Christmas 2019: Kurokawa Onsen

It was 3 years ago when I first visited Kurokawa Onsen. On my first trip back to Japan as an adult in 2016, my boyfriend and I splurged on a stay at a ryokan (Japanese-style inn) at the famous onsen hotspot in Kumamoto prefecture. With absolutely no previous experience staying in any ryokan, this upscale…

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Exploring the Outdoor Playground of Aso, Kumamoto

Originally written for Voyapon @ http://voyapon.com/outdoor-adventure-aso-kumamoto/ Sponsored by Northern Kumamoto Administrative Headquarters Ahh, the great outdoors of Aso. Famous for its rich milk and yogurt drinks, Aso is an incredible fusion of contrasting terrains that seamlessly blend into one another. As a Canadian who split her time growing up in the Canadian Rockies and its…

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The Swordsmith of Arao, Kyushu

Originally written for Voyapon @ http://voyapon.com/swords-samurai-kumamoto/ Sponsored by Northern Kumamoto Administrative Headquarters “Strike while the irons hot.” I always knew what this meant, though never witnessed it in its complete, literal meaning. That is, until one a stormy day, while the furnace roars and hammers clang, as Mr. Matsunaga of Arao, Kumamoto leads us into…

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Miyazaki Day 3: Takachiho

Day 3: Takachiho Gorge Our last day in Miyazaki starts early. There’s a place I’ve wanted to visit since looking into our travels in Miyazaki. Takachiho Gorge is famous for its gorgeous ravines. There are turquoise blue boats you can rent for a unique perspective of the gorge. The previous night, we learn on the…

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Miyazaki Day 2: Udo-jingū and Wild Horses

It’s day two, and the sun feels prickly on the back of our necks. It suddenly feels like summer, and I am overly dressed with pants and a long sleeve shirt. Our first stop is Udo-jingū, a brightly painted shrine set within a cave on cliffs facing the Open Pacific. With brilliant red paint set…

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Miyazaki Day 1: Aoshima Island and Obi Town

From the 29th of April to early May, a string of consecutive holidays called Golden Week (GW) takes place every year in Japan. This year’s abdication of the Emperor and the subsequent succession meant that this Golden Week would be extended to the first ever ten consecutive days off around the country. It was always my…

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Into the Mountains of Nakatsu, Oita for Vegan Curry and Coffee

If anyone is looking for a Rastafarian inspired Japanese restaurant, look no further than Satta Yard in Nakatsu. About a 40 minute drive from the city and into the quiet hills of Nakatsu will bring you to some of the healthiest (and tastiest) curries around. It might feel like a bit of a trek, but…

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Parent Observations and Roasting Yams with Neighbours

It’s almost the end of my fourth month working as an English teacher. In the beginning of May, I started three weeks of “Parent Observations” (P.O.s), where parents observe lessons delivered to their children by yours truly. It’s an opportunity for parents to see how their investments have been utilized, and I can’t help but…

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