Kaohsiung, Taiwan: One day Cijin Island Guide

Kaohsiung, Taiwan: One day Cijin Island Guide

Hello, all! Just came back from my Taiwan trip.

One highlight of my trip was my tour of Cijin Island with my colleagues. Cijin Island is a small thin strip of land/ island lying at the entrance to Kaohsiung’s port. This island offers plenty for its visitors both in terms of things to see and do and also offer an opportunity to feast on seafood while in Kaohsiung.

Getting to Cijin Island

There are two main ways of getting to Cijin Island. Both involve taking a short 5 minutes ferry ride from Gushan Ferry Terminal. You can get to the ferry terminal either by the metro and alighting at Sizihwan station or the light rail at Hamasen station.

We took the light rail since there was a stop close to where we were staying. For those who are reading this blog for the first time, I typically stay at 85 Sky Tower Hotel while in Kaohsiung. My review of that hotel can be found here.


The ride was slow paced since its more of a light rail than a metro line. It, however, allowed us to have a good view of the sights along the shoreline including, the Pier 2 Art Centre, the Iron Bridge (crossing the Love River) and Hamasen Railway Cultural Park where you can find disused train tracks!



From Hamasen Station, the ferry terminal is a short walk away. There are a number of ice shaving shops along the way. While you can always grab yourself some ice shavings, there are other shops on Cijin Island as well.




The cost of the ferry is 40 per pax. The cost of the light rail is 30 per pax. This is assuming you pay in cash. If you have their local transport cards, discounted fares apply.

Things to do while in Cijin Island

The most important thing to do is, I think, to hire for yourself a mode of transport. Either grab a bicycle or a battery powered bicycles (either 2 seaters or 4 seaters) as they will allow you to cover great distances while on the Island and allow you to not only explore all of the sights but also feast on cheaper seafood outside of the main tourist belt. My suggestion is to get a battery powered vehicle as it may be too tiring to cycle for long.



Talk to the salesperson who you are renting the bikes from. They will normally offer a short introduction of the things to see along the route and also they own personal suggestions of where to eat.

We covered the many sights along the way in our 4 seater:


One possible itinerary is to go along the coast and hit all of the main sights like the Rainbow Church, the huge ass clam and the Wind Power display before heading for lunch. After lunch you can then turn back towards the other half of the cycling route and finishing off at Cijin Star Tunnel, Fort and Lighthouse.













For lunch, we had it at “Wan Er”. It appears to be a more of a no frills restaurant where their chefs prepare dishes and place them on a counter. You take the dishes that you want and pay for them at the designated counter using vouchers which you can purchase from their main counter for cash (third pic below). Don’t worry, any excess vouchers can be swapped back for cash. You can park your bicycle nearby. The battery powered bikes come with a key so you can just remove it while you feast away. Our little feast here was only a 1000 Taiwan Dollars and we had scallops, abalone, a huge fish, some kind of mock abalone and some broth:








We finished off the day at the main street on Cijin island after returning our bikes. There were plenty of stores there selling both touristy items and also local eats. We decided to pop into a ice shavings shop for our well deserved ice shavings having burnt large amounts of calories climbing up to both the Fort and also the Lighthouse:


For those who still have some time left, you can also consider popping over to the other side and visiting the British Consular Residence which lies on top of a hill also overlooking the small gap leading into the harbour. It is a short walk away from Gushan Ferry Terminal and offers pretty decent scenic views of both the Lighthouse and also the harbour itself.

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Travel Hack: A better way to find cheaper (cheapest) flights

Different travellers have their own “travel hack” on how to get the cheapest travel deal.

For some, it means booking on a Tuesday (Don’t ask me why but there appears to be some rumour that that the cheapest deals are on Tuesdays). For others, it might mean arranging your holidays such that your flights are scheduled on less popular weekday slots or odd hour slots. Then you have package deals on Expedia where bundling gets you a better value than you would have had booking separately. Why not also include the price guarantees offered on travel sites?    

Is there a simpler way? Something like a “An Idiot’s Guide to Travel Hacking”?

Have a look at Matrix Airfare Search.

This search engine is amazing as it offers what appears to be an independent search of  available flights (Note: the engine appears unable to identify budget airlines). “Independent” here is reflected by the fact that the engine is not managed by a travel agency. The operator neither sells any tickets nor earns any commission from your purchases. The site will show the relevant airlines and you can either book your tickets directly with the airline online or through an agent. If booking via an agent, Matrix will provide you the relevant booking codes.

