Experience · Food · Travel

Day 4 – Fukuoka (Hakata Ichiban Ramen – Daimyo Catholic Church – Fukuoka Tower – Omurice)

As the result of yesterday’s trip to Beppu, we woke up really late today. We were really tired. Taking it easy on our morning… didn’t even have breakfast.

It’s been 4 days in Fukuoka and we haven’t eaten any ramen! Fukuoka is famous for its Hakata style Ramen. A very thick pork broth used for this noodle soup. Time to have brunch at ramen place then!

We were told by Pris’s friend that there is a ramen street on 2nd floor of Ekinaka Hakata Shopping mall. And the recommended ramen shop is Shin-shin. We arrived at ramen street at 11 am and were heading to shin-shin ramen when I saw a long queue in front of it! Desperately wanted some food, we walked around to find an interesting ramen shop. After walking one full block, we found one.

Hakata Ekinaka Shopping Ramen Street
Ramen Street
Ramen street map Ekinaka Hakata Shopping mall
Ramen street map

 

Hakata Ichiban Ramen. There was no queue in front of it but somehow I was interested in this shop. Maybe because I saw a lot of signatures on the wall 😀 Looks like some celebrities coming to eat in this restaurant and left their signature. Before entering the restaurant, we needed to buy meal ticket from the machine first. All of them in Japanese but there were some that are in Roman alphabet so we could read it. I picked ramen karaniku-miso. It was 750 yen.

Hakata Ichiban Ramen Menu
Hakata Ichiban Ramen Menu
Hakata Ichiban Ramen Restaurant
Hakata Ichiban Ramen Restaurant

Put in the money, clicked on the menu I want then I got the meal ticket. We gave meal ticket to the lady who ushered us to our seat. The place is small but quite packed even though there was no queue outside. Looking closer to the place, I was thinking we picked the right restaurant. The people seemed to enjoy their food. Some even asked for another portion. There were more signatures on the wall in front of us.

Hakata Ichiban Ramen Restaurant

The noodle came and at first didn’t look special. Just a normal white pork bone soup. I mixed the karamiso with everything and tasted it. O.M.G. it was very delicious. No wonder Hakata-styled ramen is very famous. Ho Chi Minh has a good ramen place as well called Ramen Danbo. And I heard they also from Hakata. I think these 2 ramens are on par.

Karamiso Ramen Hakata Ichiban
Karamiso Ramen

With happy tummy, we continued our adventure. We went downstairs to 1st floor and I saw the sign “Souvenir Street” Uh-Oh.. Dangerous! We both like shopping. First thing first, supermarket. Local supermarket is a must visit for me. We spent the time quite long there, looking for some stuff for us and for our family.

In front of the supermarket, there are small shops so we also visited them. Found a casual long dress for 1280 yen. Not bad eh. And the shopping continued… the souvenir street was dangerous for us indeed ^^;

We ended up going back to the apartment to store our stuff first. We planned to go to Tenjin Station then to church. It was not convenient to bring all those stuff. We rested for a bit, charging our phones and ready to go.

To go to Tenjin Station from Hakata Station, we can take bus or train, but somehow Google Map only suggested train. So train it is! We needed to take Kuko Line, a subway line but we couldn’t find the machine to buy the ticket. Apparently, we had to go to basement first by following the sign ” Kuko Line ” then buy the ticket from the machine there. First time in their subway line. We proceed to entrance after got lost to another exit somehow ( I blamed Pris for this, but I was at fault for following her and didn’t check carefully xD). Line 2 is for Tenjin Station.

Subway Ticket Fukuoka
Subway Ticket

Tenjin Station is a huge station with soooo many exits. We checked on map and couldn’t decide which one should we take to reach the church so we followed Google map suggestion, which was Exit 4. After we got out, we turned to the right direction and followed the street (we actually got lost again and this time because of me lol. I followed Google map direction then it turned out the GPS was not working properly.. oh well).

Cheeza by Glico

We stopped by at family mart and bought something to eat in case we hungry later. I found cheeza!! My friend told me to try it because it is yummy. And it really does! I like it.

With Pris in charge of direction, I just followed her and taking some photos on the way. We knew we have arrived when we saw a very tall tower with 3 big bells.

Street view Fukuoka

Daimyo Catholic Church Tower Fukuoka
Daimyo Catholic Church Tower

Daimyo Catholic Church. The english mass in this church starts at 4 pm so we still have time. We stopped by by the shop. They have many cute stuff. I planned to buy something for my mom but couldn’t find anything with Japanese characteristic. The shop is closed at 5 pm so if you want to buy something, better buy it before the mass started.

Lady Mary statue Daimyo Catholic Church Fukuoka

 

The mass was finished pretty fast, less than an hour. Then all of us got an honor to witness a baptism ceremony for an African baby. Such an amazing moment!

I couldn’t take photos of this church because it is not allowed. The design is simple and it allows a lot of lights coming in from transparent roof on certain part. We went out of the church and took photos before departed to our next destination.

Daimyo Catholic Church Tower Fukuoka

Street view Fukuoka

Fukuoka Tower.

Pris already searched for the bus to take to go to Fukuoka Tower from Daimyo Church. Unfortunately, it changed. By the time we arrived at the bus stop, Google map told us to go to another bus stop! We had no other option than following the suggestion. After about 10 mins of walking, we arrived at designated bus stop, then we took bus number W1 to go to Fukuoka Tower. Our destination was the last stop of this bus, and it stopped directly in front of a small Shopping Center.

