10 Tips For Your First Japanese Holiday

Whether you’re a long-time Club member or a new face in the Wyndham family, you’ve got one thing in common – you love travelling.  From sun-soaked tropical vacays to inner-city expeditions, you’ve done it all.  You can’t wait for that moment when you step off the plane and into an exciting new world.  Strange experiences, different cultures, unfamiliar faces – it’s all part of the fun.  You’re an explorer.  You’re an adventurer.  You’re part of Club Wyndham.

Now think of Japan.  What do see?  Mount Fuji, its summit iced with pale snow, silhouetted against the horizon.  Pastel-pink sakura blossoms hanging heavy in the spring air.  The formidable legacy of the samurai.  The metropolitan vastness of Tokyo.

With its long, proud history and a host of unique traditions, this incredible country is nothing like anything you’ve experienced before.  Even for seasoned travellers, Japan’s distinctive culture is a shock to the system.  So, to prepare you for your first Honshū holiday, we’ve put together a list of ten handy tips to make your trip as awesome as possible.

  1. Don’t be afraid to try new things.

It’s Travelling 101, right?  Even if you love jumping outside your comfort zone, keep this one in the back of your mind during a trip to Japan.  Experiences like eating raw fish, getting stark-naked at a public onsen with strangers and watching monkeys swim in the snow can be intimidating for Westerners.  Make sure you plunge headlong into everything Japan has to offer, and don’t miss out just because it seems different (or even a little weird).

  1. Be polite and respectful.

Once again, this seems like a standard travelling tip, but Japan and the Japanese have an international reputation for being exceptionally well-mannered.  Blowing your nose in public, being loud on trains and wearing shoes on tatami mats are all frowned upon.  When you’re visiting attractions like temples and shrines, remember that they’re not just relics from the past – for many practitioners of Buddhism and Shintoism, they’re still deeply sacred sites, so follow the rules and be respectful.

  1. Don’t be offended if your tattoos get strange looks.

Although tattoos are pretty accepted in metropolitan areas thanks to high volumes of tourists, they’re less common in other parts of Japan, and, if you’ve got visible ink, you might be barred from onsen and other traditional places.  Why?  Historically, yakuza (Japanese mafia) received irezumi (hand-poked tattoos) body suits as a tribute to their status.  Tattoos and organised crime are inextricably linked in the general Japanese mind, so don’t be offended if you get some strange looks.

  1. Time your visit based on what you want to do.

Japan’s a highly seasonal country.  Winter activities like skiing aren’t available during summer, and many summer activities like hiking or swimming aren’t possible with snow.  Spring and autumn are the two most photogenic seasons – in spring, you’ll get to see the beautiful sakura blossoms, and, in autumn, the leaves of maples and other deciduous trees turn yellow, orange and red.

  1. Avoid peak season.

Japan is a small and densely-populated country, so it’s a good idea to avoid the Japanese school holidays.  The worst offender is the summer break, which generally ranges from 20 July to the end of August – if you try popular activities like climbing Mount Fuji during this period, you’ll end up locked in a person-to-person traffic jam.

  1. Avoid Western food.

There’s nothing wrong with Japan’s Western-style restaurants, but it’s pretty much a crime not to eat local in one of the world’s foodie capitals.  Please, stay away from MacDonald’s – check out a sashimi bar or an izakaya (saké pub) instead.  Udon and soba noodles, sushi, sashimi, gyoza, and tempura are just a few of Japan’s delicious offerings.

  1. Bring cash.

Surprise!  Cash is still king in most parts of Japan, so don’t step out without a tight wad of yen in your pocket.  Many places, especially in rural areas, won’t take card, so make sure that you withdraw enough to see you through the day.

  1. 7-Elevens are your friend.

7-Eleven convenience stores might seem like a last-ditch option for some late-night munchies if you’re a Westerner, but, in Japan, they’re 24-hour lifesavers.  If you’re missing some of your essentials, you’re hungry, or you feel like knocking back a few cups of saké, your local 7-Eleven is the place to visit.  Unlike American and Australian 7-Elevens, the Japanese renditions have pretty much everything you could need, including bento boxes, alcohol and toiletries.

