We spent all Saturday resting and taking it easy and yesterday morning got in the car and drove back to Townsville. Got back home about 1.30pm. So endith our holiday.

I had a really good time and enjoyed seeing all the sights of Japan. I couldn’t have done it without my wonderful travel companion, Jodie. Jodie was very kind in inviting me in the first place to join her on her holiday, and she was extremely kind in looking after me on a trip where I was basically useless when it came to helping to navigate or communicate with the locals. I really appreciate it.

Nagoya Castle / Going Home

Today we got home.

But our flight didn’t leave until 9pm on Friday night so we had another day to spend in Japan. With out suitcases packed we caught a train to Tokyo and once there bought tickets (~$100) for the bullet train to Nagoya. This time we made sure that we got a non-smoking carriage which greatly improved the comfort of the trip. The ride to Nagoya took about two hours. On the way we saw Mt Fuji in the distance.

When we arrived in Nagoya we found some coin lockers to store our luggage. Cost about $7 but there was no way we could do any sightseeing if we still had to lug around the suitcases so it was well worth it.

We had a quick lunch at McDonalds and then took a train a few stops and got off to see Nagoya Castle.

The Castle itself was quite impressive and the colours in the surrounding trees were lovely. You appreciate such things more when you come from a climate that doesn’t really have seasons.

Nagoya Castle
Nagoya Castle
Statue at Castle

Fall colours on trees around Nagoya Castle
Fall colours

When we were done we caught a train back and found our luggage. The train stations in Japan (and probably most other places) are not luggage friendly, lots of stairs. We found the right train line to the airport but had a little trouble due to lack of signage in picking the right train. Eventually it came along and we were on our way. When we got to the airport we had to wait a little bit before we could check in. Eventually Jetstar opened the checkins and we booked our way home. We did a little shopping (there aren’t many shops in Nagoya airport) and our plane left around 9.40pm.

On the flight home we got the entertainment units again so we could watch movies. The selection had changed and was much better this time. We had some problems with the sound not working on the units but the staff swapped them over for us and everything was working fine. Jodie scored some free breakfast from the staff and we saw a really beautiful dawn as we flew into Australia.

Dawn coming into Australia as seen from our plane

We landed at about 5.45am. We went through with our passport checks really quickly. Then to get our luggage. We waited. And waited. And waited. About an hour later we (and everyone else from our plane) got our luggage. The baggage system in Cairns is absolutely woeful, or at least was on this day. The trip through the customs check was quick and we were outside at the taxi stand. Except there were no taxis. Thanks again Cairns. A few minutes later a taxi came and picked up someone in front of us and the driver said they would call more drivers out. About 10 minutes later they finally came and we went back to Brett and Jo’s for place for a sleep.

2nd last day in Japan

This morning we caught the train to Ginza. We had breakfast in a little cafe near a busy street intersection and watched the world go by. Then went for a bit of a walk.

Jodie enjoying her coffee
Jodie enjoying her coffee
Ginza Street

We walked to the nearby Emperial Palace. Its a huge park with the Palace in the middle. While you can’t actually to into the grounds you can walk around the outlying parks. Really quite beautiful.

Imperial Palace Grounds
Imperial Palace
Jodie helped a group at the Palace and took their group photo for them (only took her two attempts 🙂 hehehe)
Jodies helps group

We caught another train to Shinjuku and had lunch in a restaurant called ‘Good Times’. An American style place. When we had finished eating we spent the afternoon walking around the streets and checking out the shops.

While walking we passed a giant animated crab above a shop. First thing I thought of was ‘thats much cooler than the giant crab at Cardwell’.
See the giant crab

We caught a train home and had a rest for a while and started pre-packing our luggage. When we got hungry we went to a nearby station (3 stops) and went looking for dinner. Except I’d spotted the wrong sign. Doh! Back on the train again and back in the other direction (4 stops). Found the place we wanted and got our dinner, take away. Quickly took the train back home (1 stop) and had a nice dinner in our room.

Peeing Santa

A few times we’ve been on the trains and gone past a station with what looked to be a Santa doll peeing. Surely we were seeing it incorrectly. Nope.

At the Hamamatsuchuo train station is a Santa peeing. Have no idea why.

Peeing Santa


Today we caught the train to the city of Odaiba. Had a walk down near the beach and then around the shops.

Cat Shop
Cat Shop
Park bench near beach
Park bench near beach
Godzilla attacking a Christmas Tree
Godzilla attacking a Christmas tree
Statue of Liberty… I have no idea why it was here. Now I’ve seen three. The original in New York, one in Las Vegas and one in Japan.
Statue of Liberty

We went into a shopping centre and found the Sony centre where you could play hands on with some stuff. Like an electronic kids playground. Aimed at smaller kids but we still had lots of fun.

Afterwards I decided to head back to the accomodation for a rest as I wasn’t feeling well and Jodie continued on with her adventure. I made it back ok even though one of the trains I was going to catch wasn’t running. Changed lines and took another train without any problem. Maybe this catching trains is easier than I originally thought… nah.