Summary and curiosities

As my very last entry for this Japan trip I summarised some sites and Apps which helped me to make this trip a full success. I also added the list of hostels and restaurants so hopefully it is of use in case you are planning your own Japan trip and liked the things I wrote about in the previous posts. At the end are also some curiosities I discovered whilst travelling.


  • Japan-Guide is probably the most helpful source I used. They really list all possible information you would need about Japan. Their Best of Japan in 14 days was the initial source of my route which slightly adjusted to cover my needs.
  • Japan Rail Pass is the official website for the Japan Rail Pass I used to travel around with next to all public transport for free. In my case I broke-even with the Rail Pass as I took really a lot of bullet trains but make sure to make a proper approximation beforehand as it might be cheaper to by a regular ticket than if you take less bullet trains than I did.
  • Hakone Zenzan is the website for the Hakone area which explains best about what to do around Mt. Fuji and how to get around.
  • Alpine Route is the official website for the alpine crossing I did and provides you all the information you need to plan your trip including time tables.
  • HyperDia is a fantastic tool to check the train table in English. It is also possible to filter by train connections which are covered with the Japan Rail Pass.


  • HyperDia also offers an App. I used the one for Android to check trains on the go.
  • Gurunavi is a food App which easily allowed me to search for a specific restaurant type in the area around me.
  • I first downloaded also some Apps for Tokyo, Kyoto and Osaka but never used them at the end. I preferred using the good all paper-based maps and asking people for recommendations.


Absolute Recommendation:


Cannot recommend:

Can absolutely not recommend:

Macha KitKat

Wasabi KitKat

Japanese love KitKat and it must be the only country in the world which has a Wasabi version to offer. Normally everything is green tea (Macha) flavoured though; particularly when it’s ice cream.

Macha ice cream

Macha ice cream

Macha ice cream

Another weirdly cute thing is the Japanese obsession with Hello Kitty. As it wouldn’t be sufficient to have it present in all merchandise they also use it to “spice” up the traffic in Tokyo. As you can see below they replaced the regular road construction barriers with Hello Kitty ones.

Hello Kittys

Hello Kitty on the road

Japan loves vending machines so it does not surprise that you can find them every where selling basically everything from food and drinks until electronic equipment. My favourite ones were the coffee ones though. Especially the boss as he is the biggest boss of them all.

IMG_2935 IMG_3111

Always good for a smile are the plenty hilariously clumsy translated shop and restaurant signs.

IMG_3115 IMG_3127

Talking about restaurants, it seems to be a thing to have the dishes presented in some sort of plastic in the windows to illustrate what they are serving. For me this was the indicator to not use any restaurant which had such displays though.


Last but not least I want to present you the most ugly car I’ve seen for a while. Unfortunately it is not a novelty to discover ugly cars in Japan. They seem to have a completely different portfolio of cars which are more focused on space efficiency and other “beauty standards”.


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  1. Why did you avoid restaurants with food display though? For me that would be awesome since I’m a picky eater and seeing my food before ordering would make me more comfortable. Just curious 😀

    • Julian Peak

      I thought the display of food like this was not so appealing. Maybe because I first associated it more as tourist lure at the beginning. Didn’t realise that it’s also for the Japanese. I generally like the adventure of not knowing what I’ll get though. As long as it is good quality I am willing to try nearly everything.

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