Sunset

Ukimi-do Hall

Photowalk to Ukimido Pavilion

While on my evening walk today, I dropped in at Ukimido Pavilion. Ukimido is a hexagonal gazebo over the Sagiike Pond in an aloof area of Nara Park. During summer evenings the floating pavilion is illuminated and it feels very relaxing sitting in the center of the pond surrounded by enchanting lights.

Ukimido is a hexagonal gazebo over the Sagiike Pond in Nara Park The park is generally crowded with tourists all through the day, but they usually stay away from this area The airy structure in the middle of the pond, surrounded by herds of deer, is one place where I can find peace at any time of the day I have been to Ukimido in Nara several times before but never during the evenings A few days before I came across a flier at the Nara Tourist Information Center that had a cover photo of the pavilion at night It looked so immersive that I couldn’t miss photographing this lovely gazebo
Tojinbo Cliffs

The thrilling Tojinbo Cliffs

Tojinbo Cliffs enjoy the dubious distinction of being the most loved suicide spot in Japan. For the wandering souls like me, the enthralling, rugged cliffs eroded by the raging waves of the Sea of Japan combined with the mesmerizing sunset is certainly more than likely to cause skipped heartbeats.

This day is special to me, today I can safely proclaim to be the second Indian to visit all 47 prefectures of Japan The first Indian to explore all 47 prefectures is obviously my wife Ranita san I had been wanting to visit the cliffs since the day I witnessed the thrilling cliffs of Sandanbeki in Wakayama My JR Pass was going to expire soon, so I made up my mind to drop in at Tojinbo today Tojinbo is a series of basaltic cliffs located within the Echizen-Kaga Quasi-National Park in Sakai, northern Fukui, bordering Ishikawa Pronounced Toujinbou, the rugged, precipitous cliffs stretch for over a kilometer, and is
Kobe Harbour

An evening at Kobe Harbour

Mani & I took the train to Kobe to check out the stunning illuminated harbor but we were sucked into the Bon Odori festivities happening on the same day. Food and beer stalls were everywhere. Surrounded by a sea of Kimono clad couples, on a small wooden stage, a group of lovely ladies were dancing to traditional music. It was great fun watching this 500-year-old tradition that is celebrated yearly to honor the spirits of their ancestors.

Mani & I dropped in at Kobe in Hyōgo Prefecture today, to spend the evening at the stunning Harbor but we were pleasantly surprised by the Bon Odori festival happening on the same day! We used the Kansai Thru Pass to travel to Kobe The Kansai Pass, also called Surutto Pass, allows unlimited travel on most train lines in the Kansai area, barring the JR trains You can also avail the JR Kansai Area Pass for the same However if you are touring mostly the Kansai area, the Surrutto Pass offers the better value as it covers a denser network in the
Osaka Castle

The stunning Osaka Castle

I love walking around Osaka Castle in the evenings. The castle was built by Toyotomi Hideyoshi, who ruled Japan in the latter half of the 16th century. The stone walls and moats surround the castle separating it from the bustling city. As dusk sets in, the sodium lamps light up the pathways surrounding the castle. The weeping sakura leaves along the wide moat briskly sway in the wind and the castle itself looks like a fantasy structure from the mythical age of dragons.

I dropped in at Osaka today to capture the stunning Osaka Castle in the evening light Osaka, Chūō-ku is the second largest metropolis of Japan It’s a bustling city with over 19 million inhabitants The city is well-connected by the subway During my first few days in Osaka, I used to feel very lost making my way through the confusing subway But I have made progress in the last few months and now am able to understand the routes better We started from Nara after lunch Nara to Osaka Castle We reached the Tembabashi Station at about 4 pm In my opinion its the easiest route to the Castle
Aomori Bay

A magical sunset in Aomori

We went for a stroll along the Aomori bay at dusk. As the sun gradually sunk into the Japan Sea, we were treated to a magical sunset. There is nothing more enchanting or enticing as Mother Nature. So just stop whatever you are doing. Leave the desk, couch or whatever and go out, and witness the golden moments that are passing you by.

There are days and there are Days Today was one such day of days or more realistically, evening We were treated to one of the most memorable sunsets of our lives at Aomori Bay It was 430 pm by the time we arrived back to Aomori Station from our somewhat educational trip to the ruins of Sannai-Maruyama JR Aomori Station We walked back to the APA Hotel where we were staying for the duration of our trip in Aomori We got refreshed and then ventured out for a walk along Aomori Bay Aomori City Aomori is the northernmost prefecture of
Tsuruga Castle

The Tsuruga Castle

We take a walk to the Tsuruga Castle in Aizu Wakamatsu, a city where the influences of samurai remain strong even today. The five storied impregnable fortress and castle tower that stands today is a replica reconstructed in 1965, based on photographs and historical documents of the preceding Kurokawa Castle, built in 1384.

We take a walk to the Tsuruga Castle in Aizu Wakamatsu, a city where the influences of samurai remain strong even today The five storied impregnable fortress and castle tower that stands today is a replica reconstructed in 1965, based on photographs and historical documents of the preceding Kurokawa Castle, built in 1384 Catching the train to Aizu-wakamatsu Catching the Rapid Local to Aizu-Wakamatsu Statue of young Byakkutai warriors in front of Aizu-wakamatsu station Statue of young Byakkutai warriors in front of Aizu-wakamatsu station Akabeko, the legendary cow from the Aizu region of Japan Akabeko, the legendary cow from the Aizu region of Japan After dropping our
Sakurajima

The sleeping SakuraJima

Today we took a bus to the Kagoshima pier to witness the mighty Sakurajima. Sakurajima is one of Japan’s most active volcanoes and the symbol of Kagoshima. Approximately 10 billion tons of lava has flowed out over the years. Its frequent lava flows have resulted in the former island to be connected with the Osumi Peninsula.

Today we took a bus to the Kagoshima pier to witness the mighty Sakurajima Sakurajima is one of Japan’s most active volcanoes and the symbol of Kagoshima Approximately 10 billion tons of lava has flowed out over the years Its frequent lava flows have resulted in the former island to be connected with the Osumi Peninsula
Engetsu Island

Eye of Engetsu

Engetsu Island is a sandstone rock in the midst of the sea, popular for its remarkable sunset view. The almost perfect circle in the center of the island is enchanting to see as the sun passes from inside the circular arch.

This is a three-part story which began at dawn, with me traveling all the way from Nara to Wakayama In Wakayama, Sandanbaki Cliffs wes the first place I visited After spending a couple of hours at the cliffs I walked down to the lovely Shirahama beach The bright morning had grown into a lovely afternoon I was in the mood for a long walk, so I left the white sands of Shirahama Beach and started my walk towards Engetsu Island Engetsu Island is a small white sandstone island just off Shirahama’s coast in Wakayama Prefecture From the beach, it took me about 30 minutes on foot to
Heijo Palace

The majestic Heijo Palace

I used to go past the Heijo Palace every time we used to drop in at Osaka. It used to look so beautiful in the night from the train. We finally went to the palace grounds today, to capture its majestic view. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Heijo Palace used to be the emperor’s residence when Nara was the capital of Japan in the 8th century.

While I was living in Nara, Kyoto used to be one of my favourite places to hang out during the weekends Unless I had a JR Pass lying around, I would generally take the Kintetsu local line from Nara to Kyoto On-route, the train line passes through a wide stretch of paddy fields with a beautiful building standing majestically at the Heijo Palace site As the local train used to run past the heritage building, it used to captivate me each time, especially during my late-evening rides Today I took out some time to explore the Palace grounds and capture its majestic persona, which at one point of time, used to be

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