Day 8: Washuzan Highland, New Reoma World, and a Speakeasy
Well, today was another two park day. And honestly turned out to be another surprise great day, even with rain coming down most of the day (only one of a couple days the whole trip with rain).Washuzan Highland:
After a short cab ride (we often had to take cabs once we hopped off the subway), we arrived. Before talking about the park...some notes about cabs in Japan: Generally, at the stations we needed them at, they were already lined up waiting for us in a very orderly fashion. Also, cabs are quite expensive (gas and cars are way pricier here). Just something to keep in mind. I believe I took a picture at some point for this report of the pricing that was on the back of the seat. But most taxi trips we took were 3000-5000 yen ($30-50) each way from the Subway. Something to factor in if you plan to visit. We split up into taxi groups of 3-4, which really helps to trim the cost.
Now, as far as Washuzan Highland goes..probably one of the least impressive of the parks we went to, but still had two great attractions we all enjoyed and the overall WTF feeling I had walking through the park makes this visit more than memorable. It is themed to Brazil (though I can't say how effectively). The park (as with most others) is built on a NOT flat plot of land. Tons of stairs everywhere and literally not a single guest in the entire park except for us. I'm sure the rain contributed, but from what someone told me on the trip, Japan doesn't really 'do' part-time employment. So the park stays open most of the year, even during the dead season to support the employees. They have 3 coasters in the park, though I'm not sure if the Jet Coaster or Ultra Twister are still operational at this point (they were both closed on our visit). The third is a Togo looper that has two trains (one stand-up and one backwards-facing). On busier days, they will run both at different times during the day. They were only operating the backwards train on our visit). The other noteworthy attraction is the sky-cycle, which as you will see is a harrowing, wobbly, insane, only-in-Japan kind of experience. Really, my two laps on this made the visit to the park worth it as it resulted in my second favorite picture of myself on the trip.
Story time. When I got off Star Jet, I heard some music coming from the bottom of the steps. I walked down to find a Samba group performing. There was a few instrumentalists and two dancers (from Brazil, I believe). They likely started performing before anyone from TPR (or anyone at all) was down there to watch/listen. The whole thing was bizarre to think about. If we hadn't been there, I truly got the impression that they would have still performed to no one. After the show (which was honestly really fun), the two instrumentalists hustled off stage and brought out an easel of sorts and started flipping through a history lesson on Brazil (presented in Japanese, naturally). They tried to get us to participate and had people attempt to pronounce certain words, and the whole thing was just amazing and bizarre. I truly felt horrible leaving before the show was over (but the entertainment was continuous throughout the day, it seemed). They didn't mind, though and were so grateful we were there. It warms my heart.New Reoma World
An Italian Theme Park. This place had loads of charm, a really kind of surprisingly good haunted walk-through, one of my favorite dark rides of the trip, some fun coasters (including a forceful mine train coaster, and a Space Mountain Knockoff), and really friendly staff (as would be a theme). I really enjoyed it here and was easily able to fill the time we had in the park with stuff. It is definitely out of the way, but it is a fun little park.
Upon approaching this smaller door, we were greeted by this sign. We walked in and the bar itself was really small. There were maybe 8 seats at the bar and a few tables, with a narrow walkway in the middle. If there were no seats, the bartender told new guests they would have to wait outside or move along. We took a seat and were told he did not have a cocktail menu (he apologized). He informed us that we would tell him what kind of flavors we liked and that he would make us a drink accordingly. I told him for my first drink that I wanted something sweet and also bitter. I think he asked me for my spirit of choice and gave me a few general flavor options. What came out was a glorious, glorious cocktail that I'll remember to this day. We hung around for a while and then ordered a second round. This time, I wanted something that had a 'tea-like' flavor to it (they had no tea). He worked some magic and out came another very different, very tasty drink. I tried everyone else's drink in my group and loved them, as well. The place was incredibly fascinating. The bartender spoke great English, aimed to please and even took a small swig of each drink in the shaker glass before serving (for science)! One time, he did that and actually did modify the drink. It seems like every cocktail is an adventure for him, making something a bit different to suit the taste of the guest. Cocktails ran 1400 yen (no tip), which I felt very fair for Osaka, given the experience we had. I can honestly put this experience in the top 5 for the trip, easily.
- Please read this. It will bring you joy. And with that, I'll leave you for now!
Last edited by Taylor Finn
on Tue Feb 26, 2019 6:18 pm.