The castle on lake Biwa: Hikone castle

Castles played an important role in Japans history, right up until the Meiji restoration and the modernisation of Japan. Sadly, through war, fires, and in the name of progress, many Japanese castles were destroyed. Today, although Japan boasts a large number of castle keeps, only 12 are those that have remained through the years. Hikone … Continue reading The castle on lake Biwa: Hikone castle

Chasing the cherry blossom: Getting the most out of sakura season in Japan!

Japan has an amazingly deferential relationship with nature, protecting the stunning environment that the islands of Japan home. One of the most intrinsically tied aspects of Japanese culture and nature is the cherry blossom phenomenon. If you have spent any time reading about, studying or visiting in Japan you will have seen the numerous references … Continue reading Chasing the cherry blossom: Getting the most out of sakura season in Japan!

Japan 2017: Day 17; Kawaguchi-ko and Narita-san

Our penultimate day in Japan and our final day in Yamanashi prefecture, a sad day. We awoke at 3am as we wanted to get to the north shore of Kawaguch-ko for sunrise, and without a car this walk is almost 2 miles, so we needed a quick start. It was the darkest morning we had … Continue reading Japan 2017: Day 17; Kawaguchi-ko and Narita-san

Japan 2017: Day 16; Kawaguchi-ko part 7; a cloudy day

So we awoke in our plush and fancy hotel for sunrise (as usual), we had bought breakfast with us as we were getting up around 3am to watch the sunrise. Sadly, the clouds from the day before had stayed and obscured the sunrise. As the clouds were obscuring the view we decided to explore the … Continue reading Japan 2017: Day 16; Kawaguchi-ko part 7; a cloudy day

Japan 2017: Day 14- Kawaguchi-ko pt 5; Tanuki-ko, waterfalls and sakura

Day 14 and another morning of now visible Fuji for sunrise, such a shame. We headed off at around 6am to get to Chureito Pagoda, as from the night before we knew it was all in full bloom. Although the flowers were on our side, the weather was not, and Fuji had a cloudy hat … Continue reading Japan 2017: Day 14- Kawaguchi-ko pt 5; Tanuki-ko, waterfalls and sakura

Japan 2017: Day 4 – Kyoto

On our fourth day in Japan we left the capital to continue our journey across Japan. Unfortunately we left it until the late afternoon to book our shinkansen tickets (using our JR pass) and so all the trains before 10 were fully booked! We did manage to get seats D and E as this is … Continue reading Japan 2017: Day 4 – Kyoto

Japan 2017- Itinerary

Here is a whistle stop tour through our itinerary of our most recent Japan trip, April 6-23 2017 Day 1: Tokyo- land Narita airport at 8:30am, travel to Ueno -> Asakusa, Sumida Park, Skytree, Chidorigafuchi in the evening Day 2: Tokyo - Ueno park for hanami, Shibuya for Genki Sushi, Shibuya park, Yoyogi park, Harajuku, … Continue reading Japan 2017- Itinerary

Japan 2017: Day 1 – Tokyo

For our three day stay in Tokyo we had chosen the popular area of Ueno as our base. From Ueno you have easy access from Narita airport, to shinkansen lines and to some major metro lines too. Plus the park and shopping area offers lots to do and see. We stayed at the Hotel Mystays … Continue reading Japan 2017: Day 1 – Tokyo