Archives pour la catégorie Voyages

kinosaki onsen and tsumago

Back from KINOSAKI ONSEN which was still lovely and where I took so many baths, I’m trying to put the pics on the website but from where I am it doesn’t seem to work , will try later
riddle… it’s like a crunchy cookie and it has legs and I had it as an appetizer for dinner in my minshuku in TSUMAGO….. what is it?
Well I went back to TSURUYA RYOKAN which I highly recommend since the owner is nice and speaks English,  he even advised me to see the fireworks, and the ryokan is in the center of town.
I spent two days basically hopping from onsen to onsen and doing nothing else. Also had a nice lunch and dinner in a small restaurant serving fish and shells… lovely sazae and hotate…grilled.
my neighbour was an old japanese lady from Osaka who gave me her sashimi because she didn’t want it and we had been in the same onsen.
It was so relaxing
I hope they take me there again because when I left I forgot my room key in my pocket and only realized when I was already in the train…. ya daaaa!!!
Then it took me from 9.30 to 4 to arrive in TSUMAGO, a lovely village in the KISO VALLEY.
I quite fell in love with MINSHUKU DAIKICHI and with the village in itself because it looks just as if a samourai was about to cross the street and even the postman is wearing edo jidai clothes.
 You can see some pictures on this link
The next day I walked 8 kilometres to the village of MAGOME I must say I thought I was going to die but the hike is very pleasant. I would suggest to do it from Magome because it’s down most of the way while from Tsumago it was mostly up. The path goes along the river with a waterfall at some point and lovely houses, you can even buy vegetables… they are just there in a bucket of cold water with the price and you put the money on a little shelf.
Magome is built on the hill and I had never seen a village built that way because it’s so steep.
It’s more touristy than Tsumago (there’s even a Magome Kitty) I think, you get big highway buses stopping there with their share of foreigners and japanese.
I came back by bus and relaxed before dinner.
that’s all Tsumago and Magome
My lovely lunch at daikichi ryokan (oishiiii)
leaving Tsumago there is a lovely fountain
Then ready to walk 8km uphill all the way in the forest to Magome
the village is built on the hill
OK I’m going to reveal what I had for dinner  as an appetizer it was grasshopper ( yeah 3 of them ) they are called inago in japanese.
They taste just like little biscuits with legs, they are very crunchy.
 OOOOO le petit biscuit avec des pattes !!!
And here’s Kinosaki onsen.
My lovely breakfast at Ryokan Tsuruya
a little frog outside the onsen signals the feet bath,       in front of the station you can see the geta with the name of all the ryokans
inside one of the changing rooms outside the baths a stamp to keep as a souvenir

in japan now

Well ,I’ve been here since July 7th and it’s been very hot and humid. UNO HOUSE is still the same only the prices have risen up and the dorms are now 1950 yen a night which is a little bit expensive since there is no aircon but the central location and the atmosphere still make it a great place. We walked back from karaoke at 6 am yesterday and were glad it was so close.
The first week was kind of quiet with a few gaijins only. The first karaoke I went to was only to sleep in for one hour with Kinuko chan but we also tried a great restaurant in Pontocho.The cook found Kinuko chan and me funny and he gave us some suppon no chi (it’s a kind of turtle blood) to drink with sake. It’s supposed to make you genki, well I was so genki that I couldn’t sleep all night long.
Gion matsuri was really interesting (before the 17th when the rain set in) and I took some pictures and videos of the Chigosan (he’s the chosen boy who stands on the main float) in Yasaka Jinja.
I also discovered this cafe between Yasaka Jinja and Entoku in where they serve a marvellous maccha float in picturesque surroundings. There’s the sound of running water and you can watch caps swimming in the pond.
I’m so surprised that the Lonely Planet doesn’t mention ENTOKU IN  because it’s quite one of my favourite temples, it’s got a karesansui (dry) garden and wonderful screens with a white dragon swimming in the waves and fishing birds. It’s a lovely place to sit and relax and they sell a combined ticket for DAITOKUJI with a little present (either postcards or a tenigui handkerchief) for 9000 yen.
Then with some of the funny crowd from Uno House I  went to ARASHI YAMA to see the bamboo forest and some of the temples, TENRYUJI and DAIKAKUJI. We managed to get into a little hut next to the river just before it began to pour, goof for us they had some potato kuroke so we were able to satisfy the needs of « kurokke chan » ( sorry Ade)
I’ll put pictures of Jimmy, Ade,Tobias and Jason later.We WANT him … No MIKI chan I was him first !!!
Friends from UNO HOUSE STAFF (but they left)
with bubu chan and ade

