The Lake Suite Ko No Sumika: Toya Sun Palace Resort’s New Building

07.February.2019 | SPOT

Toya Sun Palace Resort and Spa has announced that it will open an annex of the main site called The Lake Suite Ko No Sumika on August 1, 2019.

This hotel offers the closest view of Lake Tōya without anything to get in the way of the breathtaking scenery. It offers a luxurious resort experience for adults that resonates with nature by taking full advantage of the vast and open surrounding environment and making it one with the facility.

Enjoy the morning calm over the quiet lake as if time has stopped, basking in the sunlight and breathing in the fresh, crisp air. Feel at peace with the changing seasons as cherry blossoms decorate the spring, lush greenery spreads through summer, the red leaves reveal themselves in autumn and the snow falls in winter all while absorbing the tranquil sound of the brisk breeze.

 

The Lake Suite is a top class hotel that offers the closest view of Lake Tōya than any other hotel site. Sitting right next to the lake and being at peace and one with nature will make you want to stay there forever. The “Sumika” in the facility’s name means “to live” while to live somewhere means that you must like that place. That’s the kind of experience The Lake Suite wants to offer: a place that you will always love and always want to be.

Upon arriving, you are transported into another world as you pass through a hallway surrounded by water where you can hear the trickling of the flowing lake. You are then met with the hotel entrance where the visual effect of a flower basin fuses the hotel Lake Tōya as one.

 

The hotel lobby incorporates the colour brown giving it a chic and stylish appearance that goes well with the outdoor scenery. The lobby interior has a soft “Japanese” aesthetic with warm lighting. The lounge is stocked with various drinks to enjoy while gazing across the lake.

On the top floor of the hotel (floor 8) there is a large open-air bath that offers an unbroken, panoramic view of the lake. This bath is built like an infinity pool that makes it look like the bath connects directly to the lake. Guests can enjoy the sky reflecting from the water surface. At night in spring, you’ll also be able to soak in the stars with star gazing. There’s also a sauna and the bath has a jet function too.

 

The hotel’s restaurant also boasts the closest view of Lake Tōya.

 

If you’re looking for a premium and unforgettable stay in Japan then look no further.

 

RELATED ENTRIES

  • ONSEN GUEST HOUSE TSUTAYA to Open in Hakone This November

    21.September.2019 | SPOT

    ONSEN GUEST HOUSE TSUTAYA is a new hot spring and guest house facility set to open in the town of Sokokura in Hakone on November 26. The building is being renovated from an old guest house that has enjoyed a long history of hot springs since the Edo period.

    Sokura Onsen is about a 90 minute car drive from the city centre and is considered one of Hakone’s “7 Hot Springs,” a list that has been around since the Edo period. The place is said to have been used and loved by many military commanders back in the day for the high water yield gifted by the water source.

     

    When the building was first constructed it was known as “Tsutaya Ryokan” and became a famous guest house with not only locals but travellers who would arrive all the way from Tokyo. ONSEN GUEST HOUSE TSUTAYA combines history of both Sokura Onsen and Tsutaya Ryokan.

    The renovated building was built 29 years ago. Though it has been revamped, it still maintains a nostalgic air to it in the style of a traditional guest house. It’s home to 6 spacious ryokan-type rooms and 46 compact rooms.

     

    There is a space where one can gaze at the river after taking a dip in the hot springs, as well as a lounge with tables which encourages you to socialise with people you have just met. There are male and female open-air baths and indoor baths as well as a cooking space and laundry service for those looking to stay longer.

     The facility offers a retro environment in which each guest can relax and enjoy their own time as they please. Throughout the guest house is original old-fashioned furniture that has been upcycled, including kotatsu tables and shelves, to give that sense of traditional Japanese culture. This has been combined with contemporary art to create a fusion of the old and new.

    It is a harmonious combination of a traditional Japanese hot spring ryokan, or inn, and a guest house, which means travellers from abroad will be able to enjoy the beauty of the country’s traditional culture.

    Escape the noisy city and enjoy peace and tranquillity surrounded in the colours of autumn at ONSEN GUEST HOUSE TSUTAYA

  • Kusatsu Onsen’s Emerald Green Pudding is a Must-Try After a Dip in the Hot Springs

    11.September.2019 | FOOD / SPOT

    Kusatsu Onsen is a hot spring resort in Gunma Prefecture that is one of Japan’s three principle hot spring locations. The site opened its new Japanese custard dessert (known as ‘purin’) shop, Kusatsu Onsen Pudding, on August 24, which serves the most incredibly smooth purin you have ever tried, each inspired by the hot springs.

     

    Once you’ve stepped out of the nice warm hot springs of Kusatsu Onsen you can refresh yourself with a delicious purin packed full of love from the shop which has created a flavour you can only try by travelling to Gunma and going there. Each and every dessert is made fresh in the shop to further elevate its exclusivity as a local speciality.

     

    Kusatsu Onsen Pudding also makes sure to use local and regional ingredients where it can to help support manufacturers and producers. Their purin is also made with a special type of milk sourced from in Gunma known as Haruna milk. The milk is made as delicious as can be by ensuring cows are raised on a healthy natural diet of grass on green pastures in Gunma bathed in plenty of sunlight.

    Yuhata Purin

    The Yuhata purin is inspired by the hot spring areas where mineral deposits are harvested, its jelly taking on a gorgeous emerald green colour. It’s lemon and lime flavoured, the perfect flavour to enjoy when stepping out of the hot water, and one which goes surprisingly well with purin.

    Yumomi Purin

    The staple purin of the store, this purin is based on yumomi, a method used for cooling the hot water with paddles from which cold water gushes forth. This velvety delight is made with lots of fresh cream and high-quality vanilla beans from Madagascar for added punch.

