Taiko-en: Osaka’s Oasis in the City Begins 2020 Autumn Illumination Event
01.October.2020 | SPOT
Taiko-en is an enormous site spanning 250,000 square feet and is home to a breathtaking garden, restaurant, and more. This year, the site is giving host to a special illumination event for autumn this year which began on Saturday.
Since July 2019, Taiko-en has been lighting up its garden with illuminations for people to enjoy the beautiful garden in the evening, bringing together nature with the history of the site.
The illuminations begin with projection mapping at the entrance of the garden which rolls out an autumn colour carpet. As visitors walk along the projected path, the lights and colours dance beneath their feet.
Further in they will come to the “Night Museum” area where they will find stone statues collected by Denzaburō Fujita lit up, as well as paper lanterns, and more, offering a magical atmosphere different from that during the daytime. There’s also a path home to moso bamboo as well as acrylic bamboo with LED lights in it which lead visitors into a mystical world of dazzling radiance. In the main area, there’s a lake with a sea of clouds above it, and the trees of the garden coloured bright red.
The restaurant and banquet area are open for business, so after enjoying a gourmet meal, visitors are encouraged to go and see the light show.
Taiko-en 2020 Autumn Garden Illuminations (Japanese: からくれないに染まる夜～2020 秋～)
Running: From September 26, 2020 everyday from 19:00
Price: Adults ¥500 / Children ¥300
*Price subject to change depending on the season
Hoshino Resorts KAI Poroto to Open in Hokkaido in January 2022
21.October.2020 | SPOT
Hoshino Resorts, Japan’s premiere hotel management company boasting over 40 properties both inside and outside Japan is set to its new onsen ryokan (hot spring Japanese style inn) Hoshino Resorts KAI Poroto in January 2022 following the completion of a partnership agreement with Shiraoi, Hokkaido on June 28, 2018.
KAI Poroto comes as the 19th property for the KAI brand, following KAI Nagato (opened in March 2020), KAI Kirishima (scheduled to open in January 2021), and KAI Beppu (scheduled to open in summer 2021). It will also be the third KAI property to open in Hokkaido, following RISONARE Tomamu in Shimukappu and OMO7 Asahikawa in Asahikawa. The new property will be designed by Japanese architect Hiroshi Nakamura.
(Hiroshi Nakamura & NAP)
Guests will be able to enjoy Shiraoi onsen water at KAI Poroto. The water comes from a “moor spring” which contains organic minerals derived from plants. This type of water is rare throughout the world. KAI Poroto faces the shores of Lake Poroto and is surrounded by the natural forests of Hokkaido where many species of wild bird live. All guest rooms boast a lake view where changes in scenery throughout the seasons can be enjoyed.
KAI Poroto will is cooperating with both the town of Shiraoi as well as “Upopoy”, the National Ainu Museum and Park, which has the aim of becoming a “symbolic space for ethnic harmony”. The facility will respect Ainu culture and provide a place of accommodation for guests to experience it.
Upopoy: A symbolic space for ethnic harmony
A symbolic space for ethnic harmony by the name of “Upopoy opened in Shiraoi, Hokkaido on July 12, 2020. This national centre serves as a base for the reconstruction and development of Ainu culture, which is in danger of survival. The main facilities are the National Ainu Museum and the National Ainu Park. The National Ainu Museum is the first national museum in Japan centred around indigenous Ainu people and the history and culture of the people as expressed through their perspective. This is expressed in a variety of different exhibits. The National Ainu Park is a field museum, where Ainu culture can be taught through a number of programs. Experiences on-site include the Ainu traditional dance, which is registered as UNESCO intangible cultural heritage, wood carving, and embroidery workshops, as well as food and traditional performing arts experiences. “Upopoy” means “to sing (in large numbers)” in the language of Ainu.
