Every Single Spot in Hokkaido’s Green Town of Biei is a Sight to Behold
Japan’s northernmost prefecture Hokkaido is immensely popular with travellers and sightseers not only during the winter season but in the summertime too.
If you have never heard of Biei before then we guarantee you’ll want to make it your next travel destination. Located roughly at the heart of Hokkaido, the town of Biei is nothing short of majestic when it comes to its natural scenery for which it is treasured greatly. It also goes by the name “Town of Hills.”
We are joined by Mirina who travels around Hokkaido and posts the sights she sees on her Instagram page. Here are some of the must-visit places located in Biei using photos kindly provided by Mirina.
These are the kind of beautiful sloping hills you can expect your eyes to roll across when visiting Biei. The hills connect to many different locations bearing their own colours of nature. Biei’s hilly area is known as “Patchwork Road,” and as its name suggests, it looks just like patchwork.
Address: Hokuei, Kamikawa District, Biei, Hokkaido
Time: Sunrise to sunset
Biei Official Website: https://www.biei-hokkaido.jp/en/
Shirogane Blue Pond
Shirogane Blue Pond can be reached by car or Dohoku bus from JR Biei Station in 20 minutes. People flock to this place every year to see the enchanting blue colour of the pond’s surface. The way you see the colour also changes depending on the weather, so we recommend going one afternoon when the weather is good.
▼Shirogane Blue Pond
Address: Shirogane, Biei, Kamikawa District, Hokkaido
Official Website: https://www.biei-hokkaido.jp/en/sightseeing/shirogane-blue-pond/
Seven Stars Tree
Seven Stars Tree can be reached by car in 13 minutes from JR Biei Station. It gets its name from having appeared on the packaging for Seven Star cigarettes. Mirina’s photo was taken by the nearby white birches.
She also took one as the sun set. The pink evening sky is an equally beautiful sight to behold next to the green spectacle during the day.
▼Seven Stars Tree
Address: Hokuei, Kamikawa District, Biei, Hokkaido
Opening Hours: Sunrise to sunset (Light-up runs until 21:00)
Official Website: https://www.biei-hokkaido.jp/en/sightseeing/sevn-stars-tree/
Shikisai No Oka
The Shikisai no Oka flower park is 12 minutes by car from JR Biei Station and a 25-minute walk from Bibaushi Station. When summer rolls around, the fields bloom rainbows of flowers. During winter you can enjoy riding snowmobiles across the snowy hills.
This photo was taken in June and showcases the nemophilia beds. During summer break you can expect to see dianthus, scarlet sage, marigolds, sunflowers, and more. Every spot on the flower fields looks picturesque.
▼Shikisai No Oka
Address: Shinsei-daisan, Biei, Kamikawa District, Hokkaido
Opening Hours: Dependent upon season, please check the website for more details
Official Website: https://www.biei-hokkaido.jp/en/sightseeing/shikisai-no-oka-flower-park/
Rubeshibe no Oka
The hills of Rubeshibe are a sightseeing spot not yet known to a lot of people. They’re just a 5-minute car ride from JR Biei Station. Rubeshibe comes from the Ainu language and means “the marshy road that leads down from the mountain.” From here you can see the fields and roads of Biei, and beyond Mount Tokachi, Mount Tomuraushi and more.
▼Rubeshibe no Oka
Address: Rubeshibe, Biei, Kamikawa District, Hokkaido
Biei Official Website: https://www.biei-hokkaido.jp/en/visit/observationfacility/
The Sunsets of Biei
If you’re visiting Biei then you can’t leave without witnessing its breathtaking sunsets. The colours of the late afternoon sky offer a much different experience to that during the day. It really is a picturesque world.
Mirina has countless other photos of must-see sightseeing spots from around Hokkaido over on her Instagram page. You should definitely check it out if you’re thinking of travelling there for some amazing location recommendations.
Photos: Mirina Nishio
6 Must-Visit Cafes in Hokkaido For Their Kawaii Pancakes
Hokkaido is the northernmost of Japan’s islands and a popular tourist location with both locals and overseas visitors, enjoyed for its winter sports like skiing, hot springs and more. It is also enjoyed for its cool climate, being the coldest region in Japan. It’s home to many tourist spots and seafood restaurants, but today we’re covering its countless cute cafes.
Kei, a Japanese Instagrammer, posts his visits to the many cafes of Sapporo―the capital of Hokkaido―on his Instagram page（
607keih）. Today he will introduce us to 6 must-visit cafes in Hokkaido with the cutest pancakes.
Fafi Tamago no Pancake g-plus (Susukino, Sapporo)
This popular little cafe in the district of Susukino showcases its assortment of pancakes in a glass display. The cafe now sells affordable pancake and purin sets. I ordered the “Fruits and Milky & Chocolate Purin” set (¥980).
The fluffy pancake is made with Fafi’s famous eggs which have a rich flavour and big yolks. The milky cream is sweet and silky smooth. Inside the pancake is delicious pineapple and strawberries which add a deliciously fruity accent.
Their pancakes are noticeably smaller at g-plus but since it comes with a purin in the set you’re sure to be nice and full after. The set is perfect to share too.
