Today onwards! Earliest bus from Kawaguchiko to Mishima (the bus driver made the strangest arm gestures whenever he’d stopped or had to turn), and in Mishima we activated our Rail Passes and took the Shinkansen to Shin-Ôsaka. We’d gotten help from a station guard when trying to figure out how to get from there to our hotel, and he’d said go to Namba and take exit number 5. Only hubby didn’t get it/didn’t trust it, so we didn’t take exit number 5 (of like, 20 different available ones), but another, and finding our way to the hotel took a godawful while. But the hotel was very nice.
We went out pretty much straight away and took the subway over to Kaiyûkan, a big aquarium in the harbour. Only when we came to the entrance I saw the building next to the aquarium, and it had a huuuge banner with Naruto on it!! I got a little excited, shall we say.
But the aquarium first. And it was rather amazing, starting a the top of the building and spiralling down, with aquariums stretching several floors. But some of the enclosures were very small compared to the numbers of animal inside them (especially the penguins), so I don’t actually think any of my marine biologist friends would have liked it there.
After Kaiyûkan we went to the Naruto building. And it turned out to be just as great as I thought it would. It was a big exhibition of the entire series, and I had no idea about beforehand. (If I’d gone to Japan and missed it? It would have been devastating!) There were loads of the original artworks, and descriptive panels in both Japanese and English. And since it was rather late and the exhibition had already been going for a while the crowds were minimal! Two specially made movies with manga stills made to move, it was incredible, and very good soundtracks as well. And several life size statues, of Naruto, Kakashi, Sasuke (and someone else I think) but not of Sakura :( The only bad things were one, that you couldn’t take photos, and there were staff everywhere keeping an eye out (but I couldn’t resist and managed one photo in Sasuke’s room!!! Only to find that that exact one were available online with the promo pics, but whatever, I got an adrenaline shot anyways! XD) and two, the souvenir shop at the end weren’t that great. Not a big selection, you could only buy five things, not matter value, and if you left you had to buy a new ticket (!) to get back inside the shop again… Really? What’re you all afraid of?! But all in all a great exhibition, both in my and hubby’s mind.
And then we were both starving and entered the first restaurant we found, which happened to be western, but whatever, too hungry! I’m afraid we exasperated the servers a bit with ordering several times so close to closing time. Hubby was very hungry, and japanese servings are rather small. And also dessert!