What brings us to the beautiful city of Kobe? The nature, of course.
Hahaha ok, I'm not fooling anyone here. Of course I wanted to try the famous Kobe beef. But first I wanted to see some of Kobe's attractions. The air was cool but the sky a beautiful blue - perfect for a little mountain trip.
Kobe Nunobiki Herb Gardens
Right next to the Shinkansen station "Shin Kobe" you'll find the ropeway for the Nunobiki Herb Gardens. It's possible to hike up the hill by foot, but who would want to miss
such a great view?!
Since Christmas was just around the corner, they had a little Christmas Market at the top station. A beautiful forest surrounds the area and you can stroll through the herb gardens, explore the glass houses or relax on some hammocks while watching the sunset.
The best part is definitely the view of Kobe City, the port and the sea - and you can have all that while sticking your feet into relaxing, hot water. Say hello to foot baths! Don't forget to pack a little towel.
Little side info: I love bunnies (you'll notice later, haha). So imagine how amazed I was when I learned 2023 is the year of the rabbit, and everyone released awesome, cute bunny
merch? Loving it. More Japan curiosities: Hello Kitty fire extinguishers. Be a fire fighter in style.
When you're in Japan, take the time and walk around, go through small alleys and look at the stores and signs. Promise, you'll always find interesting stuff.
Even at night there's a lot to see. The hills had some illuminated signs, there's a beautiful china town, and the port and sea look really impressive in the dark. It was very windy and cold, but
I like being near the sea.
The best part: They had some illumination event with lights and music. I really love the song, I could listen to it endlessly. Sadly I wasn't able to find the original anywhere...
Listen for yourself:
When in Kobe...
Obviously we visited the city of Kobe for the lush nature and the beautiful buildings, duh. Kobe Beef? Never heard of her- ... hahah, joking. It's my 5th time in Japan and I've never had Wagyu before. So I did some googling to find a place with a free space for the next day. The website was completely in Japanese, so I struggled with the powers of google translate to book a spot for a course meal.
The next day we headed toward the location, but it still seemed to be closed. So we idled in front of the shop for a while - not realizing the chef was already inside and moved the closed-sign away while we weren't looking. Oh well. The restaurant was more like a tiny bar with seatings right in front of the grill. The Kobe Beef experience is reservation only, so we were the only customers at this time slot. The chef didn't speak any English and I was too shy to use google translate to make a little bit of small talk, so there was a bit of awkward silence.
We were presented with various delicious tiny dishes of food: Kobe Beef Sashimi with sea urchin (I once had really disgusting sea urchin, but this one was
good!), Beef Sushi and some soup/stew dish. I really liked all of them. Eating raw meat or eggs took a little bit of getting used to, but once I managed to turn off my brain
and just enjoy the taste, they're really delicious!
Though...not so much for my friend. He doesn't eat raw food, so when the chef presented the beef sashimi, we kindly asked him to grill it a tiny little bit for my friend. I could literally see his heart breaking, hahaha... I'm sorry! One dish had a tiny raw egg coming with it. When the chef turned around to get the next ingredients, my friend quickly chucked the egg into my bowl, hahaha. Me coming to the rescue.
Anyway, next came the highlight part of the course meal: The Kobe Beef Steak.
He grilled it right in front of us and we got to eat the tiny bits just fresh off the grill. And let me tell you, it was delicious. Just a little bit of salt was the perfect seasoning, the meat was amazingly delicious by itself. A few vegetables and mushrooms got grilled along, and they were delicious as well.
The whole set meal was around 120 Euro and in my opinion totally worth the experience. But if you're a picky eater, you should better make sure to not pick a course meal with raw parts, hehe.
Kobe Photo Highlights
With our bellies full, we headed south: Boarding the Shinkansen towards Kagoshima! Stay tuned
What did you think? Leave a comment! ♥️