t see chaos. In fact, what you’ll see is “well organized, well choreographed chaos,” if you know what I mean. If you’re wondering why so many people cross this junction, it’s because it’s in ...
How to pay your Philippine travel taxes online

How to pay your Philippine travel taxes online

America, Announcements, Flights, Hongkong, Internet, Japan, Kyoto, Leisure, Macau, Mindanaoan Update, News, Osaka, Seoul, Society, Taiwan, Technology, Tokyo, Tourism, Travel, United States of America
Here in the Philippines, individuals who leave the country need to pay travel taxes. The Philippine travel tax is actually a levy imposed by the government. Filipino citizens, foreign passport holders and non-immigrant foreign passport holders who have stayed in the country for more than one year are usually required to pay full travel taxes when they go abroad. Currently, the Philippine travel tax rates are Php 1,620 for economy passage and Php 2,700 for first class passage. I'm sure frequent travelers like myself will agree that the queues at the travel tax payment booths can be time consuming. To address this, the Tourism Infrastructure and Enterprise Zone Authority (TIEZA) has launched a system for travelers to pay their Philippine travel tax online. Here's how you do it. ...
Cat Cafe Calico in Shinjuku, Tokyo, Japan

Cat Cafe Calico in Shinjuku, Tokyo, Japan

Advocacy, Entertainment, Japan, Leisure, Tokyo, Travel
During our trip to Japan, we just had to visit a cat cafe. To visit at least one cat cafe was definitely a part of our Japan itinerary. We chose Calico Cat Cafe, one of the most popular cat cafes (I read somewhere it's the oldest, too) in Tokyo, Japan. You see, my entire family loves animals. We have a family dog, whom we absolutely adore, but if one of my brothers had his way, he'd also want our family to have pet cats. I like cats as well but not as much as he does! Before anything else, by the way, allow me to share a few things about cat cafes. A cat cafe is where you can enjoy drinks like coffee, tea, juices and shakes and get to interact with various breeds of cats. Cat cafes have become pretty popular since lots of apartments don't allow pets. Anyway, to make my brother hap...
Finding the Godzilla themed hotel in Tokyo Japan

Finding the Godzilla themed hotel in Tokyo Japan

Entertainment, Features, Hotels, Japan, Leisure, Tokyo, Travel
We found Godzilla! Yup, my brothers and I found Godzilla in Shinjuku, Tokyo, Japan! A Godzilla-themed hotel, that is :) Even though it was really pretty cold that night, I asked my brothers if they wanted to look for Hotel Gracery in the Kabukicho District in Shinjuku. It's the hotel famous for its really cool Godzilla-themed guest rooms. According to reports, the Godzilla Room on the hotel’s top floor features a life-sized Godzilla claw looming above the beds. The other Godzilla View rooms, on the other hand, let guests overlook the life-size replica of the celebrated mutant dinosaur's head. Hotel Gracery Tokyo also offers Godzilla-themed desserts and merchandise. That night, however, my brothers and I could only afford to see the Godzilla head from the outside. Maybe one day we'll ...
Kamukura Ramen in Shibuya, Tokyo, Japan for yummy, cheap eats

Kamukura Ramen in Shibuya, Tokyo, Japan for yummy, cheap eats

Food, Japan, Kyoto, Leisure, Osaka, Reviews, Tokyo, Tourism, Travel
My brothers and I spent our first evening in Japan in Shibuya, one of Tokyo's special wards. I was really looking forward to spending time in Shibuya especially since it's one of Tokyo's busiest districts. You can read more about our fun Shibuya escapades. Anyway, while my brothers and I roamed around Shibuya, we realized we haven't eaten anything yet after we checked in at Oak Hostel Cabin. As fate would have it, we stumbled upon this ramen restaurant that had an English menu - Kamukura Soup With Noodles. Entering that restaurant was one of the great impromptu decisions we made while in Tokyo :) Because, as it turned out, Kamukura is one of the popular ramen places in Japan that served really good, filling and affordable food! Kamukura Ramen actually has a controversial c...
Nakamise Street for souvenir hunting in #Tokyo #Japan

