Monday, 8 May 2017

Forest of Owl ASAKUSA 

When touring Tokyo, animal cafe is definitely a must go. We were visiting Sensoji temple, so we decided to hop to some animal cafe nearby. At first we went to HUTCH Asakusa, we really want to visit it but the fee is unreasonable overpriced! Just to view the rabbits is YEN2000, and want to touch the rabbits another YEN2000! Which means each person is YEN4000, almost SGD50! For 2 person (my hubby and me, my twins is FOC) will costs us SGD100! That's crazy! Not to mention the lady serving us were super unfriendly. So we decided to head to another animal cafe which is totally an excellent idea!

We went to Forest of Owl which is about 15mins walk away. We were greet with an extremely friendly Japanese girl with an owl perched on her shoulder. Twin E's eyes suddenly sparkling with joy and exclaimed "BIRD"! The entrance fee is only YEN890 and with a free drink! We went upstairs and was greeted by a super cute tiny owl.


Beside owls, there were also dog, meerkat, otters, chinchillas, iguana, snake, sugar gliders and tortoises. You can feed the tortoise by purchasing food (YEN100).



You can even pat some of the owl. If you ever go to Asakusa, remember to pay Forest of Owl a visit. You definitely will not regret going.

Sunday, 7 May 2017

Fuji Shibazakura Festival

I seen pink moss pictures on my Facebook several times and would love to see it. Fuji Shibazakura Festival starts from mid April to end of May and I happen to be in Hakone! So even it is a distance from my hotel, I decided to go there. Twin E loves nature e.g birds, flowers, etc. So she definitely would enjoy the view too.

* Taken from http://www.shibazakura.jp

After 2 hours drive, we finally reach there and surprisingly we were not charged of entrance fee. We were informed that the entrance fee is waived and they directed us to the car park. Happily we parked our car, and headed to the festival. We walked about 10mins to the "lake" (we find it is the size of a pond) with bared Sakura trees surrounding us. Sadly the pink moss and tulips are not fully bloomed yet. End up what we see is as below :-


Very big different right! No wonder they waived off the entrance fee. But at least we have a perfect mount fuji view. The food festival is great too. We love the food and there is performance too! Twin E enjoyed looking at the tiny limited pink moss, poppy flowers and lavenders. As long as there is some nature around her, she is fine especially with the cool weather.

Thursday, 4 May 2017

Airfrov

When we go Tokyo, one dessert we definitely won't miss is Tokyo Banana! This time round I bought the new flavour - Strawberry cake from GINZA. 


Personally I like this better than the original tokyo banana. After I ate the whole box (12 pieces), I start to miss the cake. Lucky there is Airfrov and I have SGD10 credit with them. So I post a request and someone accept it within 10 mins! Now I'm waiting for him to return on 19 May to pass me the cakes. If you are interested, this is how Airfrov works:-



For first timer, you can enter code:- RBRNX to redeem free SGD10 credit !!! And the more you refer, the more credit you earn too!



Wednesday, 3 May 2017

REVIEW: Airbnb @ Tokyo

* https://www.airbnb.com.sg/rooms/10645949?s=51

Due to budget & space constraint, I have decided to stay at Airbnb. For 4D3N, the room costs me SGD532 + SGD64 (sofa bed usage). I book the room mainly by mistake 😅 but the stay isn't horrible. 

PROS:-
The hosts are very friendly. They are very approachable, provide good communication and help throughout our stay. They even prepared gifts for my twins toddlers. When we need to book a taxi to Hilton hotel to take airport bus (because it is impossible for us carrying 2 huge luggage, 1 stroller, 2 hand baggage and a 14 months old twin toddlers to walk 15 mins from the house to Hilton), they help us check on the phone number to call.

The apartment is located in an uncomplicated, quiet, family friendly district. You see parents bring their children to the playground in the morning, or people walking their dogs.

Supermarket and restaurants are only 5 mins walk away.

CONS:-
Need to walk 15 mins to the nearest train station which is metro line (nishi shinjuku station), not JR line (shinjuku station). So the train will be crazily packed with people and is very difficult to manage for me. It is always better to take JR line instead of their metro line!

The room was smaller than expected. Definitely a perfect stay for a solo or couple traveller. But is too small for a family of 4 especially if your toddler has "many hands" like my 14 months old twin boy. Double bed is also insufficient for a family of 4 to sleep in. Sofa bed in the room is also chargeable which I didn't realize.

Conclusion:-
Most likely my family will not stay there again, due to the location and small size room. But if you are a solo or couple traveller, you definitely will enjoy your stay very much.

*Trying out their new toy

Tuesday, 2 May 2017

REVIEW: Hakonenomori Okada

We stayed at Hakonenomori Okada / hakone no mori-okada in Hakone and have paid SGD361 for 3D2N in japanese style room. This is consider cheap in Hakone as the hotel in Hakone can be easily SGD300 per night. 