Use the site as either a confirmation of your other price research or as a preliminary search to get a sense of the price for a particular leg.

Make sure to search both “Cheapest Available” and “Business Class or higher” options when using the search feature. Sometimes you may find good bargains where flying business will cost you just a few hundred dollars more. For example, for my upcoming trip to Delhi from Singapore. A direct return flight via Jet Airways would have cost me S$400. Flying business class via Malaysia Airlines with a stop in KL would just require a top up of another S$400. Definitely worth the bit more for a better flight experience.

There are also better examples like this where the options on Expedia although cheaper is just slightly cheaper than if you had flown business:

Expedia: Singapore to Kaohsiung, Taiwan (Assuming you are unable or unwilling to fly Scoot):

Vietnam Airlines Economy S$830.50

11 February 2018 (SG – KHH)

1.25pm – 9.55pm

13 February 2018 (KHH- SG)

7.30am – 7.25pm


Cathay Pacific Economy S$1,387.60

11 February 2018 (SG – KHH)

6.50am – 2.10pm

13 February 2018 (KHH-SG)

9.25pm – 11.55am


Matrix: Singapore to Kaohsiung, Taiwan

Vietnam Airlines Mixed S$1,125

11 February 2018 (SG – KHH) (Economy)

1.25pm – 9.55pm

13 February 2018 (KHH- SG) (Business, Part)

7.30am – 7.25pm


Vietnam Airlines Mixed S$1,624

11 February 2018 (SG – KHH) (Business, Part)

1.25pm – 9.55pm

13 February 2018 (KHH- SG) (Business)

7.30am – 7.25pm

This opens up a lot of options for you.

For example, instead of flying economy on Cathay and paying S$1,387, you have the option of flying the cheaper Vietnam flight at S$1,125 to experience Business Class for one part of your journey or topping up slightly for the S$1,624 flight for a more complete Business Class experience.

While using Matrix doesn’t guarantee that you will find cheaper tickets, it opens up more options to choose from. I hope you will find it useful and will incorporate it into your holiday planning.

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My (not so) near death experience – Fugu dining

My (not so) near death experience – Fugu dining

I always dreamed of trying and experiencing something unique. Sort of like marking significant milestones in my life. One such milestone is cheating death by eating Fugu or what is commonly known as pufferfish or blowfish.

Fugu? What is Fugu (Pufferfish aka Blowfish)?

For those wondering what Fugu is, National Geographic nicely describes this deadly fish as:


Biologists think pufferfish, also known as blowfish, developed their famous “inflatability” because their slow, somewhat clumsy swimming style makes them vulnerable to predators. In lieu of escape, pufferfish use their highly elastic stomachs and the ability to quickly ingest huge amounts of water (and even air when necessary) to turn themselves into a virtually inedible ball several times their normal size. Some species also have spines on their skin to make them even less palatable.


A predator that manages to snag a puffer before it inflates won’t feel lucky for long. Almost all pufferfish contain tetrodotoxin, a substance that makes them foul tasting and often lethal to fish. To humans, tetrodotoxin is deadly, up to 1,200 times more poisonous than cyanide. There is enough toxin in one pufferfish to kill 30 adult humans, and there is no known antidote.

I was about to put something 1200 times deadlier than cyanide on my plate and hope to almighty God that I don’t die from it.

Well sort of.

Pufferfish, if prepared correctly is not toxic. Only certain parts of the fish will cause death if ingested. The emphasis here is “if prepared correctly”.

If done wrongly, I would be 6 feet under.

Evidently, I didn’t die. If not, you will be the first person reading a blog entry from the other world.

How does Pufferfish Taste Like?

I had it in Tokyo, Japan after my whirlwind tour of Hokkaido with my girlfriend where we visited Hakodate, Noboribetsu, Sapporo and Otaru. It was our last meal in Tokyo and we wanted to try something unique.

We went for Fugu at Torafugu-tei near the famous Shibuya Crossing. You can’t miss it since it has a huge ass Fugu right above the store front!


This restaurant serves a variety of Fugu called “Tiger Blowfish”.



Great to know that the restaurant serves “Only the safest product”

There’s a la carte and also meal courses on offer. When we were there, there were two courses on offer. One going for 4,980 yen before taxes. The other going for 6,480 yen before taxes. While we were a little puzzled by the menu, there appears to be only minor differences with the menu (the more expensive comes with “Deep Fried Blowfish” while the cheaper menu instead comes with “Blowfish under-skin”), we decided to go big (if it’s going to be our last meal after all) and ordered the 6,480 yen set.