    Furomage

    A pun on the word fromage, with furo in Japanese meaning “bath,” the Furomage purin uses a rich cream cheese base which has a seriously smooth texture. It’s topped off with strawberry jelly for the perfect combination, packing a perfect balance between sweet and sour.

    Yuhata Soft (Milk/Yuhata/Mixed)

    Choose from the Yuhata soft serve ice cream which is ramune flavoured and inspired by the flowing water of the hot springs or the Haruna milk-mixed vanilla flavoured Milk soft serve. If you can’t pick, then choose mixed for a bit of both. A satisfyingly refreshing pick for when you’re done in the hot springs.

    The shop has plans to sell purin made using bamboo steamers in the near future, so you’re pudding can be steamed like yourself after a dip in the water! The wooden spoons used to eat the desserts are also made in the image of the paddles used in yumomi too.

  • Delicious and Instagrammable: 7 Bubble Tea Drinks Unique to Sapporo, Hokkaido

    02.September.2019 | FEATURES / FOOD

    Bubble tea is a national sensation in Japan. Until now, MOSHI MOSHI NIPPON has been introducing quite a lot of bubble tea shops in Harajuku, however today, we are going to introduce you to some special bubble teas that you can only get in Sapporo, Hokkaido.

     

    When it comes to cafés, desserts and drinks in Sapporo, you can always count on Instagrammer Kei to pick out the most unique and cute places.  Check out his Instagram (@607keih) which is home to a precious collection of mouthwatering and delicious pictures.

     

    And with that let’s get started:

     

    Club China/Tanukikoji 

    Almond Jelly Coconut Milk and Bubble Tea ¥600 (strawberry sauce topping: +¥50)

    (Chinese almond jelly is sometimes made with apricot kernels.)

    Club China is a Chinese restaurant where you can enjoy authentic Chinese food in a classy atmosphere. This rare bubble tea is the perfect way to discover authentic Chinese flavours. You can change the sweetness of your drink by adding gomme syrup, brown sugar sauce or strawberry sauce.

     

    ▶︎ Club China (クラブチャイナ)

    Address: SYOKUSAN 35 Building 3rd Floor

    3-chōme-5 Minami 3 Jōnishi, Chūō-ku, Sapporo, Hokkaido

    Opening Hours

    ・Lunch: 11:00 ー 15:00(Last orders: 14:30)

    ・Tea 14:30 ー 17:00

    ・Dinner: 17:00 ー 22:00(Last orders: 21:00)

    Closed: Wednesdays (Open on national holidays)

    Website: http://www.clubchina.jp/index.html

     

     

    Oukacha (Located inside Izakaya Chorotto)/Higashi Ward

    Strawberry Milk Cream: ¥580

    There is a famous Izakaya (Japanese-style pub) in the Higashi-ku area. However, during the daytime, it is sometimes taken over by a bubble tea shop called Oukacha. The drink to look out for is their homemade brown sugar syrup bubble tea, which you can order with topping of whipped cream. This is the way to treat anyone with a sweet tooth! 

     

    ▶︎ Oukacha (Located inside Izakaya Chorotto 桜華茶)

    Address: 7-1-24, Kita 15 Johigashi, Higashi Ward, Sapporo, Hokkaido

    As the opening and closing days/times are irregular, please check them on the shop’s official Instagram or Twitter

     

    o.cha.bar/Tanukikoji

    Ritz Cream Cheese Churros: ¥550, Okinawa Brown Sugar Bubble Milk: ¥650

    MESSE Building is a mall full of interesting restaurants including a Bikkuri Donkey. Head to the 5th floor to discover a Taiwanese and Korean restaurant called o.cha.bar. This is where you will come across the Okinawa Bubble Milk. This is a bubble tea which is topped with a generous serving of cream made using salt sourced from Okinawa. The tapioca is imported directly from Taiwan and has a very springy texture. Maximise your experience by dipping the churros in the cream cheese. 

     

    ▶︎ o.cha.bar(オチャバー)

    Address: N.MESSE Building 5th floor, Minami 3-jo Nishi 3, Chuo-ku, Sapporo-shi, Hokkaido 

    Opening Hours: 11:30 ー 21:00

    Closed: No regular holidays 

    Official Twitter: https://twitter.com/ochabar1

     

     

    cafe & kitchen unique/Higashi Ward

    Strawberry Milk: ¥480 , Matcha: ¥480, Served in a bottle: +¥80

    cafe&kitchen unique is famous for their delicious fluffy pancakes that are made in a deep pot and topped with beautiful toppings. However, their bubble teas which are sold in cute bottles are also something you do not want to miss. The Strawberry Milk contains fruity pieces which perfectly compliment the milk. The Matcha Milk has a gentle sweet flavour that adults would love.  

     

    ▶︎ cafe&kitchen unique (cafe&kitchen ユニック)

    Address: 3 Chome-2-6 Kita 10 Johigashi, Higashi Ward, Sapporo, Hokkaido 

    Opening Hours

    Lunch : 11:00 ー 14:00

    Coffee Time: 14:00 ー 17:00

    Dinner: 17:00 ー 22:00

    Closed: The 1st and 3rd Thursday of every month. 

    Official Website: https://cafekitchen-unique.com/

     

     

    MY TAPIOCA KOUTA/Higashi Ward

    Brown Sugar Bubble Tea Latte 

    Ramen restaurant Ore no Ramen Kouta also runs the bubble tea shop MY TAPIOCA KOUTA, where it is possible to order just a bubble tea. The brown sugar adds a strong accent to the flavour. The tapioca pearls are large and although this is filling drink, it is also cheap which makes it a good deal. The shop is open late into the night which is perfect for those late night cravings. 