▼Fafi Tamago no Pancake g-plus (Japanese: ファフィたまごのパンケーキ g-plus)
Address: 9-1019 Minami 5 Jonishi, Chuo Ward, Sapporo, Hokkaido
Business Hours: 11:30-19:00 (Last Orders 18:00)
Closed: Thursdays & Fridays
Official Website: https://g-plus.owst.jp/
Café ZIKKA (Kiyota, Sapporo)
Café ZIKKA serves a variety of pastries and desserts. Their elusive strawberry pancakes are a limited-time-only offer. These fat and fluffy pancakes have a distinctly different taste to other places. Heaping with strawberries, the fruit and pancakes marry in the most sumptuous of flavours when eaten with the yogurt ice cream centre. The strawberries also come in a variety of forms including whole, compote and sauce, making for a variety of succulent textures.
The fresh cream isn’t overly-sweet making for a lighter pancake. It’s also topped with crushed almond for added texture. The size of the pancakes aren’t huge but since it’s served with two and many toppings you’ll absolutely be satisfied afterwards.
Address: 11-12 Hiraokakoenhigashi, Kiyota Ward, Sapporo, Hokkaido
Business Hours: 11:00-20:00 (10:00-19:00 in January and February)
Closed: Wednesdays (Open on national holidays)
Official Website: http://yoshidacoffee.com/index.html
Kaze o Kanjite (Motomachi, Sapporo)
This cafe is just a 5-minute walk from Motomachi Station via the Tōhō Line. Simply exit from Exit 1 of the station, make a right and you’ll arrive right there.
This cafe’s aim is to bring it lots of students to eat their pancakes which are both cheap and delicious. I ordered the berry sauce pancakes.
The cafe’s homemade strawberry jam contains pieces of fresh strawberry which alone already make the pancakes tantalising enough. They are served with a side of fresh fruits like extra strawberries as well as orange slices. The pancakes served here are so good that I personally count them as the best in Sapporo. That, and the prices are amazing for the huge portions you get. I want more people to get to know about this place, and not just students.
▼Kaze o Kanjite (Japanese: 風をかんじて)
Address: Kita House 1F, 17-2-3 Kita 24 Johigashi, Higashi Ward, Sapporo, Hokkaido
Business Hours: 10:00-18:00 (Last Orders 17:00)
Closed: Mondays & Tuesdays
ROJIURA CAFÉ (Susukino, Sapporo)
ROJIURA CAFÉ is another cafe located in Susukino round on the backstreet of Round One. They serve pancakes and parfaits right into the early hours of the morning.
Their caramel sauce has salt in it to add a mouthwatering salty flavour that draws out the sweetness of the fresh cream. The nuts only add to this delectable delight of a pancake.
Fine and fluffy pancakes fit for the gods. Whether it’s a dessert like pancakes or parfaits or even meals, ROJIURA CAFÉ’s doors are open to you from the evening until the deepest hours of the night.
Address: TAKARA6.3, 3 Chome Minami 6 Jonishi, Chuo Ward, Sapporo, Hokkaido
[Mon-Thurs] 18:00-03:00 (Last Orders 02:00)
[Fri-Sat] 18:00-04:00 (Last Orders 03:00)
[Sun & Holidays] 18:00-01:00 (Last Orders 00:00)
No Fixed Holidays
Official Website: http://sapporo-rojiuracafe.com/
OJ Coffee (Kotoni, Sapporo)
You’ll find OJ Coffee just a few minutes’ walk from Kotoni Station in Nishi Ward, Sapporo. This cafe serves exquisite coffees and boasts an abundant menu consisting of soba noodles, curries, steaks and more. They also serve pancakes so I decided to give them a go.
Fluffy, moist and glorious. The pancake is topped with custard and served with a side of fresh cream, both of which aren’t overly sweet and go perfectly with the sweet beaten eggs of the pancakes. Decorated the outside of the plate is an assortment of fruits, maple syrup and other tempting treats for a variety of flavours. The coffee flavoured soft serve ice cream is a great palate cleanser too. The ice cream doesn’t have the bitterness that comes with coffee but it’s very coffee flavoured. It’s close to Kotoni Station so if you’re strolling around Nishi Ward looking for a cafe I highly recommend visiting here.
Address: D Planning Bldg. 1F, Kotoni 2 Jo, Nishi Ward, Sapporo
Business Hours: 7:30~22:00 (Last Orders 21:30)
No Fixed Holidays
Official Website: https://www.oj-coffee.com/
Café Blue (Ishiyama-dori, Sapporo)
Café Blue, built up from a renovated old house, is currently selling a new lemon and yogurt pancake for a limited time.
Their pancakes never fail to be anything less than fluffy. The generously drizzled yogurt sauce is fairly refreshing and sweet while still retaining that yummy yogurt flavour. The lemon curd sauce, too, is refreshing and combines well with the pancakes as lemon always does. The lemon also has honey in it making for a satisfyingly sweet and sour combination.
The ice cream on top is salt flavoured which bring out all the sweet flavours of the dessert. The crunchy almonds are nice and nutty and bring a great texture to the soft and sticky combinations. When I eat pancakes this is the kind of thing I’m looking for!
The sauce was refreshing and the pancake overall was delicious and very easy to get down. The yogurt sauce really is amazing!
