Blogs from Himeji, Hyogo, Japan, Asia

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Asia » Japan » Hyogo » Himeji July 19th 2019

. Last night we joined Mitchie and Shingo for dinner and a concert. The performers were two highly skilled and fantastic performers who played shamisen. Yes they wore the kimono in their poster for the first half of their two hour concert I enjoyed it so much I thought I’d give you access to them if you’re interested.The blog can’t host the video, but these links should help from u tube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tXE-qTbYvFI&feature https://youtu.be/RcqO0zkyQRo... read more

Asia » Japan » Hyogo » Himeji July 9th 2019

To reacclimatise to Himeji, Jacinta organised for me to attend a cultural performance at the Sosha Shrine which is in the heart of Himeji, just below the castle. We were accompanied by Kasumi who is a member of the shrine. Two amazing facts about the visit: It was the first I'd heard of Gagaku, and the whole event was catered to English speaking tourists - a first in Himeji for me. Unfortunately we were the only two obvious ones at the event and consequently have been immortalised on many digital recordings of the event. Gagaku is music and dance from about 1500 years ago formerly performed in the Imperial court. I think this would have been in Kyoto. However, the company bringing back this cultural art form are from Kobe city, about 30 minutes away by ... read more
our performance MC and English interpreter
one of the drummers
Ryuteri player

Asia » Japan » Hyogo » Himeji May 23rd 2019

Today we started the last leg of our journey through a small part of Japan. We were going to Kobe, via Himeji. Every travel company we had spoken to recommended a day’s trip (at least) and to the castle. Third castle in a row, but they do differ by their history and layout. So it was back on the Shinkansen for the last time. . We got off at Himeji and discovered a bus which tours the city so we bought our tickets. We found the correct bus stop and set off to explore the the castle. The outside is very impressive. The castle dates back to 1333 when it was built as a hill fort. In 1346 it was dismantled and rebuilt as a castle, and then two centuries later it was remodelled again as ... read more
Himeji Castle moat
castle complex and city from Himeji Castle 6th floor
strong wood frame structure of Himeji Castle

Asia » Japan » Hyogo » Himeji March 5th 2019

Returning to Japan for the fourth year, and to Himeji for the second year is proving to be an excellent beginning to my retirement from teaching. Being greeted with hugs from Japanese women colleagues from 9 years ago was a most unexpected gift. I have been surprised and delighted with how easy these first two months have been. The school year ends in Japan in late March and so I arrived in time to teach the last few classes and set exams for the Year 12’s (三年生). Yesterday was their graduation ceremony: a formal, solemn and moving end to their school days, followed by beaming faces, oodles of photos and a dance display at the school entrance. I was moved to tears by the rousing thanks each class gave their home room teacher. Shogai Daigaku (university ... read more
Welcome Party
Dream House
Playing the hand drum

Asia » Japan » Hyogo » Himeji September 17th 2017

Sunday, 17th September 2017 Nagoya >> Himeji (278.3km, 93 mins, 8,610 Yen) The weather was forgiving as I woke up shortly after six this morning. The rains that plagued since yesterday had miraculously stopped as the skies gave an all clear signal. The weatherman from NHK had announced that the typhoon had already made landfalls in the southern part of Kyushu early morning and was soon on its way to sweep through the rest of Japan within the next 24 hours or so. With perfect weather before the impending storm, I jumped onto the opportunity for a whirlwind Shinkansen excursion to Himeji and Kyoto for the day. Home to the magnificent white castle, the beautiful Himeji-Jo was evident as soon as I made my way out of the train station. I strolled my way through the ... read more
Himeji Station concourse
The imposing modern facade
Himeji-Jo

Asia » Japan » Hyogo » Himeji April 6th 2016

Himeji Castle is often described as the prettiest castle in Japan and, although we haven't seen all the others, it's not difficult to believe. We are so lucky to have seen it. Nicknamed 'White Heron' or 'White Crane' because of its gleaming exterior and delicate architecture, it has been closed for restoration for several years and only reopened a couple of weeks ago, in time for cherry blossom season. So significant is this fact that the finale of the Miyako Odori dances we attended celebrated the blossoming of the 1000 cherry trees at Himeji. The survival of the castle is in itself quite miraculous. It was sold to a private buyer in the Meiji era (late 19-early 20 C) for the equivalent of $2500 in today's money and was slated for redevelopment but the project was ... read more
Kokoen Gardens
Maiko farewells a client outside a Gion tea house.
Wedding coupe at Himeji Castle

Asia » Japan » Hyogo » Himeji March 29th 2015

Himeji In Himeji steht ein Schloss, das einige Jahre wegen Renovierung geschlossen war, und vor kurzem wieder eröffnet wurde. Noch dazu war Sonntag, und ganz Japan ist auf den Beinen um das Schloss zu besichtigen. Deswegen wurden die Leute für die Besichtigungstour in einer langen Schlange durch das Schloss geschleust... You are never alone in Japan.... read more
Sightseeing Bus
Ruf zur Ordnung
Wartezeit

Asia » Japan » Hyogo » Himeji March 19th 2014

March 19, 2014 Himeji Himeji is famous for its castle, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, however the castle is currently undergoing renovation and is surrounded in a massive steel scaffold, which is itself impressive in a way. It reminded me of the last time I was in DC and the Washington Monument had scaffolding around it, making it look like somewhat futuristic. The outline of Himeji Castle could just be seen through the scaffold rising above the castle grounds, but it doesn’t quite have the same effect. It’s not quite nodokana. However, having already been warned about the castle by the Polish man I met in Miyajima, my goal was to visit Shoshayama and the temple there. The bus ride takes just over a half an hour from the train station, and ... read more
Maniden Stilts
Maniden Balcony
A Road in Engyo-ji

Asia » Japan » Hyogo » Himeji October 5th 2013

The first half of the day was a rest day with alight lunch at home. Then we took the bikes for a 30minute bike ride through the suburbs to the ropeway for Mount Shosha. It cost about $5 each for the ropeway up and another $5 each to enter the temple walk at the top of the mountain. This is certainly a must see...we had no idea how magnificent this temple was going to be! The buildings were built around 966 but all have been rebuilt or restored over the years. There were many beautiful Buddha statues along the way but the most significant surprise was the 1000 or more tiny jizo statues along the way. These statues are said to be the protectors of children. We spent a few hours wandering in and out of ... read more
Gardens at Mt Shosa
Koala  in yukuta

Asia » Japan » Hyogo » Himeji October 4th 2013

We started the day with a well earned sleep in and slow bike ride to the shops. It was great to be away from the tourist hype. We rode our bikes from home to the busy shopping streets and malls, each mall branched off the main street withmore shops and more malls as far as your eye could see. We went to a large honya , book shop, where we bought a series of basic bilingual manga to bring home. Kate bought Doraemon, Riley bought the Tale of Genji and Lori bought a manga about a kuruta game we have played the last few nights. We rode to the shops to buy ingredients for a home cooked meal of bolognese and rice, yummy ! The girls watched a movie and ate chocolates and chips while the ... read more
Reading manga
Amane  wine bar
Sanyo building lunch




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