First up, came the Blowfish Skin. If you had jellyfish before, it has a similar chewy texture. It was very refreshing due to the sauce it was served in. It was citrusy like a mix of soy sauce and some kind citrus fruit. The grated ginger (that reddish thing) was not overpowering and helped balance out any fishiness (although I didn’t feel that the dish was at all fishy in taste). I would have loved it even more if it had been a hot summer day as the dish was served chilled.


Blowfish Sashimi was up next. Surprisingly, unlike our typical experience with Japanese Sashimi, it was not served with wasabi. Instead, again you find a small portion of ginger on the side to go with your soy sauce. There was also a slice of lime, if required. This was, I think, the key point in the meal as you get to experience the actual taste of fugu. Its surprisingly neutral tasting and very “clean” tasting. It doesn’t have a taste per se unlike Salmon and/or Tuna. Or it’s just me not having grown up with fugu and not recognising a “fugu” taste. The flesh is very firm and slightly chewy. Likely from all that muscle gained from puffing away? I actually felt something while having the sashimi. My lips felt slightly numb. Was it just my brain working overtime or was it really true that a master fugu chef will just leave a slight amount of toxin on the flesh to tease diners?


Blowfish hotpot. Yep, we graduated from the raw food portion of the meal. So, what happened was the restaurant staff had laid out a sort of paper bowl in the middle of the table that is above an induction heater. The bowl had a metal piece in it that heats up the broth. The broth was very simple (essentially a piece of seaweed to give some flavour). I guess the idea was to not overwhelm the delicate taste of the blowfish. Any heavier and/or stronger tasting broth would have covered the little taste of the fugu. We were told to cook between 6-7 minutes per piece (longer for bigger pieces and shorter for smaller pieces). The flesh, when boiled, was tender. There was no fishy smell at all. For those who are used to having fish soup of some kind, you will normally assume to soup to have some kind of fishy taste/smell to it. Oddly, there was none. It really goes towards showing how neutral tasting the fish actually is. I did try drinking of the broth towards the end. It was a pleasant tasting soup with a slight sweetness from all those vegetables that came with the hotpot. But not much taste attributable to the fugu itself. HINT: Don’t drink too much of the broth. One or two spoonsful is/are good enough as the broth has one more task to perform.




Midway into our hotpot came the fried blowfish. Make a guess what did it taste like. Like fried chicken, of course. Honestly, I believe you can actually pass off fried fugu as a nice piece of fried chicken. The entire thing was crispy and tender. Absolutely delightful.


Blowfish Porridge. Well, there is no blowfish involved here. Instead, the staff will prepare the porridge at your table using the broth leftover from the hotpot. They will add in a bowl of rice to soak in all that goodness before pouring in an egg for flavour before topping it off with some spring onions and some soy sauce. It was more than plenty for the two of us. We found that the waitress was a bit light on the soy sauce and we decided to add it a bit more. The porridge evolves with time. At first, its watery before turning thick after absorbing in all that broth. I found it to be very filling and my advice is that if you think you are already about full, you might want to ask the waitress to cut back on the rice so that you won’t have too much porridge.



We ended our meal with a small dessert – a mini ice cream sandwich.


Post fugu meal – I didn’t die!!!

As time ticked by, I knew I was safe. I cheated death.

Would I recommend Fugu? Yes! Definitely. I do think most should at least try it once during their lifetime. But do remember to have it at proper establishments with proper fugu chefs. While deaths do occur, they can be attributed to amateurs who had no idea what they were actually doing.

Have you tried fugu? Let me know in the comments.

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Fantastic 2017! Whats up 2018?

Fantastic 2017! Whats up 2018?

A happy new year to all my readers out there.

It has been a roller coaster year for me.

2017 saw me leaving the honourable profession of being a lawyer and going in-house as a legal counsel (which I still hope is an honourable profession). 2017 also saw me starting up my own spot in the world wide web with the creation of Etraveller Times. When I started this blog, I thought it would be merely a hobby of sorts where I get to share the many tips and tricks I picked up along the way. Well, that was how I saw it back then in August with me posting what I thought was cool travel hacks or tips that can make your travel a better one. I sought to answer questions like:

The blog then started to take a life of its own.

