“Before I Leave” Bucket List

Inspired by the blog Japan Bucket List. I have different interests and sightseeing goals than the author, so here’s my version!

[Latest update: March 27, 2016]

General “I’m in Japan!!” Pursuits:


Regional Pursuits:


  • Tokyo
    • Ride an overnight bus from Mie to Tokyo (at least once)  (done!)
    • Get an omamori from Meiji-jingu  (done!)
    • Photograph Tokyo Tower from the outside  (done!) , and Tokyo City View (Roppongi) from the inside  (done!)
    • Go shopping in Harajuku (Takeshita-dori), Shibuya  (done!),and  Akihabara  (done!)
    • Grab a Starbucks and watch the famous Shibuya crossing from above
    • Visit the Pokemon Center in Yokohama, the Gundam statue in Odaiba   (done!), and a maid cafe in Akihabara  (done!)
    • Ghibli Museum. Enough said.  (done!)
    • Visit a cat cafe   (done!)
    • Photograph Senso-ji in Asakusa   (done!)
    • Eat Chinese food in Yokohama, and then go on the ferris wheel (Cosmo Clock 21)  (done!)
  • Climb to the top of Mt. Fuji and photograph the sunrise & sunset  (done!)
  • Photograph the “Crow Castle” (Matsumoto-jo) near Nagano  (done!)
  • Visit the 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art in Kanazawa  (done!)
  • Kyoto
    • Photograph the bamboo forest in Arashiyama  (done!)
    • Walk through Sannen-zaka  (done!)
    • Spend a night in the 9h Capsule Hotel  (done!)
    • Go to Uji and embrace all the history, tea, and literary references to Tale of Genji  (done!)
  • Osaka
    • Try out fugu at Zuboraya
    • Watch all kinds of plays (Kabuki, Noh, bunraku (done!), Takarazuka)
    • Spend a day at Spa World  (done!)
    • See the famous Osaka castle  (done!)
    • Visit Shitenno-ji and Sumiyoshi Shrine  (done!)
    • Get a good city view from Umeda Sky building  (done!)
    • Fashion-watch in America-mura (within Shinsaibashi), eat in Dotonbori, and check out camera gear in Nipponbashi  (done!)
  • See Himeji-jo after renovations have finished in 2015  (done!)


  • Walk through the Tottori sand dunes  (done!)
  • Photograph the Kintai bridge in Iwakuni
  • Photograph Okayama-jo and Kibitsu-jinja
  • Make some Bizen pottery in the town of Imbe
  • Visit Hiroshima  (done!) + Miyajima  (done!)



Seasonal Pursuits:

  • SPRING –

    • Go to Hokkaido and try dog-sledding (even though it seems both cool and scary at the same time)
    • Trek to Nagano to see the onsen monkeys (Japanese macaques)  (done!)
    • Photograph Kinkaku-ji under a blanket of snow
    • Make the traditional first shrine visit (hatsumode初詣) on New Year’s Day (done!)