First, Choose Your Starting PointTokyo OsakaFrom Tokyo1. By ShinkansenPhoto by Tokyo Sakura on FlickrThe Hokuriku Shinkansen started running in March 2015, enabling travelers to reach Kanazawa Station directly from Tokyo Station. The fare is a little expensive, but you won’t need to transfer trains, so it will be a quick, comfortable trip. For information regarding access to Wakura Onsen (hot springs) from Kanazawa Station, click here.Travel Time: Two hours and 28 minutes from Tokyo Station to Kanazawa StationFare: 13,600 yen for non-reserved seats, 14,120 yen for reserved seatsService: “Kagayaki,” which stops at a maximum of six stations, will run 10 round trips per day. “Hakutaka,” which stops at a maximum of 16 stations, will run 14 round trips per day.For further information: JR West2. By PlaneThe main air route from Tokyo to Ishikawa prefecture goes through Haneda and Komatsu airports. The travel time is short, but Komatsu Airport is located some distance away from Wakura Onsen, so you will have to use buses and trains to get there.Flight Time: About an hour, from Haneda Airport to Komatsu AirportFare: About 10,000 yen minimumService: Both ANA and JAL flies six round trips per day from Komatsu AirportFrom Komatsu Aiport to Kanazawa Station1. Super Express bus, headed for the west entrance of Kanazawa Station, leaves from Airport Bus Stop 1. The ride takes about 40 minutes, and the fare is 1130 yen for adults, 620 yen for children.2. Local bus, also headed for the west entrance of Kanazawa Station, leaves from Airport Bus Stop 2. The ride takes about 66 minutes, and the fare is 1130 yen for adults, 620 yen for children.*The bus for Wakura Onsen leaves from the east entrance of Kanazawa Station.3. Local bus, headed for Komatsu Station, leaves from Airport Bus Stop 3. The ride takes about 12 minutes, and the fare is 270 yen. From Komatsu Station, take the JR Hokuriku line to Kanazawa Station. The train ride takes 35 minutes, and the fare is 500 yen.For information regarding access to Wakura Onsen from Kanazawa Station, click here.3. By BusYou can take a bus, from JR Shinjuku or Tokyo Station, to Ishikawa prefecture. The fare is cheap, compared to trains or planes, but the travel time will be far longer, so this is the best option for those who want to save their money and travel at night.For information regarding access to Wakura Onsen from Kanazawa Station, click here.Travel Time: About eight and a half hours, from the Tokyo Metropolitan area to Kanazawa StationFare: 5100 yen, minimumService: Three round trips per dayFrom Osaka1. By TrainJR West runs the Thunderbird train, which goes through Osaka, Shin Osaka, and Kyoto stations. They are all main sightseeing spots in the Kansai area, so this is a convenient way to travel. For information regarding access to Wakura Onsen from Kanazawa Station, click here.Travel Time: About two hours and 50 minutes, from Osaka Station to Kanazawa StationFare: 7130 yen for non-reserved seats, 7,650 yen for reserved seatsService: Between Osaka and Kanazawa, 22 round trips per day. Between Osaka and Wakura Onsen, one round trip per dayFor further information: JR West2. By BusThere are various bus services from Osaka to Ishikawa, and it is recommended for those who value low-price fares over speed or comfort. For information regarding access to Wakura Onsen from Kanazawa Station, click here.Travel Time: About five hoursFare: 3000 yen, minimum*Bus service differs daily, so be sure to check the schedule beforehand.
Along the way up the 140 step staircase, there are signs with the words “Love Shrine” written on them. Once you find these signs, let’s continue forward in that direction. Tanzan Shrine has been worshiped for matchmaking since ancient times thanks to the so called Love Shrine in the east hall past the signs.The union dwelling stone, said to be where the god dwells, is enshrined at Love Shrine. Definitely please try rubbing the stone with all your heart to improve your luck in love. What Is Tanzan Shrine? Long ago, when present-day Nara was the center of the government, a political reform called the Taika Reform occurred on this land. Kamatari Fujiwara, the leader of the Taika Reform, is worshiped at Tanzan Shrine as the gosaijin (*1).The shrine grounds are filled with several shaden (*2) painted in scarlet colors. Among them is the Thirteen-Storied Pagoda, which is known as the symbol of Tanzan Shrine. Let’s stroll the grounds, decorated with cherry blossoms in the spring or vivid leaves in the autumn, while climbing the 140 steps that lead us to the main shrine.In this article, we’ll introduce the highlights of Tanzan Shrine.*1 Gosaijin: the god that is enshrined at a shrine.*2 Shaden: a building in a shrine. Love Shrine
In Japanese summers both the temperature and humidity get quite high and, particularly in July and August, you might start to feel like you’re being boiled alive when outside. To relieve the heat, many tricks have been practiced in Japan since the olden days.Japan is especially rich with water, so much so that it is called a major power when it comes to water resources. As a result, there are many water-based counter-measures for heat to be found throughout Japan.Dry Mist: Lower the City’s Central TemperaturesPictured above is the latest device that produces an artificial mist, called “Dry Mist”. You can find them in large cities such as Tokyo, where the heat rises easily due to a lack of urban open spaces.This device cools you by creating a latent heat of vaporization when the mist evaporates, which contributes to lowering the atmospheric temperature. Although it is called mist, it immediately evaporates, so it doesn’t get people wet.The pioneer of this technology is Japanese, and “Dry Mist” is a counter-measure technology for Japan’s characteristic heat.Uchimizu: An Ancient TrickUchimizu is a method of cooling the temperature around you by sprinkling water in places such as at the entrance of your house or business. It is a Japanese custom that has been practiced since the olden days as a means of cooling down the hot days of summer. When the sprinkled water evaporates, it takes away the surrounding heat and lowers the temperature. In other words, uchimizu uses the same principle as the modern “Dry Mist” technology. Photo by Danny ChooThe important thing here is that the water that is used is not tap water, but so called “Secondary Usage Water” – water that has already been used once, such as the left over water from baths or laundry, collected rainwater and the like. From an environmental and economical perspective, reusing the water in this way is both cost effect and eco-friendly. The number of municipalities that are paved with roads suitable for uchimizu is rising.Uchimizu Events are held all over Japan!Uchimizu was originally an individual activity, but now Uchimizu Events are being held in communities all around Japan. Here we will focus on introducing events in Tokyo.Daimaruyu Uchimizu Project: around Tokyo StationThe area full of office buildings surrounding Tokyo Station is generally called Daimaruyu (大丸有), using the reading of the first kanji of the Otemachi (dai, 大手町), Marunouchi (maru, 丸の内) and Yurakucho (yu, 有楽町) areas.Tokyo is a concrete jungle and as a result of the thermal energy that accumulates during the day, the nightly temperature in Tokyo is almost the same as day. Because of this, the organisation that manages the area holds an Uchimizu event every week in the summer season with this as its core.Depending on the event, yukatas are available to rent, so we really recommend that travelers with an interest in Japanese traditional clothing participate.Kasumi Terrace’s Uchimizu Club KasumigasekiKasumi Terrace’s Uchimizu Club is an Uchimizu initiative that is being implemented in Kasumigaseki Sanchome South District (an area full of office buildings) with the cooperation of central government agencies and civilian enterprises, as an occasion in which you can contribute to your area.The Children’s Kasumigaseki Field Trip Day is held as an open participation event on an appointed day by a government office, in which people neighborhood kindergarten age children visit the local government office to see what government workers do there. The parents/guardians that attend may also participate in this event. As the sprinkling of water is carried out by both adults who work during the day and children, it seems it has also become an occasion in which both parties can intermingle.Uchimizukko Gathering AkihabaraAs the act of uchimizu is a tradition from the olden days, many practice it at events whilst wearing a yukata, but at the Uchimizu event held in the Akihabara area, the atmosphere is a little different.Why, you ask? It is because this Uchimizukko Gathering is held by cute maids and cosplayers who work in Akihabara. It functions not only for lowering the area’s temperature, but also as an event that connects all the streets in Akihabara.This time round, we introduced the latest Japanese technology “Dry Mist”, and the traditional Japanese culture of uchimizu at different events in Tokyo, though these events are held all across Japan. When in Tokyo, why not beat the heat by experiencing some of these cool water-based activities?InformationDry Mist MapShin-Marunouchi Building（Marunouchi area）Address: 100-0005 Tokyo, Chiyoda-ku, Marunouchi 1-5-1Website: Marunouchi Dry MistMitsubishi Ichigokan Museum（Marunouchi area）Address: 100-0005 Tokyo, Chiyoda-ku, Marunouchi 2-6-1Website:Mitsubishi Ichigokan MuseumRoppongi Hills 66 Plaza（Marunouchi area）Address: 106-0032 Tokyo, Minato-ku, Roppongi 6 chome, Roppongi HillsWebsite: Roppongi HillsAkihabara CrossfieldAddress: 101-0021 Tokyo, Chiyoda-ku, Sotokanda 4-14-1Website:Akihabara CrossfieldUchimizu EventsDaimaruyu Uchimizu ProjectOpen period: last third of July to mid-AugustLocation: Otemachi・Marunouchi・Yurakucho AreaWebsite: Daimaruyu UchimizuKasumi’s UchimizuOpen period: the first third of AugustLocation: Kasumigaseki Common Gate Central PlazaUchimizukko FestivalOpen period: the first third of AugustWebsite: Uchimizukko Festival (Japanese only)
