Sunday, April 8, 2018

Tokyo Joel Robuchon Restaurant in Ebisu - Best Michelin 3 Star French Cuisine Gourmet Dining Experience in Japan

French cuisine in Tokyo Japan? Yes because it is Joel Robuchon Michelin 3-star. Hiding in the concrete jungle of central Tokyo, world's capital of most Michelin star restaurants, Le Chateau de Joël Robuchon stands out in the Ebisu/Yebisu as it is the most unique building and the most prestigious Michelin star French cuisine restaurant in Japan for the past 10 years. I am dedicating this blog article to share my amazing Tokyo luxurious fine dining experience at Michelin 3-Star Robuchon restaurant.

Monday, February 26, 2018

The Last Samurai Movie Film Locations in Japan - Day trip to Mount Shoshazan Engyoji temple in Himeji

In October 2017, I traveled in Japan using the JR pass. While I was planning my rail pass itinerary, I came across the idea of visiting The Last Samurai film locations at Mount Shoshazan 書写山 Engyoji 圓教寺 temple in Himeji 姫路. I realized travel blog resources were lacking on visiting many off the beaten path or road less traveled destinations in Japan, I decided to share my own day trip travel experience of visiting film locations of one of my favorite movies The Last Samurai, which embraces deep rooted Japanese culture of Bushido 武士道 or the way of Samurai warriors.

Sunday, January 28, 2018

Wagyu Gyudon Japanese Beef Bowls - Cheapest and Best way to Experience Wagyu in Japan

Tokyo Consult blog readers often inquired about where to get cheap Kobe Beef 神戸牛 or Matsusaka Beef 松阪牛 in Japan. While the best Kobe Beef is never meant to be reasonably priced, "generic" Wagyu is often more affordable to the budget travelers. After extensive research and a bit of luck, I was fortunate to have the opportunities to have tried 3 inexpensive Wagyu Beef Bowls during my trip to Japan in 2017. I am sharing my dining experiences and where to enjoy these delicious and cheap Wagyu Beef in this blog post.
Charm of traveling in Japan is discovering tasty food inside of meal boxes

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

Shinagawa Keikyu EX Inn Hotel Stay Experience - Tokyo Reasonable, Spacious, Stylish and Convenient Location Accommodation Review

In October 2017, I traveled in Japan using the Japan Rail JR pass. I stayed at Shinagawa Keikyu EX Inn Hotel 京急 EX イン 品川 駅 前 while I was visiting Tokyo and nearby areas. While hotels are merely places for rest and sleep to many travelers, reasonably priced and conveniently located hotels would make travel experiences more efficient. I am writing this blog article to showcase the importance of conveniently located hotel stay as well as other advantages of staying at Shinagawa Keikyu EX Inn Hotel in front of Tokyo Shinagawa station.

Friday, December 8, 2017

Delicious Food and Restaurant Discovery and Recommendations in Japan 2017

In October 2017, I traveled in Okinawa and mainland Japan  using 7-day Japan Rail JR pass. I realized there is always new food discovery with every trip I took in Japan. I have discovered great Wara Wara Izakaya 笑 笑 居酒屋 restaurant with amazing dishes, delicious soul-food chicken cuisine, almond tofu dessert, and special Japanese fruit tomato, etc. I am sharing my 2017 Japan mainland food discovery and where to taste those delicious food in this blog article. I plan to share my Okinawa food discovery in another article blog post in the future.
Dishes with brown sauce and mayonnaise over omelet are almost always delicious in Japan 

Sunday, November 26, 2017

Project Shinkansen 2017 - Island Hop between Okinawa, Kyushu and Western Japan with Japan Rail Pass

In October 2017, I took my "annual" trip in Japan, I visited Okinawa 沖縄 and then started my 7-day Japan Rail Pass journey between Kyushu 九州, Shimane 島根, Tottori 鳥取, Wakayama 和歌山, Mie 三重, Izu 伊豆, and Tokyo areas. The itinerary seemed to be very busy but it was kept at an enjoyable pace due careful planning and nice traditional Onsen hot spring soak to rejuvenate our travel souls. This trip was my 4th trip using Japan Rail Pass, I am dedicating this blog post to share my detailed daily itinerary, travel tips and recommendations.

