Plum Blossom Festival in Ogose (Ume Matsuri)

With spring comes the blossoming of many flowers across Japan. I’ve come to learn that appreciating the changing of seasons and enjoying the blossoms is very ingrained in Japanese culture, something that I myself have come to really appreciate. In the February and March stretches, plum blossoms are the flower to view, so I found […]

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More Japanese KitKat Flavors

If you thought those first few flavors were the only KitKat flavors available, you would be wrong! There are a seemingly endless number of flavors, many of which seem to be seasonal or limited edition, many more of which I have been able to encounter. I will share the next batch of flavors with you […]

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Ryokan: Traditional Japanese Inn

On our trip to Nagano over the winter, we decided to stay in a traditional Japanese inn, or ryokan, for our lodging. We stayed at Matsuya Ryokan in Nagano, a mere minute walk from the huge Zenkoji Temple and a 20-minute walk from Nagano station. I had been told it would be a very unique […]

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Otaru Snow Light Path Festival 2018

About an hour north of Saporro is Otaru, which has its own winter-inspired festival during the Sapporo Snow Festival. Known for its restored canal along the sea, Otaru decorates the canal and a special street in the city with lanterns made of snow and ice. With a good pair of snow boots and a warm […]

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Sapporo Snow Festival 2018: Susukino

In my last snow festival post, I focused on the insane amount of snow and ice present along Odori Park in the heart of Sapporo. Just a few blocks away there was a display of ice sculptures in Susukino. Since there was so much going on, I decided to separate the two out and dedicate […]

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Sapporo Snow Festival 2018: Odori Park

Every year, the city of Sapporo hosts a large snow festival across the main streets in its city. You can see monumental snow sculptures and ice sculptures across two key areas in the city: Odori Park and Susukino respectively. I was lucky enough to visit both on a recent trip to Hokkaido and here is […]

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Zenkoji Temple

Zenkoji is the most famous temple in Nagano City. It has beautiful grounds and a lot going for it, but for this post, I want to try something different. I want to focus on the O-Asaji morning ceremony and my experience with it. This will be a long read (clocking in at just over 1500 […]

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Jigokudani Snow Monkey Park

When you tell people you are visiting Nagano, they will ask you if you’re going to ski or snowboard. After you tell them you aren’t, there is a small chance they will ask if you are going to see the snow monkey park. Every time you see snow monkeys hanging out in hot springs set […]

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Kawagoe Antique Market

Once a month on the 28th, next to the County Government Office, the city of Kawagoe allows vendors to set up shop to sell various antiques. I’ve been lucky enough to visit it a few times and wanted to share some of the pictures I’ve taken of some of the incredible goods they have for […]

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More Japanese Sweet Potato Treats

I discovered that the sweet potato season runs mainly in the fall and winter and more seasonal goods appear in stores, vending machines, and restaurants. In my quest to find the most delicious sweet potato treats, I venture forth from summer sweet potato treats into the harsh cold of autumn and winter! Advertisements

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