Category Archives: TRAVEL

Mansion for Foreign Engineers in Kagoshima

Ijinkan Foreign Engineers Residence in Kagoshima

Built in 1866 to house British engineers that were constructing a modern spinning mill as part of Satsuma Domains importation of Western technology, the Kyu Kagoshima Bosekisho Gishikan is usually known simply as Ijinkan. Since 2015 it has been a part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Meiji Industrialization.

Ijinkan Foreigners mansion in

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Shodoshima Pilgrimage Temple 3 Kannonji

Kannonji was the first temple I visited on the Shodoshima Pilgrimage that was big enough to have a resident priest. What appeared to be varved dragons ran along the steps leading up to it.

Legend has it that the temple was founded by Kobo Daishi himself, and the statue of 11-face Kannon is claimed to be his work. It is a “secret” Buddha and so cannot be seen by the public.

Like many

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Awazu Onsen: Cave Temples, Craft Villages and Ancient Ryokan

Source: Japan Cheapo

The smallest of the four Kaga Onsen towns, Awazu Onsen is home to a couple of pretty big names, from cave-carved temples to the oldest of ryokan. The town was founded over 1300 years ago by the Shugendo Buddhist monk Taicho Daishi (as legend has it, at least), who was ordered to dig for water sources by the mountain deity Hakusan Daigongen.
The town’s local highlights
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The town’s ryokan (traditional Japanese inn) have their own hot-spring source—rather than using a shared central one—so each claim slightly different water properties. The ryokan onsen are all open to the public at certain times so you can try a few out during your stay (in the name of research)! The town also has its own central public onsen, plus a

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Harry Potter World May Be Set to Open in Tokyo

Source: Tokyo Cheapo

If Warner Bros. Entertainment has its way, Toshimaen—Tokyo’s retro amusement park—will soon be the home of the newest Japan-based Harry Potter theme park. Seeing how much of a drawcard The Wizarding World of Harry Potter™ at Osaka’s Universal Studios Japan has been since opening in 2014, it only makes sense that Tokyo has its own little dedication to the world’s favorite wizard boy.
Currently, Seibu, the owners of Toshimaen, are in talks with Warner Bros. Entertainment, who owns the rights to the film franchise, and it sounds like a confirmation of a deal could be locked down as early as spring. In the meantime, the company behind the Nerima Ward location, Toshimaen has announced that they’re flirting with the idea of closing

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Exploring Mt. Mitake: Untouched Nature and a Shinto Priest Village

Source: Tokyo Cheapo

The beautiful mountain of Mitake is only 2 hours from Tokyo and offers autumn colors, waterfalls, hiking, Shinto rituals and, to top it all off, night views of the capital glittering in the distance.
Why Mt. Mitake is one of the best hikes close to Tokyo
If you are looking to escape Tokyo for some nature with an added spiritual touch, make Mt. Mitake your go-to hike. Located in the Okutama region, the westernmost part of Tokyo, it is part of the Chichibu-Tama-Kai National Park, covering more than 1250 square kilometers of forests, mountains, and gorges. While a little farther out than the uber-popular (and equally crowded) Mt. Takao, Mt. Mitake offers more scenic hiking courses of unspoiled nature that make you forget that you are, in fact

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