My Journey of 368 days (+ The Ultimate Guide for WK 📖 )

Oh, I’ve been there too. Entries are limited each day, and you need to apply at least a month ahead of time by snail mail. Also, at 3000 yen, it’s the single most expensive temple in all Kyoto. So no, I wouldn’t really say it’s packed with tourists, though since you’re all allowed into the gardens at the same time, you do travel in a peloton a bit.

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Sorry for taking so long, I took a weekend trip.

I’m finishing my sixth year in Japan.
1 year Japanese school, 4 years college and then working from this year.


No worries, we all have a life, I’d assume. :wink: thank you for replying!

Wow, 6 years, and you did college here! Did you do Japanese courses?

I was a regular student, so most of my credits were in Japanese, yes.
But since my major was international relations, we naturally had several professors who would teach in English, so maybe something like 70/30 Jap/Eng?

For my graduation thesis I cheated and wrote it in English. Not that my English is great, but my Japanese professor’s English was worse, so he couldn’t be very picky checking it. =X


This works and blew my mind. Now I can focus on so much more and still level up in a timely manner I was leveling up like a month and half each level ugh now 10 days still going to aim for 7 days for next level Thanks for the guide! You rock! Thanks again!

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Hi! It took me a while to come back, but here I am :grin:

:trophy: The number one thing that helped me on this guide was by far the chapter with the scripts, because it allowed me to customise WK in a way I didn’t even think it was possible.

A special mention goes to the :tada: Statistics site:tada:. I don’t remember if you specifically talked about it or you just mentioned it in passing, but it’s a tremendous tool to keep my motivation high. As a non-beginner it can be quite frustrating not to be able to skip anything or at least unblock more elements at once. So whenever I feel like I’m wasting my time, I just open the stats and look at all those Kanji I still have to make acquaintance with, and I get a little excited because I know that if I just keep going, I will eventually get to them.

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Yeah, I’ll need to look into it further, I have some ideas: NHK easy, trying to read some very simple manga (although I actually dont have a clue on where to find that online), some children stories or folktales etc, this place has some good ideas.
btw this book seems like a good option for grammar, at least for my lowly level. Might snag it

oh I know that drill, ahah cheers

Agreed, since they only allow a limited number of people it was not crowded and it will definitely be the most expensive. They are super strict on timing as well, if you don’t make it and the gates are locked you’re out of luck. I had to use JTB to get a letter over to them at the time, JTB was super helpful to make it happen.

We hit over a dozen temples/shrines, the Inari Shrine, and Golden temple Kinkaku-ji, were by far the most crowded. Kinkaku-ji was shoulder to shoulder. Inari was a lot of people but large enough grounds to sustain it. Inari also has a great climb up with Torii gates and some stellar street-side food vendors.


hey can you update the fast and slow level list, it may become our top priority in your guide
Can I ask some questions? I see you have the fastest route (3 days 10 hours) in the last level and 7 hours in the other
1/ So you just DO your review when it comes? Like have a watch to alarm or sitting all day before the computer, or you have any trick in counting time to do the review. In my case, I’m retiring so I can have all my spare time in wanikani, but maybe else can’t.
for instance, the first review comes after 2,4,8 … hours then you must do RIGHT AFTER it come out ? Or you wait and do it in a batch.
2/ about the vocabulary section, if I have 10 in lesson and 20 in review so total 30 ----> if it is fast level (3 days) then I need take 30/3 vocab each day??? or only 10/3 and I can do vocab in review section whenever I want?
Thank you

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So… I got to level 8 last Friday and this Friday I hit level 9. All I did was follow @jprspereira’s guide. It wasn’t even hard. As you can see I started this account and then didn’t touch it for a long time. Then I had some trouble staying with it around levels 5 and 6, then I got sick and fell off for 18 months. But even if you compare to the 3 levels I did okay at, 12-16 days. So on average it took me twice as long. I know it’s only been one week but even on my old account that got up to level 18 or so, I didn’t see this kind of speed for any of those levels. I am so thankful for this thread, I should be almost level 30 around my next birthday. I am looking forward to level 30 syndrome, that sounds like a nice problem to have. :joy:


Thank you so much for coming back :grin:

Perfect way of thinking. You’re going places my friend :sunglasses::+1:

It really depends on your style of learning (more active vs more passive). Do you want to be more independent and do thing your own way, or do you want to find a more strict program where you just follow along?

Because I would suggest you Bunpro for grammar, if you’re more into the active style of learning. I’d recommend you a textbook if you wanna follow a program, stick to it, and reach the goal. If you can do both, please do both ^^

One thing that not a lot of people might agree with me is that I feel like textbooks are in no way complete. You will always have to search somewhere else for more info. Even in those expensive ones. I do feel that you should look into the links that Bunpro suggests first. You’ll soon realize that it bases its suggestions on a couple of websites all the time. Those serve as a good substitute for a textbook, sometimes far more complete.

What’s your level of Japanese btw? Have you checked the Book Clubs on the forums? :grin: Reading something with other learners might help you get out of that “learning paralysis” :slight_smile:

I’m so sorry that I’ve taken this long to reply back. Really do. Appreciate you coming back here :slight_smile:

Huuuum… yeah, sounds fun but a little too messy for me to handle. We’ll see :grin: Thank you for the info!


