Well the dust has well and truly settled since we arrived back from Japan in April, but that doesn’t mean that the trip isn’t still on our minds. We crammed so much into our trip that we only recount a handful of the unique experiences in such a short post.

We spent the first five nights in Tokyo, navigating the bright city lights of Shinjuku, exploring ‘electric city’ in Akihabara, dining at the Monster Cafe in Harajuku, cuddling the hedgehogs at a Hedgehog and Otter Cafe, visiting Tokyo Disneyland (the happiest place on Earth) and watching the robots battle it out at the famous Robot Restaurant in Shinjuku. All that said, perhaps the highlight of Tokyo was watching us all struggle to navigate the infamous Shinjuku Train Station – the busiest train station in the world – which has over 200 exits that managed to confuse us each and every time that we visited.

We also took a brief day trip out of Tokyo to visit Mount Fuji, where we saw sunshine, rain, hail, fog and snow all in one day. After Tokyo we spent a few nights in Okayama, and from there we visited the beautiful city of Hiroshima for an emotional day of history, and the Teshima Art Island, for a truly unique experience of Japanese architectural and landscape art. From Okayama we caught the Shinkansen (Japanese fast train) to Kyoto, where we spent the rest of our trip in a traditional town house. In Kyoto we viewed the stunning cherry blossoms at their best, visited the traditional town of Nara (and their wild deer), walked through the Fushimi Inari Shrine, spent a day at the stunning Arashiyama Bamboo Grove and discovered the thrills of the late night Karaoke bars.

All in all it was a trip that none of us will forget.

Beau Deurwaarder

IOE’s  Supported Holiday Program for 2020 will be advertised soon. Keep watch, so you too can explore the world with this exciting program.