Designed by Hiroshi Nakamura
Japanese architect Hiroshi Nakamura is behind the design of KAI Poroto. “Poroto” means a large lake in the Ainu language and KAI Poroto boldly draws this lake into its premise. In the lobby of the birch forest, guests will be greeted by a magnificent view of the lake, which leads to Mount Tarumae. Guests can also relax in the lounge while watching the flames in the fireplace, something which was at the centre of Ainu people’s lives. On the surface of the lake, a bathhouse called Kashi, which is built using traditional Ainu construction methods, stands like a village. The open-air bath makes one feel as if you are immersed in the lake. The design has been created in a way that is modern, inspired by the lifestyles, nature, and family of Ainu people.
Hoshino Resorts KAI Poroto
Address: 1-1018-1 Wakakusa, Shiraoi, Hokkaido
Grand Opening: January 2022
Official Website: https://www.hoshinoresorts.com/en/brand/kai/
Pokémon Cafe and Pikachu Sweets by Pokémon Cafe Reveal New Desserts Including Polteageist Tea Set
Pokémon Cafe and Pikachu Sweets by Pokémon Cafe are releasing a new teatime menu at their respective branches on October 24, 2020.
Polteageist & Sinistea Tea Party! Fruit Tea Set ~Apple Flavoured~ | ¥1,188 (Tax Included)
Polteageist & Sinistea Tea Party! Fruit Tea Set ~Strawberry Flavoured~ | ¥1,188 (Tax Included)
Pokémon Cafe is serving up two different fruit tea sets based on the Ghost-type Pokémon Polteageist and Sinistea. Customers are free to pour in their desired amount of fruit syrup which changes the colour of the tea. The sets come with a cute cookie too.
Pikachu Sweets by Pokémon Cafe
Left: Polteageist’s Tea Party! Fruit Tea ~Mixed Berry Flavour~ / Right: Polteageist’s Tea Party! Fruit Tea ~Peach Orange Flavour~ | ¥700 Each (Before Tax)
Pikachu Sweets by Pokémon Cafe is also going to serve up some Polteageist themed fruit teas as well as a selection of desserts like macarons and financier almond cakes which have Pokémon tail and ear designs.
After ordering one of the Polteageist fruit teas, customers can place their cups under the Polteageist tea pot as pictured above and activate the pot to dispense their drink, so it’s like Polteageist really pouring tea for you.
Left: Swirlix Strawberry Macaron | Middle: Pikachu Vanilla Macaron | Right: Galarian Ponyta Pistachio Macaron – ¥500 Each (Before Tax)
Treat yourself to one of the super cute Swirlix, Pikachu, or Ponyta macarons each with designs that tell you instantly which Pokémon they’re inspired by.
Polteageist Fruit Tea and & Pikachu Macaron Set
Customers can order a tea and macaron combination set too.
Pikachu Glass Parfait Set | ¥1,500 (Before Tax)
An adorable set of Pikachu parfaits, one being caramel banana flavoured and the other chocolate.
Pikachu Tea Party Assortment – Pika Pika Pikavee Set | ¥2,800 (Before Tax)
Another set to share between friends and family, this time with two Pikachu glass desserts as well as Pikachu and Eevee cupcakes.
Pikachu Tea Party Assortment – Ghost Type Set | ¥2,800 (Before Tax)
This set comes with the Pikachu glass desserts as well as Ghost-type Gengar and Litwick mousse cakes.
The Polteageist teapot and Sinistea teacup used at the Pokémon Cafe and Pikachu Sweets by Pokémon Cafe will also be released at Pokémon Center Online in Japan on December 5, 2020.
© 2020 Pokémon.©1995-2020 Nintendo/Creatures Inc./GAME FREAK inc.
Pokémon, ポケットモンスター, and ポケモン are registered trademarks of Nintendo, Creatures Inc., and GAME FREAK inc..