Address: 16-9-12 Minami 19 Jonishi, Chuo Ward, Sapporo, Hokkaido
Business Hours: 9:00-19:00 (Last Orders 18:00)
No Fixed Holidays
Did you enjoy Kei’s picks? Be sure to check out their Instagram page for more recommended desserts and foods to try in Sapporo. There’s a wealth of choices on there that will make for great reference when travelling to Hokkaido.
Photo & Text: Kei (@607keih)
Translation: Joshua Kitosi-Isanga
2016-2018 rankings for top lodgings in Hokkaido! Best picks for foreigners included!
03.May.2019 | SPOT
TrustYou is a campaign aimed at encouraging tourism in Hokkaido. They have released accommodation rankings 2016-2018 to reveal which are the most highly rated hotels, resorts and lodgings based on word of mouth, and which places cater most for international guests. TrustYou’s stats also include the best picks for foreigners!
1st place (general) : Noboribetsu Onsen Kyo Takinoya
In 1st place is Noboribetsu Onsen Kyo Takinoya. It has a history of 102 years in the business and was founded in the 6th year of the Taisho era of Japan. Due to a large scale renovation that took place in 2008, the 61 room hotel was converted into 30 room hotel which stayed true to its traditional Japanese style whilst holding a slightly modern touch. They have many large hot springs so it is often called the “Onsen Depart” (because it is full of variety ー like an onsen department store). Here there are four varieties of natural baths from sulphur baths to radium baths. As well as indoor baths, there are also baths on the rooftop which are surrounded by a forest view and gardens.
2nd place (general): Pension Jokura
In 2nd place comes Pension Jokura. The building was once the main office of a northern wealthy merchant from the Edo period called Takadaya Kahei. The old wood from the warehouse was used to build a six-room boarding house.
“44 years ago, I stayed in a boarding house in Central America to pursue my career. I was there for a few weeks which then led to my dream of owning and managing my own boarding house. After many years, I have finally made my dream come true!” said owner Sato-san, who manages the property with their partner. The best part about this place is the at-home atmosphere that you can only get in such a small boarding house like this. From word of mouth of the guests, it is clear that the owners are “very kind and friendly” and “their hospitality is absolutely wonderful”. They can even speak English. This level of hospitality has made them extremely loved by their guests.
In 5th and 10th place come Shikotsu Lake tsuruga resort spa Mizunouta and Extract of Niseko Konbuonsen Tsuruga villa heather. These lodgings are run by the Tsuruga group, which manages 13 hot spring lodgings in Hokkaido.
Shikotsu Lake Tsuruga resort spa Mizunouta
Shikotsu Lake Tsuruga resort spa Mizunouta is a resort hotel which holds the concept of physical beauty and healing. From plentiful rest, food, walks, aesthetics and fitness to hot spring baths, this hotel covers all areas of health and well-being. The resort is located in Shikotsu-Tōya National Park and it is here that you can enjoy the beauty of Lake Shikotsu. There are a variety of exercise machines in the gym and approximately 20 types of pillows in the pillow gallery for guests. You can also pay a visit to the aqua bar which serves a variety of mineral waters sourced from within and outside of Japan. This truly is a unique hotel that provides more than enough for its guests.
After looking at the highly rated lodgings based on the language support they offer, you can see a clear distinction in the hotel locations and the other features that they offer. 3 of the top 5 English lodgings are located in Abuta District, Niseko. Each of these is suitable for long stay trips so it is clear that these places are popular amongst western tourists who stay for longer periods of time.
For Chinese speakers, there are two resorts that are managed by a Chinese company. The Hoshino Resorts Tomamu The Tower and Hoshino Resorts RISONARE Tomamu ranked highly for foreign language support. These large-scale resorts are useful for making large group bookings which adds to its high popularity.
TrustYou will help you find accommodation in Hokkaido so that you can be completely satisfied with your trip! For more information on the rankings, please check out the individual official lodging websites.
TrustYou word of mouth platform
6 Delicious Desserts in Sapporo ― The Gourmet City of Hokkaido
Sapporo is the fifth most populous city of Japan and the capital of Hokkaido. It’s a location bustling with tourists from around the world every year who come to enjoy its lush natural environment, fabulous food and amazing art.
The city also has a whole range of popular sweets and desserts. Here’s our list of 6 of them you have to try when visiting Sapporo.
Saturdays Chocolate Factory Cafe
Saturdays Chocolate Factory Cafe is a local chocolate brand that started in Sapporo. They delicately craft chocolate in chocolate using carefully selected ingredients from around the world. The shop interior is stylish like that of a general store, with chocolate decked out in cosmetic-like packaging. Enjoy a variety of chocolate and drinks sat at the counter or on the benches.
KANON PANCAKES is a popular pancake cafe that opened in 2012. The cafe has a high ceiling and a relaxing space with table seats and window seats where you can enjoy yourself even on your own. Their pancakes will satisfy your belly and are the perfect picture for your Instagram feed. They have a range of different pancakes to try, so tuck in!
WORLD BOOK CAFE
This spacious cafe has huge bookshelves lining the interior just like a bookshop with books on world travel and more. Displayed on the walls are illustrations of famous figures. The cafe is so relaxing you’ll want to stay there for a lengthy period of time. Enjoy a cup of fragrant coffee and pick from a line-up of delicious sweets or something from the food menu. They also offer a book borrowing service that lets you keep the book for 2 weeks, so if you couldn’t finish the book you were reading in the cafe then take it with you!
