nearly there – to make a dream come true

dream it - city.fiSo only 2,5 months to go ….. Hong Kong and Japan here I come. And it’s all because of Ueno Sakura Matsuri, the Cherry Blossom Festival. At the age of 76 and a cancer journey be able to go on a trip this ….. and on my own feels just AMAZING!!! To be able to make a dream I had for over 30 years finely come true.

All hotels are booked, one paid for … and so is all flights, except one. The total for my flights came to 8.950SEK/$1. 236/£770/€980. If I had booked the ticket all together at a travel agent the cost had come to around 30.542SEK/$4.220/£2.626/3.343€ – that is a massive saving. I have booked all my flights online with separate airlines.cherry blossom - timeout jp

I’m flying CPH- Hong Kong (1 stop) / Hong Kong – Tokyo / Hiroshima – Tokyo and Tokyo – CPH (1 stop) – the longest flight will from Tokyo back home 12,1 hours including stop over in Helsinki. Great connection and a fantastic price with Finn Air.

From Hong Kong to Tokyo do I fly with HK Express, very cheap and with that comes a downfall….. I was departing just before midnight and land very early morning in Tokyo. Then suddenly they had an earlier departure to arrive at midnight, so I changed my booking for a fee of 300HK$.

From Hiroshima to Tokyo I will be flying ANA Nippon, cheaper than the train .. and I will landed at the airport where my departure will be the following morning. This booking hasn’t been done yet, because with Nippon’s domestic flight is it only possible to book 2,5 months (75 days) in advance.

Regarding  2 hotels (Hong Kong & Kyoto) did I have to rethink a bit … I wanted to stay on the Kowloon side in Hong Kong, but found a fantastic upgrade offer with The Cosmopolitan Hotel – gives me a deluxe stay with airport transport, smart phone, breakfast and plus I can keep my room until 4pm on departure.

My room will have a view over the Happy Valley House Race Ground. No harbor view, but it’s not far to walk down to the waterfront and Star Ferries. This went over my budget, but with airport transportation and breakfast included – it’s a really good deal. I booked directly with the hotel.

Regarding travelling in Japan I have come to the conclusion that I will not travel enough by train to make up for the cost of a rail pass. When I counted on it, I can go first class (green car) on the fastest Shinkansen for less money than a weekly rail pass cost. So that will be me cruising in style at a speed of 300 km/h (185 mph).

In Tokyo I had my eyes on The Hotel Grand Arc Hanzomon with view over the Imperial Palace in  Chiyoda (千代田) district, the center of Tokyo and next door neighbor to the British Embassy.

Close to Tokyo Station where I will take the bullet train to Kyoto from. A very popular hotel and it wasn’t easy to get a room there – especial none-smoking. It became cheaper for me to book it with agoda.com, because the breakfast buffet is included in their price. The hotel’s website doesn’t have any meal offers. All paid for.

Kyoto has been a real pain and hard work. I want to stay close to the Gion district and Kamogawa River, the old and beautiful Geisha district, but all the hotels I had eyes on is being full booked that week. So I searched with the headlights on and I found a hotel, Hotel Vista Premio Kyoto – only 5-minute walk from the river.

When I checked hotel booking websites it was sold out everywhere. So I went on the hotels own website and I manage to get a single room with breakfast for 5 nights to a great rate.

The hotel has great reviews and a  MASSIVE plus is that they have laundry facilitates on 6th floor for their guests. That is me in the middle of my trip with laundry needed to be done.

Hiroshima I will be staying next to the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park at ANA Crowne Plaza Hiroshima – big double room with breakfast for 5 nights. This I have booked with booking.com – a little better rate than with the hotel’s website.

One of the nights in Hiroshima will I stay overnight on Miyajima Island at Kurayado Iroha, a Ryokan aka Japanese guesthouse – with half board included it will be my most expensive hotel night. There are no restaurants on the island except in the hotels and Ryokans, also booked with bookings.com.

My last night before departure home will I be staying at Hilton Hotel by Narita Airport, 1 night with breakfast and  airport shuttle, through booking.com.

Now I have started to look at sights, restaurants, walks, tours, MUSTS and hidden gems.

So 1th of April will I and my TENA pads, in their own suitcase, take off from Copenhagen Airport and the towels will be less for each destination and I will be more “be-richered”. My bank account and feet will suffer most.