Pokémon Cafe (Nihombashi, Tokyo)
Address: Nihombashi Takashimaya SC East Bldg. 5F, 2-1-2 Nihombashi, Chuo Ward, Tokyo
Business Hours: 10:30-22:00
No Fixed Holidays (Except when Nihombashi Takashimaya SC is closed)
Pokémon Cafe (Shinsaibashi, Osaka)
Address: Daimaru Shinsaibashi Honkan 9F, 1-7-1 Shinsaibashisuji, Chuo Ward, Osaka, Osaka Prefecture
Business Hours: 10:00-21:30
No Fixed Holidays (Except when Daimaru Shinsaibashi is closed)
Pikachu Sweets by Pokémon Café
Address: Sunshine City Alpa Floor 2F, 3-1-2 Higashiikebukuro, Toshima City, Tokyo
Opening Hours: 10:00-20:00
Official Website: https://www.pokemoncenter-online.com/cafe/pikachu_sweets/
*Opening hours subject to change, please check in advance before travelling.
*Food served and duration subject to change without notice.
*Photos are for illustrative purposes only.
*Seat reservations are taken online only – phone reservations not available.
World’s First Mario Cafe and Shop Opens at Universal Studios Japan in Osaka
Universal Studios Japan (USJ) announced earlier this month that its new Nintendo-themed area SUPER NINTENDO WORLD will open in spring 2021. While the grand opening of SUPER NINTENDO is still a while away yet, USJ has everyone covered, as the new and first of its kind Mario Cafe & Store officially opened inside the park’s Hollywood Area on October 16, 2020.
The cafe and shop is dream come true for fans of the Mario bros as they enter into a world inspired by the video game series with Mario and Luigi and level decorations in every corner. It can be easily spotted thanks to the red and green “M” and “L” letters on the windows symbolising Mario and Luigi as well as the Mario and Luigi hats. Gamers can enjoy this exciting space while they wait for the official opening of SUPER NINTENDO WORLD.
Themed food and merchandise line-up
Decorations are instantly recognisable with Question Blocks and Pipes on the walls, Mario Mushroom-coloured tables, and more.
The food line-up includes dishes, drinks, and desserts like pancake sandwiches made to look like Mario and Luigi’s hats, fruit dream soda inspired by the brothers’ moustaches, and a selection of original merchandise which reads “WHOSE CAP?” on it like T-shirts and more. You can see more of what’s on the menu here.
SUPER NINTENDO WORLD
Grand Opening: Spring 2021
Official Website: https://www.usj.co.jp/web/en/us
Japan’s Elephant Zoo Ichihara Elephant Kingdom to Receive Revamp For Spring 2021
20.October.2020 | SPOT
Ichihara Elephant Kingdom is the home to the largest number of elephants in Japan. The zoo has announced major renovations set for completion next spring which will allow for the elephants to live an even more enjoyable life.
Ichihara Elephant Kingdom is located in central Chiba and is home to 12 elephants. It’s also home to around 80 other species of animals like red pandas, beavers, capybaras, hippos, and more. The zoo also has a variety of attractions, like the Elephant Ride which sits behinds where the elephants live, and the Elephant Lift where you can ride up and down an elephant trunk. The Head of Ichihara Elephant Kingdom, Sayuri Sakamoto, served as the writer for the 2005 Japanese drama film Shining Boy & Little Randy. One of the zoo’s Asian elephants, Randy, was also a model for the film.
The renovations will introduce a new home for the elephants as the current one is seeing wear over time, as well as a new large-scale pond for the elephants to play in, a playground, and more. The zoo has always ensured a safe distance between visitors and the elephants so people can enjoy watching them will making sure the elephants stay happy. It is now creating new spaces to continue that service.
The water pond the zoo is building for the elephants is called Elephant Splash, and they are launching a crowdfunder on October 27, 2020 to ask for people’s help with funding the project. It will allow a new space for the elephants to play which visitors are sure to enjoy too, like seeing the 1- and 2-year-old Ramu and Momoka splashing around.
The crowdfunding project has nine different tiers including tickets to an evening cherry blossom party at the park, a chance to ride the elephants, and more. The campaign will end on January 15, 2021, the same date as Ramu’s birthday.
