Things to Do in Osaka for First-Timers


Osaka Castle
Osaka Castle

Japan has never been in my travel wishlist even though my favourite cuisine is Japanese food (pretty ironic isn’t it). However, I am absolutely glad that I’ve paid a visit there with my family last year. Japan does not disappoint me, in fact it exceeded my expectations. The food, the people, the architecture, the culture, — it was bliss. I’ve visited Osaka, Nara, and Kyoto during my trip, but I’ll be breaking down the content into 3 different articles. So, if you want to check out those posts, stay tune!

1.Visit Osaka Castle and Nishinomaru Park
Osaka Castle
Osaka Castle

Osaka’s monuments really don’t get any more iconic than this majestic Osaka Castle. It was surrounded by breathtaking Nishinomaru Park, which happened to be a great spot for Hanami during the Cherry Blossom Season (I wish we went there a week early to catch those beautiful scenes!) Osaka Castle park is free so make sure you stroll around, you can even have picnic there.

Osaka Castle
Osaka Castle
Osaka Castle Osaka Japan
Osaka Castle
We bought some food from Kuromon market and enjoy it with the beautiful scenery.

The castle opens it’s doors at 9 am and the park surrounding the park is open all to the public at all times. It will cost you 600 Yen to go inside the castle.

Matcha Ice-cream
Matcha Ice-cream

Don’t forget to grab the delicious Matcha ice-cream while admiring the Osaka Castle!

2. Go Kuromon Ichiba Market
Kuromon Market Osaka Japan
Kuromon Market
Kuromon Market Osaka Japan
Kuromon Market

If you are a hungry soul (like me) craving for mouthwatering fresh seafood, and street food, you must not miss this market which has more than 190 years of history and tradition. There are tons of shops (approximately 150) selling food from sweet to savory.

tuna sushi kuromon market osaka japan
Fresh tuna sushi – I can still remember how the tuna melts right away after I put them in my mouth.
Grille Scallop Kuromon Market Osaka Japan
Grille Scallop

Food to try:

Grilled Scallop, Tuna Fish, Sashimi, Takoyaki, White Strawberries

3. Shop until drop and Eat all you can at Dotonbori and Shinsaibashi 
Glico Dotonbori Shinsaibashi Osaka Japan
Glico Sign, Dotonbori

Going to Osaka without making a stop at Dotonbori and Shinsaibashi is like going to Paris without seeing the Eiffel Tower. Shinsaibashi Arcade is the premier shopping area in Osaka. Around 600 meters long, it’s filled with trendy boutiques, retail chains, and luxury department stores. Whether you’re looking for Japan designers’ shops or international brands, you’re bound to find what you love here! When you walk into this open area and see that large Glico man sign. That’s when you know you’re in Dotonbori. The giant Glico Man is Dotonbori’s most iconic landmark.

Dotonbori Osaka Japan
Glico, The Landmark of Dotonbori
Dotonbori Osaka Japan

Food You Must Not Miss In Dotonbori and Shinsaibashi

Ichiran Ramen

Ichiran Ramen Dotonbori Osaka Japan
Ichiran Ramen

Ichiran originated from Fukuoka offers Classic Tonkotsu Ramen from the 1960s. It is an extremely popular ramen place in Japan even the locals will queue up for their ramen! I can literally have this every day, it totally taste different (in a good way) with what I had in the past!

Luke’s Lobster

Luke's Lobster Shinsaibashi Osaka Japan
Luke’s Lobster

Ever since I had my first burger and lobster experience in London, I will not miss any possible chance to have a bite of it, and I’m glad I did.

Pablo Cheesecake

Pablo Cheesetart Dotonbori Osaka Japan
Pablo Cheesetart

Pablo which originates from Osaka as a takeaway cheesecake shop has attracted long queues for its signature “Rare/Medium” cheesecake. Recently, Pablo have even packaged its products as Osaka souvenirs targeting at travelers.

Authentic Japanese Street Food

When in Japan, eat Japanese food (including their delicious street food) as much as possible. Don’t lie, you’re going to miss the authentic taste when you’re back home.

Try Sashimi, Okonomiyaki, Takoyaki, Yakiniku, Kani.

Sashimi Osaka Japan
4. Visit The Universal Studio
Harry Potter Universal Studio Osaka Japan
Harry Potter

If you enjoy the adrenaline rush or want to reminisce your favourite movies’ characters. Universal Studio can never be wrong! The prior reason I visit USJ is of course the sake of Harry Potter!

