Tohoku

Tokyo Tower from Sky Deck

An evening at Tokyo City View

Tokyo City View, an observation facility located in the center of one of the world’s metropolis, Tokyo, features an indoor observation deck 250 meters above sea level and a Sky Deck outdoor observation deck 270 meters above sea level.

Tokyo City View, an observation facility located in the center of one of the world’s metropolis, Tokyo, features an indoor observation deck 250 meters above sea level and a Sky Deck outdoor observation deck 270 meters above sea level Corridors of Tokyo cityview Corridors of Tokyo Skydeck Tokyo Tower from Sky Deck Streets of Tokyo from the observation room at Roppongi Hills Tokyo City Steets from Skydeck Tokyo Tower Tokyo Tower On the way to Tokyo Tower Roppongi Hills Mall
Aomori Bay at dawn

Aomori Bay

Aomori is mainly known for producing apples, and inevitably, the area offers all kinds of apple-based culinary delights: warm apple juice, apple mousse and apple pies to name just a few. But I love the refurbished port area, which now offers the opportunity for beautiful walks by the water.

Aomori is mainly known for producing apples But it was not always so The first apple saplings were imported in Japan around the year 1871 In the spring of 1875, the Department of Industry Promotion from the Home Ministry sent three apple saplings to Aomori prefecture The apples that were grown on the grounds of the Aomori Prefectural Office were the beginnings of Aomori’s apples Since then Aomori apples have come a long way Today most of the shops in the city will inevitably offer numerous kinds of apple-based culinary delights Today however I am going to talk about one of the most photogenic spots in Aomori – the Aomori Bay
Yamadera in Fall

Fall leaves at Yamadera Temple

Yamadera (山寺) is a scenic temple located in the mountains northeast of Yamagata City.

This journal is mostly about my Fall experience in Yamadera (山寺), a scenic temple located in the mountains northeast of Yamagata City When autumn deepens and the leaves begin to change color in the the fall months, hunting for autumn foliage has become a popular pastime in Japan Watching my friends post the mesmerizing beauty of Autumn forced me to also schedule my tour to Japan during this time of the year Mind you, this need to visit far off places to appreciate the beauty of autumn has been a custom since ancient time as depicted in “The Tale of the Genji” Even in the eighth century we have scenes that

The Nangaku-ji Temple

Scattered throughout Yamagata Prefecture, there are over two dozen mummified Japanese monks known as Sokushinbutsu. The process of self-mummification was mainly practiced by monks in Northern Japan between the 11th and 19th century. Today we walk down to the Buddhist mummy of Nangakuji Temple in Tsuruoka that holds the remains of Tetsuryou-kai, mummified at the age of 44, in a meditating pose, to understand what drove these monks towards this self inflicted, painful death.

From the beautiful prefecture of Akita, we were headed to Niigata Unfortunately there are no Shinkansen lines along this route, so we caught a local JR train along the Uetsu Line to Sakata From Sakata we changed to another train on the Inaho line towards Niigata The Inaho line passes through endless paddy fields During summer, the lush green fields are a treat to the eyes On the way we had planned to take a break at Tsuruoka in Yamagata Prefecture to visit the Nangaku temple The Nangaku Temple houses the mummy of Tetsuryukai’s, who
Lake Tazawako

The lady of Lake Tazawa

We took a ride to Lake Tazawa to witness the remnants of the legend of Tatsuko, a girl from In-nai area who in the search for eternal beauty was turned into a dragon and to this day protects the mysterious lake.

The beauty of Japan lies in its peaceful lakes, gardens and mountains Today we head out to a mystical lake in Akita Lake Tazawa is a caldera lake in the city of Semboku in Akita Prefecture With a depth of 423 meters, it has the distinction of being the deepest lake in Japan, but more interestingly the lake finds a reference in the folklores of Tatsuko, a young maiden from In-nai, who wishing for everlasting youth and beauty, is said to have been cursed and turned into a dragon on the shores of this very lake Today in her remembrance, a golden statue of Tatsuko created by Yasutake Funakoshi in 1968, stands at the edge of the lake with
Hirosaki Castle

An evening at Hirosaki Castle

We dropped by Hirosaki Castle today, the only remaining castle from the Edo period in the Tohoku area of Japan. Built in 1611, the castle is renowned for the weeping Sakura blossoms in its surrounding park.

After a lovely time at the Tambo Art fields, we set off for one of the most beautiful castles in Tohoku region Hirosaki Castle (弘前城) is a hirayama-style Japanese castle constructed in 1611 The present tower however was rebuilt in 1810 in the late Edo period (1603-1867) after a fire destroyed the original in 1627 It was the seat of the Tsugaru clan, who ruled over Hirosaki domain in the Mutsu Province, now known as central Hirosaki in Aomori Prefecture Tambo Art Fields to Hirosaki From Tamboato Station, we took the local to Onoekoko-Mae Station and from there another train on the Konan Line all the way to Hirosaki Station
Watchtower at Sannai Maruyama Ruins

Ruins of Sannai-Maruyama

We step back in time to the Jōmon period at the Sannai-Maruyama Ruins. The ruins in the southwest of Aomori is the largest ruins of a Jōmon-period village in Japan. Most of the excavated items have been reburied for preservation, but a few excavation sites and artifacts are on display along with reconstructed dwellings, giving us a sense of the daily life of ancient times.

Today I visit the ruins of Sannai Maruyama in Aomori Discovered in 1992, the Sannai Maruyama Archaeological Site is the largest and one of the most complete and best-preserved Jōmon Period (13000-300 BC) village in Japan  Morioka to Aomori I and my wife, Ranita were on a short tour of Tohoku region We were thoroughly refreshed from our previous day at Jōdogahama beach in Iwate The day was bright and sunny as we checked out of our hotel and walked down to Morioka Station to catch the train to Aomori As we entered the JR Station, we were quite pleased to see it was still decorated, in lieu of

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