Temples & Shrines

Fun things to do in Asakusa & Sumida, Tokyo

Asakusa is a neighbourhood in the northeast of Tokyo city adjacent to the Sumida River.  It’s known to visitors for the historic Senso-ji temple and spectacular views from the Tokyo Skytree but let’s take a deeper look at things to do in Asakusa. We’ve been…

Shinkyo bridge in Nikko, Japan

20 Things to do in Nikko | Travel Guide

Under the canopy of the majestic old cedar trees and protection of Mount Nantai lies the town of Nikko, a popular destination for visitors from Tokyo.  The UNESCO World Heritage Shrines and Temples draw tourists from all around the world but there’s so many more…

Daigoji temple - Bentendo Hall

Daigoji Temple and a Sakura Festival

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.

Kenka-sai ceremony at Fushimi Inari shrine in Kyoto

Kenka-sai festival at Fushimi Inari Shrine

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…

The golden pavilion temple, also known as Kinkaku-ji in Kyoto, Japan

The Golden Pavilion Temple

Kinkaku-ji, the Golden Pavilion Temple should be on your list of things to do in Kyoto. Here’s what you need to know to plan your visit. We’ve been to the Golden Pavilion temple during spring time and in winter and thoroughly enjoyed both visits.  It’s…

A day trip to Enoshima

A day trip to Enoshima

Take a day trip from Tokyo to Enoshima. The island has been a tourist escape for centuries but now is only 70 minutes from central Tokyo. Enoshima offers something for everyone; great food, caves, gardens, shrines, views history and beaches.

Everything you need to know about Shichi-go-san celebrations

Shichi-go-san festival in Japan

There’s not much that’s more adorable, or kawaii I guess, than dozens of young children in traditional kimonos.  It’s a sight you’re likely to see a lot in Shinto shrines during the shichi-go-san festival in mid November.  An excess of cuteness and so many bright colours is a photographers dream…

The Rakan of Daisho-in Temple

Daisho-in temple on Miyajima Island

If you’re planning a visit to Miyajima Island in Hiroshima Prefecture you will probably have Itsukushima Shrine at the top of your list of things to see.  The waterfront shine is famous for its ‘floating’ tori gate and shrine buildings and is especially dramatic at…

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

16 of the best day trips from Kyoto

A super fast and efficient public transport system, being geographically compact and with so much diversity makes Japan an ideal 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…