     

    ▶︎ MY TAPIOCA KOUTA

    Address: 4-5-26, Honcho 1 jo, Higashi Ward, Sapporo

    Opening Hours: 11:00 ー 23:30

    Official Twitter: https://twitter.com/tapiocamy

     

    Milk san Asabu Branch/Asabu

    Strawberry Milk: ¥650, Brown Sugar Milk: ¥570, Tapioca Topping: ¥70 (served in a bottle) 

    Milk san serves delicious drinks made using milk which is specially produced by dairy farmers, contributing to the delicious Hokkaido goodness of the drink. The small tapioca pearls and the rich milky flavour are the perfect combination. The brown sugar flavour is only available at the Asabu branch, so we recommend you try it. As these drinks are served in cute bottles, you just have to post a picture on Instagram. 

     

    ▶︎ Milk san Asabu

    みるくsan麻生店

    Address: Karumu Asabu 1st floor, 5-2-8, Kita 39 Jonishi, Kita Ward, Sapporo 

    Opening Hours: 10:00 ー 19:30

    Official Website: https://www.milk-san.com/

     

    Iced Biscuit Shop SHONPY/Susukino

    Chocolate Mint Frappé: ¥690, Strawberry Milk Bubble Tea with a Tapioca Float: ¥690 

    One by one, this shop makes iced biscuits that are original down to their shape. SHONPY also delivers countrywide. The Strawberry Milk Bubble Tea comes with a tapioca float that is too cute to consume. It is filled with fruit such as strawberries and bananas that are a perfect match with the tapioca. The Chocolate Mint Frappé comes in a very cute bottle. This shop opened in Harajuku too.

     

    ▶︎SHONPY

    Address: SUSUKINO LAFILER 2nd floor, 4 Chome, Minami 4 Jonishi, Chuo Ward, Sapporo, Hokkaido 

    Opening Hours: 10:00 ー 21:00

    No fixed holidays

    Official Website: http://shon-py.jp/

     

    So, how about it? If you ever find yourself in Hokkaido, Kei’s recommended Hokkaido-limited bubble teas are bound to make your trip special. 

     

    Kei’s Instagram is full of delicious desserts and mouthwatering meals. When in doubt of where to eat out, Kei’s Instagram is bound to save your day so please check it out.

     

    Photos & Text: Kei(@607keih

  • A Magical Ice Village is Forming This Winter at Hoshino Resorts Tomamu in Hokkaido

    01.September.2019 | SPOT

    Hoshino Resorts Tomamu―one of Hokkaido’s leading snow resorts―is set to open a new area called the Ice Village this winter. It will run for a limited time from December 10 to March 14.

    The Ice Village spans coolly across 3.2 hectares of land and is home to 11 domes made entirely of ice. This winter-only experience has been running every year since 1998. Made to look like a real village, some of its iconic sights include the Ice Church and Ice Hotel which can be found at the very back. Everything from the towering ceilings to the walls are formed solely of ice.

     

    The main street, named fittingly the “Ice Street,” includes a cafe, gallery, shops and more, all enveloped in a chilly white world.

     

    Ice Crystal Park: A New Addition to the Ice Village to Gaze at the Sights and Scenery

    The Ice Crystal Park is frozen over with tables and chairs made of ice and has snowflakes dotted here and there, creating a true winter wonderland. Order a hot drink from the Ice Bakery & Cafe or munch on a tasty treat from the Ice Sweets Shop as you sit and gaze at the snow-covered landscape of the Ice Village while surrounded by towering white birch trees. And everyday at 19:30, a 5-minute firework show will warm up the winter sky which is best enjoyed while sitting in the park.

     

    Time: 17:00-22:00

    Price: Free

     

    Bite Down Frosty Treats at the Ice Sweets Shop

     

    It wouldn’t be a complete Ice Village without its own glacial cuisine. At the Ice Sweets Shop you can order ice cream which is made from liquid milk on an ice block. The temperature of the air coupled with the frozen coolness of the ice block causes the milk to freeze into a yummy dessert. There’s also chocolate ice bars made from hot chocolate, colourful macarons, toasted marshmallows, and more.

     

    Time: 17:00-22:00 (Last Orders 21:00)

    Price: Milk Gelato – from ¥1,100 / Macarons ¥550 / Ice Bar ¥550 / Marshmallows ¥550 (*All prices include tax)

     

    Grab a Drink From the Ice Bar

    The village even has its own Ice Bar, complete with an ice counter and ice cellar for serving sake. This year, the bar will serve an all-new original gin drink made using snowmelt from Tomamu. There are over 50 drinks to pick from, including original cocktails, whisky, and more.

     

    Time: 17:00-22:00 (Last Orders 21:45)

    Price: Original Gin – ¥1,650 / Drinks With Ice Glass – from ¥1,100 (*All prices include tax)

     

    There are many other exciting things to find at the ice village, including the Ice Hotel which you can sleep in, the Ice Atelier, and more. Have a reason to go out this winter by visiting the Ice Village in Hokkaido.

  • teamLab Now Holding Digital Art Exhibition at World Heritage Site Shimogamo Shrine in Kyoto

    31.August.2019 | FEATURES / SPOT

    With the increase in number of collaborations between contemporary digital art and traditional and historical Kyoto sites, teamLab is getting in on the action with its new digital art exhibition “Digitized Forest at the World Heritage Site of Shimogamo Shrine.”

     

    We are joined by Instagrammer Macchan who recently attended the exhibition and who has provided photos for us.

