Posted in Art, Experience, Family, Feelings, Food, Hotel, Japanese Culture, Japanese Food, Mt. Fuji, Nature, Place, Sunrise and Sunset, Tokyo, Travel

Trip to Northern Japan’s Three Greatest Summer Festival (Day 1)

I took a Tohoku Shinkansen, Yamabiko 43, operated by JR Higashi Nihon (JR East Japan) for Morioka this morning.

There is a train map.

It is common that two Shinkansen runs till Sendai Station then disconnected to become two Shinkansen lines.

Shinkansen is heading north; the place for Japan’s major rice production.

I had a lunch box on the Shinkansen.

Ta-dah

More rice field.

We arrived Morioka Station and look!

There are many buses for tourists!

We headed for Aomori by bus.

We stopped at Tsugaru Service Area for a break.

We can take a good view of Iwaki-san (Mt. Iwaki) that is also called: Tsugaru (Tsugaru is old name of this area) Fuji.

Isn’t it look beautiful as Mt. Fuji!

First, we checked in at Ryokan (Japanese Inn), Asamushi Sakura Kanko Hotel because Nebuta Matsui (Nabuta Festival) starts 7 pm so that we have to have an early dinner at 4 pm.

The room is in old fashioned.

There is a Fusuma (Sliding Door), I opened then…

A view from a room is also nice.

We relaxed at the room, then had a dinner at 4 pm so that we could leave at 4:50 pm.

I also had a Wakame Men (seaweed noodle)

And dessert: coffee jelly.

Dinner was very delicious.

These food are made of fresh ingredients!

Then we left Ryokan for Aomori: Nebuta Matsuri.

There are bankers for Nebuta at ASPM (Aomori Sightseeing Products Mansion).

Then we moved to our seats for watching the Nebuta Matsuri.

The parade started.

The origin of Nebuta is the lantern festival.

The decoration became unique so craftspeople started to present.

That’s how this Summer Festival began.

They will turn it, spin it and bow it!

There is a group of Hayashi (musicians), making rhythm.

Haneto (Jumpers) – anybody can rent a formal wear to join jumping.

There are cute ones.

Chocobo…? Final Fantasy…?

Even from small, they turn Nebuta.

There are so many people to enjoy the moment together.

After enjoying it for about an hour and half to returned to Ryokan.

Futon is ready.

And I found a supper on the table…?

Onigiri (rice balls) for supper.

After satisfying my stomach, then I took Onsen (hot Spring) for my relaxation.

We are staying at Asamushi Onsen (Asamushi Hot Spring).

Water is cleared and nice.

My skin is smooth and moist!

Posted in Feelings, Food, Hotel, Japanese Culture, Japanese Food, Nature, Place, Sunrise and Sunset, Travel

Trip to Hokkaido (Day 1)

Depart Haneda International Airport (Tokyo) for Chitose International Airport (Sapporo, Hokkaido).

There are many buildings and houses in Tokyo.

After 1.5 hours journey; it’s snowing in Sapporo, Hokkaido.

Hokkaido is huge; we need to rely on cars.

We didn’t make a reservation, but there are many counters for rent a car service providers at the arrival hall of Chitose Airport.

I just picked Nippon Rent a Car.

The number of rent a car is large in Hokkaido; these cars are all rent a car service cars.

The counter is also huge.

While waiting for a car, I found Hokkaido Exclusive Drink: Hokkaido Tokibi-cha (Corn Tea).

This is nice roasted taste.

There is a departure gate as well.

My Hokkaido Car is cute Toyota Vitz.

First, we went to Shokotsu-Ko (Shikotsu Lake) for lunch or snacks.

These snacks are nice.

Yaki Tokibi (Grilled Corn)

Imomochi (Potato Mochi (potato mixed with pounded rice))

The scenery is beautiful with snow and sun setting.

Driving in snow is also beautiful.

Finally, arrived at Jozankei Onsen (Hot Spring) Sankeien (Hotel Sankeien).

Hotel room is washitsu (Japanese style).

Before dinner, went to Onsen to fresh up and warm up.

Then dinner.

Now I’m watching TV from Futon. fufufu

Posted in Diving, Feelings, Nature, Place, Sunrise and Sunset, Travel

Diving in Palau

I returned from Palau yesterday.

I wanted to post frequently, but internet connection was bad, terribly bad in Palau.

The internet condition will improve next year after optical fiber reaching Palau.

Ocean is so beautiful there.



German Channel

Manta, Manta, Mannttaaaaaaa!

Manta swam over meeeeee!!!




Cowtail Stingray 


Sias Corner

Handsome Turtle



Baraccudas


There are many sharks.

Big one, small one, could they be a family?


Ulong Channel

The landscape is beautiful.


Blue Hole

So mysterious; bless taking. 



Blue Corner

Napoleon Fish


Shark




Helmet Wreck




Blue Corner – Sunrise Diving

Ocean is clear and peaceful.

There are many fish and early riser, Baffalo Fish greated me.







It was fun diving in Palau!

Posted in Feelings, Food, Mt. Fuji, Nature, Place, Shopping, Shrine and Temple, Sunrise and Sunset, Tokyo, Travel

Trip to Mt. Fuji and Odaiba

My friend treated me a kebab for breakfast @ Asian Kebab, Roppongi.


I ordered Otsumami (snacks); this menu is Kebab meat and cabbage only (no rice or a pita bread).

It’s delicious and good portion.

I think I will take out this when I feel lazy to cook. hahaha


I took Chuo Highway to Mt. Fuji 5th Station.

We can go up to 5th Station by car.

There is a rest area to take a break and to admire Mt. Fuji. 