The Sapporo branch of Rokkatei is just a 5-minute walk from the south exit of JR Sapporo Station. They are famous for their crispy biscuit snacks called Marusei Butter Sandwich which they also have an ice cream version of. This version is made with vanilla ice cream, white chocolate and raisins. This dessert can only be eaten in the Sapporo and Obihiro branches.
This mochi shop uses komochi from the city of Nayoro in Hokkaido, a white, chewy kind of mochi that doesn’t dry out and get hard easily. They are made with adzuki and black soy bean both from Tokachi. They stock a whole range of different mochi using ingredients from Hokkaido, with prices starting at a resonable ¥140. They also serve matcha for ¥200 when you eat in, meaning you can kick back and enjoy some authentic traditional Japanese confections.
This bar style shop is open until 2am where you can enjoy sake together with a parfait. Their sweet parfaits are irresistible, combined with pear and yogurt. It’s the sister shop to the restaurant Risotteria GAKU which has boasted popularity for 10 years in Sapporo and Asahikawa. If you’re a fan of parfait or even of Risotteria GAKU then you’ve got to eat at Parfaiteria PaL.
Did you enjoy this list? Which do you want to try the most? Be sure to check out these places if you’re in Sapporo!
Travel Japan: Turtle Rock, Oshinkoshin Waterfall & Other Must-Visit Sites in Hokkaido’s Shiretoko Peninsula
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 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.
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.
Top 4 Must-Visit Places in Ishikawa to Keep Cool This Summer – MOSHI MOSHI NIPPON
Ishikawa Prefecture was formerly split between Kaga Province and Noto province and is still sometimes thought of as two peas in a pod. What was once Kaga Province in the now southern part of Ishikawa consists of six cities and towns including Kaga, Komatsu, Nomi, Kawakita, Hakusan, and Nonoichi.
Kaga Province is home to many waterfall spots widely known as great places for keeping cool in the hot sun. Providing as great sightseeing experiences, one can bask in the negative ions of the waterfalls and overcome the summer scorch.
Watagadaki gets its name from its appearance which is likened to falling torn cotton (wata being the Japanese word for the material). You will arrive right next to the waterfall when you descend down the path beside it, at which its great tumbling sound will fill you with a feeling reminding you that you are enveloped in nature.
▶︎Watagataki Waterfall (綿ヶ滝)
Address: 1-4 Shimoyoshitanimachi, Hakusan, Ishikawa Prefecture
Enquiries: 076-274-9544 (Hakusan Tourist Centre)
Access: 50-minutes south of Japan National Route 157 via Hakusan Interchange / 60-minutes from Kanazawa Station
Nanatsudaki Falls is comprised of seven smaller waterfalls which it gets its name from. It has long been a place of worship. Six of the waterfalls are found upstream, where the water rolls beautifully over the rocks which have formed over tens of thousands of years as a result of the movement of the earth’s crust. The surrounding trees boast lush green verdure or red and yellow autumnal leaves depending on the season, offering different spectacular sights to behold whatever time of the year you visit. There’s a path you can walk along where the upper six waterfalls are so you don’t have to worry about falling in!
▶︎Nanatsudaki Falls (七つ滝)
Address: Nagatakimachi, Nomi, Ishikawa
Enquiries: 0761-51-2308 (Nomi no Satoyama Fan Club)
Access: 25-minutes by car from Nomi-Neagari interchange
The water at Tsuruga Falls flows down five levels, and the biggest waterfall at the back splits into two separate waterfalls. Collectively the waterfalls tower up 30 meters high which is an incredible sight to see when up close. Tsuruga Falls gets its name from the splitting waterfall at the back which is said to look like the legs of a crane.
▶︎Tsuruga Falls (鶴ヶ滝)
Address: Yamanakaonsen Aratanimachi, Kaga, Ishikawa Prefecture
Enquiries: 0761-78-0330 (Yamanaka Onsen Tourist Association)
Access: 15-minutes by car from Yamanaka Onsen Bus Terminal
The name origin of Junigataki Waterfalls lies in its twelve separate falls which flow from the Gotani River. The incredible crashing sound of the water cannot be put into words; it’s an overwhelming spectacle that will have you wanting to go back more than once. In summertime it’s common to see families and young people playing in the water from up at the top of the waterfall down to the lake below. The waterfalls are a quite a distance from the city of Komatsu, but there are roads that lead right to it so it’s very accessible.
Address: Nunohashimachi, Komatsu, Ishikawa Prefecture
Enquiries: 0761-22-4111 (Komatsu City Hall)
Access: 45-minutes by car from JR Komatsu Station
Did you enjoy this list? If you’re in Japan this summer visiting Ishikawa then be sure to pay a trip to one of Ishikawa’s many waterfalls to cool yourself off.
Komatsu City Official Website
Seafood Heaven at Shizuoka’s New Restaurant Atami Ginza Osakana Shokudo
Atami Ginza Shopping District in Shizuoka’s seaside city of Atami is enjoying a new boom of bustling customers this year, and they’re sure to continue pouring in with the opening of its new seafood entertainment restaurant Atami Ginza Osakana Shokudo. The eatery opened its grand doors on August 8, offering fresh, flavourful seafood dishes. In the evenings, the restaurant turns into Osakana Sakaba where they serve gorgeous sake.