“Hope makes the dream a possibility.”
Lailah Giftytena - tena.co uk

Images provided by and thanks to;
city.fi
timeout.com
Gallery 1; vipservicespb.ru/ch.aviation.com/ swingforwishes.com
Gallery 2; asiatravel.com/asiarooms.com/hospitalitynet.org/neeu.com
Gallery 3; transit-port.netsnapthepix.com/japan-guide.com
Gallery 4; agoda.com/grandarc.com/web.mytrip.net/tripadvisor.com
Gallery 4; kayak.com/hotel-vista.jp/travelpod.com/tripadvisor.com
Gallery 5; hotels-world.com/fitforcharity.org/fnetravel.com/thebesthotels.org
Gallery 6; hotels.com/backyardtravel.com/japanican.com/venere.com
Gallery 7; laterooms.com/booked.net/jaunted.com
tena.co.uk

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32 thoughts on “nearly there – to make a dream come true

    • A-C, I am sure I will get a fantastic trip …. it’s all down to me, but I always meet interesting people and I’m not shy.
      Be careful with what you wish for …. there will be plenty of reports *smile

  1. 🙂 This sounds like an amazing trip you’re planning! So are so fantastically organized – I am so happy for you that you will be going on this journey.
    When will you be in HongKong?
    Many hugs and enjoy your planning! xoxo 🙂

    • Thanks, Dia … I have to be organized because I’m travelling alone and not 20 anymore, plus I have to think about my “health” issues. It’s not just to pack and go anymore *smile – I will make sure that I get a fantastic trip. I will be in Hong Kong the 6 first days in April. The planning that is left is the fun one. Now when the most important things are booked Before bed hugs. *smile.

    • Colline, thank you. As a single female travelling – I have to stay at hotels that is not hidden … on narrow backstreets and I need comfort, but it doesn’t have to be 5*. Never been a backpacker. The rooms a fantastic and none of them are expensive, set a budget of 1000SEK/120$ per night with breakfast max. Only HK that is slightly over and the night at the island is the double.

    • Uru, If I manage this trip without “killing myself” – Australia will happen too. *smile
      Planning is the really fun part and there are no suitcases involved. *smile

  2. Viv, you are an absolute inspiration! The original ‘never give up’ girl! How you managed your budget is fantastic, well done you!! Looking forward to meeting up, not long now 🙂

    • Sue, I will have my health issues where ever I’m – and thanks to my UK pension am I able to travel. It would be fantastic if I’m an inspiration for someone, but don’t think I’m on the go all the time. Very lazy person at home and not that very active – so my travel is a great way for me to get motivated.

  3. Full of joy for you, Vivi 🙂 If you’re going to make a dream come true it has to be larger than life, and girl, you can do that better than anybody I know. I only hope that one day I might be able to see those cherry blossoms for myself, but if not I know I will be able to feast on them in your posts.
    Hugs, darlin’! Have a lovely weekend 🙂

    P.S I just saw Sue’s note! A meet up? When and where? Oh, I’m SO nosy! 🙂

    • It’s healthy to be nosy …. *smile – Sue and I are going to meet up over lunch in London at the end of the month.
      And I’m having a full day date with Suzanne@travelbunny … in Brighton. I’m staying in Brighton – but I’m going up to London for the day and Cirque du Soleil at Albert Hall. She lives just outside Brighton.
      Jo, I hope that you will be able to see the cherry blossoms too.
      You know – I have my problems where ever I’m – and they are more acceptable if I’m on an adventure, because it takes my mind of feet, bladder and sorry ass. I have been given a second chance on life – and maybe it’s a way to escape from too.Escape from boredom.

      • I often wonder about the health problems, Vivi, but don’t like to ask too frequently. And yes, keeping on the move you can maybe outrun them, or at least keep them out of mind.
        I’m in London very briefly next weekend. We’re like ships that pass! 🙂 I’ve been friends with Suzanne since before my blogging life began, but we’ve never met, though we almost managed it in Whitby one year. She seems the loveliest lady so I know you’ll have fun.
        Have a good weekend, hon. Spring’s on the way… eventually 🙂 🙂

      • She is truly a lovely lady – aren’t you trying to meet up with her while you’re in London. Or there isn’t time enough for a cup of tea. You know we aren’t never too busy for a cup of coffee with a friend.
        Jo, one day I will make my way back to Leeds – great city. Only that the connections with Sweden is none. Have to fly up when I’m UK – maybe when I visit Belfast next time.

      • I’m there on a promotion event with Mercure hotels, Vivi. It’s been quite complicated to arrange and I hadn’t thought as far as meetups. Maybe I’ll ask 🙂

  4. Sound’s amazing Vivi – I can’t wait to follow you and Oscar on your epic trip! Enjoy the rest of your planning – part of the fun is all in the anticipation isn’t it! 🙂

    • Suzanne, I totally agree …. planning is the fun bit – and a big part of the adventure. There is so much to do – but not everything can be done, but I will try to get so much in as possible. *smile Have a great weekend.

    • Debby, yes … I have been thinking about for such a long time – was in Japan in 1978 while working on a cruise liner. Always wanted to see more. There will be loads of stories to tell and all hotels has free wifi. *smile

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