Friday, July 1, 2016

Day 4: Takahata Fudoson Temple in Japan

Five story pagoda
My initial plan is to go to Kidzania Tokyo, my son enjoyed Kidzania Manila so I’m pretty sure he will have a great time in Kidzania Tokyo. Wednesday is the perfect time to visit because half of the activities are in English, it is called English Wednesday

Read: Kidzania Manila

There are also English speaking staffs walking around to support and help the kids. You can visit on other days but expect that the instructions are in Japanese language and we don’t know how to read, write or speak the language so I put it on our Day 4 which is Wednesday. 

But when I checked the app, it will take 1 hour and 30 minutes train ride just to get there plus we need to transfer train. I’m not really comfortable in transferring trains because trains in Japan are very confusing. I don’t want to get lost so I research another tourist spot which is near the Tama Area. 

Good thing that Tama Monorail website has suggestion “Fun Sites”, sites that you can visit by riding Tama Monorail train. 

1. Sanrio Puroland 
2. Showa Kinen Park 
3. Takahata Fudoson 
4. Tama Zoological Park 
5. Seibu Dome 

So I replaced Kidzania Tokyo to Takahata Fudoson + Showa Kinen Park. I know that my son doesn’t enjoy temples but I told him that we will ride boat in the park after our temple visit. Hehehe! 

Side story: My son has his own bucket list in Japan, he wants to ride Shinkansen bullet train, visit Tokyo Disneyland and Tokyo Disney Sea. I was surprised when he said Shinkansen bullet train and I asked him, where did you learn that? He said, "alam ko yan, kita ko yan sa journal/magazine then he showed me the journal. Hmm, may silbi din pala yung binabayaran kong P1300+ journals sa school. But I told him that we will not ride bullet train but we can go to Disney Sea. So he was really patient to wait for Day 5 so we can go to Disney with his dad. 

Takahata Fudoson Temple 

I was glad that we did not have any problem in commuting when we visit Tama Zoological Park and Keio Rail-Land Museum so my son and I pursue our Day 4 trip even without hubby. I activated my roaming surf again so I can update my husband.

Read: Tama Zoological Park
          Keio Rail-Land Museum

Takahata Fudoson Temple is the oldest temple in Kanto region. According to Tokyo Handy Guide, the precincts of the temple of the Shingon School of Buddhism are scattered with cultural properties such as the Fudo-do, the Nio-mon Gate, the Goju-no-to Tower (Five story pagoda), the monument of Shinsengumi and the statue of the Shinsegumi’s Vice Captain Hijikata Toshizo

This is open 24 hours a day and 365 days a year. Admission is FREE but Dainihi-do Main Hall (200 yen) and Okudono Hall (300 yen) have a fee if you want to enter. 



Directions: Walk to Tama Center Exit 1, ride Tama Monorail for Kamikitadai. Get off at Takahatafudo station (6th station). 20 minutes train ride. Five minutes on foot from Takahatafudo Station. 

Fare is 310 yen adult 160 yen child 

Upon getting off the train, I saw an arrow sign to turn right to Takahata Fudoson Temple and so we went down the stairs and I saw a small arc, feeling ko lang yun yung way so we walked there and I felt relieved when I saw the five story pagoda. Yey! We found it. 



Sharing with you the pictures. 






Takarawa

I saw cute little kids again, it seems that kids in Japan like exploring places. Again, teachers and kids lang ang nandun.



I also saw some group of hobbyists, they are sketching temples and nature. 



We did not stay long because my son wanted to ride the boat at the park.



Penetralia

Taishi
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On our way back to the train station, I saw C&C Curry Shop again. If you’ve read my previous post, we’re supposed to eat here but I don’t know how to use the vendo. When I saw that the food vending machine was inside the restaurant, we entered the restaurant and asked help so I can place my order. The staff gladly assisted me and she showed me the menu for curry sauce, I chose mild curry.





