We took a day trip to Kobe from Osaka today. Up until now we’ve been walking our way through each city but Kobe was the first place the heat became too unbearable to walk the entire day. We did, however, manage to check out a few shrines and started a hike before the heat became too much. We ended up hopping on an air conditioned City Loop bus to check out the rest of the city. I highly recommend it!
The City Loop bus drives around in a loop stopping at various attractions and sightseeing areas around the city. Best part is, you can buy a day pass and jump on and off the bus all day! When you visit the Tourism office you can pick up a coupon package that has coupons for the bus as well as for other attractions around the city. You can also print out a copy of the coupon book at the Kobe Tourism site here.
I’ve noticed that in each city we visit, they have these neat custom manhole covers designed to represent the city.
One of our stops was the Shin-Kobe Ropeway which is a gondola that takes you up and over the Nunobiki Herb Garden. You get a great view of the city from the gondola and a birds eye view of the garden. We walked our way down through the garden and had lunch about halfway down.
After walking through the garden, we took the gondola back down to the bottom and stumbled upon Kobe’s Chinatown or otherwise known as Nankinmachi. This was the first Chinatown we’d seen since we arrived in Japan! K and I decided to be adventurous and ate some of the street food. It was Peking duck, we couldn’t resist! Luckily we didn’t get sick :)
Also close by was Kobe Harborland. We walked around the Mosaic shopping centre and found some neat shops and an arcade to play some UFO games.
By this time, it was almost dinner time and we were on a hunt to find Kobe beef! It’s one of the main reasons we visited Kobe in the first place :P We were all settled in to the first restaurant when they told us they were sold out!! We randomly chose a restaurant that had only Japanese written in the front with a few pictures of beef.
We walked down some stairs to find a huge restaurant hidden below. This place turned out to be really fun. We were each given our own hot plates to cook our Kobe beef. It was delicious! I find it so interesting that here in Japan they don’t really use oil to grease their pans. We were each given a chunk of fat that melted and greased up our hot plates. So smart!