Ichihara Elephant Kingdom
Opening Hours: 10:00-16:00 (Last Entries 15:00)
About 5 minutes from Ichihara-Tsurumai interchange of Ken-O Expressway
About 65 minutes from Tokyo station,
About 80 minutes from Yokohama station,
About 35 minutes from Haneda airport
to Ichihara-Tsurumai Bus Terminal.
About 5 minutes by our free shuttle bus from Ichihara-Tsurumai Bus Terminal.
About 10 minutes from Takataki station of Kominato railway by the zoo’s free shuttle bus.
Official Website: http://www.zounokuni.com/english/
Fujikawaguchiko Autumn Leaves Festival 2020 Begins This November
19.October.2020 | SPOT
The Fujikawaguchiko Tourism Association will host this year’s Fujikawaguchiko Autumn Leaves Festival, which will be the 22nd run, to help support the tourism industry in the northern region of Fuji which has seen a great impact as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
With much less people travelling to Japan during the pandemic, and the virus having continued for a long time, the Fujikawaguchiko Tourism Association is instead focusing on travellers within the country by hosting various events that can be enjoyed at Fujikawaguchiko.
All the necessary precautions will be taken at this year’s festival, including taking people’s temperature upon arrival, the mandatory wearing of face masks, alcohol gel being available at the site, and more. This will protects not only the locals but sightseers too, and so cooperation is being asked of everyone visiting.
At this year’s festival, visitors can look forward to the popular Momiji Tunnel of maple trees which will be lit up at sunset until 10:00pm. The beautiful autumn colours can be enjoyed with Mount Fuji in the background. There will also be food, souvenirs, and a variety of activities to be enjoyed.
The Momiji Tunnel is an absolute must-see for anyone visiting Yamanashi during autumn and is nothing less than Instagram-worthy.
22nd Fujikawaguchiko Autumn Leaves Festival
Location: Around Lake Kawaguchi
Running: November 7, 2020 – November 29, 2020
Opening Hours: 9:00-19:00 (Light up is from sunset to 22:00)
Access: 25 mins from Kawaguchiko Station by bus (nearest bus stop: Itchiku Kubota Art Museum Stop)
*Please observe social distancing and government guidelines in relation to COVID-19.
*Fujikawaguchiko is a World Heritage Site and recognised as a place of natural beauty. Please take your trash home with you.
Disney: Twisted-Wonderland Mobile Game Gets Themed Cafes in Tokyo, Osaka and Nagoya
LEGS, INC. has announced that it will open three cafes themed on the mobile game Disney: Twisted-Wonderland at OH MY CAFE branches in Tokyo and Osaka on November 20 and in Nagoya on November 27.
Disney: Twisted-Wonderland is a Japanese mobile game that was released on March 18, 2020. The concept, character designs, and scenario for the adventure rhythm game were conceived by Yana Toboso, the creator of the popular Black Butler manga series. The game is centred on the villains of Disney.
The cafe’s theme places customers in the food hall of Night Raven College, the magic training school where the game is set. It will be adorned in decorations inspired by the game’s food hall, and coupled with that, the cafe will serve up food and drink that actually appear in the game. There’s also exclusive merchandise for players to get their hands on.
There are four different lunches to pick from, all of which are low in salt content and so are a healthy option for wizards and witches flying into the cafe.
<Lunch Option A>
Deluxe Menchi Katsu Sandwich | ¥1,990, with plate ¥4,290 (Before Tax)
The most popular item on the food hall’s menu is the non-fried menchi-katsu meat cutlet sandwich.
<Lunch Option B>
Salmon Cream Stew | ¥1,990, with plate ¥4,290 (Before Tax)
A cream stew packed with salmon and vegetables and served with slices of baguette for dipping.
<Lunch Option C>
Tomato Base Squid Ink Pasta | | ¥1,990, with plate ¥4,290 (Before Tax)
A colourful tomato-based veggie pasta in squid ink and served with fruity yoghurt.
