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Monday, January 23, 2017

Chikamachi Lounge Nagoya Station

チカマチラウンジ

Chikamachi Lounge is a group of European-inspired and Asian eateries in a passageway linking the Midland Square building with the Winc Aichi conference center in the Meieki (Nagoya Station) district of Nagoya.

Beer Bar La Maison, Nagoya Station area.

Chikamachi Lounge links another passageway in the Marukei Kanko Building and the basement of Winc Aichi to offer a variety of places to eat and relax in a pleasant environment after a day's shopping or time in the office.

Vintae, Chikamachi Lounge, Meieki, Nagoya.


These restaurant-lined walkways have an Italian restaurant, il Bamboccio, a Spanish-style bar, Vintae, serving omrice lunch sets, along with raw ham, tapas and pintxos, a "British-style" pub, called Strawberry Pudding and Beer Bar La Maison, serving western-style Japanese food (yoshoku) including some rich and healthy-looking beef and vegetable stews washed down with beer or wine.

Strawberry Pudding


Other eateries in the passageways offer Chinese, soba, yakitori fried chicken and ramen.

There is seating "outside" (though you are underground), some stylish black and white coin lockers (in Winc Aichi) to store your luggage if you are catching a train from Nagoya Station and an enclosed smoking area.

Ramen Restaurant, Winc Aichi, Nagoya, Aichi.


Chikamachi Lounge
Meieki 4- 4-10
Nakamura-ku
Nagoya-shi 450-0002
Hours: 11am-11pm

Coin lockers, Winc Aichi, Nagoya.


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Sunday, January 22, 2017

Japan News This Week 22 January 2017

今週の日本

Japan News.
Japan Becomes a Rising Star for the Swiss Watch Industry
New York Times

Japan's hi-tech toilets to get standardised symbols
BBC

Japan hotel chain angers China over book's denial of Nanjing massacre
Guardian

Seven Cambodian women rescued from sex slavery in Gunma Prefecture restaurant
Japan Times

Disaster Poetry from Ōfunato
Japan Focus

Last Week's Japan News on the JapanVisitor blog

Statistics

"This year Japan is paying 556.6 billion yen (4.8 billion dollars) for the stationing of US forces here, 165.8 billion yen (1.5 billion dollars) for land-leases, and, according to last year's figures, 8.8 billion yen (77 million dollars) to subsidize the bases. About all the US pays for are the troops' salaries. If our costs go any higher, we should consider treating the US military as a mercenary force under the command of Japan's Self Defense Forces."

Source: Japan Focus

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Saturday, January 21, 2017

Hotel Chuo Selene

ホテル中央セレーネ

The area around Dobutsuen-Mae Station on Osaka's Midosuji Subway Station and Shin Imamiya Station on the JR Osaka Loop Line is home to numerous hotels catering to the foreign visitor on a budget.

Hotel Chuo Selene, Nishinari-ku, Osaka.


Centrally located with easy access to other parts of Osaka and Kansai Airport via a wide variety of train, subway, & tram lines, within sight of the Abeno Harukas development, and on the edge of the entertainment district around the Tsutenkaku Tower, Hotel Chuo Selene is not the cheapest - there are plenty of establishments offering trimmed down, simpler accommodation - but if you want en-suite and decent free wifi, its a good option.

Hotel Chuo Selene, Osaka, Japan.


The rooms are minimalistic and modern: light wooden floors, walls without ugly pictures, simple desk etc and the effect is a light and airy atmosphere. Anything not in the room, like kettle etc can be gotten from the front desk where 24 hour free coffee and tea is available. The staff speak some English, Chinese, & Thai, and large rental lockers are available to store luggage.

Shinsekai at night, Osaka, Japan.


Hotel Chuo Selene
1-1-11 Taishi
Nishinari-ku
Osaka 557-0002

Hotel Chuo Selene is 2 minutes on foot from Dobutsuen-Mae Station and right opposite Spa World.