Atami is home to many fishing harbours, including those in Ajiro, Izuyama, and Hatsushima. Atami’s waters are a treasure trove of sea life, offering a bounty of seafood such as mackerel, salmon, shrimp, Splendid alfonsino, shellfish, and more.
The restaurant uses a previously vacant building which has been renovated for the opening. Their menu concept is “Atami nostalgia” which will fuse together traditional Atami food with new spins. Food is prepared in an open kitchen in a variety of ways including sashimi, grilled, steamed, and so on.
Splendid Alfonsino Rice Bowl – ¥2,780 (Before Tax)
The absolute must-try on their menu is their Splendid alfonsino rice bowl. It’s topped generously with huge cuts of horse mackerel, mackerel, and Splendid alfonsino, all caught fresh from neighbouring harbours.
The restaurant also serves the ginormous Japanese spider crab which is a local speciality in the city of Izu. They are kept fresh in tanks in the restaurant. In the evening, when the restaurant turns into a bar, you can have this crab served however you like: as sashimi, grilled, or even steamed. As well as fresh seafood, they also serve vegetables and other meat, all sourced locally. Tofu, desserts and other food is too.
Japan is known for its exquisite seafood. If you’re travelling to Shizuoka this summer, be sure you pay a visit to the new Atami Ginza Osakana Shokudo.
Atami Ginza Osakana Shokudo (Osakana Sakaba at night)
Address: 8-8 Ginza-cho, Atami, Shizuoka Prefecture
Opening Hours: Lunch 11:00-16:00 (Last Orders 15:30) / Dinner 17:00-22:00 (Food Last Orders 21:00/Drink Last Orders 21:30)
No Fixed Holidays
Access: 14-minutes on foot from JR Atami Station
Official Website: http://www.osakana-atami.com/
Stay Cool This Summer in Kyoto at These 4 Nature Spots
When talking about seasons in Kyoto, a lot of people are sure to point towards autumn when the leaves turn fiery red and sun yellow. But did you know that in Kyoto enjoys cool and truly beautiful summers?
If you’re in the old capital this summer, or are planning to catch the sun there with a trip next year, then you’ll want to add the 4 spots in this list into your schedule, each abloom with magical foliage and verdure.
We are joined by Macchan, a Japanese Instagrammer who snaps photos of sightseeing spots around Kyoto lush with greenery.
Giouji Temple is a modest thatched hut wrapped in a bamboo thicket and maple trees. The temple is detailed in the epic The Tale of the Heike in which the dancer Gio fled to the temple from her home in the capital with her mother and sister after falling out of love with Taira no Kiyomori.
A visit here ensures you can enjoy the summer with more than just your eyes as you listen to the dancing of the bamboo thicket and the cries of the cicadas.
Address: 32 Sagatoriimoto Kozakachō, Ukyo Ward, Kyoto
Official Website: http://www.giouji.or.jp/en
Adashino Nenbutsu-ji is a Buddhist temple with a history spanning 1,200 years. A memorial service for those who died without kin is taking place on August 23 and 24 at the riverbed of the temple’s west wing where candles will be lit in their honour. Lanterns are also lit in the surrounding area along the streets.
Address: 17 Saga Toriimotoadashinocho, Ukyo Ward, Kyoto
Official Website: http://www.nenbutsuji.jp/index.html
Fushimi Port Park
Fushimi Port Park is a huge park home to a gymnasium and sumo area. They also have a hiking course. The sea does not reach here, but there is a canal which boats go up and down, and this is where the park gets its name. It has a bounty of trees and plants, so if you’re looking to enjoy a peaceful stroll in nature then be sure to visit.
Fushimi Port Park
Address: Yoshijima Kanaidocho, Fushimi Ward, Kyoto
Official Website: http://www.kyoto-park.or.jp/fushimi/
This residence was built for and used by the Kan’in-no-miya family in 1710, with Prince Naohito as its founder―the son of Emperor Higashiyama. The family lived in the house until 1877 after which they moved to Tokyo. Following the war, it was liberated and became a park, and today it is used to exhibit photography and paintings. The residence is famous for its peach trees, making it a popular spot in spring. However, in summertime, it’s much quieter, adding grace to the tranquillity of the surrounding green landscape. What’s more is that despite it being such a prestigious location, it’s free to enter! Don’t tell too many people about this secret spot.
Address: 3 Kyotogyoen, Kamigyo War, Kyoto, Kyoto Prefecture
Official Website: https://kan-in-nomiya-teiato.jp/eng/
Macchan has visited many incredible spots around Kyoto, so if you’re in need of recommendations be sure to give them a follow.
Ice Cream Lovers’ Paradise: Over 100 of Japan’s Best Ice Creams Unite at Ice Cream Fair in Hokkaido
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.
Ice Cream Fair Aipaku Hokkaido in Sapporo 2019
Running: August 15 ー 20, 2019
Opening Times: 11:00 ー 20:00
Venue: AKPLA, (Sapporo Kita 3-jo Plaza)
Kita 2 Jonishi, 4/ Kita 3 Jonishi 4, Chuo Ward, Sapporo, Hokkaido
Takeaway: If you wish to purchase ice creams to take away, please consider purchasing a cooler bag and dry ice (保冷バッグ＋ドライアイス) at the venue.