Side story: I know that my son doesn’t eat that much so I only order 1 pork katsu and I will eat the leftover. But when the staff served the order, kinakausap na naman niya ko at tinuturo na mag-order ng food sa vendo. Hindi niya ko maintindihan na 1 order lang talaga so ending, nag-order na rin ako just to end the conversation. 


2 cups of rice yata ito per serving
They are mixing the curry with their rice but we're not into curry, kung gravy ok lang. 
She can’t understand me and I can’t understand her. It was our first time to eat katsu with Japanese curry. The food was good but the serving was big for our tummy so ang dami namin leftover, binalot ko na lang sa tissue yung katsu namin. Sayang ang food and it is not cheap pero dun affordable fastfood na ang C&C Curry Shop.   

Next stop is Showa Kinen Park

Takahata Fudoson Temple
733 Takahatafudo,
Hino-shi, Tokyo 3173 
Midori-cho, Tachikawa-shi, Tokyo

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Day 3: Keio Rail-Land Museum in Japan

When I learned that there is Keio Rail-Land in Japan, I immediately added this in our itinerary. I was glad that we can visit two attractions in one day because they are located at the same location. The Keio Rail-Land is just across the Tama Zoological Park

Read: Tama Zoological Park

My son has been enjoying our stay in the zoo so I had to remind him that we need to go to Keio Rail-Land and we cannot afford to miss it because like Tama Zoo, they are closed every Wednesday too. We left the zoo before 2PM and we joined these kids in crossing the pedestrian lane. 



I just noticed that Japan has a lot of vending machines, they use it for drinks, snacks, train ticket and even in purchasing attraction ticket. But not all are user friendly so I have to ask help again so I can buy tickets.

I told the staff that I need two tickets, 1 adult and 1 child and she instructed me on what to press and when to insert money. (again, tinuturo lang niya since she can’t speak English). What I like in Japan, even there is language barrier, they are very kind and helpful, they will try their best to guide you.

Keio Rail-Land Entrance Fee 

250 yen - 3 years old and above.

Finally, we got out ticket and we can now enter the museum. Unfortunately, they don’t have English version of the flyer but at least the pictures give me an idea on what to expect.



Keio Rail-Land is a railway museum that is operated by Keio Corporation. The museum was opened in year 2000 and was expanded in year 2013. It is divided in three parts, the indoor exhibition (two floors) and outdoor exhibition.

Indoor Exhibition First Floor 



You can see the miniature train diorama, train simulator, mini Keio bus and mini Keio train cab at the first floor. There is souvenir shop too at the entrance of the railway museum. 



You can drive your own train in this diorama for 100 yen, my son likes to drive the different mini trains but I told him to try other attractions. Hehehe! Kuripot lang si mommy, ayaw ng may bayad. 




So he tried this train simulator, I’m not sure if he was doing the right thing but one staff said, “very good”. Good thing that the place was not crowded so he can use this game over and over again. 






Beside the train simulator is the mini Keio Bus



We also enjoyed dressing up, he changed costumes and I took pictures. 

Indoor Exhibition Second Floor 

Second floor is the play area or kid zone, there are corner for kids and toddlers. My son enjoyed this game area where you can build and play your own railway for 30 minutes, then you have to put it back again at the proper storage. Clean before you go. Just get your time card from the staff. 



While waiting for our turn, my son played here. 



After several minutes of waiting, we fell in line so we can play. My son used to love Thomas and Friends so I gifted him Thomas Climbing Set four years ago. But of course, child’s interest changes as the years go by so he seldom use the train set.



Read: Thomas Climbing Set




But I think he missed the train because he likes to play again so we got another time card. 





There are also tables and chairs where you can stay, drink and eat snacks. Vending machines are available. 



My son also played here “Quiz Station,” I find it weird because it is in Japanese Language pero gusto pa rin niya magquiz. Guessing game ito. Lol

Outdoor Exhibition 

I was trying to figure out on how we can go to the outdoor museum but I can't find the way so I have to ask the staff and show him the flyer. He said “outside” so we went out and walk to the other side of the museum. You need your ticket to enter so keep it or else you have to pay again. 