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Thursday, January 19, 2017

Kyooji Temple Yanaka

経王寺

Kyooji Temple is a small Nichiren temple off the Yanaka Ginza shopping lane in the Yanaka (Yanesen) district of Tokyo.

Kyooji Temple, Yanaka, Tokyo.


The temple dates from the Edo Period and contains a statue of Daitokuten, one of the Seven Lucky Gods (shichifukujin). The statue is said to have been carved by Nichiren (1222-1282) himself though this is, probably, unlikely.

The main gate still has bullet holes from the Battle of Ueno in 1868 during the Boshin War when supporters of the Tokugawa shogunate were driven out of Edo by imperial troops.

Kyooji Temple, Yanaka, Tokyo.

Kyooji Temple
3-2-6 Nishinippor
Arakawa-ku
Tokyo 116-0013
Tel: 03 3821 5241

Kyooji Temple is a short walk from Nippori Station on the Yamanote Line, Toneri Liner and other lines.

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Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Kyoto City Bus 1

京都市バス#1

Kyoto city bus #1 runs from Nishigamo Shako-mae close to Kamigamo Shrine in the north of Kyoto to Demachiyanagi Station and then back.

Kyoto City Bus 1.


Bus #1 passes Jinkoin, Omiya Somonguchi-cho, Yamanomaecho, Gentaku-shita, Murasakino Sendocho, Asahigaoka, Bukkyo Daigaku-mae, Senbon Kitaoji, Funaokayama, Kenkun Jinja-mae, Daitokuji-mae (for Daitokuji Temple), Kitaoji Horikawa, Kitaoji Shinmachi, (Kitaoji Bus Terminal (Subway Kitaoji Station), Karasuma Kitaoji, Shokubutsuen-mae (Kyoto Botanical Garden), Furitsu Daigaku-mae (Kyoto Prefectural University), Rakuhoku Koko-mae, Ipponmatsu, Shimogamo Jinja-mae (Shimogamo Shrine), Tadasunomori, Shin-Aoibashi, Aoibashi Nishizume, Kawaramachi Imadegawa and Demachiyanagi Station.

Kyoto City Bus 1.


The Kyoto #1 bus service begins at 5.47am daily from Nishigamo Shako-mae and the last bus is 10.24pm.

From Demachiyanagi Station the first bus is at 6.19am daily and the last bus is at 10.56pm. There are 3-6 buses an hour.

Find out more about buses in Kyoto.



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Monday, January 16, 2017

Sesoko Island

瀬底島

Sesoko Island is a small island off the Motubu Peninsula near Nago on the west coast connected by bridge to Okinawa Honto.

Sesoko Island, Okinawa.


Sesoko has a few lovely white sand beaches and a number of guest houses and minsuku that attract budget travelers for snorkeling and relaxing throughout the year.

The most popular beach is on the west coast, the 800m-long Sesoko Beach, which has parking (1000 yen), life guards, umbrellas and loungers as well as food and drink for sale.

There's also a  smaller beach right at the bridge to the main island - Anchi-hama. The water at both beaches can be amazingly clear and the sea a beautiful turquoise color.

Sesoko Island, Okinawa.

A number of specialist marine sports shops offer jet skiing, parasailing, snorkeling and diving trips in summer.

A photo posted by JapanVisitor (@japanvisitor) on

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Sunday, January 15, 2017

Japan News This Week 15 January 2017

今週の日本

Japan News.
Caroline Kennedy, an Ambassador Whose Role Transcended the Embassy
New York Times

Emperor Akihito: Japan considers moves to allow 2018 abdication - reports
BBC

Almost 75% of Japan's biggest coral reef has died from bleaching, says report
Guardian

China moves Japan war start date up to 1931 in textbooks to boost ‘patriotic education’
Japan Times

The Japanese State versus the People of Okinawa: Rolling Arrests and Prolonged and Punitive Detention
Japan Focus

Last Week's Japan News on the JapanVisitor blog

Statistics

A recent survey of sixth graders across Japan asked them about their future dream job (the number in parenthesis is the result from the previous year).