Monday, October 30, 2017

Hakone Setsugetsuka Private Onsen Ryokan Experience - Gora Onsen Tokinoyu Setsugetsuka Hot Spring Spa Hotel Review

In May 2017, my buddy Richard traveled in Japan using the Japan Rail Pass. While visiting Hakone, he stayed at an upscale Onsen 温泉 Ryokan 旅館, Tokinoyu Setsugetsuka 季の湯 雪月花, in Gora Hakone 箱根 強羅 for his once-a-life-time private Hot Spring spa experience. I would like to dedicate this blog post to share his personal experience and photographs of one of the best Private Onsen Bath Ryokan hotel in Hakone near Tokyo.
Experiencing private open-air wooden Onsen bathtub is on the bucket lists of many couples traveling to Japan

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Tokyo Love Story - Day trip to Japanese Television Drama Film Locations of Baishinji station and Iyo Ozu Town near Matsuyama in Shikoku

In November 2015, I traveled to Japan using the Japan Rail Pass. When I was visiting Matsuyama 松山 in Shikoku 四国, I decided to follow Japan National Tourism Organization 日本政府観光局 (JNTO) and local tourism office's recommendation for sightseeing ideas of visiting Tokyo Love Story television drama filming locations. While majority of the television drama scenes took place in downtown Tokyo, some of the most important scenes were filmed at Baishinji station 梅津寺 駅 and in Iyo Ozu 伊予 大洲 area in rural Shikoku near Matsuyama. I am dedicating this article for my day trip to film locations of classic Japanese television drama of the 1990's, Tokyo Love Story, 東京 ラブ ストーリー, 東京 愛情 故事, 도쿄 러브 스토리.

Monday, July 10, 2017

Osaka Reasonable Affordable Hotel

Updated on January-28th-2018

I have always liked to stay in Osaka during my trips to the Kansai area (Osaka, Kyoto, and Kobe) Staying at a hotel in Osaka will put travelers in the middle of the kansai area geographically. Being based in Osaka will allow travelers to have the easy access to Kyoto to the east, Kobe to the west, and Nara/Uji to the south. Osaka Hotels are typically less expensive than Tokyo hotels. For travelers with limited amount of vacation time, I believe in hotels in convenient locations or interesting areas. Many different areas in Osaka have different characteristics; certain area is more suitable for foodies and some areas are more suitable for shoppers. I have listed my recommendations for reasonably priced hotels in different areas in Osaka.
Osaka. Osaka Consult. OsakaConsult.
Wonderful Osaka

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Don Quijote - Japanese Discount Super Store for Best Shopping Experience in Tokyo and other parts of Japan

Don Quijote or Don Quixote or Donki ドン・キホーテ is the best one stop shopping during your trip in Japan. This franchise super store is known for their long opening hours, often 24 hours a day, and the wide varieties of products they carry. The products found in the Don Quijote shops range from inexpensive souvenirs, electronics, snacks/groceries, cosmetics, name-brand products, cosplay-themed and even adult themed items. Don Quijote stores are everywhere throughout major cities and nearby major stations in Japan and even in Honolulu, Hawaii USA. Their dominance even reached mainland US after Don Quijote Japan purchased Marukai USA and Tokyo Central supermarket in the US, hence similar products and shopping experiences. I am writing this blog post for my observation and experiences of shopping at Don Quijote stores throughout Japan.

