Japan Days Part 2

My Japan trip was really really fun. We experienced a lot of Japan, its food, its people, its culture. I was quite busy so didn’t end up publishing any more trip posts. But here’s one and the other one or two will be up soon, once I’ve had a chance to do some work for MIV. I’ll update you on that front tomorrow…

 

Day 4 consisted of exploring various places in Kyoto. A few stand-outs included Nijojo Castle, the Nishi Market, a couple of shrines and Kinkakuji – the Golden Temple.

A woman (Clare) stands in front of a stone entranceway to a castle. The entranceway is white with grey stones at the bottom and a black roof and gold highlights. The woman (Clare) is facing the camera and wears purple jeans and jumper under a black coat, with sunglasses. She has a backpack on and is being passed by other people in the left side of the picture.A gateway into Nijo-jo Castle - the arch is decorated by gold overlay with red and black wood and has a particular curved design.Womble sits in the foreground in front of a lake at a Japanese Castle. Behind the lake there are trees and part of the castle area.A shot looking up at some Japanese text naming the Nishi market which is on a coloured background. Below it are drawings on a canvas screenA copper drum is roasting chestnuts in a shop windowHeadshot of Clare wearing a purple jumper and black coat with a hand holding an open chestnut towards the cameraSkewers of meat, probably seafood of some kind, cooking and waiting to be cooked at the marketA shrine offering box which is bright orange with green and white overlay. The box has a roof like a house and sits on an orange post.Part of a shrine. The building has a black and red roof that is shaped like a rectangular pyramid. The body of the building is rectangular and white with red accents. It has a balcony of sorts. The sky is blue and people are moving around the building at the bottom of shot.Another building at the shrine complex - a very tall pagoda which has several stories, each with a red and black decorative roof. The body of the building is red.A shot of the golden temple across the water so a reflection is mirrored there. Trees surround the edges of the shot.Golden Temple from a different angle. The top two floors are gold and shining in the setting sun. Their roofs are black as is the entranceway. The temple is still reflected in the water and a tree is obscuring a part of it on the left side with more trees behind it.A woman (Clare) stands in front of the lake before the Golden Temple. She is wearing a black coat and purple jeans, leaning against a railing.

 

Day 5 was the start of our Japan Rail Pass. We used the Shinkansen (bullet train) to get from Kyoto to Hiroshima and Miyajima.

A shinkansen train pulling into a station. The front with its sub-nose is visible and it is pulling up behind a barrier.View of a station from a shinkansen window.Womble sitting in a shinkansen seat next to the window. The seat is blue with a white headrest. Womble is brown with yellow pants and a patterned top.

Hiroshima was sobering and a little eerie. We heard many stories of how the atomic bombing affected the lives of the people.

A shot of Hiroshima from the river.The shell of a destroyed building near the epicentre of the bomb strikeThe peace memorial to the dead. It has a large stone archway with a platform running out underneath towards the water. There are flowers in front of it with a descriptive plaque to the side.A stopped clock showing the exact time when the bomb hit, as well as the date of the attack in Western and Japanese styleImage of an exhibit showing what Hiroshima looked like from the air after the bomb hit. The children's peace memorial which has a plaque, several towers and flowers.Another shot of the original peace memorial to lives lost, showing the Japanese flag and the full archway. The foreground has brown grass.

Miyajima was quite beautiful. We visited another shrine and went exploring and looked through gift- and food shops. We finished the day with okonomiyaki from a place next to Hiroshima station.

Miyajima Gates lit up at night. The tide is coming in so soon they will look like they are floating in water.

Okonomiyaki on a plate with a second one at right-angles to it. It's a dish with noodles, egg pancake, veggies and sauce. The sauce is very visible as are the noodles. It fills the whole plate, which rests on a wooden table. A glass of water

Day 6 was a travel day. After exploring the last thing on our list in Kyoto, the Place of 1,000 Steps (or Gates), we boarded a train headed towards the snow country. We changed trains at Toyama for a wide-view train, then travelled on to Takayama. The scenery was pretty good – enough deep snow to make me a little excited. But Takayama, while pretty with old buildings, had no snow. After another train trip, we arrived at our stop for the night, Kanazawa.

Day 7 was another travel day, from Kanazawa to Tokyo. We explored Kanazawa a bit before leaving, seeing another market and some gardens (and more snow! 😀 ).

We arrived in Tokyo late in the evening. It was Christmas Eve so after finally locating our apartment, we dumped our stuff and ended up going to a Vigil Mass at 22:00. Midnight in Australia. I mentioned it briefly in my Christmas post, but it was a moving experience.

 

That’s all from me for now, I’ve got a busy day ahead. Next up will be my White Christmas and related exploits before a final post after that to tie things up. Both of those will be out next week – tomorrow is MIV-related. It’s ONE WEEK OUT TODAY!

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