  1. Learn how to use chopsticks.

You’ve probably encountered chopsticks at your local Asian restaurant, but a visit to Japan means it’s time to brush off your stick-skills and learn how to properly use these versatile utensils.  It’s also important to remember some etiquette: don’t point them at people, don’t rest them on the table, and don’t stick them in food.  The last one stems from the Japanese tradition of sticking chopsticks upright in food-offerings to the dead – it symbolises bringing death to the table, so definitely avoid doing it!

  1. Learn some Japanese.

This one’s applicable to any holiday in a foreign country.  English might be the most widely-spoken language in the world, but it definitely doesn’t hurt to read up on a few useful Japanese phrases.  Not only will it help you navigate areas that aren’t designed for tourists, it’ll also indicate that you’re making an effort to fit in, which is always appreciated by the locals.

 

And that’s it!  Remember these ten great tips, and you’ll be all set for your first Japanese holiday.  It’s time to start living your bucket-list– book an amazing Japanese experience with Club Wyndham today.

A luxuriously indulgent holiday with RCI

 

EXPERIENCE DUBAI

Mix the grandeur of the futuristic skyscrapers with the vast desolation of the Arabian sands, Dubai is one of the world’s most intriguing cities that is thoroughly modern yet historical all at the same time. If you enjoy living large and holidaying in extreme style, Dubai offers plenty to satisfy your wildest imagination.

 

DESERT SAFARI

Far from human habitation, the desert safari is brimming with life day and night. Early in the morning, take on an unforgettable hot air balloon ride as you float over the endless ocean of spectacular, barren sandscapes. In the afternoon, ride the desert and bump over steep sand dunes in range rovers through the Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve to spot the Arabian Oryx, Falcons or the Arabian Wildcats.

 

 

DINING IN DUBAI

Embark on a gastronomy journey as you feast your way through the city, better known for its vibrant food scene and exotic dining experiences. No matter you are looking for homely, authentic Emirati cuisines or world-class, international menus curated by top Michelin-starred chefs, Dubai has it all. If you like to dine with a view, be sure to stop by Pierchic, the upscale restaurant with a private pier or Nathan Outlaw at Al Mahara for a unique dining-in-an-aquarium experience. For a truly romantic night, join the Dhow Cruise Dinner Dubai Creek and enjoy international buffet as you cruise past the old and new architectures of Dubai.

 

 

 

SHOPPING EXTRAVAGANZA

Get your credit cards ready because there’s no way you’re leaving Dubai empty handed. Measuring 13 million square feet (or the size of 50 football fields), The Dubai Mall houses more than 1,200 stores, 200 restaurants, and ample entertainment outlets. Other than the Dubai Mall, the Mall of Emirates offers plenty of options with more than 630 retail outlets, 250 flagship stores, 80 luxury stores, and over 100 restaurants. If you fancy good bargains, drop by the Dubai Outlet Mall – home to over 200 stores – where you’ll find luxury items sold at heavily discounted prices. Haggle your way through the charmingly historic, Old Dubai, Bur Dubai, and Deira for the cheapest gold jewelry, luscious textiles, traditional arab garb, perfumes, exotic herbs and spices, and souvenirs.

 

CAMELS AND CAMPS

Hop onto the back of a camel to experience the life of the Bedouin nomads back in time. After a bumpy good time, enjoy the cool evening breeze as the sun sets to a palette of mauves and indigos. No desert safari tour is completed without a visit to the camps where you’ll enjoy a traditional Emirati feast under the stars. Be entertained by the belly dancers, Arabian fire shows or go in awe of the led Tanoura dance.

 

 

GOLDEN TULIP MEDIA HOTEL

Located 7 minutes away from the metro station, the Golden Tulip Media Hotel is the perfect place to visit all major attractions such as the Dubai Mall, Burj Khalifa, Jumeira Beach and the Mall of the Emirates. Facilities include in-house restaurants, 24 hours supermarket, swimming pool, fitness center, spa, and steam room. Hop on the free shuttle services that bring you to the beaches and shopping malls or get on board the readily available Taxis to begin your city discovery.

