Traveling solo in Japan

In February 2015, I gallivanted around Japan alone (for the most part) living out of a very heavy suitcase. This trip was a big deal for me as it was my first time traveling alone, and also my second time going to Japan. I’ve never been to an overseas country twice before, and I had lots of fears both about being on my own, and also about getting bored as it wasn’t my first time there.

People always say traveling alone is one of the best life experiences you have, but none of my close friends had ever done it- I barely even had any acquaintances, male or female that had done it before. My first trip to Japan had been so overwhelmingly fantastic though, that I went Japan crazy and booked my next two plane tickets there within a short time span of returning home, without even consulting anyone as to whether they would go with me. It was very spontaneous and impulsive, but I didn’t regret it at all, until a few weeks leading up to my February trip. During my first trip to Japan, I had gone ahead of my friends and spent two days on my own, so I knew I could do it again.

Leading up to my solo Japan trip, I had a lot of fears about what I would do overseas, getting bored and lonely, getting lost, not having a good time, etc. In the end, my fears all turned out to be unfounded. When I got to Japan, I was surprised and glad to find that all the things I had ever heard about traveling alone, were in fact true.

The first couple of days I spent in Osaka, feeling very lonely. I got lost countless times and felt indecisive about what to do and where to go. After about 3 days of feeling lonely, I got used to the solitude and even began to enjoy it. I felt high on my own sense of independence, and felt confident in my abilities when I managed to get to where I was going without getting lost. I got used to going out alone, eating meals alone, living alone, and by the end of the trip, I didn’t want to come home anymore.

In the end, I was really glad that I took a risk and made the decision to travel to Japan on my own. I learned how to live in a foreign country on my own, and I never felt more independent in my life. I guess you could say I had the time of my life, and this trip really cemented my decision to move to Japan in the future. I’m not fluent in Japanese, so there were a lot of times where the language barrier was also an issue, but it was exhilarating and challenging to try and communicate with people when your language skills aren’t the best.

I met up with friends in Japan that I had known from before, and also met new ones. It was the first time in a long time that I had been pushed outside my comfort zone, and I loved the thrill of it. During my last week in Japan, I felt really sad knowing that my solo winter Japan adventure would soon be at an end. My only consolation was that I knew it wouldn’t be too long until I came back. So with a heavy heart, I bid farewell to my friends in Japan, with promises all around that we’d meet again in July.

Ginza
Ginza
Dinner with Bonnie and Linds, Otaru
Dinner with Bonnie and Linds, Otaru
Walking in downtown Roppongi- my favourite part of town and one of the main nightlife areas in Tokyo
Walking in downtown Roppongi- my favourite part of town and one of the main nightlife areas in Tokyo
Shirako- cod fish sperm
Shirako- cod fish sperm

DSC_0116

Tsukemen from a chain restaurant Mita Seimen Ju
Tsukemen from a chain restaurant Mita Seimen Ju
My first time sleeping in a capsule hotel
My first time sleeping in a capsule hotel
Otoro at a standing sushi bar inside Shinjuku station
Otoro at a standing sushi bar inside Shinjuku station

DSC_0148_01

Chirashi zushi
Chirashi zushi
Snow sculpture at Yuki Matsuri, Sapporo
Snow sculpture at Yuki Matsuri, Sapporo
Kurogoma soft serve near Zenko-ji shrine, Nagano
Kurogoma soft serve near Zenko-ji shrine, Nagano
Cup noodle museum, Yokohama
Cup noodle museum, Yokohama
Sakura run at Starbucks- Sakura Frappucino and Sakura Chiffon Cake
Sakura run at Starbucks- Sakura Frappucino and Sakura Chiffon Cake
DSC_0019
Drinking and sharing food with this cutie I just met at a yakitori restaurant
Macaque at Jigokudani, Nagano
Macaque at Jigokudani, Nagano
Drinking in Golden Gai- another of my favourite spots
Drinking in Golden Gai- another of my favourite spots
Snacking and drinking at an izakaya
Snacking and drinking at an izakaya
Torisashi
Torisashi
Ugly but cute cat at a neko cafe
Ugly but cute cat at a neko cafe
Last dinner with Linds for awhile
Last dinner with Linds for awhile
Shibuya Crossing
Shibuya Crossing

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s