What’s in Chugoku? Vol 3. Okayama Prefecture (Part 1 of 2)

Okayama has so many charming places to visit that you will want more hours in a day to see it all. Of course, with Okayama's convenient location in the center of Western Japan, the experienced traveller can opt to take day trips to nearby prefectures with the shinkansen very easily. Historical & Nature Attractions to Visit  Okayama Castle a.k.a. The "Crow Castle" In...

What’s in Chugoku? Vol 2. Shimane Prefecture

The volume 2 of the Chugoku series is finally here! The Shimane Prefecture is known as the Land of Gods, mainly because of the holy shrines and important places. This place is highly recommended for history buffs and sightseers.  East Shimane Izumo Taisha Grand Shrine (出雲大社) This is one of the most important and ancient shrines in Japan located in Izumo City....

What’s in Chugoku? Vol. 1 Tottori Prefecture

Tottori Prefecture is one of the least populated prefectures in Japan. Surrounded by beautiful mountains and clear waters, it is a place that boasts an abundance of nature. Tottori City Tottori City is the capital of Tottori Prefecture. Due to its roots as a castle town, there are many historic sites dedicated to the samurai clans in the area. Tottori Castle Ruins Built...

OTABE: Kyogashi o-tabe kudasai!

O-tabe (おたべ) is a casual, Japanese way of saying "please eat this". In our recent March/April 2016 publication, we featured Otabe, a shop that sells delicious kyogashi (京菓子, Kyoto sweets) and we thought you just had to know more about them. According to Otabe, the secret to delicious kyogashi is koshihikari rice, Hokkaido red beans, and prized spring water from Uriwari. This...

10 Things to do in Kyoto

Kyoto is the glorious old capital of Japan that is rich in culture and tradition with an abundance of activities and sights, but here are some things you just can't miss! 1. Get decked out in Traditional Japanese wear This full yukata and kimono rental service not only rents out gorgeous pieces of traditional clothing, they also have a hair stylist,...

9 Mind-blowing Places in Kansai – Travelog #2: Beyond Kyoto

If you missed the first part on what to do in Kyoto, please see this post! For those who wish to take a day trip out from Kyoto or other cities in Kansai, here are some good options. Uji (宇治) Apart from being known for as a city that produces excellent green tea, Uji is also home to Murasaki Shikibu (紫式部), the author...

3 Must-See Places in Kyoto – Travelog #1: Kyoto

Gion (祇園) Summertime in Kyoto means you must definitely catch Gion Matsuri! Held for the entire month of July, the main attraction is Yamaboko Junkō  (山鉾巡行), which is a parade of various floats and people in fancy costumes. I was lucky to have caught both the former and latter parade! Amazingly good ice cream from Kyosendo, which offers vanilla, green tea and...
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