This place is not protected by koma-inu guardian dogs, but by koma-ryū guardian dragons. The statues have a marvelous strength to them, don’t they?Read also: Japanese Encyclopedia: KomainuMiyazu Souvenirs – Handmade Miyazu-Ame CandyThe taste of Miyazu candy (216 yen) brings back memories of childhood for Japanese people, and will be a new flavor sensation for people eating it for the first time. You can feel the warmth from this candy, as it was made by hand.The tawny brown candy on the left is the standard plain variety, which is made of just sugar and starch syrup. Apparently locals who have moved away from Miyazu for work or other reasons sometimes get sudden cravings for this local flavor.You can buy it on the first floor of the Mipple supermarket, which also carries other souvenirs and locally-produced sake on its shelves.In ClosingWhat do you think?Miyazu City has delicious food, alcohol, great places to stay and interesting shrines. We think that by visiting the spots we have introduced in this series, you can have an experience very close to that of a local Miyazu person.Even if you just say “Kyoto”, there are really many different parts of Kyoto. If you have the chance to come to Kyoto Prefecture, visit Miyazu to see a side of the prefecture which is totally different from the usual city sightseeing fare: Kyoto by the sea.InformationKanemasuAddress: Kyoto, Miyazu City, Kawara 1878Hours: 11:30-15:30 (Lunch) / 18:30~23:00 (Dinner)Closed: WednesdayForeign language support: EnglishClosest station: Miyazu Station (Kyoto Tango Railway)Access: 10 minutes on foot from Miyazu StationPrice range: From 380 yenPhone: 0772-22–3297Homepage: KanemasuManai Jinja ShrineAddress: Kyoto, Miyazu City, Aza-NanbanHours: N/AClosest Station: Amanohashidate Station (KyotoTango Railway)Access: 25 minutes via bus from Amanohashidate; get off at Jinja-maeReligion: ShintōPhone: 0772-27-0006Homepage: Manai Jinja ShrineMippleAddress: Miyazu City, Hama-chō 3012Hours: 9:00-20:00 (Restaurants until 23:00)Closest station: Miyazu Station (KyotoTango Railway)Access: 10 minutes on foot from Miyazu StationPhone: 0772-25-3100 Miyazu City in northern Kyoto is home to one of Japan’s Three Great Scenic Views, Amanohashidate. In Part 1, we introduced a place to stay and a place where travelers can taste great seafood in Miyazu, as well as some interesting local people.We would like to introduce more fantastic Tango spots that we learned about from our local friend. Get a rental bicycle and travel around the area! We’d be delighted to see you enjoy your visit to Kyotoby the sea.Related articles:Seaside Kyoto- A Guide to the Top Spots in Miyazu City (Part 1)Miyazu’s Stovetop-Grilled Specialty, Black ChikuwaMost varieties of chikuwa sold in Japanese supermarkets are colored white, but as you can see in the photo, Miyazu’s chikuwa are black!Black chikuwa are made with zero preservatives, and since every part of the fresh fish – right down to the bones – is used when making the paste, it’s also full of nutrients. The variety of fish used in the chikuwa changes from day to day, so depending on the day, they can have different flavor profiles.At the restaurant Kanemasu – located close to Hachi House, the guest house we mentioned in part one of this series – the cooks will grill the chikuwa on a clay cooking stove, right before your eyes. Kanemasu also grills fresh squid and Iwagaki oysters, as well as other Tango ingredients like dried fish and locally-sourced vegetables, for you to enjoy.We recommend Kanemasu’s “quick-dried” fish, ikkoku boshi. Ikkoku boshi is dried for a mere two or three hours – not to preserve it, but to draw out its umami flavor. Since the flesh is as close to raw as it can be, it’s incredibly soft.Our chikuwa finished cooking while we were looking around the restaurant. Let’s dive in after adding some ginger and soy sauce. The outside of the chikuwa is crisp and savory, and you taste more and more of the umami fish as you chew. We would love for you to sample this if you come to Miyazu.This building is the landmark for finding Kanemasu. It is very close to Mipple, the supermarket we will introduce later on.The Old Home of the Ise Jingū Shrine, Manai Jinja ShrineIt is not unusual in Japan for one enormous shrine to be composed of multiple shrines, such as Mie Prefecture’s Ise Jingū Shrine and Ibaraki Prefecture’s Kashina Jingū Shrine, among others; another example is the Moto-Ise Kono Jinja Shrine (*1).Manai Jinja Shrine is one of the institutions that make up the Moto-Ise Kono Jinja Shrine. The place is regarded as sacred ground, so much so that the Amanohashidate Tourism Association actually warns visitors to “avoid visiting the shrine with impure feelings.”*1: Moto-Ise Kono Jinja Shrine……It is said that in the past, the Ise Jingū Shrine in Mie moved from place to place. Being a Moto-Ise Shrine means that at one point, the gods of Ise Jingū were temporarily enshrined there. These shrines exist all across Japan.Read also:
■App for delicious restaurants【テリヤキ】Price：Free / Monthly Fee（480Yen）Available on: iTunes Store, Google Play※When searching, type in「TERIYAKI」[iTunes Store]https://appsto.re/i6gv8tL[Android]http://teriyaki.me[Facebook]https://www.facebook.com/gourmet.teriyaki[Twitter]https://twitter.com/teriyaki_tweet For tourists visiting Asakusa, Sensoji’s Kaminarimon Gate is an absolute must-see spot. ”Namikiyabu soba”, one of the most historical soba (buckwheat noodle) stores in Japan, is located around 150m away from the Kaminarimon Gate.Founded in 1913, ”Namikiyabu Soba” is One of the Greatest Soba Shops in Japan”Namikiyabu Soba” was established in 1913 and it is one of the greatest shinise(※1) soba shops in Tokyo. The super famous store has appeared on television shows, magazines and even manga (Japanese comic books). It is almost impossible to not know of this shop if you are a soba lover.※1…Shinise – A long-established store with good reputation.At the entrance of the shop, a huge, almost imposing sign reading ”Yabu” hangs atop the shop.It gets really crowded during lunch time and oftentimes there is a queue. It’d be better if you visit the shop after finishing sightseeing around Asakusa, probably after 15:00.From the side of the store, the Kaminarimon Gate can be seen as pictured above.Passing Through the Entrance Appears a Tranquil Space, Full of Japanese SpiritAfter passing through the entrance, there’ll be a tatami style Japanese sitting area to your left hand side.On the right hand side, table seats are also available.Water was served once we sat down and relaxed. In Japan, water usually comes with meals without extra charge.The menu is hung on the wall as pictured above. We ordered the basic”Zaru soba”(750 yen) and the positively reviewed ”Yamakake soba” (1000 yen).”Zaru soba” Allows You to Enjoy the Natural Flavor of Soba.First of all, we started from the simple ”Zaru soba”. Soba is served on a tray that drains well.Soak the soba inside the special dipping sauce and then it’s ready to eat. You can also eat it with wasabi and spring onions if preferred. The dipping sauce is not so sweet and has strong-flavor due to the soy bean sauce. The refreshing taste allows one to enjoy the scent of soba noodles.Ladies’ Favorite: the Healthy ”Yamakake Soba”For people who want to enjoy the grated yam, ”Tororo”, ”Yamakake soba” here is their best choice. The cold soba is covered heavily by ”Tororo”. The “Tororo” was already perfectly seasoned with dipping sauce. The black thing that can be seen in the middle of the picture is thoroughly flavored seaweed.Since Namikiyabu’s soba noodles have the best natural scent, they can be consumed just fine with just salt. With adequate firmness, the noodles do go down well!Finally, add the soba yu (the water that soba noodles had simmered in) into the dipping sauce. For soba lovers, it is customary to finish the dish with soba yu.The fantastic balance is created by mixing the natural scent of soba and the special dipping sauce. It is less sweet, so the aftertaste is quite refreshing and perfect for finishing the meal.There are many shops with reputable origins in Asakusa. Amongst all these shops, Namikiyabu soba has been loved by people through all generations. The secret of its popularity must be its decent taste and warm treatment towards guests.It has been mentioned in guidebooks very often. If you want to know more about Japan, or Tokyo’s soba noodles, then Namikiyabu soba has to be on your must-visit list.InformationNamikiyabuAddress: 2-11-9 Kaminarimon, Taitō-ku, Tokyo-toBusiness Hours :Weekdays 11:00-19:30Holidays: ThursdayWi-Fi: Not availableCredit Cards: AcceptedMulti-language menus: English menu availableNearest Station: 7-min walk from Asakusa/Tawaharacho station of Ginza Line / A-5-min walking from Asakusa station of Tsukuba expressPrice range: 1,000-1,900YenTelephone: 03-3841-1340Official HP: http://r.gnavi.co.jp/3124405/In cooperation with TERIYAKI to help you just find the restaurants you’re looking for
Located near Toshimaen Station in Tokyo’s Nerima ward, which is just 12 minutes by train from Ikebukuro, Toshimaen Park is a popular destination for those who live in the western area of Tokyo and Saitama. This is also one of the oldest amusement parks in Tokyo.Toshimaen Park hosts its 15th Annual Hydrangea Festival in 2017 from May 27th to June 30th, featuring 10,000 flower trees of a total of 150 species. The whole garden will be litten up when it starts to get dark. Those brilliant and colorful fairies you have seen during daytime will change into their nightgowns. And there they are – irresistibly attractive and mysterious.In Closing The main attraction of the festival, the Hydrangea Garden (or “Ajisai-en” in Japanese), is separated into various sections. Walking around the park, you will pass through valleys filled with colorful globes of flowers, walk under a 20-meter flower tunnel to different parts of the park or enjoy the view from under a traditional Japanese pavilion’s roof. But don’t give up going to the park just because of the rain. You will see that the hydrangea is indeed a flower of the rain, as it will show its healthiest state and loveliest colors in the mist and humidity of a rainy day.Hydrangeas in Their NightgownsFrom June 3rd to the 25th, the park extends its opening time to 19:30. After 17:00, you can visit the Hydrangea Garden with just 300 yen as admission fee. Staying there before and after dusk, you will be surprised by how the atmosphere of the garden changes. In just a few days, you will suddenly realize how much these special flowers are loved in Japan. You can see hydrangeas blooming everywhere: at the entrances of houses, at shrines and temples, at street corners, inside restaurants, and so on. Once a year, thanks to these beautiful flowers, the city shows another face, which is misty and dreamlike.A Hydrangea Paradise in Toshimaen Park From around the end of May, it becomes hotter and hotter in Japan. The rainy season is drawing near – in just a few more days, the cool blessing of rain will come upon us and ease the heat of early summer. This will mark the beginning of a mass blooming of hydrangeas, the flowers that represent the rainy season.What Is the Hydrangea (Ajisai)? Later, as the flower got more popular, different species were bred and selected to create new species with new colors. Nowadays, we can see gardens full of hydrangeas in many different colors blooming side by side. You can also hop on the steam locomotive train and take a tour around the park. The view from the train is exclusive and very different from how you see the garden from the walking pathways. One ride costs 300 yen. Tokyo Best 5 Hydrangea Spots – The Joy Of The Rainy Season Hydrangea is a type of bush flower originally from southern and eastern Asia (Japan, China, the Himalayas and Indonesia) and the Americas. In Japan, it is called ajisai. This name seems to be deriving from a combination of ‘atsumaru’ which means ‘to gather’ and ‘ai’ – the word for ‘indigo blue’. It refers to the many small blue flowers that bloom all together. Please note that it’s quite tricky to visit the park during this time of the year. The rain may take you by surprise at any time, and you may need to take shelter for a while then come back again. One small tip for you: always keep a folding umbrella inside your bag, even when the weather forecast says it’s unlikely to rain that day. The hydrangeas gradually change color according to the chemical make-up and pH of the soil. This unique characteristic has given the hydrangea, together with lantana, another name in Japanese – Shichihenge, which means “seven transformations”, referring to its color-changing properties. Toshimaen, one of the parks with the richest history in Japan, is opening its famous Hydrangea Garden very soon. The lovely flowers inside this garden are so soothing that you’ll forget about the upcoming hot summer and about your busy daily life.Prepare your nicest umbrella and let’s go to the hydrangea paradise in Toshimaen! Toshimaen View Informationamusement_parkRead also Tsuyu (Rainy Season) – Japanese Encyclopedia Japan’s Rainy Season 2019: Travel Tips And What To Wear