 

 

 

 

TO BOOK, PHONE:

(INDONESIA) 007 803 651 0043
(THAILAND) 1800 011 300
(MALAYSIA) 1800 806 753
(PHILIPPINES) 1800 165 10797
(CHINA) 400 920 0896
(SINGAPORE) 6697 7277 (Non- ITFS)

A Royal Treat with Down to Earth Care

We seldom travel. After reading the many travellers’ reviews plus the incessant promotion from Wyndham prompted us to try out to see for ourselves how good they really are. We have chosen Wyndham Grand Phuket Kalim Bay. We were not disappointed as the place is out of this world and we were treated on arrival like royals till the minute we left. The resort is built on the mountain facing the Kamala beach right next to the very popular tourist spot of Patong Beach. Beautiful view of the sea, tranquil & peaceful. (Tip for visitors – Block K rooms has the best ocean view).

 

 

The services were down to earth. Staff could never do enough to make sure your rooms are absolutely comfortable and clean with constant supply of towels! They will go the extra mile to look after us…like Ake, Su are so amazing, Matt the bar supervisor and of course Van the manager was the perfect host, always ready to share with us the many amenities of the resort. And then food, oh wondrous food. The food here is so diverse from different cultures….and plenty. I enjoyed the authentic spicy Thai food the most, the fresh seafood platter with special herb only Thai chef can make. The International buffet bf, dim sum and the guava juice is my favourite!

 

 

 

The resort may be away from the hustle bustle but still enables a wonderful travel to centre of Phuket to have a good time. Patong Beach is nearby to submerge yourself in the sea, parasailing, jet skiing or just laze under the sun. Not to mention the numerous stores nearby that caters for everybody shopping needs. The tuk-tuk ride is a must try if you haven’t, or else just hop onto a cab for a more adventurest island excursion and end with the Simon Cabaret Show (watch out for The Lady Boys!)

We love our stay here albeit a bit short. The staffs make it extra special, we will recommend to anyone. Thank you all, you really live up to your vision To Put The World On Vacation and a Hospitality With a Heart.

 

 

 

Mr Yong Cho Teo

Club Wyndham Asia Member

BALI – “CAN’T WAIT TO EXPERIENCE AND EXPLORE ANOTHER PLACE WITH WYNDHAM”

bali - cultural showThis is my first trip since joining the Club Wyndham Asia and my first trip to Bali also. As the first-timer enjoy the club member’s benefit, my husband and I decided to share the great moments with 2 kids, mother and 3 aunties.

We choose to experience Bali and stay at Ramada Encore Bali located at Seminyak. We love Ramada Encore Bali because the staff is very friendly and helpful, the breakfast is yummy and the pool is awesome. Bali has so much to offer and every place is amazingly unique in its own way. With 5 days stayed, we explore the beach, see dolphins jumping from the sea with sunrise view, enjoy the scenery of paddy field and volcano, experience the cultural show and etc.

Thank you Wyndham for the unforgettable experience not only to me but also to all of us. In fact, this is our first time having the holiday together. For my aunties, it were the new life record because it were the first time they are travelling on airplane and first time travelling to a foreign country. Being the member of Wyndham is exactly the right decision I’d made in life. Can’t wait to experience and explore another place with Wyndham.

 

Ramada Encore Bali Seminyak

bali

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Azreena

Club Wyndham Asia Members since March 2017

CHRISTMAS IN SINGAPORE

Our family went on a vacation on Singapore, that is where we planned to celebrate Christmas on. We stayed on Ramada Singapore by Wyndham at Zhongshan Park for five (5) days. When we first got to the hotel we were greeted by a very astonishing lobby staff, as we entered the hotel lobby we were surprised as how the lobby looked. We were also greeted with a very welcoming hotel staff, which showed us the mini bar and business office. One of the hotel staff  bring us to the money changer machine and teach how to convert PESO into SINGAPOREAN DOLLAR, he was very nice. Anyway, once we got to our rooms we were surprised on how the rooms looked, cleaned, luxurious rooms and worth the money we spent there. The beds were very comfy and the blankets and pillows are fragrant. The view outside the window was cool very relaxing to looked at the park. Internet connection is good which my kids first checked on it. My wife was very happy because she liked the TEA that was put on the table.