     

    Shimogamo Shrine is a shrine located between the Kamo River and Mount Kōya. It was registered it as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. The shrine is associated good luck in marriage and welcomes sightseers from Japan and around the world. It can be reached by the 205 Bus from Kyoto Station and getting off at either Shimogamo Shrine (下鴨神社) or Tadasu Forest (糺ノ森前). It’s also about a 20-minute taxi ride from Kyoto Station.

     

    This marks the third run of teamLab’s “Digitized Forest” exhibition at Shimogamo Shrine, and this year’s exhibition has been made even bigger. It is running until September 2, 2019.

    Floating by the Rōmon Gate of the shrine are spheres of light which change colour and emit various musical tones unique to the colour when touched by a person. They also react to the other spheres around them, changing to the same colour and letting out the same tone, creating a chain reaction.

    Egg-shaped orbs of light can be found dotted around the Tadasu Forest by the shrine which illuminate the trees. Like the light spheres, when the eggs are pushed they change colour and play a musical noise specific to that colour, the sound and tone spreading through the forest.

    These objects of light can also be found at Mitarashi Pond where they float on the water. The orbs shine brightly and then fade slowly as if breathing. If pushed by people or blown by the wind they will change colour and emit sound.

     

    The best part about teamLab’s art exhibitions is how visitors become part of the exhibition itself by interacting with the installations, offering a much more engaging experience than simply looking. Visit Shimogamo Shrine before the exhibition ends to see digital art meet a traditional Japanese shrine at night.

     

     

    If you’re looking for more sightseeing recommendations for Kyoto then be sure to follow Macchan on Instagram!

     

    Photos by まっちゃん

  • 7 Best Peach Desserts to Enjoy This Season in Hokkaido – MOSHI MOSHI NIPPON

    20.August.2019 | FEATURES / FOOD

    Hokkaido is a popular tourist destination for Japanese people as well as foreigners. During the winter, it is the perfect place to go skiing and during the summer, you will not suffer under sweltering heat like the rest of Japan. Hokkaido not only flourishes with wonderful tourist locations and delicious gourmet seafood, but also beautiful and stylish cafés.

     

    In this feature, we are joined by Instagrammer Kei whose page is centred around cafes in Sapporo, Hokkaido. They have provided us with photos of desserts made with peaches which can be enjoyed right now before summertime ends.

     

    Initial Sapporo in Susukino

    Parfait Pêche – ¥1,700

    Sapporo cafe Initial was ahead of the parfait game before the boom in Japan. Right now they are selling two new parfaits: one made with melon and the other with peach. They are being served until the end of August.

    The parfait is topped with sweet sliced peaches underneath which sits refreshing milk flavoured soft serve ice cream for a heavenly combination. The yogurt mousse elevates the sweetness of the peaches and goes well with the sprinkle of black pepper. There’s even Parmesan cheese which tastes gorgeous with everything. No matter where you stick your spoon in this parfait your taste buds will be treated with delight.

     

    ▼Initial

    Address: DRESS 2F, 5-Chome-36 Minami 3 Jonishi, Chuo Ward, Sapporo, Hokkaido
    Opening Hours: [Weekdays] 17:00-Midnight / [Weekends & Public Holidays] 14:00-Midnight (Last Orders 23:30)
    No Fixed Holidays
    Access: 5-minutes on foot from Susukino Station and Ōdōri Station
    Official Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/INITIAL.sapporo/

     

    Gohanya Cafe Miyabi in Kita 24 Jo


    Whole Peach & Royal Milk Tea – ¥1,380

    The seasonal parfait at Gohanya Cafe Miyabi right now is the Whole Peach & Royal Milk Tea. It’s served with an entire plump peach on top which is best enjoyed by cutting and eating bit by bit until it drops into the glass. The peaches they use are refreshing and really delicious♡

    Tea is the main component of this parfait and that too was super refreshing. It also includes a framboise sorbet which add satisfying sour notes, and the cookies and other hidden treats add a multitude of tasty textures.

     

    ▼Gohanya Cafe Miyabi

    Address: E-COUR24 1F, 3-Chome-1-1 Kita 24 Jonishi, Kita Ward, Sapporo, Hokkaido
    Opening Hours: Lunch 11:00-15:00 / Cafe Time 15:00-17:30 / Dinner 17:30-21:00 (Last Orders 20:00)
    Closed: Thursdays
    Access: 150 meters from Kita-Nijūyo-Jō Station
    Official Website: https://miyabi-sapporo.shopinfo.jp/

     

    TSURU CAFE in Miyanomori


    Flavour Soft Peach – ¥830

    TSURU CAFE is a stylish and popular little cafe that is selling its new Flavour Soft Peach for a limited time. The syrup is this parfait is in fact made from red shiso leaf. Inside you will find a tower of peach compote, soft serve ice cream, meringue, and the syrup.

     

    The milky ice cream is a a magical mix together with the peach compote. The crunchy meringue is simply melt-in-your-mouth too♡

     

    The syrup has that distinct red shiso fragrance but it tastes sweet and so makes an amazing flavour. The shiso will no longer be served once sales of this dessert finish, so you’ll want to get in there ASAP!

     

    ▼TSURU CAFE

    Address: 5-Chome-2-8 Miyanomori 2 Jo, Chuo Ward, Sapporo, Hokkaido
    Opening Hours: [Mon-Sat] 10:00-20:00 / [Sun & Holidays] 10:00-19:00
    Closed: Wednesdays
    Access: 500 meters from Nishi-Nijūhatchōme Station
    Official Blog: http://tsurucafe.jugem.jp/

     

    KAJITSU_CLUB in Tanukikoji Shopping Street


    Peach & Hokkaido Soft Cream – ¥600

    KAJITSU_CLUB is located in the Beats Eats are on the basement floor of PARCO. You can order the ice cream of this peachy parfait as vanilla, yogurt or mixed. I went with mixed.