The open-air exhibition area houses five retired Keio EMU cars. This is your chance to see the different models or series of train throughout the years. You can see Keio 6000 series car DeHa 6438, Keio 3000 series car KuHa 3719, Keio 5000 series car KuHa 5723, Keio 2010 series car DeHa 2015 and Keio 2400 series car DeHa 2410. 



There is also a cute mini train ride for a minimal fee. I asked again help so I can purchase the ticket in the ticket vending machine. 100 yen for one round of ride.




The museum is not that big, I think 2 hours is enough to enjoy it. If you love trains, I’m pretty sure you will enjoy this place, my son and I had fun in this railway theme park. We left before 5 PM. 

Keio Rail_land 
3 Chome-36-39 Hodokubo, 
Hino, Tokyo 191-0042, Japan
Hours: 9:30 AM - 5:30 PM Museum is closed every Wednesday, year-end and New Year.
Phone: +81 42-593-3526 
Public transit access: Tama-dōbutsukōen Station 

C&C Curry Shop

My husband has dinner meeting so we went straight to Tama Center Station to buy dinner at C&C Curry Shop but unfortunately I cannot order our food because I don’t know how to use the food vending machine. Waah! 



Good thing I found a food shop so nagtake-out na lang kami ng food. My son and I loves katsu, so we ordered this. Inulit-ulit ko talaga sa staff na pork katsu. Lesson learned, dapat alam ko na yung Japanese term for pork, chicken, seafood and beef para mas madali communication.



Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Day 3: Tama Zoological Park in Japan

Since Keio Plaza Hotel Tama is far from the usual tourist destination in Tokyo, I have to search and search so my son and I won’t be bored. It is not practical if we will just stay in the hotel because we did not go to Japan just to have staycation.  

Read: Keio Plaza Hotel Tama

There is no pool or play area in the hotel and we cannot watch TV because most of the shows are in Japanese language and if there is an English show, malakas pa yung volume nung nag-interpret to Japanese kaysa sa pinanonood. Lol

I searched for places to visit near Tama area so I was really glad when I’ve read about Tama Zoological Park. My son likes visiting zoo, if you’ve been following this blog for quite some time now, you know that we’ve already visited 7 zoos in the Philippines. 

Read: Trip to the Zoo

I immediately added the zoo in our itinerary and put it on Day 3 which is Tuesday, that is the only time that we can visit the zoo because it is close every Wednesday. 

My roaming was not working properly, it is so weird that I can receive call and text but I cannot text or call so my husband activate my Globe Roaming Surf for P599 for 24 hours so just in case we’re lost we can inform him. 

On the day of our trip, I still have no idea where is the Tama Monorail Station, the train station is different from the Tama Center Station. My husband, asked me if alam ko na ba pupuntahan ko, I said, oo, ako na ang bahala. Lol. But the truth is I was still searching, according to the app, it is just 5 minutes walk from the hotel so for sure sa tabi-tabi lang yan.



So even I was nervous to commute without hubby, I have to be brave for my son. My son and I walk to the Tama Center Station and when I saw that some people turn left before we reach the Odakyu Tama Center Station, we turn left too and I was glad when I saw a sign with arrow “Tama Monorail”. Yey, we found it.



I bought train ticket to Tama-Dobutsukoen (Adult 260 yen and Kid 130yen), what nice about the Tama Monorail, it is like our very own LRT and MRT, two way lang siya so hindi na nakakaligaw kung san kami pupunta. 



Tama-Dobutsukoen is the fourth station and travel time is around 16 minutes. You can already see the Tama Zoological Park and Keio Rail-Land from the train station. It is just walking distance from the train so you won’t be lost. (1 minute walk) 



Tama Zoological Park 

You need to buy your ticket in the ticket vending machine. We were standing there for so long because I’m trying to figure out how I can buy the ticket. One lady Zoo Staff rescued me and helped me in using the ticket vending machine.



