Family Fun: African Safari Park (Oita)

My husband had a business event in Oita prefecture the other day so with little on our schedule, my daughter and I tagged along too. The plan was to occupy ourselves at Harmonyland, the Hello Kitty themepark and a mecca for Sanrio fans. Unfortunately, Harmonyland happens to close on a Thursday. And we were in... Continue Reading →

Family Fun: Takachiho

My family and I spent this past Saturday on a day trip down to Takachiho. It's on the other side of Mt Aso from Kumamoto City, tucked into the northwest corner of Miyazaki Prefecture. My husband and I had been before, just the two of us, but this time we took our three-year-old along and discovered... Continue Reading →

Family Fun: San Juan Bautista Park (Ishinomaki)

Four hundred years ago, the lord of the Sendai domain - one-eyed samurai Date Masamune - was looking for a way to expand his trade options. Though the policy towards outside religions was about to change dramatically under the Tokugawa shoguns, Date planned to open trade with Catholic Spain (and subsequently, Mexico) and further build up... Continue Reading →

Family Fun: Shitamachi Museum (Tokyo)

Whew, did I mention "perfect" weather in the blog last week? I write my Friday Photo post early in the week when that was still the case. Come Wednesday, though, the heat ramped up and we were treated to near 90 degree temps (that's 30 degrees Celsius for you sensible metric scale users out there).... Continue Reading →

Family Fun: Unique Playgrounds

My daughter is a pretty easy-going traveler, but there is a limit to how many museums you can drag a toddler to. Sometimes you just have to build in a little bit of playground time. Luckily, there are some fantastic recreational areas scattered around the islands that will entertain adults almost as much as their... Continue Reading →

Family Fun: Shimonoseki Aquarium

Just a few weeks ago, I claimed that Kagoshima aquarium wasn't worth writing up in a post. Perhaps I'm becoming a bit jaded, but the more aquariums I visit in Japan, the less I find that they impress me. And yet, with not much else to entertain us in rainy, snowy Shimonoseki the other day,... Continue Reading →

Family Fun: Visiting an Onsen

I was going to write this post on the Kagoshima Aquarium, bit frankly, it wasn't all that awesome of a site and I've already written up far better aquariums in Japan. So after a trip to the local sento (public bathhouse) this past weekend with a VERY enthusiastic three-year-old, I thought I'd write a bit about... Continue Reading →

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