COCOON CITY is a large shopping facility neighboring the JR Saitama-Shintoshin Station. It consists in three buildings – Cocoon 1, Cocoon 2 and Cocoon 3.Cocoon 1In Cocoon 1 there are around 100 shops: clothing stores, cosmetics shops, cafés and restaurants, bookstores, a supermarket and drugstores.Cocoon 2 houses a number of 164 shops and restaurants.Brands that are popular with overseas customers, such as Uniqlo and Mujirushi ryōhin (MUJI) are also here. In addition, there are fashion stores displaying trendy items, such as H&M, as well as select shops with high quality and unique items.Spaces for other purposes such as the “Cocoon Square”, a place where events are organized, “Cocoon kitchen” in the Food Court, or “Cocoon Dining” in the restaurant area, can also be found in this building.Cocoon 3In Cocoon 3 you can find a large electronical appliance store, sportswear shops, pet shops and bicycle stores.COCOON CITY is, just like its name suggests, a facility that gathers all the stores in the city in one place. It is very pleasant to forget time and just enjoy shopping here. Shopping Destinations Around Ōmiya StationIn the proximity of Ōmiya Station there are several shopping malls. It might be enjoyable to check them all out, but each one has its own distinctive features, so we will introduce them here in order.2. Sogō ŌmiyaSogō Ōmiya is a department store located around the West Exit of Ōmiya Station. 13 stories high, this building houses supermarkets, men’s and ladies’ clothing stores, as well as restaurants. There are also many luxury brand stores here.3. Ōmiya ArcheŌmiya Arche, located also at the West Exit of Ōmiya Station is a facility housing various commercial companies. In this building you can find several shops handling fashion and interior design items popular with young people in their teens or twenties. Because of its convenient location near the Ōmiya station, events and celebrations are often organized here.4. The DOM Shopping Center at the Ōmiya Station, West ExitIn the DOM Shopping Center area around the West Exit of Ōmiya Station, there are stores like MARUI and OPA with a large variety of fashion shops, as well as the Daiei supermarket and TOKYU HANDS, which handles interior design and daily use items.5. Takashimaya, ŌmiyaŌmiya Takashimaya is a department store in the area of Ōmiya Station, East Exit. Takashimaya is different from other department stores in that, while it can be found countrywide, it sells products specific to each region. Therefore, in the Ōmiya store you can find souvenirs and other items that are specific to Saitama prefecture.6. LUMINE ŌmiyaLUMINE Ōmiya is a shopping center located in the building above Ōmiya Station. The direct access from the station is one of the specific features of this store. It is especially popular among ladies in their late twenties.7. Aeon LaketownIn front of Koshigaya Laketown Station in Saitama prefecture, there is the Aeon Laketown pictured above.Aeon Laketown consists in three areas – “kaze”, “mori” and “Laketown Outlet”. In the “kaze” area there are many shops for young people and couples, while the “mori” area is dedicated rather to families. In the “Laketown Outlet” you can buy the products of various fashion brands at affordable prices.There are a total of 710 shops in these three buildings, so you would need more than one day to visit them all.8. Mitsui Outlet Park, IrumaMitsui Outelet Park is an outlet park in Iruma city, Saitama prefecture. There are 204 shops in in this facility: 181 outlets, 6 restaurants, 11 shops in the food court and 6 other shops.This outlet is very popular, being visited in weekends by people who live in the area, as well as by people from other towns in Saitama, who come here for shopping.In ConclusionIt is easy to reach the shopping spots in Saitama from Tokyo, and their greatest appeal is that they are located in the proximity of train stations, making it possible for customers to enjoy a whole day of shopping. We warmly recommend you check them out along with the Saitama cuisine restaurants and the leisure destinations in the area.For other great sightseeing destinations in Saitama, please refer to our special feature on Saitama Prefecture.Sponsored by Saitama Prefecture Saitama prefecture, which neighbors Tokyo in the north, has many impressive sightseeing destinations. There are places where one can enjoy the cuisine and leisure activities specific to Saitama, and the fact that they are all close to Tokyo adds to their appeal.Read also:Only in Saitama Prefecture! Exciting Activities and Gorgeous SightsIf You Visit Saitama, You Must Try These Gourmet DishesConvenient Shopping Facilities in SaitamaIn addition to delicious cuisine and unique leisure activities, Saitama has large scale shopping facilities and popular outlet malls, which makes it a convenient shopping destination.The large shopping facilities contain various stores. From fashion items to food and souvenirs, anything is available here. They are very convenient to the travelers who would like to buy something on their trip.We will introduce some of the shopping spots in Saitama. Some of the restaurants featured in our previous article are also close by, so you could visit them on the same occasion.1. COCOON CITY (Saitama-Shintoshin)
Here is the popular coin case. It’s so cute how Duffy’s face makes up the entire body of the case!The coin case also comes with a cord that you can hang around your neck. These are items that you can not only use inside the park, but also on a daily basis. Pictured above is the ShellieMay coin case.Characters Available: Duffy, ShellieMay, Gelatoni, StellaLouPrice: 1700 yenSize: 14cm (length) x 22cm (width)4. Backpacks With Adorable Ears First on the list are definitely plush dolls. For Duffy fans these are must-buy merchandise. Enjoy an adventure in Tokyo Disney Resort together with Duffy just like Mickey, who kept Duffy close to his side even during his long voyage.The plush dolls come in sizes S, M, and L with the S size being the best size for carrying around. The M and L sizes are too large to walk around with, but would perfect to keep at home.Characters Available: Duffy, ShellieMay, Gelatoni (S, M only), and StellaLou (S only)Price & Size:S… 3900 yen, approximately 30cm in height when sittingM… 11,000 yen, approximately 50cm in height when sittingL… 52,000 yen, approximately 65cm in height when sitting2. Hand Puppets: Use Your Hands To Play! Here’s a puppet Duffy that you can maneuver by putting your hand inside. It would be fun to role play each of the characters and play around with them!The puppets are slightly smaller than the S sized plush dolls, so being able to play with them easily is a great appeal of the product. We also recommend these to puppets for those with children.Characters Available: Duffy, ShellieMay, GelatoniPrice: 2570 yenSize: Approximately 20cm in height when in a sitting position3. Coin Cases are Great For Daily Use Pictured above are StellaLou and Duffy chocolates. The different chocolates packed into this box are almost too charming to eat. In addition to these chocolate, candies, cookies, and other treats are also available for purchase.Price: The chocolate pictured above is 1200 yenWhere to Buy These GoodsThe merchandise of Duffy and his friends that we’ve introduced in this article can be purchased at McDuck’s Department Store inside American Waterfront at Tokyo DisneySea.These goods are also for sale at Aunt Peg’s Village Store (American Waterfront) and Galleria Disney (Mediterranean Harbor).These goods may sell out or change in design and price, so please check the official character page (Japanese) for the latest information. This tote bag is as fluffy as Duffy’s fur. The Duffy badge stitched onto the lower right of the bag is fashionable as well. This is another item convenient for everyday use.Characters Available: Duffy, ShellieMayPrice: 2900 yenSize: 30cm (width) x 22cm (height)6. Plush Doll Badges Make for a Great Accent Accessory! Look for Duffy Merchandise at DisneySea!Duffy, an adorable and charming Disney character, is a teddy bear made by Minnie Mouse for Mickey when he was setting sail for a long voyage. The bear was nicknamed Duffy because he was put inside of a duffle bag.Duffy’s friends consists of the female bear ShellieMay, the talented painter cat Gelatoni, StellaLou, a bunny who loves to dance. You are actually only able to buy goods of Duffy and his friends at Tokyo DisneySea!In this article, we’ll introduce Duffy goods that you’ll definitely want to get your hands on when you visit Tokyo DisneySea.1. Must-Buy Plush Dolls Here’s another product perfect for using at home. This is a simple tissue box case featuring Duffy’s face. This would make an adorable addition to your room. Pictured above is the ShellieMay tissue box cover.Characters Available: Duffy, ShellieMayPrice: 2600 yenSize: 25cm (width) x 8cm (height) x 13cm (depth)10. Indulge in Delicious Chocolate This plush doll badge is a size that fits snugly into your hands. There are many types of plush doll badges available, like Duffy wearing his different outfits. These keychains are a compact fifteen centimeters, making them a wonderful accent for your your pencil case or bag.Characters Available: Duffy, ShellieMay, Gelatoni, StellaLouPrice: Around 1500 yenSize: 14 to 19cm7. A Smartphone Case That’ll Always be With You These indoor slippers are so adorable that you’ll think twice about using them. They also have a soft texture that is perfect for using at home. Sizes run on the slightly smaller side, so be sure to purchase them after checking if they fit you.Characters Available: Duffy, ShellieMayPrice: 3000 yenSize: Approximately 22.5 – 24.5cm9. A Unique Tissue Box Cover There are several types of bags of Duffy and his friends, but we especially recommend the backpack. The upper portion of the bag is adorned with ears and the rest of the backpack features a cute Duffy design.If you put your belongings into this backpack, you’ll free up both of your hands and it’ll be easier to walk around the park!Characters Available: Duffy, ShellieMayPrice: 4500 yenSize: 26.5cm (width) x 37cm (height; includes ears and ribbon)5. Fluffy Tote Bags Want to always have Duffy with you? Then how about this smartphone case? If you take out your phone, snuggly fit in a Duffy case from your pocket, it would be adorable, wouldn’t it? You might be inclined to take more care of your smartphone when you start using such a cute case.Characters Available: Duffy, ShellieMay, Gelatoni, StellaLouPrice: 3900 yen (Gelatoni and StellaLou are 3300 yen)Size: Can be used with smartphones that are the following size. Between 108-145mm (length), 56-70mm (width), 9mm (thickness)8. Be with Duffy at Home with Indoor Slippers Tokyo Disney Resort View Informationamusement_parkYou May Also Like6 ‘Only in Japan’ Souvenirs From Tokyo Disney ResortA Beginner’s Guide To Tokyo Disneyland6 Popular Snacks Only At Tokyo Disney ResortMade in cooperation with Oriental Land Co., Ltd.
