Day 117 – Osaka, Japan

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It’s August! Which means I’m officially down to my last week of traveling before I fly back to the US. With the end drawing near, I knew I needed to jam-pack this week with fun things to do. Traveling has taken it’s toll on me, both physically and mentally, but I have to power through! #parasablog

Around noon, I got on a train and headed south to the city of Osaka. It’s a little less than an hour away from Kyoto by train and Japan’s third-largest city. The main attraction that I wanted to see was Osaka Castle, so I found the closest station and walked about 2 kilometers, across the moat and onto the castle grounds. Osaka Castle sits in the center atop a mound of boulders. The architecture is stunning. And I actually had a window of blue skies today, which was a brief relief from the unforgiving humidity.

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After getting my series of castle selfies, I met up with my friend, Tommy, from UTSA for drinks. He’s been living in South Korea for the last 3 years, so it was nice to catch up on our recent travels for a bit. It’s so nice to see a familiar face from back home when you’re on the other side of the world. We got a little lost, exploring different Japanese game shops along the way. We even found one shop that had shelves full of secondhand retro Nintendo consoles and aisles of old games.

For dinner, we went to a little ramen place hidden in a small alleyway (not Ichiran). I’d say my day trip to Osaka was a success, especially since it was a last-minute spur of the moment ordeal. One of the best parts about traveling is the flexibility to do whatever you want, whenever you want. Osaka, nor Kyoto, were neither on my original itinerary when I decided to stop in Japan, but I am so thankful for my friends and family that showed me around these cities, which I would have otherwise missed as a solo traveler.

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Cheers to having friends that love to travel as much as you do. Next round’s on me!

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