From a mere how to guide, it became my diary of sorts where I record the many experiences I had overseas and locally here in Singapore. Part diary and part guide to any willing reader wanting to know more. It started off as a simple introduction to Singapore’s attractions and must eat foods. That saw me making a special trip down to Singapore’s very own Botanical Gardens and the Chinese Gardens. It also saw me being a glutton taking in rich and exotic foods like Bone Marrow.



Sup Tulang aka Bone Soup

Sup Tulang, Golden Mile Food Centre, Singapore

It then branched out to a mini-Taiwan guide (as a result of my constant business trips to Kaohsiung) where I discussed its night markets, its custom of betel nut chewing and my first in depth hotel review – 85 Sky Tower Hotel (again compliments of my generous employer).



Then came my Bangkok series where I shared my 1-day itinerary historic/cultural itinerary and half day itinerary shopping/spa itinerary. Don’t worry, I have more installed for Bangkok ><.



Jogjakarta was another awesome place to visit (especially for all those quitting from Drew & Napier’s Insolvency Team – Apparently it has become a pilgrimage for all of us quitters). Its more than just temples with an awesome hidden beach with a death defying gondola ride and also an exhilarating jeep ride to an active volcano:




If that doesn’t sound like enough for a year, I also visited Malaysia’s Melaka (Malacca) and Johor Bahru before finishing the year in Hokkaido, Japan feasting on my many bowls of Kaisendons, drooling over fresh seafood all around me, looking at my girlfriend hugging a kick ass cabbage instead of me, soaking our feet in a natural hot spring river and seeing snow fall for the first time.






What a wonderful year it has been for me! How has your year been?  


Review: Pocket Wifi Router (Changi Recommends)

Review: Pocket Wifi Router (Changi Recommends)

For those wondering how not to burn a hole in your wallet while remaining connected in Japan, I covered some great tips and alternatives in one of my earlier post. This is a follow up article where I share my experience using a Pocket Wifi Router that I got from Changi Recommends.

Collection of Pocket Wifi Router at Changi Airport Terminals

A really seamless process. Just order online and head over to the booth at the airport terminal. Place a deposit and you are done. Returning the device is likewise straightforward.

The kit comes in a pouch with the router (pre-charged) and a power charger. The power charger appears to have been set up for the region you are travelling to (i.e. with the correct socket plug type):



Value for money

For those lost, these routers are small little gadgets that emit a wifi signal that your phone / laptop can tap into such that you have a mobile unlimited data wifi hotspot with you all the time. The data allowance for such routers are generally unlimited (subject maybe to a speed throttle in cases where the fair usage amount is consumed). While such routers are generally expensive (averaging USD100 for around 9 days of use), Changi Recommends offers a very reasonably priced router (unlimited data) at just SGD5 per day with the first day rental being free. This is a bargain at SGD40/USD30 for 9 days of unlimited data coverage!

Easy to use

Unlike other fanciful travel hacks (e.g. flexiroam – a sort of international data roaming service which I also use from time to time – check out my post here), there isn’t much fiddling to do to start using the router. It is as simple as turning it on and finding it on your phone’s/laptops wifi list and keying in the password that is located at the back of the router. Nothing complicated.

Fast connection

I don’t know whether you feel the same way but hotel wifi connections are terrible. Even for 5 star hotels, you sometimes have trouble getting a decent and fast connection.

The pocket wifi router solved all of that. The connection was fast and during my stay in Japan we used it for not only the most basic of things (emails/social media/google maps) but also the more data intensive applications like watching youtube videos and given the odd game or two of Mobile Legends (Side note: Japanese Mobile Legend players are insane ><)

The connection also held up away from Tokyo and worked spectacularly while we were in Hokkaido.

While the connection was generally good on the Shinkansen, there were certain times when the connection was weak. This is to be expected as the train was passing through tunnels with poor signal strength.

Battery Life

While there are other reviews claiming the battery life is awesome, my experience is that it actually depends on your use. Sure, if you just turn it off after each use, the router can definitely last for ages. But if you are like me and would prefer to feel like you are back at your home country (i.e. free access to data the whole day), you will likely keep the router on the whole day. Expect it to last approximately 8 hours before it goes flat (assuming two users). Less if there are more users tapping into the router. So be sure to have a power bank or two to juice up your device in the late afternoon.

I hope my review is helpful. If you are heading to Japan anytime soon, be sure to get one router for yourself.

