Any interesting/fun/crazy things to do or eat in Japan in fall? Nature&City

Hi, guys! I’m going to Japan in early November and I’m looking for things to do and/or eat while I’m there.

I’ll be going to Tokyo, Kyoto, Osaka, Nara and Nikko. I also have two days that I can use for day trips. What do you recommend? What should I do or check out? Any restaurant recommendations?

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Aah, what an amazing trip, have fun! We have a great list of some of Tokyo’s wildest concept cafes, I’ve always wanted to visit one of these: https://www.atlasobscura.com/lists/tokyo-concept-cafes

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Oh, yeah. Where do I start? Let’s start with a couple food highlights from my recent trip.

Soba at this place in Tokyo: 店舗案内|松原庵 欅(けやき)原宿 蕎麦(そば)屋

Tofu at this place in Kyoto: Kyoto Mamehachi - Pontocho - Restaurant Reviews, Photos & Reservations - TripAdvisor

Two of the best meals I’ve ever had.

There’s a Zen temple called Kang-an in Kyoto that has a bar, which is really beautiful, especially at night. It’s deep in a Kyoto neighborhood and not very easy to find, but well worth the hunt. An intoxicating temple in Kyoto | The Japan Times. I went on both my trips to Kyoto.

And don’t miss Sanjūsangen-dō! It’s magical.

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Thaaaanks. I got interested in Zauo. That sounds really fun.

Hiiiiii, thanks for the recommendations! I am really interested in the tofu restaurant, I had no idea about it.

Also, earlier I had decided to not visit the Sanjusangendou, but reading the post and finding out about the Musashi battle, I’ll have to check it out!

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While it sounds crazy, KitKats. Only in Japan will you find over 300 flavors of KitKat’s. Also Taiyaki, the most fun spot to find and eat these is in the Asakusa shopping area of Tokyo. Near Asakusa are also lots of stores that sell the plastic food one associates with U.S. Japanese restaurants.

If you like modern architecture, try to get to the other side of the Sumida River from downtown Tokyo.

In Kyoto, a very off the beaten path thing to visit is Mimizuka. I suggest you print it off in Japanese, with a map if possible as many local people know nothing about it.

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Simple but good: in the winter, if you see a guy (it’s always a guy, I believe) pushing a small fragrant cart with a sad-sounding melody blaring from it down the street, DO stop him and buy a roasted sweet potato. These are satsumaimo, the ones with red peels and white/yellow flesh, and they are very different from orange yams.

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Make sure to stop into a Japanese bakery. They have THE most beautiful pastries you ever saw!

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It doesn’t sound crazy at all. I’m aware of the many KitKats that exist in Japan. They’re so many it’s kinda overwhelming. Do you have any recommentations of flavors? I’m excited about the cherry blossom one and also the green tea, which I think is the most traditional.

Is Mimizuka the one with all the ears in it?

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Do they only come out in winter? Is it easier to find it in Kyoto?

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Green Tea is my favorite, but I love anything matcha. The saki ones are not very exciting, but I thought the shinzu apple, Tokyo banana, and strawberry tiramisu were good. I would have loved to have found cherry blossom, that sounds wonderful. Have fun!

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The gold dusted ice cream and other foods of Kanazawa. There is a 900e hamburger made in honor of the new emperor.

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Japanese Massaged Dried Persimmon: Hoshigaki

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Definitely watch “Abroad in Japan” videos on YouTube!

I think they may be year-round, but it’s more of a treat when your hands are cold. I never looked for them in Kyoto, but I imagine they are there too?

Japan is big on seasonal flavors. In the Fall some of these things are sweet potato, kabocha, chestnut… https://tokyocheapo.com/food-and-drink/japanese-fall-foods/
Convenience stores like 7/11 or Lawson’s (which I 100% recommend as great places to pick up snacks) will even have things like beverages, breads, chips, and candy flavored after seasonal foods. Like purple sweet potato Kit Kats, or chestnut tonyu.
Pulling something from Gastro Obscura, you can get fried Maple leaves near Osaka! I haven’t tried them myself. https://www.atlasobscura.com/foods/maple-leaf-tempura-japan

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We went to Toei Kyoto Studio Park. It is an interactive theme park/movie set where you can observe the filming of period dramas (jidaigeki films) and walk around the set. The sets depict a street from the Edo period, and is used to shoot more than 200 films per year. There are ninja shows and you can also dress up as a geisha or samurai.

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I got hooked on it. Thanks :slight_smile: