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  1. After spending a day in Hida-Takayama I went to Osaka. While waiting for the shinkansen in Nagoya to Osaka there was a group of middle or high school girls that were getting off the platform. One of the girls kept looking in my direction, so after a few seconds of her looking in my direction I looked back over at her and she waved and I waved back at her. The girls that were with her started giggling at that, maybe that one girl in particular wasn't used to seeing foreigners. Once I arrived in Osaka I headed toward Namba as that's where the hostile I booked was located. It was difficult to locate and I had to ask for directions a few times. The hostel I had booked did not have a room for me though so I had to stay at a nearby Korean hostel.
    Nearby there was an open air mall with a bunch of different stores. It was really crowded and it felt a lot different than similar American malls.
    The next day I went to Nara deer park and Todaiji. I really enjoyed Nara deer park being able to feed the deer was fun. There were a lot of Chinese visitors to the park as well. The younger Chinese women bought the deer food to feed the deer. After they figured out these people had food though a lot of them gathered around this group and startled the Chinese girls they were running around and trying to feed the deer at the same time. After watching this interesting event I went into Todaiji, which was more interesting in it's own way. To see the size of the building and different statues was impressive. All the detail that went into each statue was awe inspiring. Outside of Todaiji there was a sakura grove that I spent the rest of my time in while in Nara. It was so beautiful it felt like it was pulled right out of the pages of a manga. I would suggest that particular spot for any couples looking for a romantic place to take a stroll or eat a picnic.
    The following day I went to Himeji castle. On my shinkansen ride there I had an older Japanese woman that sat next to me because she wanted to practice her English. I had spoken to her in Japanese a little bit before boarding the train so I think it helped to set her at ease to practice her English. I wanted to take great pictures of Himeji but unluckily for me my camera battery needed to charge that day so instead of using a good camera for Himeji I had to use my phone camera. I am a major history nerd so seeing Himeji castle has to be one of my favorite memories of Japan. Just imagining how difficult it would be to siege the castle set off visions of battles in my head that I saw no possibility of the invading army winning. It was a very impressive defensive castle, only later did I find out that no-one had successfully set siege to the castle.
    I spent a total of 3 days in Osaka so the majority of my time was spent with the trips to Nara and Himeji. I did however go to the aquarium in Osaka. It was very large and I enjoyed seeing all the different animals. Nothing of note really happened while I was there so there's not much to tell about the aquarium.
    After spending time in Osaka my next destination was Hiroshima.
    thomas likes this.

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  1. thomas
    Thanks for sharing this. It appears the deer were quite well behaved that day. I remember they almost knocked me down, slavering all over me. We went to Himeji Castle during its renovation, I am really looking forward to seeing it in its fully restored glory.