<Lunch Option D>
Four Mushroom Risotto | ¥1,990, with plate ¥4,290 (Before Tax)
A creamy, mild-flavoured risotto served with four different kinds of mushrooms.
Character Drinks (7 Flavours) – Heartslabyul, Savanaclaw, Octavinelle, Scarabia, Pomefiore, Ignihyde, Diasomnia | ¥890 with coaster ¥1,790 (Before Tax)
A selection of colourful tinted waters inspired by seven different characters seen in the game.
Superdeformed Series Art Example
Pattern Series Art Example
Magic-wielding players can get their hands on a selection of merchandise both at the cafes, and from November 20, via the OH MY CAFE STORE website. There are two different designs for the merch line-up as pictured above.
Customers who book a table in advance (¥650 before tax per person) at the cafe will receive one of 22 possible lunch mats, and if they order a drink, one of 22 coasters.
Disney: Twisted Wonderland @ OH MY CAFE
OH MY CAFE TOKYO
Address: Tokyu Plaza Omotesando, 4-30-3 Jingumae, Shibuya, Tokyo
Running: November 20, 2020 – January 31, 2021
kawara CAFE&DINING Shinsaibashi
Address: Shinsaibashi Opa Floor 9F, Nishi-Shinsaibashi, Chuo Ward, Osaka, Osaka Prefecture
Running: November 20, 2020 – February 2, 2021
kawara CAFE&KITCHEN Nagoya PARCO
Address: Nagoya PARCO, 3-29-1 Sakae, Naka-ku, Nagoya-shi, Aichi
Running: November 27, 2020 – February 9, 2021
Official Website: http://twst.ohmycafe.jp
Tokyo Midtown Announces Winter Event ‘MIDTOWN WINTER MOMENTS’
18.October.2020 | SPOT
Tokyo Midtown has announced that its winter event ‘MIDTOWN WINTER MOMENTS’ will run from November 19, 2020 to February 28, 2021.
“ANOTHER WORLD” is the concept for this year’s rendition of the annual event, which will see new winter illuminations, Christmas decorations, the opening of an ice rink, and plenty of other fun experiences for people to enjoy throughout the entire day, right into the evening.
MIDTOWN WINTER LIGHTS
A highlight of the event will be the “MIDTOWN WINTER LIGHTS,” warm illuminations to light fires in hearts during the cold winter season that will create a dazzling spectacle the likes of which cannot be missed.
Path of Light – An Illuminated World
The pedestrian walkway will welcome a strip of gorgeous golden lights affixed to towering trees to guide your way. More golden lights than ever before are being prepared this year to pull visitors into a romantic and dreamy world.
SNOW LIGHT GLOBE – A World of Snow
The SNOW LIGHT GLOBE is a giant 3-meter tall and 4.5-meter wide snow globe inside which glistens sparkling snow, crystals, and aurora. The lights are ever-changing throughout the day, presenting itself differently every time you look at it.
STEP LIGHT – A Colourful World
STEP LIGHT is a fun and interactive illumination display with lights that light up when you step on them, creating a colourful walkway.
Running: November 19, 2020 – February 28, 2021
Time: 17:00-23:00 (Until 24:00 around the plaza)
Location: Midtown Garden
MIDTOWN ICE RINK – A World of Ice
MIDTOWN ICE RINK is something people in Tokyo look forward to every winter. This year, the rink is opening in November. It’s one of the biggest ice rinks in Tokyo and provides real ice for people to skate on, welcoming everyone from children and beginners to pros. The rink will be open into the evening too when it will be lit up so people can enjoy a little night skating session.
Running: November 19, 2020 – February 28, 2021
Time: 11:00-21:00 (Last Entries 20:00)
*Opens at 17:00 on November 19 and is closed on January 1
*Opening hours subject to change depending on weather
Location: Tokyo Midtown
General (High School Students and older) – Weekdays ¥2,000 / Weekends & Public Holidays ¥2,500
Children (Junior High School Students and younger) Weekdays ¥1,500 / Weekends & Public Holidays ¥2,000
Midtown Christmas Trees
Various Christmas trees will be set up in the Tokyo Midtown garden area, indoors, and elsewhere to set in the holiday season mood.