     

    The fresh peaches are so good! The soft serve ice cream is nice and sweet and there’s also a sour yogurt flavour. The flavours might be simple but the quality is high.

     

    ▼KAJITSU_CLUB

    Address: PARCO B2F, 3-Chome-3 Minami 1 Jonishi, Chuo Ward, Sapporo, Hokkaido
    Opening Hours: 10:00-20:00
    No Fixed Holidays
    Access: Directly connected to the Ōdōri Station subway
    Official Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/kajitsu_club/

     

    SHIRAYUKI in Tanukikoji Shopping Street


    Momomo – ¥600

    Available this August only, SHIRAYUKI’s new bottled drink is made of half frozen peach smoothie and half jelly and Hokkaido milk. This combination is match made in heaven! They come with a bag if you want to order for takeout too.

     

    SHIRAYUKI

    Address: Sapporo Aiseikan Bldg., 5-Chome Minami 1 Jonishi, Chuo Ward, Sapporo, Hokkaido
    Opening Hours: 12:30-19:00
    No Fixed Holidays
    Access: 5-minutes on foot from Ōdōri Station
    Official Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/shirayuki.hokkaido/

     

    Pâtisserie LEEMO in Shinkotonicho

    Whole Peach Parfait – ¥1,350 (*Only 20 available per day)

    Pâtisserie LEEMO is known for its cute cakes and baked sweets, but right now they are selling this Whole Peach Parfait until the end of August.

    You only need to feast your eyes on this dessert to know how refreshing the flavour is going to be. It even contains a jelly made from rosé wine, but the alcohol taste isn’t strong so can be enjoyed by anyone.

     

    Depending on the stock of the bakery’s peaches sales of this dessert may end earlier. You can also make a reservation for one which I recommend, so don’t miss out!

     

    ▼Pâtisserie LEEMO

    Address: 6-Chome-2-21 Shinkotoni 2 Jo, Kita Ward, Sapporo, Hokkaido
    Opening Hours: 10:00-19:00 (Parfait served at 12:00-18:00)
    No Fixed Holidays
    Access: Approximately 1km from Shinkawa Station
    Official Website: http://patisserieleemo.jp/

     

    Cake and bake HACHI CAFE in Hachiken


    Whole Peach – ¥720

    This luxurious-looking dessert is a whole peach filled with framboise jelly and custard making for an irresistible sour and sweet combination. The tart underneath is incredible too! Due to limited stock and the time it takes for the peaches to ripen there are days when the dessert isn’t serve. You can check the cafe’s official Instagram to find out if it’s on the menu that day or not.

     

    ▼Cake and bake HACHI CAFE

    Address: Hachiken 3 Johigashi, Nishi Ward, Sapporo, Hokkaido
    Opening Hours: 11:00-17:00
    Closed: Wednesdays & Thursdays
    Access: 550m from Hachiken Station
    Official Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/hachicafe8/

     

     

    Did you enjoy this list? Make sure to wolf down all of the tempting peach desserts you can in Japan before summer ends.

     

    Kei’s Instagram page is a wealth of recommendations for meals and desserts in Hokkaido, so be sure to check out their page if you’re planning to travel there.

     

    Photo & Text: Kei (@607keih)

    Translation: Joshua Kitosi-Isanga

  • Travel Japan: Turtle Rock, Oshinkoshin Waterfall & Other Must-Visit Sites in Hokkaido’s Shiretoko Peninsula

    18.August.2019 | FEATURES / SPOT

    Shiretoko Peninsula was registered as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2005 and is the northernmost location in Japan to have been so. Even in a place such as Hokkaido, which strikes all with its marvellous natural landscape, Shiretoko is said to be home to many secluded locations. Many of these have not been touched by the hands of man―they have been left as they are―and so one can discover sights, animals and much more that they cannot anywhere else.

     

    We are joined by Mirina, an Instagrammer who posts her experiences travelling to Hokkaido’s many sightseeing spots located in pockets of nature. She has provided us with photos of her trip to the Shiretoko Peninsula and its must-see spots.

     

    The Shiretoko Five Lakes

    The Shiretoko Five Lakes are situated inside an old-growth forest from which you can admire the grand Shiretoko mountain range in the back. Many wild animals live here such as the brown bear and black woodpecker. The view is one would expect from a World Heritage Site, with gorgeous scenery to soak up in every direction.

     

    ▶︎The Shiretoko Five Lakes

    Address: Onnebetsumura, Shari, Shari District, Hokkaido

    Shiretoko Shari Machi Sightseeing Website: https://www.goko.go.jp/multilingual_eng/index.html

     

    Turtle Rock (Cape Chashikotsu)

    Cape Chashikotsu, located on the Utoronishi side, can be seen from Shari and looks just like a giant turtle which is where it gets its nickname “Turtle Rock” from.

     

    ▶︎Turtle Rock (Cape Chashikotsu)

    Address: Utoronishi, Shari, Shari District, Hokkaido

     

    Oshinkoshin Waterfall

    Oshinkoshin Waterfall is listed as one of Shiretoko’s “8 Sights.” This towering waterfall rolls down the rocks and splits into two separate waterfalls halfway down which has given it the nickname “Two Beautiful Falls.” The are stairs that enable you to walk beside the waterfall halfway up, letting you get nice and close to the water. There is also an observation deck atop the waterfall from which you can see many sights such as the Sea of Okhotsk and Shiretoko mountain range. The waterfall is also listed as one of Japan’s top 100 waterfalls.