Nakamise Street for souvenir hunting in #Tokyo #Japan

Arts, Features, Japan, Mindanaoan Update, Tokyo, Travel
Hunting for souvenirs in Tokyo, Japan can be done in the district of Asakusa, which is considered the center of Tokyo's shitamachi ("low city"). In Asakusa, the main attraction is the Sensoji Temple. However, before you reach this very popular Buddhist temple, you need to pass through Nakamise Street. This is where you go souvenir hunting in Tokyo :) Nakamise Street is Tokyo's biggest souvenir market. You can find lots of traditional Japanese items, local snacks, knick knacks etc. My brothers and I tried the local snacks made fresh and right before you! Very delicious, trust me :) By the way, it is PROHIBITED to eat and walk at the same time in Japan. Ergo, you need to consume the food and drinks where you purchased them. Please take note! At the last stretch of the souvenir shops...
Where To Stay In Tokyo #Japan : Oak Hostel Cabin #travel

Where To Stay In Tokyo #Japan : Oak Hostel Cabin #travel

Hotels, Japan, Kyoto, Mindanaoan Update, Osaka, Tokyo, Travel
For many travelers like myself, Japan can be quite an expensive place to visit. However, this does not mean that there aren't any ways for us to save especially on accommodations. There are actually many cheap hotels in Japan that you can choose from. You can stay in a stylish place that has a comfortable lounge, a popular budget hotel just 3 minutes away from Shinjuku or if you're feeling a little bit adventurous just like me and my brothers, you may want to stay in a capsule room in Tokyo! Located just 7 minutes away from Suitengumae Subway Station (Hanzomon Line) and in the Chuo-ku area, Oak Hostel Cabin is a good choice if you're looking for a place to stay in Tokyo, Japan. Fairly new, Oak Hostel Cabin Tokyo offers dormitories (male, female, mixed) that have capsule style rooms. Oak...
Cheap Way To Travel From Narita To Tokyo

Cheap Way To Travel From Narita To Tokyo

Japan, Kyoto, Osaka, Tokyo, Tourism, Travel
Yes, it's true. Japan is truly an expensive city BUT if you know where to look and how to follow instructions and, more especially, if you have cool travel aficionado friends who generously share tips, then you can certainly still travel to Japan on the cheap. I got this very helpful Japan travel tip from Paula Peralejo! This is for those who want to save on transportation from Narita Airport to Tokyo (and vice versa). A little backgrounder first. While Narita Airport isn't the only airport near Tokyo (there's also Haneda Airport), it's usually where most international flights are serviced. Narita is about an hour away from Tokyo proper so unless you want to stay near the airport for some reason, DO NOT book hotels near Narita. I just had to say that since I've noticed that the hotel...
How to apply for Japan visa in the Philippines

How to apply for Japan visa in the Philippines

Japan, Kyoto, Osaka, Tokyo, Travel
When I started preparing documents for my Japan tourist visa, I somehow knew what to expect. In fact, the process was pretty similar to getting my tourist visa to Korea except for one major difference, which you'll find out later :) Anyway, here's how to apply for a Japan tourist visa in the Philippines: A Japanese visa is technically FREE of charge. However, the Japanese embassy ONLY entertains visa applications coursed through accredited travel agencies. Since my brothers and I flew from Cebu to Narita, we applied through one of the Japanese embassy's accredited agencies in Cebu. Do note that while there is a Japanese embassy in Cebu, it's only for diplomats. All visa applications will still be processed in Manila. For our agency, we chose Friendship Tours Cebu. My brother, ...
Back from Japan!

Back from Japan!

Japan, Kyoto, Osaka, Tokyo, Travel
I'm back home from a much-needed vacation to Japan, the Land of the Rising Sun. I'm still on a natural high, after having spent one glorious week there! I visited three major places in Japan - Tokyo, Kyoto and Osaka. It was an all DIY, budget trip. And, yes, I'll share budget Japan travel tips for y'all! I had a really nice experience in Japan. It was the peak of the Koyo Season (when the colors of the leaves change). Technically, the weather was supposed to be autumn but let me tell you - my brothers and I froze our a**es off! Admittedly, we were underdressed and totally unprepared for WINTER! Yikes OMG. Climate change, hello, is that you? Thankfully, I managed to bring my trusty Gap scarf (a gift from Divine Lee), two H&M sweaters, a knitted wool hat (which I wore in the US)...