Two Winged Spoons: A Travelogue

Travel, Food, Culture and Lifestyle

This article originally featured in the March 2021 issue of Connect.

Ketaki Katdare (Osaka) and Aniket More (Tokyo)

About
Travel being our PASSION, my partner and I have been taking baby steps in this nomadic world, exploring places around Japan and coming by some beautiful experiences that we wish to share via Two Winged Spoons, our travelogue. However, travel isn’t our sole purpose.

Two Winged Spoons is about love, seeing the world through different lenses, devouring scrumptious cuisines, and living a happy life. We both believe in chasing happiness and shunning the negativity and clutter of modern life. Life isn’t perfect for anyone, but having an optimistic attitude towards it just gives us so much time and energy to do the things we love.

We work very hard at our professional jobs to earn and save the money we choose to spend on travel. For the past year, we have spent large portions of our earnings on traveling while holding full-time corporate jobs. The only reason to put it out here is—“If we can do it, so can you!” People like to invest in big houses, cars, etc., but our priority at the moment is to travel and gain new experiences in life, learn about new cultures, make sure to design our life our way, and appreciate every moment of it because after all, it’s ONE LIFE—make it count!

So what’s in the bag?
Now that we have just stepped in the biz, we are aware that there is a lot of work to do.

To kickstart, we intend to share blogs about the places we have visited, tips on planning itineraries, guide books, scenic landscapes, and certainly some bummer experiences because, hey! No one usually wishes to talk about them, and life can’t always be perfect!

To give the gist, here’s a sneak peek of one of the best vacations we have had to date.

Niijima Island
That perfect getaway from Tōkyō

It isn’t every day that you get to wake up to the sea, especially if you are living in a bustling city like Tōkyō. Also, every once in a while, you need that break from your monotonous corporate life.

There might be plenty of beach locations covering this island country, but Niijima is different. You’ll find none of the luxuries of life on this offbeat island (not even a convenience store), and that’s exactly what makes this place special.

Long sandy beaches, towering white cliffs, and plenty of waves make Niijima a popular holiday spot and major surf destination. And it doesn’t stop here. Another reason Niijima is famous is its moai statues, which are dotted all over the island. Swim, surf, sunbathe, take a dip in a hot spring, or just ride a bicycle around (as the island is very small)—it has a great variety of options.

Yunohama Roten Onsen

Fun Fact: The Yunohama Roten Onsen is a mixed onsen (hot spring), free of cost, open 24/7, and you can enter wearing swimwear—something totally out of the ordinary for a Japanese onsen concept.

Getting there:
We would highly recommend at least a two- nights stay if you’re looking for a short weekend getaway from Tōkyō. You may either opt for a high-speed jet ferry, which takes about two and a half hours, or the larger passenger ships, which depart at night and take about eight to nine hours, if you wish to experience an overnight ship journey. Both options leave from Tōkyō Takeshiba Pier.

Things to do and beyond:
Some of our recommended spots are Habushiura Beach, Mamashita Beach, Ishiyama Observatory, and Yunohama Roten Onsen.

With almost no souls around, you can have a leisurely time at beaches, sipping on some drinks or just gazing at the ocean.

Fun Fact: The Yunohama Roten Onsen is a mixed onsen (hot spring), free of cost, open 24/7, and you can enter wearing swimwear—something totally out of the ordinary for a Japanese onsen concept.

Choosing a roof over your head:
Being a tiny island and sparsely populated, Niijima doesn’t offer any luxurious hotels. However, you can choose a nice hotel with an onsen or a simple guesthouse based on your preference.

Dining at Niijima:
FISH obviously must be on your menu here. We would definitely suggest a restaurant called “Sakae Sushi” if you are a sushi lover. One fish variety that we strongly recommend is kinmedai for a succulent fish experience.

We will soon be writing about plenty of such experiences and information, so do keep an eye on our website and follow us on our Instagram account.

 

Ani and Keto met in Japan during the year of the pandemic. Apart from battling their 9-5 corporate jobs, they share a common passion for traveling, and that’s what brought them together. Ever since they have been exploring various places around the country. They have now started Two Winged Spoons, their blog on Instagram with the handle @twowingedspoons and also a website. With this, their purpose is to share the experiences they come across on this journey and show that life is beautiful.