Rest area. 



Restaurant


The menu is displayed.


But purchasing meal tickets is challenging because words are written in Japanese. Hummm


I had a shaved ice.


There is a local Mt. Fuji Beer vending machine.

I bought one for my sourvenir.



If you run out Japanese yen, don’t worry.

There is a money changer machine for many currencies.

The service is better than ordinary banks.


I prayed Fujisan Komitake Jinjya (Mt. Fuji Komitake Shrine).




We can also admire a lake view.

I think this is Kawaguchiko (Kawaguchi Lake).


I enjoyed being ON the Mt. Fuji, but I struggle with a traffic jam. Ahhhh

It was 7 pm when we arrived Tokyo; therefore, decided to go to Odaiba for ocean view and dinner.



Kaisendon (Seafood Bowl) for dinner @ Genchan, Odaiba.


After getting energy, walked the area to enjoy night view of Tokyo Bay.





It is not my first time to post about Mt. Fuji and Odaiba.

Well, these are my favorite places; I will continue to post whenever I can to share the view of the day with you.

Posted in Exercise, Experience, Feelings, Food, Place, River, Sunrise and Sunset, Travel

Trip to the US (Day 4)

I woke up early to go watch sunset at Mather Point, Grand Canyon.

The host of this event is obviously Elk Deer (sorry, I introduced this type of this deer Elf, but Elk) because she lives here.


The tip is called Mather Point.

I managed to squeeze to get a front row at Mather Point.
Sun is about to rise.


iPhone camera is not suitable to take sunrise; but I’m happy with these photos.


Grand Canyon grows softly under sunshine of sunrise.

It was so beautiful.

It was worth waking up at 3:40 am to depart hotel at 4:40 am to catch sunrise at 5:15 am.



Then returned hotel for breakfast.



This is my first time to see a yogurt vending machine.


After breakfast, went for Grand Canyon Helicopter Tour (operated by Papillon).

This is my first helicopter ride.


The ride was smooth and the scenery is gorgeous.

I would highly recommend the helicopter tour to feel how GREAT this Canyon is.





Colorado River. This river eroded the mountains to make the canyon.


For lunch, I had a typical American sandwich, B.L.T. Sandwich (beacon, lettuce and tomato sandwich) with strawberry ice cream.



After lunch, before departing for Antelope, watched Indian Hoop Dance.

He danced (or jumped) through using many hoops.


I wore a surgical mask before getting on a truck because the road is very sandy.

We cannot avoid sands because these sands make beautiful sceneries in a cave.


Our guide is Native American so he knew the cave very well, pointing out explaining what these resembles.


A face of bear in the center.


This is a closer look of bear.



A tear.


Bill Clinton’s nose.



Heart




Waves

Seahorse

 

Dragon’s Eye



Fire


At the end of the tour, he played a pipe for us, sounding so healing.
Thank you, Slow Horse!


After a great adventure, enjoyed salmon dinner listening to Country Music live band.


I’m going to stay two nights at Lake Powell Resort & Marinas.

This hotel is the only resort built next to Powell Dam.

It’s nice to have a lake (even artificial) view in the desert.


There is a coffee maker and Starbucks capsuls are available. Yeah! 

I made a cocoa for my bed time drink.

Posted in Family, Feelings, Food, Japanese Culture, Japanese Food, Pilgrimage, Place, Shrine and Temple, Sunrise and Sunset, Travel

Saigoku 33 Kannon Pilgrimage 

Last November I conducted the Shikoku 88 Temples Pilgrimage.

This time, I came to Saigoku (the Western region of Japan) to visit 4 temples in weekend for the Saigoku 33 Kannon Pilgrimage.


Thirty-three temples are located in as many as six prefectures such as Gifu, Shiga, Kyoto, Nara, Wakayama, Osaka and Hyogo.

I departed Tokyo for Osaka by Shinkansen (bullet train) early morning at 7:20 pm.


I had pork sandwich for breakfast.


Last November, I also started the Pilgrimage from here.

Bus departed from here, the same place.


First, we went to No. 3 Kokawadera.

This temple is located in Wakayama Prefecture.

I don’t remember visiting Wakayama; this could be my first trip to Wakayama.

For Shikoku Pilgrimage, we followed the number of Temple; however, for Shikoku, I was told we don’t need to follow number.


This temple is huge and beautiful.

Main temple looks far left.


This is the Main Temple.


Kawazu Zakura is beautiful.


The town is nicely decorated with Hina Ningyo.

Every 3 March, Hina Ningyo is decorated to wish for health and happiness for daughters.

Hina Ningyo is passed down to generations.

This must be antique Hina Ningyo.


We had a lunch box on bus for lunch.


No. 2 Kongoji (Kimiidera)


We climbed many steep stairs to Main Temple.


Main Temple


The ceiling is decorated with celestial maidens.


There is a Pagoda.


We could specially view the largest wooden Kannon today.

I hope you are blessed, too.


Before we check-in hotel, we stopped by to see amazing nature – strange stones: Hashigui Iwa.

It does look like as if these are foundations of bridge.

Hashigui means foundations of bridge and iwa means stones.

Amazing and beautiful.


We reached to the tip of Kii Peninsular to check-in at Kushimoto Royal Hotel.

A room is spacious.



I could see sunset from my room before dinner.


Dinner is nice.

Fresh, delicious and the right portion – not too little, not too much.

Continued enjoying local food at the room: ponkan orange, ume (Japanese apricot) and Kinkan (kumquat) juice, and water.


Wakayama is nice place to visit.

I’m Japanese; but there are still many places to be explored!