Tamonten statue (多聞天像)The guardian deities that stand watch over Sanmon are two of the Four Heavenly Kings of Buddhism: Kōmokuten and Tamonten.The hondō or main temple building appears before you once you pass under Sanmon, and if you walk to the right of the hondō, you will come face-to-fase with Tokyo’s Daibutsu.Japan’s Third Largest Bronze BuddhaThis Daibutsu is 13 meters high from base to crown and weighs an incredible 32 tons. You can get a better impression of the size of this Buddha by comparing it to the height of the worshipers around it.Of the cast bronze statues of the Buddha found in Japan, this is the third largest.With impressively soft features for a bronze statue, this Buddha is enshrined here seated upon a sacred lotus flower pedestal. To find such a solidly black Daibutsu is quite unusual for Japan.This particular Daibutsu was enshrined here in 1977 in order for the area to be reborn from the tragic events of the Great Kanto Earthquake of 1923 and the Great Tokyo Air Raid in 1945 and others, and to pray for a better future.Though its history is much shorter than that of the Daibutsu in Nara or Kamakura, it has become a much-beloved symbol for the people that live in this area. Kōmokuten statue (広目天像) Not Just Nara and Kamakura – Tokyo’s Hidden DaibutsuWhen thinking of Daibutsu, or Great Buddha statues, the majority of people immediately picture the one at Nara’s Tōdaiji Temple or the one at Kōtokuin in Kamakura.But, surprise! There is a place in Tokyo where you can see a Daibutsu too.So, today let’s head to this mysterious place that hides a Daibutsu statue, Jorenji Temple.Read also:One Of The Largest In Japan – The Great Buddha Of Shōhōji, GifuTodaiji: Feel the Ten Century Hitory of Nara’s Great Buddha Hall500 Years of History, Now in a Residential AreaJōrenji Temple stands amid a lushly green and quiet residential area.Of its over 500 year history, only in the last 80 or so years have its surroundings been known as Akatsuka, in Itabashi ward. When you pass through the gates, you will soon see a staircase and, once you have climbed that, you will see Sanmon, the entrance gate to the temple itself. It is rumored that this area was once the location of the fortress Akatsukajō which is why, on Sanmon, the characters for Akatsukayama (赤塚山) have been written. Installed in front of the Daibutsu is an important piece of equipment, the jōkōro – a container where visitors can insert incense as an offering.By placing a lit stick of incense in this large brazier and immersing yourself in the smoke, it is believed in Japan that, not only will you bring good luck to yourself, but you will also purify and cure any ills that you may have. If you’d like to have better luck or cure yourself, by all means take part in this simple ritual.Read also: The Mysterious Smoke at SensōjiInteresting Stone Statues on the GroundsWithin the grounds of Jōrenji Temple are, with the exception of the Daibutsu, some rather unusual statues.This is a stone statue of the “Enduringly Patient Ogre”, who, despite his powerful pose and droll expression, seems rather pleasant.Here is the stone “Wisdom Granting Bodhisattva”; if you visit this statue, you’re said to become more insightful or intelligent. Allegedly.There are even more stone statues to be found within the grounds. As the grounds aren’t too vast, you should definitely come and hunt for the remaining statues for yourself.One Route from the Station to the Great BuddhaThe nearest station is Shimoakatsuka on the Tōbu Tōjō line; when you exit the ticket gates, turn to your left.You will see a railway crossing ahead of you; cross over this and keep walking in a straight line along the road.After walking straight for about 20 minutes, you will see a sign for the Akatsuka Botanical Garden. As it is a fairly small sign, be careful not walk too far and miss it.At this intersection, turn left and you will see Jōrenji Temple right before your eyes.There is no entrance fee for Jōrenji Temple, however you may purchase omamori (amulets) here; they are very interesting to take a look at. And as the Akatsuka Botanical Garden is nearby, you will feel surrounded by greenery, which makes this a great area to walk in.This area is still relatively unknown to tourists, both domestic and international, which means that you can really take your time and look about. So what do you think? Doesn’t it sound lovely to get away from the hustle and bustle and see a Daibutsu while still staying in Tokyo?Recommended articlesThe Great Buddha in Ushiku, One Of The World’s Tallest Bronze Statues!One Of The Largest In Japan – The Great Buddha Of Shōhōji, GifuBuddha In The Heart of The City: Five Great Tokyo TemplesTired of Social Life? Here is Where You Visit: “Buddha statue BAR TERA”InformationTokyo Daibutsu (Jorenji Temple) Address: Tokyo, Itabashi, Akatsuka 5-28Hours: 8:00-16:00 (last entrance 15:45)Closed: -Wi-fi: -Credit Cards: -Other Languages: -Nearest Station: Shimoakatsuka Station (赤塚駅) on the Tōbu Tōjō line, Akatsuka (赤塚駅) on the Tokyo Metro Yūrakuchō lineAccess: 18 minute walk from Shimoakatsuka station, 20 minute walk from Exit 1 of Akatsuka stationEntrance Fee: NonePhone Number: 03-3975-3325Homepage: Tokyo Daibutsu (Jōrenji Temple) (External translation software enabled)
The halls and main shrine of Daiji-ji Temple are simple and built according to Zen principles. Behind the Kawagoe Castle Fujimi Tower Ruins there is actually a small shrine, called Mitake Shrine. This shrine that quietly stands here might have been the model for the anime’s Mikage Shrine. The stairs next to Bokusui falls are a sight that any fan of “The Anthem of the Heart” would recognize. It was here, on these stairs, that the main character Jun realized her words hurt others losing her ability to speak. The stairs drawn in the anime look just like the actual stairs! On the stage located in front of the main hall, performances of the Shinto ritual dance called “kagura” (*3) are held. The Washinomiya Saibara Kagura is a type of ritual dance that still retains its old style and can be seen six times a year. It’s a sight that can only be enjoyed at Washinomiya Shrine.(*3) Kagura: a sacred Shinto dance ritual accompanied by music that is dedicated to the deities. Chichibu’s Shibazakura HillSaitama prefecture has recently become known as the setting for many popular anime series too. Various locations in Chichibuappear in Anohana: The Flower We Saw That Day(also known as simply Anohana) and The Anthem of the Heart. Kawagoe is the stage to the anime series Kamisama Kiss (Japanese), while Washinomiya Shrine in Kuki was used as the model of the shrine featured in Lucky Star (Japanese). Lucky Star in particular has many fans overseas, but in general there has been an increase in the number of people coming to visit these and other settings for popular anime, manga and even drama series in Japan.Going back and forth between the world of fiction and the real places, we’ll introduce to you some of the amazing places in Saitama that became popular as the setting for anime works.Chichibu: The City of Touching Dramas (“Anohana”, “The Anthem of the Heart”)Chichibu city is an 80-minute train ride on the Seibu Railways Rapid train from Ikebukuro Station in Tokyo. For those who want to comfortably go around the city’s sightseeing spots and anime settings, we recommend going to the Chichibu Tourist Association and using their rent-a-cycle service (Japanese). It’s located in front of the station. You can rent the bicycles there from 2 hours for 300 yen to one day for 1000 yen. It’s a convenient way to see the sights of the city.1. Hitsujiyama ParkIf you head east after exiting Seibu Chichibu Station, you’ll arrive at Hitsujiyama Park, a park on top of a small hill that’s at the edge of Chichibu city. Located within this park is Shibazakura Hill, which gains attention throughout the nation every year between the end of April to the beginning of May.If you head towards this hill from the Seibu Chichibu Station direction, you’ll first see Bokusui Waterfall at the bottom of Mt. Hitsuji. The Taisho period author and poet Wakayama Bokusui loved travelling and created several works about this area because he liked it so much. After you spend the day touring around the sights of Chichibu, you’re bound to see another appealing part of this town at night. If you look up at the night skies, you’ll see stars spreading out all around you.Many people will remember the last scene of the movie “Anohana” the moment they look up at the night sky. This very sky may have been one of the reasons why Chichibu was chosen as a stage for this story.Kawagoe: Elegant and Retro Atmosphere (“Kamisama Kiss”) Jorin-ji Temple is located in a quiet residential area in the north side of Chichibu. The eleven-faced Kannon statue of this temple is said to have been created in 1595. It has been preserved with care in this temple ever since. If you walk to the east of Kanetsuki street for several minutes, you’ll arrive at the ruins of Kawagoe Castle’s Fujimi Tower. When you climb up the stairs, you’ll arrive at a place on top of the hill where the tower used to be during the Edo period. It’s said that one was able to see Mt. Fuji from the top of this tower.Incidentally, Mikage Shrine, which is the main setting of “Kamisama Kiss” is set as being located on top of a hill at the edge of the town, but the Fujimi Tower Ruins is the only hill where you can look down at the entire town! The Jizo statues in the temple grounds If you walk down Kanetsuki street with its appealing stores, your eyes will be drawn to the unique Toki no Kane, or Bell of Time. The bell tower has encountered fires many times since Kawagoe was a prosperous castle town in the Edo period, and has been rebuilt every time. Located in a 16-meter tall tower, the bell rings four times a day (6:00, 12:00, 15:00, and 18:00). The sound of the Toki no Kane is loved by the people of the city and it has been designated as one of the “Best 100 Soundscapes of Japan”.The Toki no Kane can be said to be Kawagoe’s symbol. Its elegant and fine shape often appears in “Kamisama Kiss”. You’ll be able to spend an exciting time in the city because you’ll feel like you’re taking part in the story. Toki no Kane (Bell of Time) View Information7. Kawagoe Castle Fujimi Tower Ruins Main entrance of Daishi Kawagoe (Kita-in Temple)In addition to these spots, tyou can also check out the Daishi Kawagoe Kita-in Temple, which is known as an Important Cultural Heritage building. There