“We live in a wonderful world that is full of beauty, charm and adventure. There is no end to the adventures we can have if only we seek them with our eyes open.”
The Yokohama Ramen Museum was one of my favorite things we did in Japan! It's like a theme park for ramen lovers, so you know your girl was super excited for this. Nine of Japan's most famous ramen restaurants are stationed here, so if you're visiting on an empty stomach you can try all of them! They offer taster sizes, which are pretty generous considering I thought the taster portions were only going to be a couple bites.
We chose Yuji Ramen, which is known for their tuna-katsu ramen. Tuna bones are roasted, then simmered with other ingredients to create the most delicious, salty, and slightly fishy broth. It was absolutely incredible! It is HANDS DOWN my favorite ramen I have ever tried! The broth was so deep in flavor, yet light. You could keep going in for more without feeling heavy at all. Curly noodles are best suited for lighter broths like this one, because the soup has more surface area to cling on to. Thicker, more rich broths can hold up to a flatter noodle because the soup won't slide off as easily.
Like ramen? Click here to read about the best miso ramen in Tokyo!
After our ramen lunch, we visited the Tsujiki Fish Market. While the star is the unbelievably fresh seafood, fresh vegetables and fruits are also sold at the huge outdoor market. The produce can be a bit pricey, so I would stick to sampling the fresh sushi instead.
I tried this peach sorbet while walking around, which was so refreshing! I felt like Japan had so many peach-flavored items (click here to read about the "miracle" at a vending machine involving my other peach obsession), which I had no problem with!
We visited the popular revolving sushi bar, Sushi Zanmai, where the chefs prepare the sushi right in front of you. The quality was INSANE, people!
Pictured below were some of my favorite sushi. The top left was fatty tuna, which tasted like tuna but embodies some of the richer qualities of salmon. The top right was raw shrimp, which was incredibly sweet. In the middle was of course, ikura (salmon roe), which you all probably recognize by now since I've included this in almost every blog post. On the bottom was raw scallop, another one of my favorites!
This wouldn't be a post of mine if I didn't include some close-up shots of ikura, now would it? So there you go!
Here is some fresh red snapper, another one of my favorites for its mild flavor and meaty texture!
The fatty tuna at the market was my favorite piece of sushi I had during my whole trip! It truly is a decadent cut of tuna, but one of the best!
There are so many vendors at the market that it’s close to impossible to pick just one. Lucky for us, many vendors offer taster portions. Pay 200 yen ($2 USD) for two pieces of nigiri sushi (raw fish on rice). It’s a great way to try a variety of cuts before choosing to stop by for more!
You could honestly spend hours at the market sampling various sushi, fruits, mochi (rice cake), dumplings, and more. It’s such a fun and inexpensive way to experience the Japanese culture!
Another thing to not miss is the vending machines (check out my previous post on Shibuya for the “miracle” I experienced at a vending machine). Japan is known for their diverse and delicious drinks that costs only a couple dollars. One of my favorites was the milk tea, so give it a try if you’re out in Japan!
The very last stop we made in Japan was to the Ooedo Onsen, which is one of Tokyo’s most famous and largest bathhouses. It’s a traditional Japanese past time, similar to a jimjilbang (sauna) in South Korea. Upon entering, you can pick out of six designs for your yukata (Japanese robe), and diagrams posted on the walls show you how to wear them. This was so fun and really made me feel like I was playing dress-up!
You are also given a wristband that scans wherever you want to make a purchase. This can get dangerous for your wallet though, so be mindful if you’re on a tight budget. You could spend all day at Ooedo because it’s themed like a traditional Japanese village, with so much food, games, and musical performances!
We spent our time with two friends we met at our hostel, Bobbie and Chi. We actually spent the majority of our Japan trip with them, so we had formed a tight-knit little group by the end of our trip. We had a blast, and even now writing this post I miss them so much. If you’re reading this Bobbie and Chi: I love and miss you girls!
Traveling has enabled me to be bold, kind, and hungry to learn about others and their story. Even though we are from all parts of the world (Bobbie is from London and Chi is from North Carolina), our common love for traveling brought us together. We’ve made unforgettable memories that I’ll continue to cherish for the rest of my life, and that all happened because we simply said hello and started to get to know them. Wherever you are in the world and no matter what you’re doing, don’t be afraid to be kind and to get to know complete strangers. You never know what beautiful friendships might bloom from a small encounter.
That wraps up my time in Japan! I have lots of posts from South Korea that I will be uploading within the next day or two, so thank you for sticking through with me on this journey. I’ve already learned so much about the Japanese culture and I can already see myself adopting some of their cultural norms into my own life. Japan, I’ll miss you!
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Until next time,
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