For girls, the top five responses were:

1) Food service (chef, etc.) (1)
2) Day Care Worker (2)
3) School Teacher (5)
4) Doctor (4)
4) Nurse (3)

For boys, the top five responses were:

1) Professional Soccer Player (1)
2) Researcher/Professor (8)
3) Police Officer/Detective (3)
4) Professional Baseball Player (2)
5) Doctor (6)
5) Food service (chef, etc.) (7)

Source: Asahi Shinbun

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Saturday, January 14, 2017

Chogakuji Temple & Takeda Shingen

長岳寺&武田信玄

Chogakuji Temple in the mountains of Nagano Prefecture is associated with the death of the legendary warlord Takeda Shingen (1521-1573).

Chogakuji Temple, Nagano Prefecture.


Takeda Shingen's death is shrouded in mystery. It is thought he died of pneumonia while returning to his base in Kofu from an attack on Noda Castle, north east of present-day Toyohashi. In Akira Kurosawa's film, Kagemusha ("Shadow Warrior"), Takeda Shingen, however, is shot at night by a Tokugawa sniper at the castle and fatally wounded.

Chogakuji Temple, Nagano Prefecture.


One version of the following events is that Takeda Shingen's body was cremated in the hills near Chogakuji Temple and his ashes are buried within the temple grounds. His followers tried to maintain Takeda was still alive to fool his enemies, hence the "Shadow Warrior" of Kurosawa's movie, a common thief with a remarkable resemblance to Takeda, who was forced into impersonating him.

A ten-story pagoda was erected in 1974 to mark the spot where Takeda's ashes are buried, paid for by subscriptions from residents of Takeda's home province of Yamanashi. A noticeboard references the popular 1988 NHK Taiga drama, Takeda Shingen and the history of the warrior's final days.

Chogakuji Temple, Nagano Prefecture.


Chogakuji Temple
Achi Village
569 Komaba, Shimoina-gun
Nagano Prefecture 395-0303
Tel: 0265 43 2967

Hours: 9am-5pm
Admission: 200 yen adults

Chogakuji Temple is located in the village of Achi midway between Iida and Nakatsugawa just off the Chuo Expressway. Chogakuji Temple is very close to the Hirugami Onsen resort.

Chogakuji Temple, Nagano Prefecture.


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Friday, January 13, 2017

Shin-Ochanomizu Station Mosaics

ガラスモザイク

Shin-Ochanomizu Station on the Chiyoda Line of the Tokyo metro in Ochanomizu has some lovely mosaics by glass artist Ikkou Itabashi representing the months of the year and including phrases from the old lunar calendar to describe the seasons, for example, 立秋 (risshuu), meaning the beginning of autumn.

Shin-Ochanomizu Station Mosaics, Tokyo.

Shin-Ochanomizu Station also has the longest escalator on the Tokyo subway network. Another reason to visit.

Shin-Ochanomizu Station Mosaics Tokyo.

The mosaics were completed in 2002 and make use of recycled glass.

Shin-Ochanomizu Station Mosaics Tokyo.


www.ikkou-re-glass.com

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Thursday, January 12, 2017

Hotel Avanti Tokushima

ホテルアバァンティ

Hotel Avanti Tokushima in Tokushima city on Shikoku is 600 meters from Tokushima Station and only 100 meters from the ropeway going up Mt. Bizen and Awa Odori Kaikan.

Avanti Hotel, Tokushima, Shikoku.


The Hotel Avanti is very popular with backpackers, pilgrims and foreign visitors to Japan on a budget.

The Hotel Avanti has free wifi and is very foreigner-friendly. There is no kettle in the rooms but hot water is available in the lobby.

A small breakfast is provided on a tray in your room.

Avanti Hotel, Tokushima, Shikoku.

Hotel Avanti
Higashidaiku-machi 1-20
Tokushima
Tokushima Prefecture, 770-0905

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