is also Hikawa shrine, which is a famous matchmaking shrine here as well. Kawagoe has many amzing sights and you can spend a splendid day walking around town all the while enjoying potato-based sweets, a local specialty. From the top of Old Chichiibu Bridge, we recommend observing Arakawa River flowing by and the scenery of the town past the river. After returning to Chichibu, let’s stop by Banba Shopping District. It’s between Ohanabatake station and Chichibu station. In “The Anthem of My Heart” you can see the Banba Shopping District at night, but if you come during the daytime, you can explore the surroundings while walking around and eating taiyaki or steamed buns sold in the stores that line both sides of the street. There are stores that sell souvenirs from Chichibu here, as well as regional crafts.If you head towards Chichibu Station, you’ll arrive at Chichibu Shrine located in the center of town. The base of the famous Chichibu festival is none other than Chichibu shrine. Please stop by to see the appealing and elegant main hall of this shrine.Fans of “Anohana” and “The Anthem of My Heart” can discover posters of their favorite characters throughout Banba Shopping District. We definitely recommend taking a walk around this area. みやのかわ商店街振興組合 View Information4. Jorin-ji Temple The main hall of Daiji-ji TempleThe main hall is known for having many valuable statues enshrined within it. Mount Buko, with its fascinatingly strong presence, is an important element when it comes to creating the scenery around Chichibu. It is so central to the area that it appears in the background in many scenes of the movies set in Chichibu.3. Banba Shopping District You’ll see a lot of neat things while looking around at souvenir shops! The “Kamisama Kiss” fans will surely get excited when they’ll see fox maskes in Kawagoe, the stage for “Kamisama Kiss”.Let’s go out and explore the Kawagoe spots that appear in this popular anime series!6. Toki no Kane (“The Bell of Time”) If you walk 12 minutes west from Onohara Station, located in the northern side of the city, you will arrive at the Old Chichibu Bridge. This bridge that crosses the Arakawa river was completed in 1932. After the New Chichibu Bridge was completed, this one became a promenade bridge. After passing through the large torii gate and entering the grounds of Washinomiya Shrine, you’ll feel a stillness reminiscent of those ancient times. 100 carved Japanese Kannon statues can be found on the large copper bell located within the precincts of this temple. It is a precisely made bell and is designated as one of Saitama prefecture’s Tangible Cultural Properties. The history of Daiji-ji Temple goes back to 1490. Kawagoe with its old town feel is also called Koedo (*2). It has gained attention from domestic and international travelers alike, thanks to its fine shrines and temple, historical buildings from the Edo period, and shopping district lined with retro stores.*2 Koedo: ‘ko’ means ‘small’ in Japanese, while Edo is the former name of Tokyo, making this area ‘little Edo’ or a city reminiscent of old Tokyo. After exploring further from Mitake Shrine, you’ll discover a small Inari shrine, called Fushimi Inari Shrine. The Mitake Shrine and Fushimi Inari Shrine located here in the same area might remind you of the two main characters in “Kamisama Kiss” – Nanami, who suddenly becomes the guardian deity of a local shrine, and Tomoe, the powerful divine messenger. Your heart will dance with excitement when you think that the relationship between the two characters might have been inspired by these shrines! Kawagoe Castle Fujimi Tower Ruins View Information The scene where kids in “Anohana” are playing hide and seek within Jyorin-ji’s precincts is one of the important motifs in the movie. The vivid details of the temple drawn in the movie are inspired by the design of the original building. Jorin-ji Temple View Information5. Old Chichibu Bridge From Daiji-ji you can see Mount Buko, located in between Chichibu city and Yokoze town. It’s a limestone mountain witha very distinctive appearance. Many fans of the movie “The Anthem of My Heart” will surely remember seeing the precincts of Daiji-ji in the film. The depictions of the main hall were drawn down to the smallest detail according to the original.Within these very temple grounds, the main character received from her friend a very important hint, namely that “if something is hard to express in words, you can try to sing it out”. This is a decisive scene for the development of the story.Within Daiji-ji’s grounds, you’ll see movie posters and votive pictures that feature characters from the movie as well. It’s a spot where you can sit on a bench just like those drawn in the movie and enjoy a moment recollecting the story. Daiji-ji Temple View Information Saitama prefecture is well-known for its refined, traditional city streets and beautiful natural spots. It’s also a perfect place to go on a day trip from Tokyo.Chichibu city has famous sites such as Shibazakura Hill and the Ashigakubo icicles (Japanese). Other places that are filled with sites that everyone should see at least once are Kawagoe city with its Edo period atmosphere and Saitama city which has the Omiya bonsai village. Within the grounds of Washinomiya Shrine you will also find a pond called “The Pond of Light”. According to a legend, a dragon god lives inside this pond. It’s a mysterious place where the light reflecting on the water surface makes you feel as though you were peering into the world of myth. The area around Kawagoe Station is different from the sightseeing spots with their Japanese traditional styles. Near the station you will find the modern side of Kawagoe instead. As Kawagoe has both a modern side to it and a mysterious atmosphere around its various shrines and temples, it was just perfect as the setting for “Kamisama Kiss”, which was inspired by the relationship between the world of humans and the world of gods.Kuki: A History Dating Back Centuries (“Lucky Star”)8. Washinomiya ShrineWashinomiya Shrine, in Saitama prefecture’s Kuki city, is one of the oldest shrines in the Kanto region and is a highly revered shrine. Inside the precincts, traces of houses from ancient times were discovered and that gave weight to the thought that this place has a history dating back to prehistoric times (BCE). You can see the city from above if you climb up the stairs to the top of the hill. Nearby is Mt. Buko Museum (Japanese) and Yamato Art Museum (Japanese). They’re the ideal spots to learn more about Chichibu city. Hitsujiyama Park View Informationpark2. Daiji-ji TempleIf you go down the east side of Mt. Hitsuji, you’ll arrive at the town of Yokoze. Follow the road north and Chichibu Fudasho No. 10 (*1) Daiji-ji Temple will appear on your left.*1 Fudasho – a temple located on a pilgrimage route, where pilgrims receive a paper aknowledging their visit (“fuda”). The New Chichibu Bridge is a cable stayed bridge for transportation purposes. Its expansive build will leave quite the impression on you. It appears many times alongside Old Chichibu Bridge in “Anohana” in the scenes where the characters meet to go to their “secret base”. You can go to the underpass and look at both bridges from below too. Read also:Saitama Travel Guide: 35 Sightseeing Spots, Food, Shopping And More!Spots You Must Visit in Saitama Prefecture! Washinomiya Shrine became the model for the Washinomiya Shrine found in the popular anime “Lucky Star”, where the father of the Hiiragi sisters works as the chief priest. You can find “Lucky Star” related items within the shrine grounds here; the illustrated votive boards of the “Lucky Star” characters are particularly popular. Washinomiya Shrine View InformationIn ConclusionDid you enjoy this tour of Saitama’s cities? Instead of the classic sightseeing spots in Japan, there are several places that are important settings for stories, as well as for recent manga and anime series. How about stopping by Chichibu, Kawagoe, and Kuki during your vacation and taking a look at some spots that are loved by many people? The fact that old folktales and the new stories created by contemporary creators overlap is one of the most appealing points of the cities in Saitama prefecture.For other great sightseeing destinations in Saitama, please refer to our special feature on Saitama Prefecture.You May Also Like:Saitama Travel Guide: 35 Sightseeing Spots, Food, Shopping And More!Spots You Must Visit in Saitama Prefecture!5 Unique Traditional Crafts Of Saitama: Japanese Paper, Silk, Dolls And More!Saitama’s 7 Best Accommodations: Resort Hotels To Traditional Ryokan6 Amazing Rāmen Restaurants In SaitamaSponsored by Saitama Prefecture
Shimizu ward 清水区 in Shizuoka prefecture is the setting of the well-known and endearing Japanese manga series, Chibi Maruko-chan. Chibi (“small”) and chan (a suffix used to address girls in a friendly way), is a classic anime that centers on the life of a young girl named Maruko; it is still broadcast both domestically and overseas, even today.Did you know that there was a fun place in Maruko’s home place, Shizuoka, where you could experience the world of Chibi Maruko-chan? This time we will be introducing you to Chibi Maruko-chan Land, a place that is gaining much attention from both domestic and overseas travellers alike. Let’s take a look at the charming points that this attraction has to offer.Let’s Take a Peak into the Sakura Household!Chibi Maruko-chan Land is located on the third floor of S-PULSE DREAM PLAZA, the multi-complex theme park in Shimizu ward. This must-see place recreates the Sakura family home, where the star of the anime series Momoko Sakura (whose nickname is Chibi Maruko-chan) resides.Chibi Maruko-chan’s Father: The visage of father Hiroshi drinking with his meal has been faithfully re-created.This is the room of Maruko’s older sister, Sakiko. When you push the button in front of this room, a device allows each character to talk.Experience Chibi Maruko-chan through Cosplay!At Chibi Maruko Land, you can rent the character’s clothes for just 300 yen. The attire of the following 6 characters are available for hire: Maruko, Tama-chan (Maruko’s friend), Hanawa-kun , Noguchi-san, Migiwa-san, and Shirogasaki. (*kun is an informal suffix added to names of young men; san is a polite gender-neutral suffix)Picture on the left: Tama-chan (Maruko’s friend). Pictured on the right: Maruko (the main character).Kids, as well as adults, can enjoy dressing up in