Running: November 19, 2020 – December 25, 2020
Present Christmas Tree – A World of Fantasy
The Tokyo Midtown garden will welcome a mysterious kind of Christmas tree for the first time every this year—one which sprouts presents. 25 presents will be grown, and in December one will be given out each day.
Location: Midtown Garden
Santa Tree – A Miniature World
Around 1,800 individual Santa Claus ornaments will make up the 4-meter tall Santa Tree inside the Tokyo Midtown Galleria
Location: Galleria 1F Tree Shower
Choose! Choose! AR Tree – An Original World
Tokyo Midtown also has something for people to enjoy at home. They can use an app that makes use of AR tech so that a Christmas tree can appear when you go to take a photo which you can decorate with an assortment of ornaments. There’s over 1,000 possible combinations. More details about this will be posted on the event website in early November.
MIDTOWN WINTER MOMENTS
Running: November 19, 2020 – February 28, 2021
Official Website: https://www.tokyo-midtown.com
Gaze at the Starry Sky in a Hot Swimming Pool This Winter at HOSHINOYA Okinawa
17.October.2020 | SPOT
HOSHINOYA Okinawa has announced its new “Hoshizora Hot Pool” experience where guests will be able to stay warm in the hotel’s warmed-up swimming pool while gazing up at the winter night sky. It will run from December 1, 2020 to February 28, 2020.
Okinawa enjoys a mild winter each year; it’s uncommon for the temperature to dip below 15℃. Winter is a time where all of us enjoy being in the warmth of indoors, but in Okinawa you can enjoy being outside even during the cold season. And that’s where Hoshizora Hot Pool comes in as the end of the year approaches, a time when there are many events and celebrations to be had.
The outdoor pool at HOSHINOYA Okinawa can be heated and so is perfect during the winter season. Guests are invited to soak in the infinity pool, where you can hear the sounds of the waves, and where it looks like the sea and sky become one. Almost all 88 of the constellations can be seen in Okinawa, and since the sky is clear during the winter nights, it’s the opportune time to be turning your gaze skyward.
Glowing lanterns make for a romantic atmosphere
When the sun sets, lanterns are lit by the poolside and breathe a warmth light to the cool evenings. The lights sway back and forth, reflecting off the water to create a magical atmosphere.
Hot cocktails by the pool
Guests will also be able to order from the bar once the lanterns are lit from the evening with a selection of refreshing drinks made with fresh fruits to hot cocktails to warm the body.
Float beneath the starry sky to the sounds of the waves
Guests can enjoy floating in the pool as an endless tapestry of stars unravels itself overhead. The Hoshino Resorts Banta Cafe will be open for business in the evening too. Guests can order some fruity desserts, rent lanterns, and more.
Hoshizora Hot Pool
Address: 474 Gima, Yomitan, Nakagami District, Okinawa
Running: December 1, 2020 – February 28, 2021
Price: Free (Drinks from the bar however must be paid for)
Time: Open 24 hours (But only adults can use the pool after sunset)
Bar Opening Hours: Sunset until 22:00
*Available to HOSHINOYA Okinawa guests only
Opening Hours: 19:00-22:00 (Last Orders 21:00
Price: Dessert Set for Two = ¥2,728 (Before Tax)
*Available to guests and non-guests
Official Website: https://hoshinoya.com
Ibaraki Prefecture Announces Official Tours of Mount Tsukuba and Lake Kasumigaura
17.October.2020 | SPOT
Ibaraki Prefecture has been promoting the areas of Mount Tsukuba and Lake Kasumigaura with a variety of events and programs since 2018. For 2020, one of the programs the prefecture has announced is ‘Mount Tsukuba PLAY 2020’ which invites people on a trial tour around Mount Tsukuba and Lake Kasumigaura.