I am very thankful that in the ground floor of the hotel right next to the lobby is a FOOD COURT which is consisting of different types of food, all in one spot and more SHOPS. It is very convenient for us because we don’t have to go or walk very far just to eat. You can do shopping as well.

There is a pool in the third Floor, my two kids really amazed and enjoyed swimming because it was big and cleaned.

Overall, our stay in Ramada Singapore by Wyndham at Zhongshan Park is memorable. I never forget a friendly and very accommodating hotel staff. I would certainly recommend to my relatives and friends to stay in this  hotel, safe, you feel at home. My kids always reminds me to go back on this hotel soon.

 

Mr Jimmy Del Rosario

Club Wyndham Asia Member

Club Wyndham Kirra Beach Holiday

 

I must say that that was an absolutely awesome family holiday,we were in the Gold Coast area for the SLS Australian Pool Rescue Championships,being Club Wyndham Asia members we thought “why not look for a Wyndham here in Oz”.
My family and I have loved visiting Wyndham resorts around the world and we were surprised to find a beautiful resort at home.
We took the opportunity to race in the champs and spend some fun time visiting movie world, the escape hut (awesome), enjoyed some waves at Kirra, hired kayaks on the tweed and my wife and teen daughters maximizing their shopping opportunities, we had fantastic weather, amazing surf conditions and took the time to relax with a local coffee and gelato.
Local shops within walking distance provide a opportunity for an early morning coffee breakfast and news paper in the morning sun while the kids sleep.
Our apartment was quite spacious and room enough for us all to have our own space (good for a dad with teenage daughters).
If you are looking for a great home base to explore the tweed or the Gold Coast you will do well to find a more central resort, walking distance to some of the gold coasts best shopping including the massive “Kirra Surf”surf shop and a short drive to numerous surf outlets and mega factory outlet centres.
If you’re there for the water, you will do well to find better surf spots on the north east coast of Australia.
If you’re in the golds for the night life, you are a short cab from all the night life you can handle in the Gold Coast strip.
If you’re looking to hit the coast, take a look at Club Wyndham Kirra Beach, you will not be disappointed.

 

Mr Robert Anthony Seymour Dale

Club Wyndham Asia Member

Club Wyndham Seven Mile Beach Holiday

 

Every year without fail we have a family outing somewhere, the whole family Mom, dad, brother, sis in law, nephew & his fiancé and my son. This time we decided to go Tasmania as we’ve never been there before. So we started planning early as it was a big group. We needed a few rooms if we stayed in a hotel or a big house or a resort. So I realised that since I became a member with Club Wyndham Asia, I can utilise the rooms at this resorts. They have very nice self contained Chalets with 2 bedrooms, a kitchen, a hall and a dining room. We needed 2 chalets hence, this resort was perfect. We like resorts with a full working kitchen as we all love to cook. So we will have breakfast in our resort before we start out the day touring around Tasmania. There were 2 nights we even cooked dinner as we got some nice fish and steaks at Wollys. Its a great family time for all of us as can have dinner together and wines. We really loved the resort so much as its very comfortable, all the amenities are there like our own home, even the beds are heated. Wow!

The overall experience at the resort was great. The receptionist were all helpful and the other amenities like the pool and sauna was fantastic.  My whole family was so happy and really enjoyed our stay at Club Wyndham Seven Mile Beach. I would recommend this resort to everyone going to Tasmania as its a fantastic place -5 Stars and its also located near the airport and not far from the city,  a short walk from the sea and very peaceful.  Will plan the next family holiday in a Club Wyndham Asia resort for sure. So glad I joined the Club.

Mr Kah Soon Chew

Club Wyndham Asia Member

FAMILY HOLIDAY IN MELBOURNE

Spent a wonderful week in Melbourne with my family of 9 including 3 children. The accommodation is centrally located in the heart of town and more importantly a short walk to Queen Victoria Market (an ideal place to park our vehicle overnight). It is never easy to plan accommodation for such a big travel group, especially with children on board. However, I managed to secure huge apartments which are near to one another (on the same level) and this vicinity helps to ease much on my logistics. We all had fun in Melbourne as well as a 2 nights in Philip Island for Penguins watching. The children love it!

 

 

Mr Boon Wee Ong

Club Wyndham Asia Member