the various costumes, so the visit to Chibi Maruko Land can be a great occasion for a family outing.Photo Settings that Showcase Shizuoka CityChange into your clothes of choice and head to the Chibi-Maru photo studio, where you can enjoy a photo shoot to commemorate your visit. The backdrop consists of illustrations exclusive to the Shizuoka area, such as Mount Fuji and pine trees.Shizuoka is the number one place in Japan for tea production. In this picture you can see children impersonating female tea pickers. Chatsumami-musume is the Japanese term for female tea pickers, or tea girls, who used to pick tea leaves from the plantations. They are wearing hand towels (tasuki) on their heads, and navy-blue kimonos. The traditional term for hand towel is tenugui, which refers to the cotton cloth used to wipe your hands and face. Tasuki refers to the the piece of string that is used to tie up the long sleeves of the traditional attire, keeping them out of the way when working.An Exhibit of Momoko Sakura’s AutographA manuscript bearing the autograph of Momoko Sakura, the creator of Chibi Maruko-chan, as well as materials used in the creation of the anime, are on display in the Momoko Sakura Gallery.There are countless valuable illustrations that die-hard fans can enjoy!The Chibi Maruko-chan manga was based on the childhood memories of the time Momoko Sakura spent in Shimizu district, Shizuoka city, during the period between 1974 and 1975. In the gallery you can expect to see popular everyday objects, toys and magazines from that specific period.Many Fun Souvenirs Line Up on the ShelvesAfter admiring the exhibition, how about looking for souvenirs in the Chibi Maruko Goods Shop!This is a pair of socks embossed with the image of Maruko. These fun items would no doubt please your friends and family!Chibi Maruko sembei(※1) is the most popular souvenir sold at the store. As sembei is the food of Shizuoka city, this store has teamed up with the renowned Japanese confectionery shop Aoi Senbei Honke, to bring you a premium product that promises to be both a feast for your eyes and a delicious treat.※1…… Senbei: Japanese rice crackers. They are made by adding sugar and egg to flour. The dough is then thinly set onto a mould or hotplate, then cooked.This sweet and sugary candy corner is modelled after Maruko’s much-loved candy store, Mitsuya. With traditional candy at an affordable price, the products sold here are very popular among overseas visitors in recent years. The cookies lining the shelves of the store can be bought for about 40 yen or 50 yen.I couldn’t keep my eyes off these exclusive Shizuoka items! Take a look at the products and find a much-loved item to remind you of your travels.A Special Service for Visitors to JapanChibi Maruko Land is becoming a hit with visitors from around Asia – including China and Taiwan. In recent years you can find language support in both English and Chinese at the entrance hall.You can also pick up guidance pamphlets in a variety of languages such as English, Chinese, Taiwanese and Japanese placed at the entrance, enabling a smooth use of the facilities. Free WiFi is also available.How about experiencing the world of Maruko by visiting Chibi Maruko-Chan Land? You’re bound to have an exciting time, jam-packed with curiosity and magic, creating the perfect way for you to spend a fabulous day with your family and friends.InformationChibi Maruko-chan LandAddress: Shikuoka-ken, Shizuoka, Shimizu-ku Irifunechō 13-15Open: 10:00 – 20:00 (Last Entry at 19:30)Closed: -Wi-Fi: FreeCredit Cards: VISA, Mastercard, JCB are accepted.Language Support: Japanese and EnglishMenus in Other Languages: Yes (English, Chinese, Taiwanese)Nearest Station: Shimizu Station (清水駅) on the JR Tōkaido Line (東海道本線)Access: Get the free shuttle bus (heading for S-PULSE DREAM PLAZA) from Shimizu station. It takes 10 minutes.Fee: Adults (Junior High School and above) 600 yen, small children (over 3 years of age) 300 yen.※ Children under 2 years of age enter for free.※ Seniors (Over 65), and those with disabilities can enjoy a 100 yen discount.※ Group Discount (20 or more people) – Adults 540 yen, Small Children 360 yenReligious Information: -Telephone: +81-054-354-3360Official Homepage: Chibi Maruko-chan Land
Japanese sake is a drink loved by many people worldwide. Visitors to Japan often take a bottle of sake as a souvenir for their friends and family. Sake goes well with almost any dish and everyone enjoys it at home or when dining out. Serving sake in a glass is one of the modern and sophisticated methods of drinking sake. At many office parties or business meetings, sake is served in glasses. The glass enhances the flavor of the sake and is especially recommended for cold sake. The thin rim of the glass gives the drink a smoother texture. Glasses are especially good for high-quality, delicate sake, as they allow for the subtle flavors of the drink to be enjoyed. The glass best catches the aroma of fruity, light-bodied sake.Sakazuki – Flat Sake Cups A beverage that is unique to Japan, sake is a type of liquor made from fermented rice. Commonly known as rice wine overseas, the main ingredients of sake are rice and water. For certain types of sake, the short-grain rice is first polished to remove some of its outer layers. The rice undergoes then a fermentation process, being left to age for about six months. The combination of various rice types and the fermenting agent results in various flavors of sake. The more polished the rice, the higher the quality of the sake.Japanese Sake Cups and ContainersThe flavor of the sake alters once its temperature changes. That is why sake is best served in a small cup so that it can be emptied it before its temperature changes. Below we introduce some of the special sake vessels that make sake drinking more fun.Ochoko (Small Sake Cups) and Tokkuri (Sake Flask) The masu is a wooden square box which was originally designed as a measuring tool for rice and sake. It is a square cedar box holding 180 ml of sake at a time. Many restaurants serve sake using masu containers, thus making the old Japanese tradition more cherishable. “Mokkiri-zake”, a practice in which a glass is placed in the masu and filled until it overflows and fills the masu, is nowadays a major attraction at the Japanese izakaya and restaurants. Generally used on ceremonial occasions today, masu is quite popular and makes the sake even more tasty and enjoyable.Glass Sakazuki is a wide-mouthed, flat sake cup. Drinking sake from a sakazuki is an ancient way of enjoying the drink and has been used in Shinto rituals and ceremonies. This cup is most formally lifted to the mouth with two hands: one holds the bottom of the cup and the other hand holds it on one side. Available in a number of sizes from the smallest one to a large showpiece, a sakazuki most typically holds only a few sips. The sakazuki cups are often beautifully decorated and usually made of porcelain, clay or lacquered wood.Wooden Shuki (Sake Vessels) The Japanese have developed a wide range of vessels for drinking and decanting sake, fashioned from a variety of materials that include clay, porcelain, wood, and glass. Let’s see some of the best ways to enjoy sake using traditional Japanese containers and cups.What is Japanese Sake? Shuki is the general name for sake vessels. Some of the shuki are made of pure wood and have a drum-like shape. The aroma of the wood harmonizes with the sake, making it mild and easy to drink. The sake will change its taste and become milder when poured in the wooden shuki.In ConclusionOne can enjoy both hot and cold sake in the all the sake vessels introduced above. Moreover, they match with any type of rice wine! You can gather your own collection of sake vessels when visiting Japan. You can choose them based on either aesthetic features like their shape, color and artistry, or depending on the sake type you plan to drink using them.Sake sets can be purchased at sake specialty stores or at stores selling tableware. We hope you find sake drinking even more enjoyable using the traditional Japanese sake vessels!You May Also LikeAtsukan- Japanese EncyclopediaFrom Sake To Wine – A Guide To Japanese Alcoholic BeveragesFukumitsuya Sake Brewery in Kanazawa – Learn How Premium Sake Is Made!Kameda Shuzo: A 260-Year Old Brewery Producing Sacred Sake (Part 1)Ginza Sushi Ojima – Enjoy Exquisite Japanese Kaiseki Cuisine! Ochoko is a small sake cup. It typically has a shape that allows the fragrance of the sake to gently waft upward. Tokkuri is a small flask containing the sake that is going to be poured in ochoko. Sake sets containing a tokkuri and several ochoko are a popular souvenir from Japan.The ochoko come in various materials and shapes, and it is believed that the taste of the sake changes depending on the size of the cup. For example, if one uses an ochoko with a wide mouth, the fragrance of the sake will be enhanced. When one wants to properly taste the full flavor of the sake, it is best to use an ochoko made with thin materials. Small sake cups with various colors and shapes make a great souvenir.Masu – A Sake Container
H Shopping District opened in 1953. It was once the castle town of Tamba Kameyama Castle. This name was given to the district because the shops that lined the streets at that time were structured in the shape of the letter H. Kameoka, Kyoto is a city that developed as a castle town around what is now the Tamba Kameyama Castle ruins constructed by a Sengoku military commander by the name of Akechi Mitsuhide in 1577. It is located 20 minutes by rapid train from JR Kyoto Station.Unfortunately, there are no remains of the castle. However, traces of hori (*1) can be found in various places like in the picture above when walking through town.*1 Hori: a moat that has been dug to protect a castle from invaders or animal trespassers.What Is H Shopping District? The participating stores are furnished with a sign with a base like the one in the upper left of the photo. When you think of a shopping district, many people imagine there to be an arcade or shops lining the sides of the roads. However, this district consists of a collection of individual shops located in the area.H Shopping District is a place that continues to be loved by the citizens of Kameoka. In this article, we will introduce spots we recommend in the H Shopping District where you can catch glimpses of the everyday lives of its people.This is also a perfect place for a stroll through town.