About Mount Tsukuba
Mount Tsukuba is the doorstep to tourism in Ibaraki Prefecture, known for its iconic double peaks which has it listed officially as one of the “100 Most Beautiful Mountains in Japan.” The mountain offers 10 different courses for climbers, all of which boast gorgeous views and scenery throughout all four seasons. It also has a famous shrine halfway up the mountain known as Tsukubasan Shrine which is considered the physical enshrinement of the mountain itself. The shrine has long been a place of worship for people.
About Lake Kasumigaura
Lake Kasumigaura is the second-largest lake in Japan after Shiga Prefecture’s Lake Biwa. It is loved by locals and tourists for its beautiful natural environment and the expanse of its breathtaking view. It also has its own cycling route, Tsukuba Kasumigaura Ring Ring Road, which is an official National Cycling Route that has become a popular route with cyclists in recent years.
During the autumn season on weekends, the area offers a special long-ride cycling tour as an opportunity for people to soak up the local area, as well as kids programs, concerts for parents and their children, and other activity programs and guide tours. Bookings are now available online.
A Look at Mount Tsukuba PLAY 2020
Mount Tsukuba and Lake Kasumigaura – 2 Day 1 Night Sports Experience Tour
Mount Tsukuba PLAY 2020 is offering a special sports tour for elementary school kids where a guide will take them to climb Mount Tsukuba and canoe around Lake Kasumigaura, amongst other activities.
A Photogenic Tour in the Small Town by the Lake Shore
atacamaki, a ‘slow photographer’ and resident of Kasumigaura, will be taking photographers on a two day trip around the lake and surrounding area with rental bicycles to teach them how to shoot photos like a pro.
Concert in Tsukuba Forest
A concert will be held for children in the forest where they can lay down on the grass and be at one with nature as they enjoy the performance. The performance will be played by Akashi Yamada, the forest instructor and a singer-songwriter.
Cycling Along the Kokai River and Near Chikusei With Tsukuba Mounta in the Background
A local guide will give parents and children a tour of Tsukuba and all the must-see spots. The 37km cycling tour will offer plenty for people to see and encourages beginners to cycling.
A Long Cycling Tour Around Lake Kasumigaura, Kitaura, and Tsukuba
The program also offers a two-day long distance cycling tour of 100km.
Mount Tsukuba PLAY 2020
Mount Tsukuba PLAY Special Site: https://mount-tsukuba.com/play
Rilakkuma Book Cafe Themed Afternoon Teas in Osaka Will Serve Bear-Huggingly Kawaii Food
17.October.2020 | FOOD
Major bookstores across Japan are rolling out the Rilakkuma Book Fair where fans can get their hands on short Rilakkuma fairy tails, exclusive merchandise, and more.
In line with the event, Fruits Parlor & Bakery Season & Co., a cafe in Umeda, Osaka, is serving up a special menu with the theme “Rilakkuma Book Cafe” from October 30 to November 30. This includes a afternoon teas which also celebrates the cafe’s 1st anniversary, more exclusive merchandise, and novelties for customers who order from the Rilakkuma menu.
Rilakkuma Zukin Afternoon Tea | ¥4,000 (Before Tax) *Reservation-only
A special afternoon tea featuring 13 different goodies from desserts to a sandwich, quiche, and more. It comes with a fruit iced tea welcome drink too.
Rilakkuma Yuki Hime Afternoon Tea | ¥4,000 (Before Tax) *Reservation-only
A different afternoon tea that serves up 12 items. This also comes with a fruit iced tea.
Rilakkuma’s Honey Apple Smoothie | ¥800 (Before Tax)
A honey apple smoothie topped with refreshing vanilla ice cream, smooth fresh cream, and a Rilakkuma jelly candy.
Rilakkuma’s Royal Chocolate Milk Tea | ¥1,200 (Before Tax)
Classic royal milk tea served with chocolate Rilakkumas. Eat on their own or dip into your tea!
The cafe is now taking reservations for the afternoon teas. Bookings must be made two days in advance by telephone or the official website.
