Blogs from Akita, Japan, Asia

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Asia » Japan » Akita » Yokote April 14th 2017

As we planned our trip, we worked with Inside Japan Tours (www.insideasia.com) on an itinerary that would follow the blooming of Japan’s famous cherry trees. We started in Tokyo and didn’t move to the very northern areas until early April. While in Japan, we read studies documenting the effects of global warming on the bloom: it’s occurring earlier each year. NOT THIS YEAR. This spring, storms and unseasonably cool temperatures followed us throughout our trip. We’ve been consistently 5-7 days ahead of the blossoms. “Oh, we are so sorry. They bloom next week …” However, this itinerary also sent us through some of the most beautiful parts of northern Japan, even though we saw more snow than flowers. We caught a few bravely flowering trees in Kyoto and Kanazawa, but most of the time, we saw ... read more
Yep -- it's over my head
Thatched roof in Shirakawa-go
Our Ryokan in Takayama

Asia » Japan » Akita » Tazawako September 22nd 2013

Sendai is where alot of the Tsunami happened after the earthquakes. We did not see much evidence of this. Cracks in buildings mostly , but you would have to look for them.The resilience and attitude of the people in Japan is amazing. Cleanlyness is der rigor as well. Washing the store fronts, streets, the bathrooms are spotless and everywhere. We had to eat cow tongue. Its everywhere. Cows have no moos here and I know why! Everyone eats their tongues. I am speechless. The tongues were sliced thin as if shaven. You could have them in a bowl with rice and sauce or in a ball shaped, dipped in batter. What happens to the rest of the cow? They also have ox tongue which we never found. Curious , that curry is also popular. In Sendai, ... read more
Fukuurajima Bridge
Feeding the Birds on the boat
Rock in the Bay

Asia » Japan » Akita June 5th 2013

I took Gon to an outdoor hot spring to relax before I have to get on a long ars flight back home. we got a massage after soaking in the spring and kept entering and leaving the hot soothing water threw out the day. I challenged Gon to Ping Pong/table tennis and I whooped his but 0-0. We both suck at table tennis. ... read more

Asia » Japan » Akita May 28th 2013

Be aware that I have added some more pix to the previous entry for Tokyo so you might want to look there. And as there are no snaps of Akita, there are some leftovers from Tokyo to complete the picture. I am now in Akita on the NW coast of Honshu arrived today on the Komachi 35 shinkansen from Tokyo – just over 4 hrs to do 660km odd. The train splits at Morioka – where I stayed a night on my last long trip here up to Hokkaido - the front bit goes on up to the end of Honshu to Aomori. This was covered by the 3 days (in 10 to use it) JR East rail pass I bought this morning for about 150$, which I will use for the major zooming around. Will ... read more
Ryoguku -sumos on the way home
inside the sumo stadium
how to tell a sumo outyago

Asia » Japan » Akita » Yokote February 20th 2010

This year I spent Valentine's Day in Akita with the boy. Took the night bus on Wednesday night from Tokyo and arrived Thursday morning. After some much needed sleep we went spent a lazy Thursday at his place just enjoying each other's company. We cooked up a delicious batch of chicken kabuli and got unintentionally drunk on two gingerhais. (Black Stone shochu is far too smooth to be 40%!) It was pretty nice night regardless :) Friday we went to Meat Men with everyone for Chika's birthday - the same place we went for my birthday in December. It was just as delicious the second time around and only cost $40! Considering the amount of meat and alcohol you get it's totally worth it. I couldn't go there more than once a month though. It's just ... read more
Snow Lanterns
Penis Man Statue
I was loving it

Asia » Japan » Akita December 10th 2009

This past weekend was an adventure and a half. I visited the bf for my 25th birthday in Akita, which is a 40 minute train ride, 30 minute bus ride, 1.5 plane ride, 40 minute bus ride, and 1.5 train ride away. So basically it takes me 6-8 hours to get from my door to his which is a long ass time but it's definitely worth it. :) The night I got there we decided to go to a favourite spot of mine - Futen. It's this awesome izakaya (only sits maybe 10 people tops) and the owner is fantastic. Ordered up some delicious yakitori (chicken on a stick), some Okinawan style grilled onigiri, and then had some mimigaa (pron. mee mee gaa) just to try something new and exciting. For those who aren't in the ... read more
Fish
Herro!
Fish Eggs...

Asia » Japan » Akita » Tazawako November 25th 2008

Tazawako, in the north of Honshu, was one of our favourite stops. We stayed in the superb youth hostel by Lake Tazawako where we ate the most incredible traditional Japanese food and found some great company. It was a very peaceful and tranquil place, with the most beautiful onsens you'll ever find. We'd love to come back and experience this in winter! ... read more
02 Tsurunoyu onsen (womens section)
03 Tsurunoyu onsen accomodation buildings
04 Kitchens drying chillis

Asia » Japan » Akita » Kakunodate July 7th 2008

When one thinks of Japan what do we think about? Ninjas, anime, comic books, and samurai of course. In modern Japan there isn't much in the way of Samurai anymore. Sure there are the splash of them in pop-culture and video games but they aren't much of anywhere else in my wonderings. Up in Tohoku you find a lot of history along with some pop-culture thrown into the mix. Kakunodate is the samurai spot in Tohoku. This old castle town has the most well preserved samurai houses that are lined behind beautiful black painted wooden fences. They are mostly free attractions but a couple of the houses, including the oldest and biggest, are pay to enter. They city is also famed for its swinging cherry trees that line the samurai district and along the river bank. ... read more
samurai house
samurai house
samurai house

Asia » Japan » Akita » Tazawako June 10th 2008

We all hoped into the car and off we headed for a day at Lake Tazawako. It was about an hour drive across the boarder into the Akita Prefecture. The lake is one of the largest in Japan and is still an active volcano. Okasan and Otasan (mother & father) are like my adopted family and love to take Megs and me anywhere tourist to show us around. The drive there was beautiful with luscious scenery of mountains still some with snow was breath taking. We passed lots of farms along our way also, it really felt like we were going deep into the country side of Japan. When we arrive Okasan took out a beautiful Japanese lunch which she had made at home. It had Onigiri (rice balls), vegetables with mayonnaise, fresh scallops, omelets, tomato ... read more
Lake Tazawako
Lake Tazawako
Lake Tazawako

Asia » Japan » Akita » Tazawako June 9th 2008

The Naniwa hotel was a comfy nights rest, and the hosts as helpful as ever, despite their limited english and yesterdays misunderstanding! I am certainly glad I speak some lingo - several people I have met have had no or limited ability, and even in the major cities like Tokyo, have struggled to get their needs met or point across. A bit of charades always comes in handy, but anything slightly complicated can get mixed up, even if you do speak Japanese!! A gorgeous, clear warm mornning dawned, and I decided after my early waking habit to get the earlier train just before 9am. The Akita shinkansen, originating and terminating at Akita (Tokyo bound/ from) means the trip to Tazawako and nearby Kakunodate is quick and painless, but reservations are a must. Being a monday morning, ... read more
dorothy, dorothy...
en route to the jinja
Gozano ishi jinja (shrine)




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