These Places in Japan Can Help You Move On from Your Ex
There's no easy way, but there are places to go.
There is no immediate cure to heartbreak, but there are things you can do to help yourself recover.
It isn’t the end of the world. On the contrary, exploring the world might actually speed up your healing process—travel. The change of scenery and new discoveries will let you appreciate things beyond your failed relationship, and Japan is one scenic and extraordinary place to start your healing journey. Here, we’ve listed down places you can visit in Japan as you go through the stages of heartbreak.
The first thing you need to get used to after a breakup is living life and doing things on your own. When you’re still in denial, you need a bit of peace and quiet to clear your mind, sort out your feelings, and convince yourself that life is bearable—no, great—even without your ex. Such a feat is a mountain to climb.
While a spectacular view of Mt. Fuji should lift your spirits, it may not be enough to cure a broken heart. Try harder. If you’ve gone to Yamanashi to see Mt. Fuji, you might as well engage in other de-stressing activities.
Fuefukigawa Fruit Park
Aside from being known for Mt. Fuji, Yamanashi is also popular for farms where you can pick fresh fruits like grapes, peaches, plums, cherries and blueberries—and taste them right after picking! The climate in the region is perfect for planting, so you’re assured that the fruits will be sugary-sweet. At Fuefukigawa Fruit Park, there is a scenic garden landscape which—if you’re lucky—should be bright pink and lush with peach blossoms. Spending a few hours here can help you see that there are still many things for you to be thankful for.
After fruit-picking and taking gram-worthy photos for your feed, take time to relax and pamper yourself—go to an onsen. Like other hot springs around the country, Hottarakashi Onsen will give you the R&R you so badly need as well as an unspoiled view of Mt. Fuji and the Kofu Basin—quite possibly one of the most breathtaking landscapes you’ll ever see. Having “Me” time doesn’t just help you rediscover yourself, but also reminds you to appreciate your own company.
Soon enough, you’ll feel resentment and anger toward your ex. You’ll need to release all that energy. Unless you have a real, physiological, heart condition, go ahead and ride Fuji-Q Highland’s Do Dodonpa—the world’s fastest accelerating roller coaster. The Do Dodonpa boasts of a loop that’s 39.7 meters in size, and a maximum speed of 180 km/1.8 seconds. It should have you screaming your head off—and channeling all that anger—in no time.
If you need more than an adrenaline-pumped ride to get all that steam off your system and you’re the outdoorsy type, take a walking tour. Kamikochi is a remote mountainous valley in the Nagano Prefecture. Known as the jewel of the Japanese Alps, it offers a variety of scenic locations that you can reach on foot, such as the Weston Monument, the Tashiro and Taisho Lakes, Takezawa Mars, and Myojin Pond. Sometimes the walk from one location to the next could take hours. If you don’t burn all that energy after your hike, we don’t know what will.
Shibuya, Akihabara, Harajuku, or Ochanomizu
At some point after the breakup, you’ll find yourself bargaining: seeking ways or reasons to get back with your ex. But you may also come to realize that it isn’t worth it. Don’t settle.There are other “bargains” you’d be better off pursuing—get some retail therapy.
You’ll be happy to learn that Japanese skin care and beauty products that normally cost a fortune in Manila are actually cheaper in Japan. You should find everything you’d want to hoard in any of the shops and department stores in Shinjuku.
If you want to shop for electronics, however—or if you’re looking to add to your otaku collection—Akihabara is the place to go. Harajuku, on the other hand, has stuff for anyone with an offbeat fashion sense, whereas Ochanomizu is a haven for musicians looking to purchase instruments.
You may also want to check out specialty shops in other areas that you probably won’t find elsewhere, such as the FLEAMART in Fukuoka, this antique shop in Sapporo, and this industrial home store in Nagoya.
Broken-hearted people have the tendency to feel depressed, and this is why you need to work harder to shake yourself out of it. Keep yourself entertained. Go and have fun with your friends in any of the following places:
Disneyland is known as “The Happiest Place on Earth.” Tokyo DisneySea takes that same brand of happiness and puts it in a world so different from any other Disney theme park there is. Tokyo DisneySea has seven themed lands, from the Italian Coast where you can ride a gondola, to the American Waterfront where you can board an elevated electric trolley.
Universal Studios Japan
Movie buffs love Universal Studios Japan. The themed attractions transport you to the worlds depicted in your favorite blockbusters, such as Harry Potter, Jurassic World, and Transformers, among others.
Yokohama Chocolate Factory and Museum
Chocolate is a proven mood-enhancer, and not only because it tastes good. It contains phenylethylamine, the same chemical our brains create when we fall in love. So, as long as there’s chocolate, you can have that same warm, comforting feeling, even without an SO.
At the Yokohama Chocolate Factory and Museum, not only do you get to try sweet and delicious ready-made concoctions—you also get to create your own. And since chocolate can actually make you feel good when consumed in reasonable quantities, it’ll be as if you were designing your own happiness. Sweet!
Asakusa Shrine, Sensoji Temple, and Tokyo Skytree
If you’ve gone through denial, anger, bargaining, and depression, you may be on your way to the next stage of heartbreak: acceptance. When this happens, fresh perspective and clarity will come in handy.
There’s something about Asakusa that makes it comforting and peaceful, even at night. Unlike Shibuya or Shinjuku where everyone seems to be in a hurry, Asakusa gives off a more relaxing vibe. Here, new and old worlds collide, giving us a glimpse into both modern Tokyo and Japan from decades ago.
You might as well visit Asakusa’s famous landmarks: the Sensoji Temple and Asakusa Shrine for some meditation; and the Tokyo Skytree for the view, and perhaps a bit of introspection.
Cap your day off with a cup of joe or a cocktail at a cafe or bar within the vicinity. Take a sip, grab a bite, watch the world pass you by, and celebrate your newfound freedom.
Photo courtesy of iStock.