Kobe, Hold the Beef

For this week’s edition of Travel Tuesday, let’s spend a day in Kobe.  You may have heard of it, they have some pretty famous beef, I guess.

We started out the day on a quest for said beef, but did not actually end up having any.  We ate at a restaurant called Red Rock, which was pretty bomb, despite it not being that Kobe Beef™.

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Next we hit up Kobe’s Chinatown.  It was pretty cool to see, but we didn’t spend much time there as it was mostly food places and we had just eaten a lot of food.  I was particularly impressed by the whole chickens on display, and I imagine you would be able to choose for yourself which chicken you wanted to eat.

After Chinatown, we decided to check out a nice waterfall we had heard about from an ALT who lives in Hyogo Prefecture.  What the ALT did not tell us was that the waterfall was part of an hour long hike.  There’s a reason TLC wanted us not to chase waterfalls, and the reason is that you end up on an accidental hike in jeans that are not particularly easy to move around in.  But I love a good hike, so I went ahead with it anyway.

We started off near Sannomiya station, and the hike was near Kobe station, so we started out with a hike to the hike.  Which, in retrospect, seems counter-intuitive.  When we got to Kobe station, our ALT guide told us it was a “bit of a walk” to the waterfall–then proceeded to walk through the station.  Needless to say, I was confused.

The entrance to the hike, as it turns out, was right behind the station.  The hike was steep, and it was mostly stairs.  It was like leg day on crack.  It was about a twenty or so minute walk to Nunobiki waterfall.

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After the waterfall we could have turned back, but decided to keep going up.  There were several viewpoints and places to rest along the way, so all in all we would walk around 20 minutes or so and then stop to catch our breath.  It was necessary.  Did I mention the stairs?  They were no joke.  Towards the “top” (I put top in quotes because we didn’t actually go all the way up to the top…because the people I was with were afraid of a little mud) the steps became a little precarious and questionably safe, but we made it up okay.

At the “top,” which was actually the middle, there was an herb garden (which you have to pay to get into), and some places to sit and have lavender soft cream, which was delicious.

We did not know until this point that we could have taken the ropeway all the way up.  We ended up taking that down from here instead of going the rest of the way up.  The view was really nice on the way down.  I did take a video of the descent on my GoPro, but I haven’t really tried to edit videos yet, so you’ll have to stay tuned for that one.

After our accidental hike, we visited Kobe Port, which happened to be hosting an Indian Festival the day that we visited.  There were foreigners everywhere, definitely the most I’ve seen in one place since our last prefectural seminar.  There were booths selling food and cultural items, and there was even a dance performance.

The port itself is a really nice area to go just to hang out.  There’s also a few pretty big malls right around that area if you wanted to do some shopping.

Our last stop was Eggs and Things for dinner. Eggs and Things is not local to Kobe, but still good. It has a very American vibe, and if you order the pancakes you get a Leslie Knope approved amount of whipped cream.

All in all, Kobe was a great place to spend a day, even though we didn’t get to try their famous beef.  There are plenty of other things to do in Kobe which I didn’t have the chance to do, so hopefully I’ll be able to go back soon and take in more of Kobe.

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