     

    ▶︎Oshinkoshin Waterfall

    Address: Utoronishi, Shari, Shari District, Hokkaido

    Shiretoko Shari Machi Sightseeing Website: https://www.goko.go.jp/multilingual_eng/index.html

     

    The Road To Heaven

    This long stretch of road spans 18km and has been dubbed the “Road To Heaven” as when observed from uphill looks like it disappears into the clouds. Situated on one side of the farmlands, one can enjoy a quiet and breathtaking view of the road. It’s also a popular road with bikers and travellers riding bicycles. It’s also a must-see from the observation deck close by.

     

    ▶︎The Road To Heaven (Japanese Name: 天に続く道)

    Address: Minehama, Shari, Shari District, Hokkaido

    Shiretoko Shari Machi Sightseeing Website: https://www.goko.go.jp/multilingual_eng/index.html

     

     

    Did you enjoy this list? There are countless places to visit in Japan, and some of the best are the quiet, secluded ones. If you get the opportunity to visit Hokkaido, put the Shiretoko Peninsula on your list of must-visit places.

  • Haneda Airport Releases First Bubble Tea Which Passengers Can Enjoy as They Fly

    13.August.2019 | FOOD

    XFLAG STORE + HANEDA is a small branch of XFLAG STORE and is located in Terminal 1 of Haneda Airport. On August 13th, they released three energising bubble tea flavours served in a bottle that you can take on board with you when travelling along domestic air routes. The three bubble tea flavours are; MILK TEA, HOJICHA (a type of green tea) and MATCHA. 

     

    These bubble tea flavours are limited to XFLAG STORE + HANEDA and were created with the intention of providing a splash of energizing fun to tiresome travels. 

    As long as you screw the lid on properly, you can store your delicious drink in your bag and even carry it onto your flight so you can enjoy it whilst soaring through the clouds. This is the first time a shop at Haneda airport has ever sold a bubble tea drink with the intention of flight passengers taking it on board with them.

     

    *Drinks and liquids are usually permitted on domestic flights in Japan. Please check the specific rules of your flight by referring to the official website of your airline. 

     

    To commemorate the release of the new bubble teas, XFLAG STORE + HANEDA has launched an Instagram campaign with the chance to win an Amazon gift card worth ¥10,000 (approx. 80GBP/95USD). 

     

    To take part in the Instagram campaign for the chance to win a ¥10,000 Amazon gift card, be sure to take a photo with your XFLAG STORE + HANEDA bubble tea drink and then post the picture on Instagram with the following three hashtags:

    #旅タピ #タピオカ #空の上で飲めるタピオカドリンク

    Four winners will be selected.

     

    Get your summer holidays off to a soaring start with a beautiful bottle of bubble tea. 

  • 4 Must-Visit Fireworks Festivals in Kyoto This Summer

    10.August.2019 | SPOT

    Kyoto―also known as the “old capital” and said to be the birthplace of Japanese culture. In its 1,200 year history, this ancient city has given rise to much of what can be considered quintessential Japanese culture. Fireworks are a monumental feat of summer in Japan with countless festivals up and down the country dedicated to them, and Kyoto is no exception.

     

    If you’re in Kyoto this summer then you mustn’t miss these 4 fireworks festivals.

     

    Kameoka Peace Festival Hozugawa River Fireworks Festival – A Magnificent Arsenal of 8,000 Beauties

    This long-running event is held every year to pray for world peace. Its spectacular display features a lineup of fireworks specially selected by the Japan Fireworks Artist Association which aims to evolve the tradition of firework culture. Expect to see the night sky illuminated with a rainbow of colours from the festival’s launch of 8,000 fireworks, including the Starmine which shoots a cloud of bright stars into the overhead abyss, as well as some original fireworks crafted for the festival such as the “Kamemaru Hanabi.”

     

    ▼Kameoka Heiwasai Hozugawa Fireworks Festival (Kameoka Peace Festival Hozugawa River Fireworks Festival)

    Date: August 11, 2019

    Time: From 19:30
    Location: Hozubashi Bridge
    Official Website: http://kameoka-hanabi.jp/

     

    Kyoto Nantan City Fireworks Festival – The Spectacular Starmine

    Held by the riverbed of the Katsura River, the fireworks festival in Nantan makes use of the opposite shore from the viewing point which makes the fireworks look like they are raining down from the sky like a waterfall. The finale of this festival welcomes the behemoth of all Starmine fireworks which rips across the night sky in a blazing spread. The festival is also held as part of the Bon Festival and so lanterns are let loose down the Ōi River, creating a sight of subtle grace and beauty.

     

    ▼Kyoto Nantan City Fireworks Festival

    Date: August 14, 2019

    Time: From 19:30

    Location: Katsura River
    Official Website: http://www.yagi-hanabi.com/

     

    Miyazu Toronagashi Fireworks Festival – Floating Lanterns & Fireworks For 400 Years

    Held in the city of Miyazu, this festival combines fireworks with floating lanterns and shoryobune―boats adorned with tanzaku paper slips that are sent out to light the way for the deceased as part of the Bon Festival.  Floating lanterns on the water (known as toronagashi in Japanese) in Miyazu began 400 years ago. This year, it was counted as one of Japan’s three biggest toronagashi events.

    Together with the boat, around 10,000 lanterns are sent into Miyazu Bay, creating a beautiful and majestic atmosphere. Close to 3,000 fireworks are set to illuminate the sky above, leading to an indescribable beauty as the fireworks and lights give off their own light.