“Umeda(梅田)” is one of Osaka’s main districts. Most of the locals will agree to that. Umeda is an area in northern Osaka, where many department stores, hotels, and shopping malls are located, creating a lively atmosphere.The Six Stations in UmedaMany railway lines gather in this area, and there are six stations: JR Osaka, Hankyu Umeda, Hanshin Umeda, Osaka Subway Umeda (Midosuji Line), Osaka Subway Higashi-Umeda (Tanimachi Line), and Osaka Subway Nishi-Umeda (Yotsubashi Line).The number of railway stations in a small area can be confusing, so I’ll introduce places where you can easily visit from each stations.1. JR Osaka StationWhen you talk about Umeda, this station can’t be left out.The JR Osaka Staion is the largest station in western Japan, and it connects to the JR Shin-Osaka station, where you can board the Shinkansen（Japanese Bullet train）. Also, there are many sleeper trains and express trains that goes through this station.Grand Front Osaka is the place to visit from here.The largest multiple-purpose facility in Umeda, it opened in 2013.It consists of North Building, South Building, and Umekita Square. There are many restaurants and shopping stores, along with various workshops, entertaining people of all ages.■An oasis in Umeda: “Grand Front Osaka” and the Rooftop Garden of “Osaka Station City.”2. Hankyu Umeda StationHankyu Railway is the owner of this station. You can go to Kyoto or Kobe from here, and many people use this line.You can visit Hankyu Sanban Gai, a shopping center built next to this station, from here.There is also a vast underground mall, with restaurants and shops, along with a booth selling character goods, so you should check them out, too.3. Hanshin Umeda StationHanshin Electric Railway, the owner of the Osaka-based baseball team Hanshin Tigers, known for its zealous fans, owns this station.From here, Diamor Osaka is the place to visit.Whity Umeda, an underground mall, is located right in front of the east ticket gate of the Hanshin Umada station. Diamor Osaka, second to Whity Umeda, is also connected to this station. 4. Osaka Subway Umeda Station (Midosuji Line)The Umeda station of the Midosuji line is owned by the Osaka Municipal Transportation Bureau. It runs under Midosuji, Osaka’s main street, and aptly named after it.Osaka’s subways each has its own line color, and the color of Midosuji line is red, an image of an urban main artery.You can go to the Yodobashi Camera Umeda from this station.Yodobashi Camera is a volume-sales store, supplying almost every electric appliance. It also has a restaurant floor, so many people also visit Yodobashi for that reason.JR Osaka station is the closest to this store, but there’s also a direct underground passage from the Midosuji line station.After going through the ticket gate, take exit 5. It’s very convenient in case of rain, or if it’s too hot to walk outside.5. Osaka Subway Higashi-Umeda Station (Tanimachi Line)The Higashi-Umeda station of the Tanimachi line is also owned by the Osaka Municipal Transportation Bureau, and it runs through an area with many governmental offices and Buddhist temples. Its color is green, which is the color of “Kesa” a robe worn by Buddhist priests.Taiyuji is the place to visit from this station.This is a temple of Koyasan Shingon (高野山真言） Buddhism, and it is said that Koubou-Daishi(弘法大師), who is also known as Master Kukai（空海大師）, founded this temple. It was ravaged by World War II, and scaled down during the post-war reconstruction. Twenty buildings, such as the main sanctuary, Taishido (a shrine for Prince Shotoku), stupa, have been rebuilt within the grounds, and many people come to this place of worship.(A link for further information: yahoo!ロコ)6. Osaka Subway Nishi-Umeda Station (Yotsubashi Line)Yotsubashi line, which runs under Yotsubashisuji, is another subway line owned by the Osaka Municipal Transportation Bureau. Its line color is blue, the image of Osaka’s vein, in contrast to the Midosuji line’s red. It’s also the image of the sea, as this line runs along the coastline.The last recommendation is the Osaka Shiki Theater.The theater is located on the seventh floor of the Herbis Plaza Ent building. The grand opening was 2005, and many famous numbers have been performed since then.In the summer of 2014, “The Lion King” was on stage.And in the EndUmeda is a maze-like area, where even the local people sometimes gets lost.In this article, the sightseeing spots are alotted to their nearest stations. But Umeda is a compact area, and it’s possible to walk to the places mentioned above from any of the six stations.InformationGrand Front OsakaUmekita Square Address: 4-1, Ohfukacho, Kita Ward, Osaka CitySouth Building Address: 4-20, Ohfukacho, Kita Ward, Osaka CityNorth Building Address: 3-1, Ohfukacho, Kita Ward, Osaka CityStation: JR Osaka Station*Grand Front Osaka is connected to the staion with passages on the second and basement floors.Store Hours:Shops / 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.Restaurants / 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.Umekita Cellar / 10 a.m.to 10 p.m.Umekita Floor / 11 a.m. to 4 a.m. (On Sundays and Holidays, from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.)Umekita Dining / 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.Panasonic Center OSAKA / 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.Payment: Credit cards are mostly acceptedOfficial HP：Grandfront OsakaHankyu Sanban GaiAddress: 1-1-3, Shibata, Kita Ward, Osaka CityStation: Hankyu Umeda Station*You can also use the Osaka subway Umeda station (Midosuji line). Exit the north ticket gate, and turn right.Store Hours:Restaurants / 10 a.m. to 11 p.m.Shops / 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.Payment: Credit cards acceptedOfficial HP:http://www.h-sanbangai.com/Diamor OsakaAddress: Osaka Ekimae Diamond Chikagai #1, Umeda 1-chome, Kita Ward, Osaka cityStation: Hanshin Umeda Station*Three minutes’ walk from the station.Telephone: 06-6348-8931Store Hours:Shops / 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.Restaurants / 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.Payment: Credit cards accepted公式HP:DIAMOR OSAKAYodobashi Camera UmedaAddress: 1-1, Ohfukacho, Kita Ward, Osaka CityStation: Osaka Subway Umeda Station (Midosuji line)*Directly connected to exit 5Telephone: 06-4802-1010Store Hours:Yodobashi Camera (from the Second Basement to the Fourth floor) / 9:30 a.m. to 10 p.m.Fashion Floor (from the Fifth to the Seventh floor) / 9:30 a.m. to 10 p.m.Restaurant Floor (Eighth floor) / 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.Payment: Credit cards acceptedOfficial HP: http://www.yodobashi-umeda.com/TaiyujiAddress: 3-7, Taiyuji-cho, Kita Ward, Osaka CityStation: Osaka Subway Higashi-Umeda Station (Tanimachi Line)*Seven minutes’ walk from the station, located across the Tokyu Inn Hotel.*Taiyuji is open to visitors, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.*Crdit cards are not accepted.Official HP: http://www.taiyuji.com/Osaka Shiki TheaterAddress: Seventh Floor, Herbis Plaza Ent, 2-2-22, Umeda, Kita Ward, Osaka CityStation: Osaka Subway Nishi-Umeda Station (Yotsubashi Line)Telephone: 06-6343-7500Herbis Plaza Ent Hours:From the Second Basment Floor to the Fourth Floor / 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.Fifth Floor / 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.Sixthe Floor / 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.Payment: Credit cards are mostly acceptedOfficial HP: Shiki Theatre Company
Ginza is known as an area lined with world famous high-end fashion boutiques – but did you know that there is a toy shop amid the glimmer and glitz of the prestigious Ginza area? The store carries about 200,000 kinds of toys, starting from the basement floor all the way up to the 4th floor. There are restaurants on the 5th and 6th floors, and the 8th floor has a theater.The name of the toy shop is Hakuhinkan TOY PARK.The store opened in Ginza in September 1982, and is dedicated to toys only. Other than the main store in Ginza, there are seven chain stores in Narita Airport, Tokyo Metropolitan Government Office, New Chitose Airport, Kansai Airport, Haneda Airport, and Chitose Outlet Mall Rera.Let’s take a tour through the store!B1 FloorThis floor is the Fashion Doll Park. Many varieties of dolls and their related items are sold here.There are expensive limited products as well, such as this Ricca-chan doll who is wearing real diamond jewelry.1st FloorThis floor carries fancy goods and souvenirs. These below are green tea Kitkats and wasabi Kitkats, both of which make popular souvenirs.A wide range of goods are sold here. Below is an educational toy that children can use to make their own unique snacks.Smartphone cases and stands, whose designs are inspired by Japanese food.Accessory cases that look like seafood. These are difficult to find anywhere else!Strange-looking clocks, fun kitchen goods, stationary, and party goods are all packed in this floor.2nd FloorThis floor sells stuffed toys and character goods. You can find numerous products such as Disney products, Hello Kitty items by Sanrio, Monchhichi character goods, and others here.Hello Kitty stuffed dolls dressed in kimono are popular souvenirs from Japan.In fact, the most popular or best selling items at Hakuhinkan Toy Park have multilingual displays.On this floor traditional Japanese items and Japanese toys that have been around for ages are also sold.3rd FloorThe toys sold on this floor are mainly educational toys, meant to suit certain ages of child development, and include wooden toys, radio controlled items, and of course toys for infants and toddlers. Here you will also find imported toys that may not be available in any other shops in Japan.The area dedicated to Anpanman goods is filled with products with multilingual displays, reflecting its recent popularity among Chinese visitors.
When thinking of famous things in Kyoto, what does immediately come to mind? Temples, kimono, pottery… But aren’t you forgetting wagashi (Japanese sweets)?!The former capital Kyotois where the wagashi tradition still prospers, creating sweets for special occasions, for the Imperial household, the nobility and even for temples. Because of this, the Japanese sweets created in Kyotohave come to be known as kyōgashi (京菓子, Kyoto-style confectionery). Kyōgashi are prepared by making the raw ingredients into a paste then shaping and packaging it into shapes representing seasonal flowers and plants. Using a spatula, a craftsman shapes the veins of a maple leaf wagashi. From Kanshundō HomepageIn other words, kyōgashi are not only delicious but they are a visual treat as well. With this combination of taste and beauty in mind, let’s try making our own Japanese sweets.Straight from the Artisan – Kyōgashi Workshops at Kanshundō!We visited Kanshundō, a famous Japanese confectionery store found in Higashiyama, Kyoto.Besides selling their seasonal wagashi, this shop also holds four lessons a day on how to make wagashi.The wagashi classroom is found on the second floor of the shop, where one of the most important rules is to wash your hands thoroughly before starting. You will find at your seat a sheet with the instructions on how to make the featured sweets of that particular day, which will also be explained by an artisan from the store.Here are the texts, featuring many pictures to make the contents easier to understand.There are texts available in English, Korean and Chinese as well as Japanese, so there is little to worry about when it comes to making your own sweets.The act of encouraging tourists to participate in Kyoto’s unique culture was the incentive for these texts to be made available in a variety of languages. It is the dream of this store to show people just how fun it can be to make these delicious treats.When we visited, the teacher was a wagashi craftsman with 50 years experience!Because the teacher uses plenty of gestures while explaining the process, even beginners and people who can’t speak a word of Japanese can learn to make beautiful kyōgashi.”It’s so much fun to watch as the raw materials change and take on the shape of seasonal flowers and plants.”Almost everyone that participates in this class can’t