Sunday, April 16, 2017

[Travel] 10D9N to Osaka - DAY 1

Our first few days involve a road trip all the way from Osaka to Wakayama to Shingu and finally ending at Kyoto. All for the sake of seeing the amazing Kumano Kodo that we heard about.
When we arrived at Kansai airport the first thing that hit me was "Dam its cold!". It was about 10 degrees Celsius. Which is much colder than what I am used to. 
Picked the car up at an adjacent building and off we go! Road trip! 
First stop : RAMEN!


We went straight to Ide Shoten which has been claimed as the BEST RAMEN in all of Japan. 

Verdict? Awesome! The soup is very rich in porky goodness. And that very rich pork soup is the defining strength of this ramen. The tare I believe is simply some soy sauce, the complexity and flavour mostly comes from the robust pork soup. Very very good ramen!


Next we continued our road trip to Wakayama marina city. This was just a 20-30min drive away. The 2 main attractions here is the Kuroshio market and Porto Europa. 

We first went to Kuroshio market and it was awesome. Loads of interesting stuff. I regretted not buying more things here as I thought this was only the beginning of our trip and there will plenty more of these stuff. The things they had here we could not find at Kuromon Ichiba market in Osaka. 

Very fascinating tea. It is actually savory like a soup. 

Remember Ide Shoten? They have their own instant ramen!
There are few other special ramens like these for sale here as well. My greatest regret was not getting these as souvenirs.
Also noticed these ramens seem to expire earlier. The one I got for myself only lasts for 3 months.

Next we headed to Porta Europa which is just beside the market. It's a European themed theme park. Entry was free when we were there. I think probably because things were not in full swing at the beginning of spring. Not many people were around.

Log flume ride!

Dolphin spotted!

After this we went back to Kuroshio market to watch the tuna cutting event.

You can buy the seafood from the market then BBQ it here by the seaside right beside the market!

We then dropped by a grocery store right in front of Kuroshio market. Here we found a hidden gem! The best Baumkuchen of our entire trip! Baumkuchen is some kind of layer cake in a donut shape that originates from Germany. And this one tastes just amazing. Just the right amount of sweetness and I think honey fragrance. We took a bite in the car and immediately turned back to get another one.


After filling up on Baumkuchen, we continued onwards to Shingu. We arrived at our beautiful AirBnB after a relaxed 3 hour drive. 

This is where Doraemon would sleep!

Even has a bathtub!

This simple yet beautiful Japanese home belongs to the owner of the adjacent sushi restaurant called Sushi House. We got cozy and called it a night as tomorrow a great hike awaits us!