Japan

Osaka Castle

Osaka Castle – Ume blooms and a Samurai past

I was drawn to Osaka castle for the ume, a stunning display of 1,250 plum blossom trees that offers one of the best collections within a major city.  Ume have a less dedicated following than the sakura (cherry blossoms) that burst into their dramatic bloom a…

Mt Misen Miyajima

The stunning Mt Misen, Miyajima

Goal for the day?  The top of Mt Misen! I enthusiastically parted the curtains of our room high up in the Hiroshima Granvia Hotel to watch the daylight creeping into the sky across over the city.  The weather was grey and more hazy then would…

Eikan-do Temple

Eikan-do Temple in Kyoto

Eikan-do is one of those temples that we wandering into off of the Philosophers Path without any intent or prior conception of what to expect.  That can be a blessing and a curse.  It’s nice to experience everything with completely fresh eyes and no expectations but also…

Shinkensen at the station

10 of the best day trips from Kyoto

A super fast and efficient public transport system, a geographically small country and so much diversity makes Japan a perfect country to explore. You don’t need to be constantly moving from one base to another to see new parts of Japan, so much is accessible within a reasonable commute from a central city. We’ve taken these these trips from Kyoto but they’re equally suitable if you are based in Osaka, Kobe or Nara. Have fun!

Hikone castle

A visit to Hikone Castle town

Hikone Castle is an Edo period castle in Shiga Prefecture.  It’s one of only 12 castles in Japan where the main keep is still standing and one of only 4 that are listed as National Treasures.  On a previous trip to Japan we visited Himeji…

Golden Pavillion

15 of the Best Temples in Kyoto

In a city of over 1600 temples, you are going to need to quickly narrow down your choice. The most visually stunning, the most interesting history, the most spectacular garden in all seasons. These 15 represent some of the best temples in Kyoto for visitors – which will be top of your list?

A Dome in Hiroshima

Hiroshima Self Guided Walking Tour

Our first stay in Hiroshima was planned mostly to give us a full day to explore Miyajima Island, it wasn’t until we were sitting on the Shinkensen from Tokyo that I started wondering how I would actually feel wandering around Hiroshima.  It’s a city with…

Philosophers Path

Philosophers Path in Kyoto

The Philosophers Path in Kyoto (called Tetsugaku-no-michi in Japanese) runs alongside a section of the Lake Biwa canal lined with cherry trees in the northern Higashiyama (eastern hills) district of Kyoto.  It begins at Ginkaku-ji (the silver pavilion) and ends at Nanzen-ji.  Along the path you can…

Meiji Shrine | 2 Aussie Travellers

A visit to Meiji Shrine in Tokyo

As we passed by the unique Harajuku subway building to the start of the walking path down to Meiji Shrine I was struck by the scale of the place.  In a city with the population density of Tokyo you would imagine there would be very little…

What to see, do and where to eat in Kobe, Japan

What to see & do in Kobe

In this City Guide we’ll introduce some of our top things to see & do in Kobe.  It’s a lovely, vibrant and modern city less than an hour by train from Kyoto and Osaka which makes it perfect for a day trip.  Most of these…

Mount Fuji | 2 Aussie Travellers

A day trip to Hakone

We decided that a trip to Hakone had to be included on our winter trip when we woke up one morning in Tokyo, flung open the curtains of our room at the Hotel New Otani and were greeted with an amazing view of Mt Fuji…