Travel Goals for 2017

Every January for the past few years, I've started off the new calendar with a list of my travel goals for the upcoming months. I just took a glance back at the last few lists and I am pleased to say, I've covered a lot of what I set out to do. We did indeed... Continue Reading →

Manhole Monday: Minoh (Mino-o)

Before my trip to Wakayama prefecture earlier this month, I had a bit of time to kill when my flight arrived in Osaka super early. Luckily, the Minoh Waterfall was only a short 20 minute train ride away from the airport and I had high hopes of catching the start of the autumn foliage without... Continue Reading →

Spotlight: Kaiyukan Aquarium (Osaka)

Japan is celebrating Umi no Hi (Ocean Day) today, which may not mean much to the general population but at least results in a three-day weekend. 🙂 In keeping with the watery theme, I thought I would do a post on Osaka's Kaiyukan, considered one of the top aquariums in the country. The Kaiyukan sits... Continue Reading →

Celebrate: Rice Planting

How do I know that it's summer in Japan? Well, for starters, the heat and humidity have definitely cranked up. While I am fairly diligent in my efforts to practice setsuden (energy saving), I must admit to having the air conditioner on all last week! Two, the seasonal monsoons season has arrived. While not nearly as... Continue Reading →

Top 5 Fireworks Displays

Like catching cicadas and chasing fireflies, fireworks in Japan are an integral part of the summer experience. Originally used to scare off evil spirits, fireworks (hanabi in Japanese) today are an exuberant affair. During my first week in Japan years ago, I remember joining the yukata-clad masses for the best light show ever over Tokyo Bay. If... Continue Reading →

Manhole Monday: Osaka

It might sound silly, but I get really excited about Japan's manhole covers. That's because over 1500 communities in Japan - ranging from tiny villages to megacities - have specially designed manhole covers that showcase what makes their town known. It's literally a piece of art beneath a traveler's feet. I hope you enjoy this bimonthly series on... Continue Reading →

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