     

    ▼Miyazu Toronagashi Fireworks Festival

    Date: August 14, 2019

    Time: From 19:30

    Location: Shimasaki Park
    Official Website: https://www.kyo.or.jp/miyazu/hanabi/

     

    Ine Fireworks – Fireworks Galore Envelop Ine Bay

    Around 1,200 fireworks climb up and over Ine Bay, lighting the calm water surface and the funaya boat houses of Ine with their brilliance. The boat houses themselves are also strung and lined with hanging lanterns.

     

    ▼Ine Fireworks

    Date: August 24, 2019

    Time: 20:15

    Location: Ine, Kyoto
    Official Website: http://www.ine-kankou.jp/inehanabi/

     

     

    Did you enjoy our pick? It isn’t summer in Japan without fireworks. If you’re travelling to Kyoto to catch some sun this year, finish the day off with one of its many fireworks festival―from traditional Kyoto-esque events to large-scale ones with 8,000 fireworks ready to be deployed.

  • Ice Cream Lovers’ Paradise: Over 100 of Japan’s Best Ice Creams Unite at Ice Cream Fair in Hokkaido

    08.August.2019 | FOOD / SPOT

    For six days only, The most mouthwatering ice cream flavours from all over Japan are heading to Sapporo Kita 3-jo Plaza AKAPLA for the regional ice cream fair Aipaku Hokkaido in Sapporo 2019. The ice cream fair will start on August 15 and end on August 20, 2019. 

     

    The concept of Aipaku® is to make everyone’s childhood dream into a reality; a paradise park where visitors are surrounded by the most delicious ice cream flavours that are found countrywide.  The Japan Ice Mania Association carefully selected heart-melting ice cream flavours from all over Japan to sell at this event. The event has been running since 2015 and has so far welcomed approximately 2 million satisfied ice cream lovers, making it the largest ice cream event in Japan. Visitors can tuck in to their ice creams straight away or buy cooler bags and dry ice at the venue to take it back home as a souvenir.

     

    This time, Aipaku Hokkaido in Sapporo 2019 is completely changing its lineup. Compared to when it was last run in 2017, this year will see many ice creams and ice cream brands that are new to Hokkaido making their debut. If you are an ice cream lover, this is a paradise world you just cannot miss out on. 

    Kikyou Shingen Soft/KIKYOUYA (¥500)

    Since being launched in 2015, this ice cream has become the star of the show at Aipaku. This ice cream is otherwise only available in Yamanashi prefecture. The beautiful scent of the soft serve ice cream’s kinako roasted soy bean will be the first thing to reach your nose. This ice cream is made with the original, rich-flavored brown sugar syrup of Yamanashi prefecture. 

    Manhattan Roll Ice Cream/ Manhattan Roll ¥850

    Roll Ice Cream is currently a big hit in Japan, so naturally it has infiltrated into this ice cream fair. This ice cream is not made using eggs like conventional ice creams. It is made with a unique combination ratio of milk, fresh cream and syrup. The result is a smooth ice cream which is rich but not overpoweringly sweet. 

    Double Ruby Fantasy/ MAISON GIVRÉE/¥600

    This is an Aipaku-limited ice cream. Its rise to fame occurred as a result of the World Championship of Pastry Ice Cream and Chocolate which took place in Milan in 2015. This Aipaku-limited soft serve ice cream was created by Team Japan’s captain and world champion pâtissier Hiroyuki Emori. It is covered in sugar-coated ruby chocolate and decorated luxuriously with almonds, hazelnuts and pistachios. The pink colour is enough to melt your heart. 

     

    Aipaku Original Häagen-Dazs Sundae/ Aipaku Official ¥800

    This is an original sundae flavour that can only be obtained from Aipaku. The ice cream is made using Häagen-Dazs vanilla ice cream with a generous layer of luxurious whipped cream. This is drizzled with a rich caramel sauce. Crispy feuillantine, which is made by smashing baked crêpe batter, accents the flavour and adds texture. Chunky slices of banana and salty vanilla-roasted peanuts are placed on top. This is a special sundae that ice cream-lovers will not be able to resist. 

     

    These are just a few of the vast range of ice creams you could be trying. There are just so many that you will be frozen for choice. The venue is also easy to access from Sapporo station. This is a wonderful way to leave the house and enjoy a Japanese summer whilst staying refreshed. 

     

    *Prices after tax stated above

    * The ice creams at the event may differ to the images above.

  • Experience Kyoto at Night: 5 Must-See Spots – MOSHI MOSHI NIPPON

    05.August.2019 | FEATURES / SPOT

    The ancient city of Kyoto enjoys waves of tourists and sightseers from around the world throughout the year. It is particularly hot during the summertime because it’s situated in a valley. If you’ve never walked around Kyoto’s towns at night then we invite you to add it onto your list of sightseeing experiences.

     

    We have compiled a list of 5 must-visit locations to best enjoy Kyoto’s nightscape. We are joined by Taka, a Japanese Instagrammer who conveys the beauty of Kyoto through his picturesque photographs which has has provided us today.

     

    Kyoto Station & Kyoto Tower

    The modern architecture of Kyoto Station is a juxtaposition against the traditional image of Kyoto. There are lots of great places inside the station where you can get up high and gaze down at Kyoto’s streets, but the absolutely unmissable nighttime spot are the mirrored windows. When evening sets in, you can see Kyoto Tower―which is opposite the station―reflected on the outside. Of course, you can enjoy the tower during the day too, but at night they light it up, making for a truly magical sight.