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Onsen for Shy Travelers: My experience of Sand Bath thermal hot spring Spa in Ibusuki Kyushu

In October 2016, I traveled to Japan using the 14-day Japan Rail Pass. While I was traveling in southern Kyushu 九州, I took the opportunity for a day trip from Kagoshima 鹿児島 to Ibusuki 指宿 for their famous Natural Sand Bath Spa 砂蒸し温泉 on the beach. I am dedicating this special Onsen day trip experience to some travelers who are shy and have concerns about the traditional naked hot spring in Japan.

Sunday, May 7, 2017

Beef Bowl Japanese Gyudon - Best and Cheapest Japanese Soul Food

With many franchise restaurants throughout Japan, Gyndon Beef bowl 牛丼 remains one of the best and most affordable comfort food options for budget travelers in Japan. Typical price of a regular size Gyndon Beef Bowl is about $2.50 to $3.50 USD, the value far exceeds any other cuisine in Japan. Many of the restaurants open 24 hour a day in urban areas in Japan and they are everywhere near train/subway stations, this makes it a great option for a quick bite any time of the day. Typical Beef Bowl recipe consists of thinly sliced Beef braised in sweet soy sauce, cooked to perfection with onion over steamed rice. I am dedicating this blog article to the best and my favorite franchise Beef Bowl restaurants in Tokyo Japan, such as Yoshinoya 吉野家, Matsuya 松屋, Sukiya すき屋, Nakau なか卯 and Tokyo Chikara Meshi 東京チカラめし, etc.
Best Tokyo Gyudon Beef Bowl; Mastsuya; Tokyo Consult. TokyoConsult
Best and cheapest food in Japan: Beef Bowl Japanese Gyudon

Monday, March 20, 2017

Affordable Cheap Reasonable Hotels in Tokyo

Updated on June-10th-2018


Where to stay in Tokyo Japan?

Central, Clean, and Convenient and hopefully CHEAP are the fundamentals of good Tokyo Hotels in my opinion.

My secret of being able to travel to Japan very frequently is being budget smart and location efficient with my hotel stay.

With my almost 20 years of travel experience in Japan, I have hand picked a few lists of reasonable and convenient Tokyo hotel accommodation with highest values in this blog post. 
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Toyoko Inn, a popular budget hotel franchise in Japan.
- I recommend booking the flight ticket first. Be specific about your travel dates. Then compare Hotel TOTAL PRICE after tax and service charges are added.

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Wagyu in Japan 2016 - Japanese Beef Feast beyond Kobe Beef in Kobe

In October 2016, I traveled to Japan from Hokkaido to Kyushu using the 14-day Japan Rail JR pass. With extensive research and a sense of spontaneity, my friends/cousin and I were able to enjoy some of the best Wagyu during our trip. I am dedicating this blog post to the amazing less well-known name brand regional Wagyu experiences I had during my Shinkansen bullet train trip in 2016.
Luxurious Akita Yuri/Ugo Wagyu Yakiniku Japanese beef BBQ plate

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Project Shinkansen 2016 - All Over Japan from Hokkaido to Kyushu Japan Rail JR Pass Itinerary

In October 2016, I traveled to Japan using the 14-day Japan Rail Pass. I did extensive trip planning for visiting off-the-beaten-path and less-traveled-by places because it was my third long trip using the Japan Rail JR Pass. In summary, I traveled from Hokkaido 北海道 , Northeast 東北 region near Akita 秋田, Kanazawa 金沢, Kyushu 九州 Kagoshima 鹿児島, and onto Hakata 博多/Fukuoka 福岡 area; then I slowed down in Kansai 関西 area to make day trips from Osaka 大阪.
Hayabusa Shinkansen bullet train. Tokyo Hokkaido. Japan Rail JR Pass. Tokyo Consult. TokyoConsult.
Hayabusa Shinkansen bullet train. Tokyo to Hokkaido
I was fortunate that my cousin and my high school buddy were able to join different parts of the journey. Having more than one person in the group, we were able to enjoy many more different varieties of cuisine and visit nicer authentic traditional restaurants.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Budget: How much does it cost to go to Tokyo Japan?