Rilakkuma Book Cafe
Running: October 30, 2020 – November 30, 2020
Fruits Parlor & Bakery Season & Co.
Address: LINKS UMEDA 1F, 1-1 Ofukacho, Kita-ku, Osaka
Opening Hours: 9:30-22:00 (Last Orders 21:30)
Official Website: https://season-co.shop
Get Lucky in Marriage and Matchmaking This October in Shimane’s City of Matsue
15.October.2020 | SPOT
Japan’s city of Matsue in Shimane Prefecture is wanting to create a new kind of sightseeing and tourist experience that encourages people to stay for a time in the city, and so it has launched the “Re Happy! Campaign.”
In the old Japanese calendar, October is known as Kamiarizuki, or ‘the month when deities are around.’ The Izumo region of the country is known as a place where deities from all across Japan gather, and so October here has been called the one true Kamiarizuki. There are many different kinds of deities, but today we’ll be looking at those associated with matchmaking and marriage, and mapping out a route you can take around Matsue to up your luck when it comes to these things.
Shop Name: Ohori to Hakucho
We begin at Ohori to Hakucho, a confectionery shop that sells cute sweet treats and local delicacies, some of which are themed on increasing your luck with marriage ties.
Kounkaku inside Matsu Castle
There are many old and traditional Japanese houses around Matsue Castle which make for Instagram-worthy photos, so find the right spot as you walk around and snap some pictures.
Heart-Shaped ema board
Ema are small wooden plaques strung up at shrines on which people write their wishes. Write one yourself so that the deities can receive your desires.
After a long stroll of sightseeing, head to the Tamatsukuri Onsen hot spring for a relaxing bathe. It’s said that sitting in an onsen hot spring beautifies your skin. Sit back and enjoy the fireworks on the screen while sipping on some high-grade sake.
Matsue is a great place to visit whether on your own or as a couple, with plenty of spots to up your luck with matchmaking and marriage.
Matsue Re Happy! Campaign
Official Website: https://www.kankou-matsue.jp/rehappy
Snow Fireworks to Light Up the Winter Skies of Miyazaki at Phoenix Seagaia Resort
14.October.2020 | SPOT
Phoenix Seagaia Resort, a resort located in Miyazaki Prefecture whose brand slogan claims them as the most beautiful in all of Japan, has announced a heart-warming new experience for the winter season.
Seagaia’s Snow Fireworks
Miyazaki doesn’t see a lot of snowfall, but this winter, the prefecture is welcoming an all-new fireworks festival which will launch fireworks into the sky that falls like pure white snow. Phoenix Seagaia Resort is also offering a guest plan which combines a stay at the resort with front row seats to the fireworks.
Running: December 4, 2020 – February 27, 2021 (Fridays and Saturdays only + January 10, 2021)
Time: 20:00 (Approx 3 minutes)
Starlight Winter Illuminations
THE LIVING GARDEN is the garden area of Sheraton Grande Ocean Resort exclusive to guests. This winter, the garden will be lit up with 30,000 LED lights and lanterns to create a magical, starry sky-like atmosphere by both of the garden’s pools.
Running: November 1, 2020 – February 28, 2021
Location: THE LIVING GARDEN, Sheraton Grande Ocean Resort
Illumination Times: Sunset to 23:00
Price: Free (Exclusive to Sheraton Grande Ocean Resort guests)
A Cosy Menu For a Warm Stay
Gazebos by the waterside at THE LIVING GARDEN
Sheraton Grande Ocean Resort will also serve s’mores, hot cocktails, and other treats at THE LIVING GARDEN with gazebos and fire pits. Enjoy fluffy marshmallow s’mores served with nuts and salted chocolate.
Running: November 6, 2020 – February 28, 2021 (Excluding Wednesdays & Thursdays)
Times: 19:30-23:00 (Last Orders 22:30)
Location: KUROBAR, THE LIVING GARDEN, Sheraton Grande Ocean Resort