Make sure you grab yourself a mug of butterbeer! I had the frozen version and it tasted like caramel root beer! I swear it is soooo good! There are few rides which are extremely enjoyable. For instance, Harry Potter and The Forbidden Journey (duh! even though it’s in Japanese version, I still enjoyed it a lot!), Hollywood Dream Backdrop (utterly thrilling), The Flying Dinosaur (if you have a strong heart make sure you go for it despite the long queue)!

Butter Beer Universal Studio Osaka Japan
Harry Potter Universal Studio Japan Osaka
Harry Potter and the Wizarding World
Chocolate Churros Snoopy Bun Universal Studio Osaka Japan
Chocolate Churros and Snoopy Bun
wendy quah blogger universal studio osaka japan
Universal Studio
5. Visit The Convenience Stores!!!
Look how happy is my sister after getting all her favourite snacks

You might be thinking am I serious? Why include convenience store in a travel list. Trust me, you’re gonna thank me later when you find out how much you get to save while getting yourself some delicious meals and snacks. There are three main stores name you should know, which are 7-11, Family Mart and Lawson Station. You can literally grab so much things here, ranging from light breakfast (sandwiches), to bentos, coffees, beers, and ice-creams!

seven eleven family mart osaka japan
Drinks Selection in 7-11
curry katsu don udon seven eleven osaka japan
Curry Katsu Don, Omelette Rice, and Teriyaki Udon
sandwich sweet melon bread bento starbucks coffee osaka japan convenience store
Our breakfast for the second day!
6. Grab Great Deals at Rinku Premium Outlet

If you’re a shopaholic, or wanted to grab cheaper designer pieces, seek no further than Rinku Premium Outlet which has more than 200 brands including some of their local brands.

Make sure you grab the discount coupons at the information counter to get some further deductions.

If you are planning a visit to Rinku Premium Outlets, you can plan it on your Day 1 or your last day since it is located so near to Kansai International Airport.

Tempozan Ferris Wheel Rinku Town Osaka Japan
Tempozan Ferris Wheel

If you’re not aiming to shop, I still recommend you to drop by Rinku Town as you get to see the breathtaking city scape from this huge Tempozan Ferris Wheel. You can even visit the Marble Beach to catch sunset.


I hope this travel guide comes in handy if you plan to travel Osaka!

Do not hesitate to leave me your questions, or better tips!

“Jobs fill your pocket, adventures fill your soul”


It’s Ruffle, Baby

topshop poplin ruffle shirt levi jeans mango belt coach chain crossbodyRuffles were having a BIG moment in 2016 and the game is still going strong this season, which I am absolutely thankful for as I’m definitely the “rufflemaniac” who just couldn’t get enough of ruffles.

If you have come across fashion weeks, or trend reports you probably notice that it is difficult for us to find a fashion runway that didn’t feature a little bit of flounce. So, if you’re still hesitate whether you should get your hands on, you should definitely give it a try!

Last year, ruffles were widely to be seen on dresses or chiffon blouse, but this season they were presented in unusual fabrications such as sweaters, leather skirts, or even the on the classic button down shirt.

topshop poplin ruffle shirt levi jeans mango belt coach chain crossbody

Ruffles have the tendency to be feminine, romantic, and a little bit dressed up.  For this look, I’ve decided to combine the eye-catching statement piece (ruffle button down shirt) with a basic (skinny jeans) to create that perfect balance. To inject a sense of edge, I wore a statement belt, and carried a chain crossbody.

topshop poplin ruffle shirt levi jeans mango belt coach chain crossbody

topshop poplin ruffle shirt levi jeans mango belt coach chain crossbody

The ruffle button shirt – I fell for this ruffle shirt at first sight and decided to purchase it for my graduation. This white button down shirt is versatile as you can easily dress it up and down depending on the occasion. And thanks to its ruffles and small cutout detailing on the back, this elevated button down shirt is definitely an eye-catcher and balances between being basic but yet a statement piece.

topshop poplin ruffle shirt levi jeans mango belt coach chain crossbody

 Outfit details: 

Top: Topshop ; Jeans: Levi’s ; Belt: Mango ; Bag: Coach


“Fashion is Art, and You’re the Canvas”


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Why Koh Lipe Should Be Your Next Short Getaway

Sunrise Beach Koh Lipe Thailand
Sunrise Beach

If you love beaches and tropical climate, Koh Lipe which is also known as the Maldives of Thailand is definitely the hidden treasure you won’t want to miss. With crystal clear turquoise blue shorelines that fade into white sandy shores, you can’t help but to fall head over heels!

