Japan

Daigoji temple - Bentendo Hall

Daigoji Temple and a Sakura Festival

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Local festivals are a great time to visit a Japanese Temple or Shrine. This large UNESCO listed temple is especially beautiful during the cherry blossoms and the Hanami Gyoretsu festival but it’s not the only season that it’s excels.

Central Kyoto Walking Tour

Kyoto Walking Tour – Central Kyoto

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Explore the city with this self guided Kyoto walking tour around central Kyoto. Follow the marked route or pick attractions to suit your interests. This Kyoto walking tour of central Kyoto is entirely self guided.  Take it at your own pace and spend the most…

Maruyama parks famous weeping cherry tree

10 fun free things to do in Kyoto

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Did you know there are some great fun and free things to do in Kyoto city?  I heard so many times as I was planning our trips to Japan what a terribly expensive place it was to visit.  I’d be the first to agree that…

Nishiki market (ichiba) in Kyoto city

A walk though Nishiki Market, Kyoto

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As a self confessed and unashamed foodie it’s not surprising that we found our way to Nishiki market (Nishiki Ichiba 錦市場) within hours of arriving in Kyoto.  Known as Kyoto’s kitchen this is a market used extensively by locals to source fresh ingredients, artisan produce…

Kenka-sai ceremony at Fushimi Inari shrine in Kyoto

Kenka-sai festival at Fushimi Inari Shrine

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As soon as I knew we’d be in Kyoto on the 1st April I mentally blocked out the middle of the day for the Kenka-sai festival.  Incorporating festivals and cultural events on our Japan trips is something we’ve done since our first visit and it’s provided some…

Nijo Castle in Kyoto, Japan

Visiting Nijo Castle in Kyoto

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Nijo Castle is one of the must see spots on our Kyoto list.  We were really surprised to hear several visitors to the city say they weren’t going because there’s ‘no point when there’s no castle’.  It is true that the main tower of Nijo castle…

Okayama Castle in Japan

A visit to Okayama Castle

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Okayama castle is easily accessed from the main Sanyo bullet train line making it a practical day trip from Osaka, Kyoto and Hiroshima. For anyone with an interest in castles, gardens or Japans feudal history Okayama is a worthwhile city to visit.

Best Japanese Gardens - Tokyo Imperial Palace

10 Top Japanese gardens to visit

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Japanese gardens aren’t just beautiful and relaxing spaces. They’re full of history, culture and tradition. These are 10 of the top gardens in Japan, they feature traditional Japanese garden design techniques and an all-season appeal that makes them well worth a visit.