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What to see and do while in Sapporo, Hokkaido – Part Two (Again loads of awesome photos!)

What to see and do while in Sapporo, Hokkaido – Part Two (Again loads of awesome photos!)

Sapporo is the regional capital of Hokkaido. The vibrant city offers a lively and energetic feel to its visitors especially when coming in from Hakodate and/or the outlying coastal cities. As Sapporo is a major transport hub in the North, it will likely feature in any Hokkaido itinerary. As the article turned out to be too long with all the awesome photos I took, this guide is a two part series on what to see and do while in Sapporo. This is Part Two.

Click here to see Part One where we covered Sapporo Central Wholesale Market, White Lover Park and Sapporo Beer Museum.

Sapporo Factory


If beer is not your thing or if you would like to do some shopping, you can consider popping over to Sapporo Factory which is a short walk away from the Beer Museum.

Sapporo Factory is a shopping complex that appears to be converted from an old factory. It appears to be a brewery that belonged to the Kaitakushi, the old government of Hokkaidō prefecture, and subsequently owned by the Sapporo Beer Company, the predecessor of the Sapporo Brewery. You can still see parts of the complex reflecting their link to the Sapporo Beer Company.





If you are hungry, do try the semi self-service teppanyaki restaurant where you get to be your own teppanyaki chef for the day! 





Sapporo Clock Tower, Odori Park and Sapporo TV Tower + Shopping @ Tanukikoji Shopping Arcade + Free flow Wagyu Beef Shabu Shabu

If you are not done for the day, why not visit the Odori area in Sapporo? Not only is it close to a number of attractions, it is quite close to the Tanukikoji Shopping Arcade. Don’t worry, there are many restaurants there as well so you can end of with a sumptuous meal =]

The Sapporo Clock Tower is apparently one of the oldest (if not, the oldest) surviving building in Sapporo. While it appears on many itineraries, it appeared to me to be a little hyped up. I think its expected given that it was built in 1878 and there is nothing much you can do to a building then. So either plan it as a 5 minutes detour or just route your way such that you will have a chance to have a quick glimpse before you head over to Odori Park.


Odori Park, depending on the season, may be a worthwhile place to visit. During ordinary months it is just a plain old park. However, during winter it becomes an interesting attraction with its snow sculptures and maybe even a small “christmas market”. When I was there, I noticed makeshift stalls being set up in the park and also Christmas decorations. I mused aloud to my girlfriend that it would have been a beautiful sight if we visited just a month later.


Odori park is located just beside Sappro TV Tower. It looks somewhat like the Eiffel Tower (which I covered in my other post here). dsc02665.jpgWe decided to head up the Tower during our visit as an alternative to going up Mt Moiwa. My recommendation is to skip the Tower and just brave Mt Moiwa. Although both of them offer an elevated view of Sapporo City, there is a difference looking at Sapporo City from afar as compared to looking at it from above. The Tower is only recommended if it has been raining the Mt Moiwa is shrouded with fog or if you are rushing for time. If you are attempting to do the Tower, it would be preferable to do it in the day as the city appeared to be rather dark. There are just not much attractions to catch your eye at night other than the Beer Museum and Sapporo Factory’s glass roof.       



Mt Moiwa in the distance


Odori Park down below


Sapporo Beer Museum and Sapporo Factory

Once you are done, you can perhaps pop by to the Tanukikoji Shopping Arcade. The sheltered arcade is approximately 1km long with around 200 shops that runs east to west. It begins at Nishi-1-chome and ends at Nishi-7-chome and offers tourists a very lively and vibrant area to visit. For the history buffs, this arcade can trace its roots back to the Meiji period when the Meiji government established the Hokkaido Development Commission in Sapporo with merchants setting up shop around the area. Expect to find place somewhat crowded with tourists seeking a bargain from the tax free shops and/or a meal nearby.


For us, we decided to give a shabu shabu restaurant (Wai-Wai-Tei @  Shimizu Building) near the Arcade a try after being refused entry from an overbooked restaurant while at Hakodate (read more about it here). The restaurant is actually hidden as you have to take a lift up. There were, however, signs on the street to help advertise the existence of the place. The place looked quite authentic with mostly locals frequenting the place other than the odd tourist. The prices are also affordable for a free flow of Wagyu beef.


While we got both the shabu shabu and sukiyaki, my suggestion is to go with just the shabu shabu. Sukiyaki is just too sweet. There is also pork available. For both types of meat, there are different prices for different cuts. We went with the normal wagyu beef  (3,820 yen per pax) and found them to be good enough. If you don’t fancy taking too much rice balls, consider asking them to cut back on them to reduce waste.