favourite things to do in Japan

– go to my favourite massage parlour, a lovely family owned place called BODY PLUS Hand Therapy  (where gaijins fear to tread apparently coz I’ve never seen a whitey there) where you can show the masseur where you have problems on a kind of body chart. it’s lovely.
-watch for Maiko san in Gion (I can’t believe one actually smiled  directly at me last year)
-eat green tea ice cream with dango (it’s called a chiffon maccha cake) in a small cafe near Yasaka Jinja
-sit on the banks of Kamogamo river and watch the birds fish in the evening, it’s sooo relaxing
-go to Shimogamo Shrine when there is the masturi. Crossing the river, praying to the gods and then drinking water from the shrine will make you summer free of any disease. In summer the ricer is cool and it’s so much fun to see people cross the river, girls squeal and children pull up their yukata. After I usually have some snacks at the fait just before.
-go to the sento near Uno House (you get out of there soo fresh and relaxed)
-go to the onsen near Kitatenmangu shrine
-just go onsen freaking as usual… my favourite now is KINOSAKI ONSEN
-pay my respects to Kyomizu dera, then love shrine inside and all my favourite places in Kyoto (YASAKA JINJA and the temple just behind with the kare sansui garden and the great sliding doors with a white dragon ENTOKU IN , also all the dry rock gardens, INARI TAISHA etc….
-explore the 100 shop mania that is Kyoto and squeal (on my own or with friends is better… )
-bargain for kimono and yukata at the market on the 21st TOJI TEMPLE and 25th of each month near KITANO TENMANGU in Kyoto
-Find silly Hello Kitty things (I miss you Hélène to do that, coz squealing onyour own is not so much fun)
-karaoke with friends is best (Miki chan, Kinuko chan and all the girls working in Uno house of course)
-go with friends to a silly pullicula to take pictures to stick in your pulliculla book
-go to Maruzen (books books) or Kinokunya in Tokyo
-Go back to Asakusa (especially in the evening) and watch people burning incense,
to be continued

NEW 2022: I hope I can meet you again girls. We have not been in touch but I’d love to

mes temples/ sanctuaires préférés à Kyoto

Bon, à côté de INARI TAISHA un de mes préférés avec son long tunnel de tori (pour ceux qui sont allées voir Geisha ils ont du reconnaître la scène ou la petite fille court ).
A côté 2 temples que je n’ai pas encore pu tester Sekiho-ji et Otagi Nenbutsu-ji. Ils contiennent des exemples de rakan en pierre. Les rakan sont dans le bouddhisme des gens qui ont atteint le Nirvana et sont libérés du cercle des réincarnations.  4 rakan furent désignés par le Bouddha historique au moment de sa mort (483BC) les 4 (4 points cardinaux) devaient rester dans le monde pour protéger les lois bouddhiques et les faire connaître jusqu’à l’arrivée du Bouddha du futur (Moroku Bosatsu).
Contrairement aux Jizo, divinité gardienne des enfants qui sont souvent couvertes de bonnets rouges ou de bavoirs, les rakans ne sont pas habillés. Ils ne sont pas non plus vénérés comme des êtres divins ce sont des humains .
y aller:
 Sekiho-ji: 10mn à pied de la station JR Inari (Nara line) ou de la station Keihan Fukakusa. Ouvert 9-5h. Entrée 500y adultes, 300enfants.
Otagi Nenbutsu-Ji: de la station Arashimaya (Keifuku Arashimaya line) ou JR Saga Arashimaya. Marcher vers le haut de la colline vers Adashino Nenbutus-ji. Otagi Nenbutsu-ji est se situe 5mn plus loin sur la gauche.
Entrée: 300y
Shopping à Inari taisha : les ema (plaques votives) en forme de tête de renard ou les minuscules tori à offrir.
KYOMIZU DERA qui est encore plus beau les jours de pluie. Pour y aller passer par le petit jardin derrière Yasaka Jinja et prendre à droite. Deux de mes temples préférés Chion-In and Kodai-Ji se trouvent le long de cette rue.A droite des shoji décorés d’un dragon blanc nageant dans l’écume et un jardin zen,  à gauche  un jardin plus grand et le tunnel en forme de dragon.Continuer le long de ce chemin on aboutit dans sannen zaka ou le shopping est roi. Entre glace au thé vert, gâteaux secs au gingembre et sacs en tissu japonais ou porcelaine je craque à chaque fois. Attention aux petits restaurants cachés entre les échoppes.
Dans la rue un photographe vous propose de vous faire prendre en photo en costume de Geisha et de sortir dans la rue vous faire photographier. Le résultatest assez hallucinant si vous avec à peu près 10.000 yen à mettre.
Shopping: de l’encens, du papier qui absorbe l’excès de sébum (abura paper), des épingles à cheveux, de la céramique…. arrêtez moi svp!
shopping dans yasaka Jinja: des porte bonheurs (omamori)