So the trip started at KLIA where we took the plane MH88 to Narita Airport. The total travelling party is 18 including 2 person from HINO Motors Malaysia. The trip began at 11.30pm and landed in Narita at 6am local time. Time difference is 1 hour in ahead of Malaysia.
On the first day proper in Japan (16th Oct), we actually had breakfast near the airport before proceeding to Ginza and then took a little stroll down the road and back up again. Many shops were actually of international brands and supposedly the rental for one of the shoplots is the most expensive in the entire world. I can’t remember the amount given but I do remember that it was mind-boggling.
Our lunch was at a shop reputed to be one of the first shops to sell tempura. It was a rather small shop. The tempura wasn’t exactly the most crispy in the world. Maybe it was already prepared for a while hence the lack of crispiness but I did note that the business was quite brisk and you can actually buy takeaway where they will wrap it in paper.
After lunch we went to a nearby temple. There were a few pictures taken. I will post it soon. At night, we had dinner near the hotel that we were staying at; Crowne Plaza Metropolitan Hotel. It was a sukiyaki meal. We ate a little fast and thought that was the end of the meal and actually took to requesting to add to the meal. But there was actually more to the meal and in the end, I believe that there were some leftovers. The drinking got a little boisterous and the food got neglected. Drinks were free-flow so the beer and sake just keep refilled. Went for a late walkabout and ended up at this electrical goods store. Many, many options and most of the prices are cheaper than those that you can find in Malaysia.
The 2nd day(17th Oct) was a visit to HINO city. There, 4500 people are employed to work from the office jobs as well as the factory itself. The assembly of the vehicles were quite impressive. The line is 275m long and is on a conveyor belt. From start to finish, it was a total of 16 processes and at the end of it a complete vehicle is driven off! Almost every vehicle made is different. They are tailored to the customers’ needs hence the lack of uniformity of the vehicle.
Afterwards, we went to Ome, their distribution warehouse and after looking at how the packaging, sorting and other operational things, we headed back to the hotel to freshen up before going for dinner sponsored by Hino Motors Japan. Dinner was another sukiyaki affair at ‘Fantasy Story’ but this one was more posh than the 1st nights. The waitresses were kinda cute and some of the guys were attempting to flag them down to take pictures with them. But they refused. Well one refused, the other said ok.
Went for another walkabout. Ended up in a video arcade. The amount of choices available.. wow.. ;) Ended up at another electrical shop and then headed back. Late snack of ramen was on the offing and I joined the mini group. The noodles were good and the side dishes even better. There was this ‘pork belly – buttata toro’. Excellent stuff. Yummy. There’s actually a video of it somewhere. Someone took a picture of it as well as the process of eating it with exaggerated oohs and ahhs..
3rd day (18th Oct), we headed to Nikko. On the way there, we stopped by a shrine and there was actually a documentary being filmed there. There was a white horse, lots of schoolkids running about and generally a lot of people. After that, we went for lunch. Barbeque!!! The food was good! But then you can’t really screw up barbeque now can you? Upon completing our lunch, we went to Edo Wonderland. This place is a recreation of medieval Japan during the time of the samurai and the ninjas. Following that, we went to our hotel, Asaya Hotel. This region is famous for its ‘onsen’. The hotel actually has its own attached ‘onsen’. One was at the roof which is open-air and the other is in the basement. Dinner was in-house and buffet style. Everyone wore the ‘yutaka’ (I think I have the name right.. not sure) and then we were supposed to go to the ‘onsen’. I went back to my room to wait for them and then after the designated time, I fell asleep.
Next morning, 4th day (19th), we headed back to Tokyo and had another Japanese meal in Ginza. After that, me and my dad parted ways with the rest of the party as we were gonna go do our own thing from then on while the rest went on to Yokohama and after that near Narita airport for their departure the next day.
To be updated whenever.. ;)