*Above is the living / sleeping area

PRO:- 
Location is near to Hakone Yumoto Station. About 15 mins drive or less.

The room is very big. We have a living / sleeping area, a small hall, 2 toilets (1 for toilet, another for bathing) and a "drying area" outside the bathing toilet. In the bathing toilet, there is an area for you to shower and another area for bath tub too! 

Beside the ryokan, there is a hot spring spa. I didn't visit it but the photos look very nice.

CONS:-
The furniture is quite dusty. You can see white dusts at the gaps of the furnitures.

The futon is also very thin. The blankets are square in size and the futons are rectangular. It just seem funny to me.

The receptionist does not speak proper english. So you need to be very patient when communicating with them.

Conclusion: If you looking for a family Japanese room (big and roomy) with reasonable price, this is definitely the ryokan you should book. But if you looking for something more fancy, perhaps this will not be the one for you.

*Enjoying the mountain view early in the morning

Monday, 1 May 2017

Surviving 7 hour flight

We are back from Japan and we survive the 7 hour flight to & fro! 

To Japan, we have book 2 bassinets seats so it is quite roomly for us. However there is a man seated in between us. SQ air stewardess tried to relocate him to another seats few rows behind us but the man rejected. He said he needs room for his legs to rest 😏 Anyway when the plane is going off soon, there is extra space (under premium seat) which have ample leg space. The SQ air stewardess quickly offer to the man between us, and thanks god, he took it. Baby D woke up just before the plane going off and baby E just slept thru the take off. However they woke up every an hr or two, not sure because they not used of not being on their bed. And I have to coo them to sleep. They refused to sleep in their bassinets nor they want their dad to carry them. Oh well, no sleep for me. Surprisingly SQ still served their post weaning meal but either one is sleep or not interested to eat at the middle of the night. So I just eat everything since they only serve sandwiches to us. 

Back from Japan, we were seated on normal seats near to the window. A very patient "doctor" was seated on the aisle seat. When he saw the twins, he just plug in the ear pieces. Oh well, there is a toddler just behind us as well. The twins were much more active during the afternoon flight. Of course their dad is cursing & swearing now and then. They eat their post weaning meals (which I find is more delicious than mine), try to use the touch screen, fidget on the control and of course fuss and sleep.

Personally I find their behaviour is quite manageable, even though I'm really tired as I didn't sleep much. It is our first family flight and we survived!



Sunday, 16 April 2017

Flying with twins using Krisflyer miles

My last holiday is almost 1.5 years ago! Before having the twins, I will travel every 3 to 4 months. Relaxing, and not working. Having the twins is really a major project which I have seriously work my butt off 24/7! 😓

Hence when the twins are 7 months old (back in 2016), we decided to go for a vacation this year. We thought they will be 14 months old, so should be quite ok to take plane. BUT when the time comes nearer (we will be flying tomorrow actually!), we start panicking especially my husband is not really good with the twins. And I definitely cannot look after both during the flight. So let's just pray! 🙏

We will be going to Hakone (3 days) and Tokyo (4 days) and the flight is fully redeem using Krisflyer! Yeah! Free flights for us, and 10% of the full fare for each of the twins. In total we paid SGD314 for the whole family. For those we is unfamiliar with claiming Krisflyer, below is how we go about it.

First we got The American Express® Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer Ascend Credit Card but there is an annual fee SGD337.05 which is absolutely not waive-able. You do get several freebies like bonus Krisflyer miles, Complimentary night with Millennium Hotels and Resorts, Complimentary Lounge Access, etc. Japan trip needs 40K miles for a return Economy flight.

Second, after we got enough Krisflyer miles, we log on and redeem the flight. However you cannot redeem infant (less than 2 years old) air tickets. We claimed two adults flight as per normal and called the hotline to add in 2 more infant air tickets. However I have difficulty communicating with the customer service regarding the seats. So I asked him to seemly add in the infant air tickets and I will manage it using the website.

Third, all is good and I quickly log in to secure 2 bassinet seats! Well, at least to Tokyo I manage to secure them. But for the return trip, sadly there is none. I have also place post weaning meals for my twins, and hopefully I will get post weaning meals instead of infant baby jars.

Lastly, we wait for our vacation which will be tomorrow! Read alot of reviews that Singapore Airline is excellent with babies, even crying ones. Hopefully I will experience an enjoyable flight with them! *cross fingers*

#travellingwithtwins

Forest of Owl ASAKUSA 

When touring Tokyo, animal cafe is definitely a must go. We were visiting Sensoji temple, so we decided to hop to some animal cafe nearby. ...