Aipaku Official Website: http://www.i-89.jp
Become Poop and Travel Through the Body in Kyoto’s Bizarre Exhibition
The Toei Kyoto Studio Park―a theme park in Kyoto modelled after the Edo period of Japan―is set to hold an exhibition from next month titled “A Bizarrely Great Adventure Through the Body” in which you can travel through a giant model of a body to learn all about faeces.
The event is themed on the best-selling children’s book series Grossology by Sylvia Branzei which gives humorous but straightforward descriptions of bodily functions and various medical conditions.
Stinky Poop (Unchi Kusai), the ninja mascot of the event, will join visitors on their adventure as they experience the gross potential of the human body: burps, farts, bodily odours, and more.
A total of fifteen attractions will make up the event where kids and adults can discover the “secrets” of the human body.
At the Sneeze Shutter you will learn why we sneeze by firing balls―the “foreign substance” entering the nose―into the giant nostrils which will cause it to become itchy. If you can get five balls into the nose it will let out a sneeze and blown out the balls.
The Kidney Game
At the Kidney Game you will help deliver urea, sugar, and other materials necessary for the kidney to the blood vessels to understand how the kidney functions.
Poop Fortune Telling
Sit on a real toilet and a poo character will appear on the monitor to tell you your fortune that day.
Learn all about poo at the display board which features lots of interesting information.
Why do we burp when we drink fizzy beverages? Burp Kid will explain it to you.
Take a photo with the giant poo
At the end of your trip to the event, take a commemorative photo next to the giant poo pile and butthole.
This is just a snippet of what there is to see at Kyoto’s bizarre poo exhibition. Visit to learn all about something we all do but don’t talk about!
A Bizarrely Great Adventure Through the Body (Japanese: からだのふしぎ大冒険)
Running: September 14, 2019 – December 15, 2019
Price: General (13+ Years) ¥800 / Children (3-12 Years) ¥600
*A separate fee will be charged for entry to Toei Kyoto Studio Park
*Children aged 2-years and below are permitted free entry
Event Page (Japanese): http://www.toei-eigamura.com/event/detail/240
Set tickets for the event and entry to Toei Kyoto Studio Park are now on sale at FamilyMart.
Adults: Park Entry ¥2,100 + Event Entry ¥800
Junior High School Students: Park Entry ¥2,000 + Event Entry ¥800
Children (3-12 Years): Park Entry ¥1,600 + Event Entry ¥600
*By buying this set you get ¥100 off what you would pay for purchasing them separately. The first 2,000 people to buy a children’s ticket set will receive a plush toy
Toei Kyoto Studio Park
Address: 10 Uzumasa Higashihachiokachō, Ukyo Ward, Kyoto
Experience Kyoto at Night: 5 Must-See Spots – MOSHI MOSHI NIPPON
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.
Address: Higashishiokoji Kamadonocho, Shimogyo Ward, Kyoto, Kyoto Prefecture
Kyoto Station Building Official Website: https://www.kyoto-station-building.co.jp/
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 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?
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 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.
Address: 2 Kiyomizu, Masuyacho, Higashiyama Ward, Kyoto, Kyoto Prefecture
Official Website: http://www.2nenzaka.ne.jp/
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.
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.
Once Every 33 Years a Secret Door at Tenjō-ji Temple in Kobe is Opened
04.August.2019 | SPOT
The Buddhist temple Tenjō-ji is located on Mount Maya at the heart of the mountainous area of Mount Rokko. This month, something very special is happening at the temple. An elusive door housed there is opened only once every 33 years, and this month from August 1 to 15, it is open.
Tenjō-ji is the only temple in Japan that has a building dedicated to Maya-bunin, the mother of Buddha. Its long history begins with Hōdō Sennin, an Indian high priest who build the temple at the behest of Emperor Kōtoku. In Japan, Maya-bunin is worshipped as as symbol of easy childbirth and child-rearing. Mount Maya, the mountain on which Tenjō-ji sits, is named after her.
Mount Maya, located in Kobe’s Nada ward, is a 702 meter tall mountain and one of the major peaks of Rokkō Mountains. It is close to the town areas of Kobe, and from the mountain peak one can see Kobe, Osaka, the Kii Peninsula, Akashi-Kaikyo Bridge and more, making it a popular tourist destination. It’s also frequented by Kobe locals who visit with their families to eat bento, as well as couples looking to catch a glimpse at the gorgeous nightscape atop the mountain apex.
Inside the secret door now open at the temple until August 15 are three hidden Buddhist idols: the Eleven-Faced Avalokitesvara, Acala, and Vaiśravaṇa. This is very much a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, so if you’re lucky enough to be in Japan right now, you won’t want to miss this extremely special occasion. If you do, you’ll have to wait another 33 years!
While it is open there will be talks and faith healing by the priests three times a day (10:30/12:00/14:00), exclusive celebratory merchandise, limited-time goshuin stamps, and more.