help but think like this. Just how exactly does this change happen? Let’s take a closer look.This beautiful kyōgashi with its yellow and green gradient is made from mochi (sweet glutenous rice) wrapped around anko (sweet bean paste), and represents a green Japanese plum.Let’s compare the pictures from before and after!It is almost magical that, by kneading, stretching and wrapping the ingredients, such a significant change can occur! Let’s take a closer look at how the raw materials compare to the finished product.From the warm orange color of this anko paste resulted the delicate petals of this azalea.Just how do you go from this rounded square of ingredients to these beautiful seasonal treats? If you are interested in knowing the process, by all means please take part in the wagashi workshops at Kanshundō. You will be surely moved by the ideas and the skills demonstrated by the artisans.After the class, you can enjoy the treats you made with a cup of matcha (green tea). The mellow anko paste turns into a gentle sweetness that spreads through your whole mouth and is a taste that you won’t be able to forget easily. There is an unbelievable harmony between the bitterness of the matcha and the sweetness of the anko paste.Without a doubt, you will surely enjoy the wagashi you make yourself as much as those that you buy in a store.The Heart of the ArtisanBy being taught directly by an artisan, it is possible to thoroughly experience the delicacy and the attention to details required to make wagashi.”No matter how dexterous a person may be, it’s impossible to improve yourself without practicing and training your skills every day. That is why, despite making kyōgashi for 50 years, I still believe I am an apprentice.”Those were the words of our teacher that day. With a teacher as fascinating as this, is it any wonder that so many people are interested in making and tasting kyōgashi?If you want to get a deeper understanding of the history of Japanese confectionery and try your hand at making your own sweets, you should definitely check out the wagashi workshops at Kanshundō. And, if you want to participate in this great learning experience, be sure to make reservations 2-3 days in advance just in case.InformationKanshundō Higashi ShopAddress: Kyoto, Higashiyama, Kawabata Shōmen Higashi Iru Chayachō 511-1 (near Toyokuni Shrine)Hours: 9:00 – 18:00Closed: Open every day except for New Years’ DayMenus in Other Languages: Text available in English, Korean & ChineseNearest Station: Keihan Kiyomizu-gojō station (清水五条駅)Access: 5-minute walk down Kawabata-dōri, 3-minute walk east from Kanshundō Main ShopPrice Range: 2160 yenPhone Number: 075-561-1318Homepage: Kanshundō
From: Asakusa, SKYTREE, Odaiba All In A Day! An Introductory Guide To TokyoAsakusa is a popular area that you simply can’t miss out on when sightseeing in Japan, thanks to its unique and distinctive historical townscapes, temples and shrines. See Asakusa Travel Guide: Savor The Past In The Historical Center Of Tokyo for more about Asakusa.TrainLine(s): Keikyu Airport Line (bound for Imba Nihon-idai, Narita Airport, or Aoto)Transfer Station: NoneGet Off At: Asakusa StationTravel Time: About 35 minutesTaxi Fare: 620 yenTokyo MonorailLine(s): Tokyo Monorail to JR Keihin Tohoku Negishi Line bound for Omiya to Tokyo Metro Ginza Line bound for AsakusaTransfer Station: Hamamatsucho Station (Tokyo Monorail), Kanda Station (JR, Keihin Tohoku, Negishi Line)Get Off At: Kanda Station (Tokyo Metro Ginza Line)Travel Time: About 30 minutesFare: 820 yenBusDrop Off Point: Asakusa View Hotel (about a 3 minute walk from Tsukuba Express Asakusa Station)Travel Time: About 80 minutesFare: Adults 930 yen, children 470 yen (at night from 0:00-4:59: adults 1860 yen, children 940 yen)TaxiTravel Time: About 40 minutesTaxi Fare: About 9000 yen4. How to Get to Ueno First – What Are the Main Access Routes to Haneda Airport?There are four main ways to travel from Haneda Airport to the Tokyo area: by monorail, train, bus or taxi. If you want to travel both quickly and cheaply, then the trains are your best option, but if you’d like to sit down and travel in comfort, then the buses are best.In this article, we’ll go over how to travel from Haneda Airport’s International Terminal to Shinjuku, Shibuya, Asakusa and Ueno, including the means, time it takes and the expected fares. * JR line prices listed are for tickets purchased with cash only.* For buses and taxis, travel times are based on time of day and traffic conditions, and cannot be guaranteed.* The required time refers to your time on board each transportation means: the more transfers involved in your trip, the longer your trip will take over all. Transfer waiting times can range from five to ten minutes.1. How to Get to Shinjuku From: Shinjuku Complete Guide – Popular Places, Shopping And DiningThe biggest and best downtown area in Japan, Shinjuku. A popular sightseeing spot full of various attractions, shopping hot spots and gourmet restaurants, Shinjuku is also a convenient station if you want to access other cities in Tokyo as well.For more about Shinjuku, check out Shinjuku Complete Guide – Popular Places, Shopping And Dining.TrainLine(s): Keikyu Airport Line, JR Yamanote Line (bound for Shibuya/Shinjuku)Transfer Station: Shinagawa StationGet Off At: JR Shinjuku StationTravel Time: About 35 minutesFare: 610 yenBusDrop Off Point: Shinjuku Station West Exit #24 or Busta Shinjuku (highway bus terminal)Travel Time: About 60 minutesFare: Adults 1230 yen, children 620 yen (at night from 0:00-4:59: adults 2000 yen, children 1000 yen)Those arriving via airport shuttle bus at Shinjuku Station’s west exit will receive at Shinjuku WE Bus ticket if they present their highway bus ticket to the clerks.The Shinjuku WE Bus tickets are convenient for sightseeing around Shinjuku . Please take advantage of these free passes.Tokyo MonorailLine(s): Tokyo Monorail, JR Yamanote Line (bound for Shinagawa/Shibuya)Transfer Station: Hamamatsucho StationGet Off At: JR Shinjuku StationTravel Time: About 40 minutesFare: 690 yenTaxiTravel Time: About 40 minutesFare: About 8500 yen2. How to Get to Shibuya From: Shibuya Travel Guide: Live In The Now In Tokyo’s Trendsetting HeartA city full of young people in search of the latest in cutting edge mainstream fashion, Shibuya is also where you will find the internationally known Scramble Crossing right outside JR Shibuya Station. Scramble Crossing is even said to be the largest intersection in the world.To learn more about Shibuya, see Shibuya Travel Guide: Live In The Now In Tokyo’s Trendsetting Heart.TrainLine(s): Keikyu Airport Line, JR Yamanote Line (bound for Shinjuku)Transfer Station: Shinagawa StationGet Off At: JR Shibuya StationTravel Time: About 25 minutesFare: 580 yenBusGet Off At: Cerulean Tower Tokyu Hotel, Shibuya Excel Hotel Tokyu, Shibuya Station West Exit (23:30~02:20 from Haneda Airport only)Travel Time: About 70 minutes~-90 minutesFare: 1030 yenOr, buy a round trip ticket and save 460 yen. Check out the official website for more information.Tokyo MonorailLine(s): Tokyo Monorail (bound for Hamamatsucho), JR Yamanote Line (bound for Shinagawa/Shibuya)Transfer Station: Hamamatsucho StationGet Off At: JR Shibuya StationTravel Time: About 35 minutesFare: 690 yenTaxiTravel Time: About 40 minutesTaxi Fare: About 8000 yen3. How to Get to Asakusa From: Ueno Travel Guide: Explore Arts And Culture In Tokyo’s Leisure DistrictThere are many sights and attractions in Ueno, including museums, zoos, parks and lively shopping streets. There is no direct bus service from Haneda Airport to Ueno, but it is easily accessed by train or monorail.For more on finding your way to the many exciting spots in Ueno, take a look at Navigating JR Ueno Station.TrainLine(s): Keikyu Airport Line (bound for Kamata), to JR Yamanote or Tokaido Main Line (Ueno Tokyo Line)Transfer Station: Shinagawa StationGet Off At: JR Ueno StationTravel Time: About 35 minutesFare: 610 yenTokyo MonorailLine(s): Tokyo Monorail (bound for Hamamatsucho) to JR Yamanote Line or Tokaido Main LineTransfer Station: Hamamatsucho StationGet Off At: JR Ueno StationTravel Time: About 30 minutesFare: 660 yenTaxiTravel Time: About 40 minutesTaxi Fare: About 9000 yenUsing the Bus? Take Advantage of Value TicketsIf you’re thinking about using the airport shuttle buses, it’s a good idea to purchase the Limousine & Subway Pass.The Limousine & Subway Pass is a ticket that combines your airport shuttle bus ticket (called a limousine bus in Japanese), with all nine of the Tokyo Metro routes as well as the four Toei subway lines covered by the all-you-can-ride Tokyo Subway Ticket in one set ticket.There are three types of tickets in total, with one one-way passenger ticket and 24 hour limited Tokyo Subway Ticket costing 3400 yen for adults and 1700 yen for children. This ticket is available at the Haneda Airport Airport Shuttle Bus Ticket Counter.For other types of tickets, please refer to the official website.Please choose the transportation method that best suits your purpose, schedule and budget.Read also: Getting To Shinjuku From Shibuya, Ueno, Tokyo, Asakusa And AirportsGetting To Harajuku From Shinjuku, Tokyo, Asakusa And AirportsHow To Get To Shibuya From Haneda, Narita, Tokyo, And ShinjukuHow To Reach Asakusa From Major Stations In Tokyo
Kobe in Hyogo prefecture is one of Japan’s largest port cities. It boasts a beautiful cityscape and culture which are a mix of both Western and Japanese elements. As for food, the city is known for its renowned Kobe beef, which is also counted as one of “Japan’s Three Great Types of Wagyu”. The city is also close to the tourist-bustling Osaka, and you can come and go between the two cities in a mere 30 minutes. When visiting Osaka, we highly recommend you stop by Kobe as well.In this article, we will explain how to reach Kobe from Osaka.Traveling By Train Is Recommended!If you’re headed for Kobe from Osaka, the most typical way of transportation is by train. You won’t be needing any transfers to different lines, so it will be an easy trip. There are two lines that connect Kobe and Osaka, and each has its merits and demerits.Today we will be explaining how to reach Kobe from Osaka with our destination being Sannomiya, the center of Kobe. You can choose which train line you want to use depending on your schedule or other preferences.
Table Of Contents1. What Kind of Place Is a Shotengai?2. Various Shops – From Food to Miscellaneous Goods3. Visiting a Shotengai with an Exchange Student4. Shopping in A Shotengai – Rules and Things to Be Careful About5. Japanese Phrases You Can Use in a ShotengaiWhat Kind of Place Is a Shotengai? A shotengai is a pedestrian mall, side road or small area lined with many retail shops. Shotengai shopping streets are often located near train stations, and among those, many are covered with roofs and called arcade shotengai.Somewhat different from the so called shopping streets, shotengai mostly have shops carrying goods that residents in the local community need for their daily lives. For example, there are shops that sell vegetables and fruit, meat, fish and other fresh and perishable foods. There are also shops that sell Japanese sweets, green tea and other little luxuries, as well as shops selling footwear and Japanese clothing, western-style clothing, household items and daily necessities. All these shops support the daily lives of the local citizens and are clustered together in one place, the shotengai. The Japanese shotengai also differs from a typical supermarket and shopping mall in terms of the sense of distance between shop owner and customer.At a shotengai shop, customers can enjoy chatting with the shop owner as they do their shopping. There are even some regular customers who stop in and have a cup of tea while conversing with the shop owners. The shotengai has an atmosphere similar to the public markets found in many cities outside Japan, where the locals can enjoy their shopping.In addition to featuring the most common types of shops found at a shotengai, this article will explain some rules for enhancing your shopping experience, and also introduce a handful of useful Japanese language expressions to help make your shopping go more smoothly.