Updated on July-30-2018

How much does it cost for a trip to go to Japan? Is Tokyo or Japan expensive? Maybe not when you compare Tokyo with Singapore, London or New York City. I believe if your Tokyo Japan trip is planned carefully, money can be very well spent. I have dedicated this blog post to the overall planning and budgeting for your first trip to Japan. Compare Tokyo to Manhattan, Paris, or London, the cost of visiting these modern nation cities could easily exceed the amount spent in Tokyo, Japan.
How much does it cost to visit Japan. Sightseeing, Ramen, food, day, budget, trip, hotel, transportation, accommodation, vacation, holiday, USD, prices, expensive, daily, money, Tokyo Consult, TokyoConsult.
Apple store in Ginza Tokyo
The flight ticket prices in the months of shoulder season have been more stabilized. I have found ticket price around 700 USD (LAX to Tokyo.) Because of the reasonable flight ticket prices and great currency exchange rate (1 USD to 111 Yen), I recommend booking flights and hotels as early as possible.


Monday, January 2, 2017

Delicious Japanese Food Discovery 2016

In 2016, I traveled to Japan through Hokkaido to Kyushu using the Japan Rail JR Pass. I am dedicating this blog article to share my food experiences of new seafood discovery, fruits and dessert in 2016. In short summary, I have tasted Gram Cafe's Premium Pancake, Hokkaido expensive melon, and Koshihikari rice in Niigata prefecture plus many more. 
Japanese Gram Cafe Premium Pancake.Tokyo Consult. TokyoConsult
Delicious Japanese style Premium Pancake at Gram Cafe

Monday, November 28, 2016

Kobe Beef in Kobe 2016 - Ishida Kobe Beef Steak Restaurant

In October 2016, I traveled to Japan using the 14-day Japan Rail Pass. While I was traveling from Kanazawa 金沢 to Kagoshima 鹿児島, my cousin and I decided to stop by Kobe for a few hours of sightseeing and for Kobe Beef 神戸牛 lunch. I did some research prior to my arrival in Kobe, we decided to visit ishida Kobe Beef Steak Restaurant 神戸 石田 屋 based on their recent rise in popularity and well labeled online menu.
Best Kobe Beef in Kobe. Wagyu, Matsusaka, Matsuzaka, Kitanozaka, menu, price, moriya, mouriya, steakland, sannomiya, tokyo, osaka, kobe, ishida Kobe Beef steak Teppanyaki restaurant Steak. A5 BMS 12. 神戸 牛. 石田 屋. Tokyo Consult. TokyoConsult.
Best Kobe Beef in Kobe 2016. ishida steak teppanyaki restaurant. A5 BMS 10-12 grade Steak

Monday, August 22, 2016

Atami Onsen area - Hot Spring Day Trip from Tokyo

In November 2015, I traveled to Japan using the JR Pass. While I was staying in Tokyo area, I decided to take a day trip to the Atami Onsen 熱海 温泉 Hot Spring area because Atami is a much less traveled, off the beaten path area when compared to Hakone. I took the Kodama Shinkansen bullet train line from JR Shinagawa station in Tokyo to JR Atami station. The train ride was only 40 minutes and I soon arrived at one of the best coastal hot spring resort area in Japan.
Day trip to Atami Onsen Hot Spring area from Tokyo

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Asakusa Area - Travel in time in Tokyo Japan

Asakusa 浅草 area, Sensoji 浅草寺, and Nakamise 仲見世通り areas have been the stables of must-visit sightseeing spots for new travelers to Tokyo Japan. With the recent development of the new landmark Tokyo Skytree, the already-popular tourist area has become even more popular not only among international visitors, local Japanese tourists have also flocked into the bustling neighborhood of Asakusa by the Sumida river 隅田川. I highly recommend both new or experienced travelers to visit and stay in Asakusa area for the feeling of traveling in time in the middle of modern Tokyo city.
Asakusa, Nakamise, Sensoji, and Pagoda in Tokyo Japan 
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