I went there during October, which is nearly the end of non-peak season. If you prefer to have a quiet walks on the sand, intimate dinners and have the sea all to yourself, then off-season travel is utterly perfect for you. Most important thing is you get cheaper hotel rates.

The Noi Guesthouse, Koh Lipe, Thailand
The Noi Guesthouse, Koh Lipe, Thailand
The Noi Guesthouse, Koh Lipe, Thailand
American Breakfast vs Thailand Breakfast served by The Noi Guesthouse

This is my 3 days 2 nights stay in Koh Lipe – The Noi Guesthouse. I have a marvellous experience here! Great service, delicious breakfast served, comfortable and clean room and most important is they do provide complimentary shuttle service! (definitely a big plus point).

Pattaya Beach, Koh Lipe, Thailand
Pattaya Beach

Koh Lipe is a small L-shaped island which consists of three major beaches: Pattaya Beach (south), Sunrise Beach (east) and Sunset Beach (west).

Pattaya Beach, Koh Lipe, Thailand
Pattaya Beach
Pattaya Beach, Koh Lipe, Thailand
Pattaya Beach

Pattaya Beach is the longest (1km) and busiest beach among the three beaches. The area gets crowded the whole day, as it is also where the tourists line up for their ferry boats, immigration, and of course swimming and sunbathing . At night, Pattaya beach is also famous for its nightlife as most of the restaurants and bars operate until late night.

Sunrise Beach
Sunrise Beach, Koh Lipe, Thailand
Sunrise Beach

Sunrise Beach (Haad Chao Ley) which is my second favourite beach has a long (approximately 800m) strip of white sand bordering a wide shallow bay. If you love sunrise, trust me you’re going to love here. Besides, sunrise beach is also perfect for long walks, yoga, kayak, and snorkeling.

Sunset Beach, Koh Lipe, Thailand
Sunset Beach
Sunset Beach, Koh Lipe, Thailand
Sunset Beach

Among the three beaches, Sunset Beach (Haad Pramong) is the smallest and kinda off the beaten track. It gives off that chill and peaceful vibe which makes this beach my ultimate favourite! In addition, if you have a huge thing for sunset like me, sunset here is going to sweep your feet away!

Walking Street, Koh Lipe, Thailand
Walking Street

Aside from visiting beaches, you must not miss The Walking Street which connects the Pattaya and Sunset beaches, and known as the beating heart of Koh Lipe. The Walking Street has almost everything you need there. Ranging from the authentic Thai restaurants, cafes, souvenir shops to Thai Massage. Everything here is fairly cheap as well! You can enjoy a delicious seafood dinner and it costs you way cheaper than you imagine.

Koh Lipe, Thailand

Things to Do While You’re in Koh Lipe

Rent a kayak

Sea kayaking around Lipe is a great way to enjoy the tranquility of the sea and explore hidden snorkeling spots and see the island from a different perspective. Prices start at 100 baht per hour or 300 baht per day.

Watch Sunrise and Sunset EVERYDAY

This is the best free thing you must not miss in Koh Lipe. If you are on a day with good weather, you probably have the chance to see the most memorable and breathtaking sunrises and sunsets. Hence, do it like us and make both a ritual and important parts of the day.

***Tips: For the sunrise, go to the southern end of Sunrise Beach where the sun appears right next to Koh Usen islet. For the sunset, head to Sunset Beach or the tip of Sunrise Beach next to Mountain Resort are great options.

Go Diving / Snorkeling

You’re in a beach paradise, so why not seize this opportunity and go for diving and snorkeling to explore the underwater world.

Indulge Yourself with Thai Massage 

The best thing to do on a relaxing trip is to indulge yourself with Thai Massage. I would suggest getting a Thai massage your first day on Koh Lipe as you shouldn’t be sunburnt yet. If you have sunburnt skin, try to avoid it or opt for the aloe massage as it will help to heal the sunburn and provide cooling effect. Massage prices are pretty fixed throughout the island, and its cheap!

Walk the Walking Street and Have Some Food Hunt

Like I’ve mentioned, walking street, the heart of Koh Lipe has numbers of restaurants, cafes, and souvenir shops. So make sure you take a walk and try out some of their authentic street food. Make sure you remember to grab roti mina, and some coconut ice-cream!

Enjoy Idleness

The best thing to do in Koh Lipe is to enjoy the idleness and do nothing!


“The World Is A Book, And Those Who Don’t Travel Read Only One Page”