     

    ▼Kyoto Station

    Address: Higashishiokoji Kamadonocho, Shimogyo Ward, Kyoto, Kyoto Prefecture

    Kyoto Station Building Official Website: https://www.kyoto-station-building.co.jp/

     

    ▼Kyoto Tower

    Address: 721-1 Higashishiokojicho, Shimogyo Ward, Kyoto, Kyoto Prefecture

    Opening Hours: 9:00-21:00 (Last Entries 20:40)

    *Opening hours subject to change without notice

    Official Website: https://www.keihanhotels-resorts.co.jp/kyoto-tower/

     

     

    Yasaka Shrine

    Yasaka Shrine is an easy sightseeing spot to reach being just a 5-minute stroll from Gion-Shijo Station. The shrine is a power spot said to provide good luck when it comes to marriage ties. It bustles with visits from people from around the world and is in fact open 24-hours a day.

    Paying a visit at night provides you with an entirely different look at Yasaka Shrine. Why not dine out along Shijō Street and take a walk to the shrine when the sky turns dark?

     

    ▼Yasaka Shrine

    Address: 625 Gionmachi Kitagawa, Higashiyama Ward, Kyoto, Kyoto Prefecture

    Official Website: http://www.yasaka-jinja.or.jp/

     

     

    Kyoto Minamiza Theatre

    Minamiza is the oldest theatre in Japan and is officially registered as a Japanese Tangible Cultural Property. Like Yasaka Shrine, the closest station to the theatre is Gion-Shijo Station. Leave through Exit 6 and it’s right outside.

     

    Minamiza has a long history spanning back to 1610 when it was founded. In May this year, Kyary Pamyu Pamyu performed a special concert there entitled Kyary Kabuki Kabuki which made use of projection mapping, fusing history and tradition with the latest cutting-edge technology to provide a concert like no other. The theatre is becoming a new sightseeing spot as it is lit up at nighttime. All of the lights are turned on until 10pm after which just the roof lights are kept on.

     

    ▼Kyoto Minamiza Theatre

    Address: 198 Nakanocho, Higashiyama, Kyoto, Kyoto Prefecture

    Official Website: https://www.shochiku.co.jp/play/theater/minamiza/

     

     

    Ninenzaka

    Ninenzaka is a long winding road that leads up to Kiyomizu-dera temple and is also a very famous tourist spot. It is registered under the Important Preservation Districts for Groups of Historic Buildings. In the daytime, the street bustles with locals and tourists dipping in and out of the souvenir shops, but the dark evenings of Ninenzaka are another kind of wonderful. The number of tourists drops significantly at night meaning you can have the street all to yourself and take plenty of photos, warm lanterns lighting your way.

     

    ▼Ninenzaka

    Address: 2 Kiyomizu, Masuyacho, Higashiyama Ward, Kyoto, Kyoto Prefecture

    Official Website: http://www.2nenzaka.ne.jp/

     

     

    Kiyomizu-dera

    Kiyomizu-dera is a 25-minute walk from Kiyomizu-Gojō Station which is reached via the Keihan Main Line. Registered as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, this ancient Buddhist temple is a very popular tourist destination. What we want those of you to see when visiting in the evening is the beautiful sunset which can be seen from the temple, colouring the streets of Kyoto a gorgeous orange.

     

    ▼Kiyomizu-dera

    Address: 1-294 Kiyomizu, Higashiyama Ward, Kyoto, Kyoto Prefecture

    Opening Hours: https://www.kiyomizudera.or.jp/access.php

    Official Website: https://www.kiyomizudera.or.jp/

     

    Taka has visited so many incredible locations in Kyoto, so if you’re planning a trip there and need some recommendations be sure to follow him on Instagram.

     

    Photos: Taka

  • Stay in a Traditional Japanese Hotel in Kosuge Village Where the Population is Just 700

    04.August.2019 | BUSINESS / SPOT

    NIPPONIA Kosuge Genryū no Mura is a new hotel opening in the village of Kosuge in Kitatsuru District, Yamanashi Prefecture on August 17. The hotel is renovated from an old Japanese-style house that was originally used for local personages and was constructed over 150 years ago.

    Kosuge is about two-hours from Tokyo and is completely enveloped in the natural environment with 95% of the land occupied by trees and nature. Its population is around 700 which is a mere third of its peak population. It is currently faced with a serious depopulation problem due to its ageing population.

    The hotel will open in an effort to pass on the beautiful landscapes and culture of the village to the next generation. It hopes to aid in solving the problem of its declining population and empty houses while acting as a means to bring in tourism and sightseeing.

    The hotel serves as just the first part of this village revitalisation project. It features 4 guest rooms called OHYA as a restaurant that seats 22.

    There are three rooms in the main building and one in the basement. Each is designed with privacy in mind and each has its own concept.

    OHYA 1

    From the rooms guests can enjoy the view of the gorgeous Japanese-style gardens surrounding the hotel.

    The restaurant menu concept is titled 24 Sekki, which denotes the twenty four seasonal turning points of the old Japanese calendar, and is made using carefully local ingredients so that guests can enjoy an authentic Kosuge experience.

    All the staff at the hotel are local villagers. The majority of the ingredients used in there are grown and produced by the farmers of Kosuge. The hotel also offers other services for guests to  get to know the area better such as nature walks and bike rides through the village. You are made to feel like one of the locals.

     

    A second building will be renovated in May 2020 to accommodate two more rooms. There are 70-100 vacant buildings in Kosuge, so there are plans in place to receive permission from landlords to make further repairs, improvements and renovations.

     

    If you’re travelling to Japan and are looking for a truly remote experience then why not visit the quaint little village of Kosuge in Yamanashi Prefecture?

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