Beppu: an illustrated guide to Japan’s spa city

As we stepped out of the ticket gates at Beppu station, a family was waving enthusiastically at us. We had never met our hosts, but they seemed to recognise us straight away. Japanese hospitality was already impressing us – they instantly welcomed us as part of the family.

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Miyajima – A Day Trip Exploring One Of Japan’s Most Scenic Islands

Under the shade of rustling Japanese pines, a walking path traced the low rock seawall towards the Itsukushima torii gate. The smell of dried pine needles swirled in to meet the salty ocean air. Looking out to the sparkling waters separating Miyajima Island from Hiroshima Bay mainland, we saw one of Japan’s ancient icons.

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How to enjoy Nakameguro in the winter

A suburb of Tokyo with lazy canals, rows of cherry blossoms, quiet streets and old buildings? In my mind’s eye, I pictured a mini-Amsterdam in Japan! However – this was still the mighty concrete jungle of Tokyo, so what we actually found in Nakameguro were high-walled, concrete stormwater channels stained green from algae. But this was actually more beautiful than it sounds.

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The Shibuya scramble: an illustrated guide

One of Tokyo’s most iconic sights is the famous Shibuya crossing, a pedestrian scramble through a huge neon-lit intersection, where an estimated 3000 people have been known to cross the road at the same time. But as one of Tokyo’s most crowded areas, there’s plenty more to see nearby! Let’s have a closer look…

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A few little reasons that make you want to visit Japan

Japan was one of most wonderful destinations we had ever been to. I always imagined two sides of Japan –  the historical and traditional Japan of temples and geishas, against the hyper-modern cities, cartoons and robots.

In-between it all, there are so many tiny quirks and conveniences that are the cherry on top of an already alluring destination.

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