Shabu Shabu  – Wagyu Beef (Free flow)



This is my itinerary for Sapporo. While I have sought to arrange it into a day’s worth of itinerary, I actually done it over the course of two days. Depending on your schedule, you may want to tweak accordingly. 

From Sapporo, you can consider doing side trips to Otaru (which I covered in this post) or even visiting Hakodate and Noboribetsu.

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One day in Otaru, Hokkaido: What to see and do while in Otaru (Loads of pics!)

One day in Otaru, Hokkaido: What to see and do while in Otaru (Loads of pics!)

An itinerary for Hokkaido (and specifically Sapporo) cannot be complete without a stop at Otaru. Otaru is a small port North East from Sapporo and makes a perfect day trip outside of the city. This is my one day itinerary for Otaru and covers all the must sees and must dos while in Otaru.

Getting to Otaru from Sapporo

Otaru can be reached by train from Sapporo. There are two stations you can alight at depending on your itinerary: Otaru Station and Minami-Otaru Station.




As to which is better, I would personally pick Minami-Otaru Station over Otaru Station as the former allows for a better/smoother itinerary. Otaru has two main attractions. There is a shopping street and also its canals. Coming in from Minami-Otaru Station places you close to the edge of the shopping street and from there you can visit the canals before ending at Otaru Station for your train back.

Otaru Shopping Street (Sakaimachi Shopping Street)

Once you exit from Minami-Otaru Station, grab yourself a map of the local area and walk towards the Sakaimachi Shopping Street. The walk is largely downhill with the occasional gem along the way:




Coming from this end also gives a good start to your visit as you will first encounter the Otaru Music Box Museum with an odd pendulum clock by its entrance. Head on in to be amazed by the variety of music boxes available for sale. You can find the plain simple hand wound device and also delicate (and extremely expensive) music boxes on offer. Somehow, in our modern day and age, such a simple device still amazes. Be sure to look out for the historical music carts that are essentially self contained entertainment machines belting out popular jingles. There is also a short display showcasing the development of music boxes together with other major technological developments in the world:











Across the road is the Sakaimachi Shopping Street. While I was there, there were free brochures left along the footpath advertising the different shops available and where they are located. Otaru, I think, can be considered as a mini Venice. Like Venice, Otaru appears to be a glassware city. There are countless number of shops selling delicate and beautiful glassware and also a number of wine shops selling both red and white wines as well as local sake.








Make sure to grab a Hokkaido Cream Puff while there. There is a shop selling pretty decent puffs for a mere 90 yen that comes with a free cup of coffee. Definitely value for money! On a side note, the cheese based dessert was average. So stick with the puffs!






Otaru is also famous for its seafood/sushi shops. Do shop around to see if you can get a better deal.


If you are like us, you can consider venturing away from the shopping belt to get the real deal. Not far from the other end of Sakaimachi Shopping Street is Otarusankaku Market (just beside Otaru Station).

Otarusankaku Market is a small seafood market where you can dine in. We decided to splurge this time round and got ourselves a hairy crab for 6,500 yen on top of our kaisendons. Having done some research both pre and post Otaru trip, 6,500 yen is a reasonable price to pay for a hair crab. Snow crabs are generally cheaper. King crabs are generally way more expensive. Why not also grab a 400 yen oyster and down it with some local Otaru beer? 














Otaru Canals

Once lunch is out of the way (definitely a late lunch by the time you are done with Sakaimachi Shopping Street and having walked over to the market area), you can stroll over to the canals. It is generally better to visit during winter as the views are better. The canals are just average without the snow. Consider having a Hokkaido Ice Cream while there. Perfect for a hot summer day and maybe a perfect supplement on a cold winter’s day!





Do look out for the area just beside the canal where it used to be called Wall Street of the North. Despite its small town appearance, Otaru had for a brief moment the chance of being a financial centre in the North. What remains today are the streets lining the canals with their old stone warehouses (now converted into restaurants).



Getting from Otaru to Sapporo

From the canals, you have two options. You can either head back via Otaru Station or Minami-Otaru Station.

If you are travelling during winter (night falls earlier as compared to summer), going back via Minami-Otaru Station offers a different night view and may be worth the walk.

If not, head back to Otaru Station.






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Signing off, eTraveller.


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