No, you rock! :slight_smile:

Sorry that I took this long to reply back. How has it been since you left a message? Do feel more comfortable using Wanikani? :slight_smile:

Rightttt! You can totally change your WK’s experience in a matter of minutes with them! It’s insane the quality work that script creators have put on :slight_smile:

How much is it left for you to get them? :grin:

Yeah, just take WK as something fun and that helps you review content. This will strenghten your knowledge which will then help you learn new content better :slight_smile: Kanji does get a lot easier along the way, but extra reinforcement is never a bad thing :v:


There are people out there who’ll do all the admin stuff for you (though admittedly it costs almost as much as the temple entry does). I did it on my own, and didn’t completely stuff it up, so yeah.

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Guess this doesn’t apply anymore then? :grin:

It does sound like a good problem :grin: Hey, I’m just happy that this guide helped you clear some stuff up and that’s helping you move forward and become conversational, like you wish to :slight_smile: Let me know if I can help you in any other way :v:

Also, I apologize for taking some time to reply back. Things have been quite hectic lately.

Heeey! First of all, I’m so sorry that I’ve taken this long to reply back =/

I will update it as soon as I have time. I’m actually thinking of writing a new section on the Guide related to managing intensity so that one does not burn out. I’ll probably do both at the same time if you don’t mind :slight_smile:

I usually only care about the 4h and the 8h intervals. Those are really the most important ones in terms of memory consolidation and to allow you to build that sweet 12h/24h schedule I described in my guide :slight_smile: I don’t really use a alarm clock, but when I do lessons, I do check the time I’m doing them. For example, if I did 10 lessons between 09:20am and 09:45am, I’ll know that the clock will round those reviews to 9am and now I just need to add 4h to it (1pm). Another (maybe easier) way to check the time those reviews will come is by using the Ultimate Timeline. The Apprentice items will show up in the Timeline as pink. You’ll easily be able to identify those that correspond to the lessons of that day :slight_smile:

Don’t overthink it. Are you available and willing to do them? Then by all means, go for it. No need to wait for a bunch of 50+ reviews to accumulate. Eventually, experience will help you manage your reviews better, but for now follow your instinct :slight_smile:

For the reviews that correspond to the items learned that day, I try to follow the 4/8h intervals, yes. That doesn’t mean that not following them once in a while will hurt you. Not at all :slight_smile: I sometimes do 5h for the 1st and 10h for the 2nd one because I’m focused on other things.

Those splits I mentioned in my Guide are exclusively for vocabulary lessons. The goal is so that you don’t overdo in one day (too much new knowledge in 1 day reduces retention), but also that you’re able to do all the work WK makes available for you in time (no leaving content from previous levels behind).


This is how you should think :slight_smile: Available lessons/days left to new unlocking of items (by leveling up/by guruing the radicals).

Vocab should be reviewed whenever it’s available/you’re free. The most important items to review are those which SRS intervals are the 4 and 8h, of course.

Hope that helped you :grin:

I’ll take that into consideration. As always, super useful. Thanks :grin::v::heart:


So I had a question about the pacing and when review come up for normal levels.
Using the times you used in the guide, let’s say I hit a new level and start my radical, kanji and vocab lessons at 9AM. Then I’ll have my 4h review at 1PM, and my 8h review at 9PM that day. then in 24h I’ll have my apprentice 4 review at 9PM, and 48h after that, I’ll get my guru 1 review at 9PM.

My question is, if I followed that timeline above, I would have my second set of kanji release at 9PM. If I did those lessons right then, my 4h review would come up at 1AM when I should be sleeping. Which is awkward. Just wondering how you handled this yourself, since your logs show that you were consistently leveling every seven days flat.

Thanks for the guide @jprspereira it’s been a very interesting read and very helpful for my Kanji studies.

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Notice what I wrote on Chapter 4:


The waiting time for Apprentice 3 and 4 are actually not 24 nor 48h, but 23 and 47h, respectively. My explanation was towards the 24h schedule for the sake of simplification.

What this means is that you’ll actually have this:

  • Lesson at 9am.
  • Apprentice 1 at 1pm of Day 1.
  • Apprentice 2 at 9pm of Day 1.
  • Apprentice 3 at 8pm of Day 2. (-1h)
  • Apprentice 4 at 7pm of Day 4. (-1h)

Total time: 3 days and 10 hours.

This means that you’d be actually able to do the unlocked lessons at 7pm and Apprentice 1 showing up at 11pm.

In every cycle of a level (each level has 2 cycles), you have a 2h leeway to manage your lessons/reviews. The fastest speed for a normal level is actually 6d and 20h (2x2h per cycle), but the target should be 7d for the sake of maintaining the regular schedule. If one was to do 6d20h levels, that person would end up needing to wake up during the night for lessons/reviews.

Mind you, adapting to your routine outside of WK is also important. That’s why you’ll see 7d1h levels and 6d23h levels throughout my progress. That was me adapting to external situations :slight_smile:

Hope I was clear enough :grin:


Yep makes perfect sense. I was thinking I would just always try to hit reviews at (for me) 8am, 12pm, and 8pm, but I think I’ll try to make use of the 23h and 47h windows as you’ve outlined so I can keep my reviews going smoothly, thanks!

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Thanks a lot for making this guide it was super helpful.

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Really glad it was useful to you :slight_smile: Let me know if I can help you in any other way.


Thanks I appreciate it! I checked out your instagram. I was thinking about getting into some body weight training. I think it will help my climbing. Do you have any favorite resources that you used to get started?

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