I just told her that I need two tickets, 1 adult and 1 child (7 years old). She was speaking in Japanese and I was speaking in English. We were able to buy the ticket even there is language barrier with the help of sign language. (as tinuturo niya lang kung ano pipindutin and if I need to insert the money). My son is still free of charge.


So we went inside, the staff checked my ticket. Before going to Tokyo, Japan, I printed the map that I’ve seen in their website but don't worry there is available map there too. I was happy that there is English version of it. The map was updated too because you can see the attractions that are under construction. 



Side story: I saw lot of kids who were having educational trips I noticed that there is no chaperone, as in teachers and kids only. Wow, the kids are so independent here in Japan, I remember when my son was still in Preschool, we always accompany him in all the field trips and when he was in grade school, he did not join the field trip because chaperone was not allowed. (field trip fee are included in the tuition)


I saw these cute toddlers while riding the shuttle bus. They are so behave. 
I was worried at first because I thought that the place would be crowded because of the field trip but the zoo was so huge. Even there was an educational trip, you won’t feel that the place was packed. It is divided in four zones such as Asian Zone, Australian Zone, African Zone and Insectarium.



Asian Zone 

We started our tour in Asian Zone, this is the biggest part of the zoo so we took advantage the free shuttle bus so we won’t get tired in walking. We have all the time in the world so we really took our time in each attractions. lol



Bus Route and Stop: Siberian White Crane, Rhinoceros, Orangutan, Animal Memorial Tower, Asian Plains



There are times that we followed those kids, nakikifield trip din kami. Hehehe!



We’re glad that there is free shuttle bus or else, gugulong ko sa pagod maglakad. hehehe! My son was carefully checking the map if we missed something. It seems that we will not go out unless we finished his list.



Australian Zone 



This is just a small zone where you can see the emu, kangaroo, wallaby, wallaroo, koala and laughing kookaburra. 

Insectarium 

My son enjoyed the Insectarium Zone, there are so many little creatures to see. 




Butterfly Sanctuary



Ethan: Mommy look, the butterfly will land on my finger.
After 48 years, walang nagland. hehehe!

Check the video to see how big the sanctuary. 




African Zone


Our last stop is African Zone, most of the attractions here were under construction and I was so disappointed because there is no Lion Bus Tour, under construction din. We were looking forward for it pa naman because we experienced Tiger Safari and Lion Safari in Zoobic Safari before.

Read: Zoobic Safari
          Revisited Zoobic Safari

What nice about their zoo is there are so many picnic area so if you are tired, you can just stay there, eat, drink or rest for awhile. We brought some drinks and snacks but there are vending machines, kiosks and shops everywhere.


Buti na lang may spoon ako dala, walang scoop na kasama yung ice cream in cup. 
The zoo was well maintained, the animals look happy and satisfied. Since it is a zoo, I was expecting a foul smell but wala, hindi kami nag-amoy hayop. Lol. Ang layo sa zoo natin sa Pinas. I only spent less than P300 for the entrance fee and it was super worth it. 


Nakisabay kami sa pagtawid. :)
Next stop in Keio Rail-Land, which is just across the Tama Zoological Park.

Read: Keio Rail-Land Museum

Hours and Days Open

Tama Zoo opens 9:30am. to 5:00pm (tickets sold until 4:00pm) and closes every Wednesday (closes Thursday if Wednesday is a public holiday). 

*The zoo closes from December 29 through January 1. 

Admission Fee 

Adults (16-64) 600 yen 
Seniors (65+) 300 yen 
Students (13-15) 200 yen 
Children (0-12) Free 

Tama Zoological Park 
Tama Zoo, 7-1-1, Hodokubo, Hino-shi, 
Tokyo 191-0042, Japan
Phone: 042-591-1611