Taken from our bus to Fukuoka Tower

Off the bus, we followed the sign to Fukuoka Tower. At this area, we could visit Momochi Seaside Park, Robosquare, and Fukuoka Museum. I was a bit lazy to join Pris to the tower because I have been to another tower in another city as well and it was cloudy when we were there. The sky was gray. In the end, I joined her.

Fukuoka Tower
Fukuoka Tower

Fukuoka Tower Ticket and Leaflets

The security guard asked us to buy the ticket at the counter. The price for ticket was 800 yen for adult, but since we are foreigner they gave 20% discount, so it was 640 yen per person. We queued for the elevator after we passed by the photo session area. A lady took our photo and we could buy it later when we got out if we like it. There is no toilet up there so if you need to go to toilet better do it on 1st floor. The elevator came, we got in and it went to the highest floor which is floor 123. Somehow they called it level 5.

The view was amazing despite the cloudy sky. It would have been better at night. The tower opens from 9.30 am to 10.00 pm. There was a 3D photo corner with a ramen bowl. Of course, we took photos there! 😀 You can check out the photo at Pris’s blog.

There is also an automatic tower shrine. 100 yen to play. Insert the coin then followed the instruction. At the end, you will get a number which indicates which box you should open. They have many language version in each box, so pick the one you can read. For me, I chose English.

Wishing Corner Fukuoka Tower
Wishing Corner Fukuoka Tower
Fukuoka Tower Shrine
Pris checking out the machine 😀
My luck result!
My luck result!

 

It didn’t take long to finish all the sightseeing there and we wanted to go back to 1st floor. To do so the lady asked us to go to 3rd floor. Pris was confused when they told us that. It is actually floor 121, which is 2 floors below.

When we arrived, the elevator just left so we had to queue for the next one. While waiting I looked at the vending machine and it was full of couple lock and ornament. Then I looked around and saw a bunch of locks on the rail. Oh! This is the floor for couple. I saw some couple there as well. When I walked to other side of the building, I found a corner with a giant heart made of flowers. There are 2 buttons on the left and right just behind that heart construction. I read the instructions.

Couple Locks Fukuoka Tower

Heart Gate at Fukuoka Tower 3rd floor

Apparently it is a heart gate for couple! The couple who wants to declare their love must walk through the heart while holding hands. Each of them has to reach the button on their side then later on a bell will ring!! Cute haha.

Back at first floor, we were offered the photo which was previously taken but we didn’t take it. It was bad photo haha. Sorry. There is a souvenir shop at 1st floor and a supermarket. There is also an artist corner where you can have your caricature made.

View from Fukuoka Tower

With a hungry tummy, we walked around the small shopping mall and didn’t find anything interesting. We decided to go back to Tenjin Station and find food there.

At Tenjin Station we headed to Tenjin Core. I saw they have restaurant and food court at 7th+ floor. Next to Tenjin Core is Vivre. After we got lost (again today), we found out that they are connected on certain level only. Since we didn’t know that area well, the safest way would be back to basement 2 and go to tenjin core 7th floor.

View from Fukuoka Tower

Tamago To Watashi.

I was interested in fried chicken while Pris wanted Omurice. If only they can be eaten at the same place… Okay, let’s try the omurice. I wasn’t interested because it doesn’t look like the omurice that I liked. So I made an offer, I would go there as long as we order the one with gravy lol; The portion looked big that’s why she wanted my help in case she couldn’t finish it.

There were several people eating there. The girl at next table was getting ready to eat her order. The portion was huge! We ordered the one I wanted. The portion for that one was smaller so I’m sure Pris actually can finish it alone. I couldn’t eat much if late already. Me and my weak tummy ~.~

It took a while until the dish came to our table. It looked so yummy. We shared the rice and egg. Omurice is one of traditional Japanese food where they put fried rice inside an omelette, and they usually pour gravy on top of it. I tried it. It was surprisingly yummy! (Or maybe because we were starving lol;). The gravy was very delicious. Good thing we didn’t order the one with creamy sauce. It might be good as well though, but I’m not a fan of creamy sauce.

Tamago to watashi omurice Fukuoka

We shared the dessert as well. It was delicious as well. I always thought Japanese people are good with dessert. Apparently, they do.

We finished eating by 8.45 pm and was excited to see the shop but we were unlucky! All of the shops were closed already. We were at elevator and we couldn’t press any floor except 1st floor 😦

Back at Hakata Station, we checked out the souvenir shops. Pris was looking for something to give to her parent by November 2017 but everything will expire soon. The average expiration date is August 2017. Some of them are November but it will be too tight. In a way it is good because that means they don’t use preservatives, I guess.

I bought a small pack of Menbei. I had no idea what that is but Pris said she saw many people bought it. So when we found a small pack of it, we bought it. I tried the green onion, while Pris bought the mayonnaise flavor. I’m guessing it is a kind of rice crackers but mixed with mentaiko. Rice cracker in Japanese is senbei. Maybe that is why this is called menbei. It does have mentaiko taste and a tiny bit spiciness.

 

We headed back to apartment and preparing for tomorrow.  Our trip to Nagasaki!!

Ciao!

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