Running: August 1, 2019 – August 15, 2019
Address: 2-12 Mayasanchō, Nada Ward, Kobe, Hyogo Prefecture
Opening Hours: 9:00-17:00
No Fixed Holidays
*Opening hours extended on August 8 and 11
Official Website: http://www.mayasan-tenjoji.jp/
Stay in a Traditional Japanese Hotel in Kosuge Village Where the Population is Just 700
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.
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?
NIPPONIA Kosuge Genryū no Mura
Address: 3155-1 Kosuge, Kitatsuru District, Yamanashi Prefecture (In Japanese: 山梨県北都留郡小菅村3155-1)
Grand Opening: August 17, 2019
Rooms: 4 (10 People)
Price: From ¥25,000 per person (includes one breakfast)
①Approximately 2 hours by car from Tokyo.
②1 hour by bus from Ōtsuki Station via the JR Chūō Main Line, 70-minutes by car from Oume Interchange
③1 hour by bus from Okutama Station via the Ōme Line, 20-minutes by car from Lake Okutama
Reservations: Open from August 1, 2019 via the following website: https://www.ikyu.com/vacation/00050804/
3 Must-Visit Places in Japan’s Aichi Prefecture – MOSHI MOSHI NIPPON
Aichi Prefecture is located in the centre of Japan’s Honshu island. It is home to countless shops, astounding castles, and many sightseeing spots. Mother nature is a huge part of Aichi’s beauty where she has provided plenty of places for enjoying the outdoors.
Instagrammer NAMIKO, who travels all over Japan to visit tourist and sightseeing spots, is here today to showcase three unmissable places to visit when travelling to Aichi using photos she has posted.
Aichi Farm (Aichi Bokujo)
Running just a 10-minute stroll from Kurozasa Station is Aichi Farm which is home to various farm animals, a place where you can enjoy BBQ food, and more, making it a very popular spot for friends and families looking for a day out.
But the absolute must-see part of your trip here during summer are the sunflower beds which bloom from early July right up to early September. The best times to see them in full bloom are posted on the farm’s official website so be sure to check before packing your outdoor gear and heading out.
▼Aichi Farm (Aichi Bokujo)
Address: Minamiyama-977 Komenokichō, Nisshin, Aichi
Opening Hours: Dependent on the season, check the official website for details
No Fixed Holidays (Except New Year’s and Tuesdays when the horse riding club is running)
Official Website: http://www.aiboku.com/
Nomazaki Lighthouse, or Noma Lighthouse for short, can be found along the coast of a town called Mihama in Chita District. This town bears many sightseeing spots including the aquarium and art museum. The lighthouse can be reached by riding the Meitetsu Chita New Line to Noma Station. You then change onto the Mini Seibu Bus and get off at Noma Lighthouse (野間灯台).
It is the oldest lighthouse in all of Aichi Prefecture and is popular for its “kawaii” appearance. Wanderlust travellers will love basking in the radiant summer sun by the sea and sandy beach when they go to visit Noma Lighthouse.
Address: Iwanari-20-1 Onoura, Mihama, Chita District, Aichi
No Fixed Holidays
Official Website: https://www.aichi-now.jp/spots/detail/115/
Himakajima is an island in Mikawa Bay which can be reached in just an hour from Nagoya, the capital of Aichi Prefecture. Not only do you have sunny beaches, there’s also a temple, a park for children to play in, the island’s famous giant swing, and lots of other fun places to explore. It’s also known for its octopus and blowfish catches which can be eaten there.
There are plenty of spots for taking great photos too. Since it’s an island located off the coast, any photo you take will look picturesque.
Official Website: https://www.himaka.net/
If you’re seeking out even more travel recommendations and sightseeing spots around Japan for your bucket list then we highly encourage you to follow NAMIKO on Instagram.
Introducing Four Delicious Strawberry Desserts This Summer in Hokkaido
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.
Instagrammer Kei @607keih) uses his account to introduce the world to delicious desserts and meals. Today, he will be introducing you to the delicious strawberry-flavoured desserts that Hokkaido’s capital Sapporo has to offer.
holidays pancake/ Susukino
Strawberry Pancake with Raspberry Sauce: ￥1200
holidays pancake is only open on Sundays. It is located inside a beer bar called es CRAFT. I ordered the strawberry pancake with raspberry sauce. The plate was stacked with three pancakes which were deliciously covered in fresh cream, whipped cream, vanilla ice cream, strawberries and raspberry sauce. The pancakes were soft and spongy. The flavour of the ricotta cheese really came through. Overall, this pancake is a very unique pancake to Hokkaido.
The sweetness of the raspberry sauce and sourness of the lemon juice balanced out for a slightly sour tinge. The fresh cream and vanilla ice cream toppings can be obtained for free by simply following the café on Instagram. The variety of toppings add a whole new range of flavours and colours for you to mix and match, so there is no getting bored. You can reserve your spot simply by sending them a direct message on Instagram, or by referring to their story! These pancakes are a rare find in Hokkaido, so you must try them.
Address: 1st floor N-place Building, 3-2-1, 4 Jonishi, Chuo Ward, Sapporo
Access: 3-minute walk from Susuki Station/Hosui-Susukino Station
Opening Hours: 11:00 ー 16:00（Last orders: 5:30）
Closed: Mondays ー Saturdays
Official Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/kyujitsulab/
Berry Berry Crazy is located on the 2nd floor of the building between 5-chome and 6 chome of Tanuki-Koji. The desserts here are made using strawberries sourced from Urakawa Sugano Orchard in Hokkaido. The species of strawberry used in the desserts is completely dependent on what is received upon the delivery of the ingredients that are received on the day. The parfait I ordered was made using a species of strawberry called Kaorino.
