Roadtrip to Narai-juku in Nagano

As the holiday of Culture Day draws near, every year without fail, I’m planning a road trip. And every year, without fail, the planning is going to be so last minute that the most accessible destination from Tokyo is going to be the same: Nagano prefecture. Starting backward, I’m going to describe my latest trip,Continue reading “Roadtrip to Narai-juku in Nagano”

Roadtrip to Hokkaido: The stinky valley (Pt. 3)

A surprise to no one, it seems like Hokkaido’s north is pretty cold, even when judging from spring’s average weather. That’s why, it is time to head to the south, where belated hanami blossoming (compared to the rest of the country) awaits. The first stop is Noboribetsu (登別), which with your new-found Ainu vocabulary skillsContinue reading “Roadtrip to Hokkaido: The stinky valley (Pt. 3)”

The roads of Hokkaido

Japan is made up of 4 main islands and thousands of smaller ones. One of the latest acquisitions is the northernmost island of Hokkaido, “courtesy” (more like genocide) of the indigenous Ainu. In the past, it used to be refered to as Ezo by Japanese and Ainu Moshir by the Ainu. Hokkaido (北海道) means northernContinue reading “The roads of Hokkaido”

Roadtrip to Gifu: Kanazawa challenging El Dorado (Pt. 3)

On a gloomy day, we woke up early and headed to Kanazawa, in Ishikawa prefecture. It was my second time being close to the Sea of Japan and first time at the Hokuriku area. The city of Kanazawa (金沢) as the name commands, is a city of gold (金). Responsible for 99% of domestic goldContinue reading “Roadtrip to Gifu: Kanazawa challenging El Dorado (Pt. 3)”

Roadtrip in Austria (part 1): New year’s in Salzburg

Salzburg is a classy city in west Austria, extremely close to the border with Germany and Munich, with a view of the Eastern Alps. If the word ‘Salz’ rings a bell, you guessed correctly. Today we will talk about the ‘Fortress of Salt’, which is famous in the public as the birthplace of the musical genius himself, Mozart. His birth-house as well as his residency are still preserved and serve as museums.