The parfait contained fresh strawberries and strawberry compote, whipped cream, strawberry granita, pie crust, chiffon cake, and milk ice cream. You can tell that this parfait is full of strawberry goodness just by looking at it. Not only are the strawberries delicious, but the strawberry granita and strawberry compote were also to die for. This combined with the delicious whipped cream enhances the rich flavour even more.
▼Berry Berry Crazy
Address: 2nd floor, 5-20-2, Minami 3 Jonishi, Chuo Ward, Sapporo
Access: Approx. 5-minute walk from Odori Subway Station/Susuki Station
Opening Hours: 18:00 ー 24:00 (Last orders: 23:30)
Official Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/berryberrycrazy/
Café Blue/ Chuo Ward
Condensed Milk Strawberry Pancake: ￥1380 ※ Can change pancakes to waffles
A mountain of whipped cream sits on the pancakes served at this popular café. The condensed milk strawberry pancake intrigued me for quite while so I decided to order it.
The plate is stacked with three pancakes, fresh cream and condensed milk. This is then drizzled with strawberry sauce and topped with vanilla ice cream. The pancakes were fluffy and the cream balanced the overall flavour, making it moderately sweet. The sweetness of the condensed milk and the sourness of the strawberry sauce were so delicious that there was no way I could get bored.
▼ Café Blue
Address: 16-9-12, Minami 3 Jonishi, Chuo Ward, Sapporo
Access: 5-minute walk from Ropeway iriguchi Station
Opening Hours: 9:00 ー 19:00, (last orders: 18:00)
Breakfast: 9:00 ー 11:00, lunch/dinner: 10:00 ー 19:00, desserts: 10:00 ー 19:00,
Open all year round.
Official Website: https://cafeblue.exblog.jp/
Fruit Squash: ￥500 each
Shirayuki is located in Tanuki-Koji. The fruit squash here comes in four flavours and each contains popping boba. Today I ordered the Strawberry Squash. Strawberry sauce is drizzled into a cup of carbonated water. Popping boba is then added. The drink is topped with strawberries.
The bubbles of the carbonated water makes it the perfect way to cool down in the summer. This drink is only available until August 15, so if you want to try it, get there soon.
Address: Shirayuki Sapporo Aiseikan Building, 5 Chome, Minami 1-jo nishi 5, Chuo Ward, Sapporo
Access: Approx. 5-min walk from Odori Subway Station
Opening Hours: 12:30 ー 19:00
No regular holidays
Official Instagram: https://www.facebook.com/shirayuki.hokkaido
So how about it? Kei’s Instagram account is full of desserts and meals that you absolutely must try. If you are going to visit Hokkaido, make sure to check out Kei’s Instagram so you know exactly which restaurant or café you want to visit!
Original article information and photographer: Kei (@607keih)
Kyoto’s Famous Buddhist Temple With Heart Window Holds Wind Chime Festival
The ancient city of Kyoto enjoys flurries of tourists and sightseers from around the world throughout the year. It is particularly hot during the summertime because it’s located in a valley.
Shojuin is a Buddhist Temple located in a summer retreat that was erected nearly 800 years ago. Hidden at the temple is the 11-faced Buddha statue of Kannon Bosatsu which is open to the public only once every 50 years.
The temple has a long history, and today it is used as a site for yoga, copying the sutras, and other activities when booked in advance. It’s enjoyed by people of all ages.
Today, we are joined by Macchan, an Instagrammer who tours the many sightseeing spots of Kyoto. They have provided photographs of the must-see parts of this ancient temple.
Shojuin is famous for its beautiful heart-shaped window located in the reception hall as well as its 160 pieces of ceiling art. The decorative window has been around for nearly 1,400 years and has survived disasters. It stands as a symbol of happiness.
From outside the heart window visitors can enjoy the different flowers through the four seasons. Right now during summer the view is a green spectacle. At nighttime the outdoor garden is lit up beautifully as shown in the photo.
Shojuin is famous for its summer Wind Chime Festival which is currently running until September 18.
2,000 colourful wind chimes gently sway around the temple with the summer breeze. The chimes are there for their sound and appearance and to elicit that sense of refreshing coolness.
Even the wind chimes are illuminated in the evenings. They are lit up on weekends only (except August 1 to 18) from 18:00-20:00.
The hypnotic ring of the wind chimes sounds they are calling the wind. If you’re travelling to Kyoto this hot summer, why not plan a trip to Shojuin?
Macchan has lots of other photos on their Instagram where you can feel the vibe of Kyoto. Use it as reference when you’re planning your Kyoto sightseeing.
Address: Kawakami-149 Okuyamada, Ujitawara, Tsuzuk District, Kyoto
①Reachable by Keihan Uji Bus (Numbers 180, 182 or 184) from Uji Station and Shin-Tanabe Station. Get off at Ichumae Bus Stop (維中前)
②10 minutes by the Okayamada Community Bus or taxi
Official Website: http://shoujuin.boo.jp/