Sunday, August 27
Sunday was spent in the Ueno Science Museum where they featured Antartica, apart from the standard exhibition. The standard exhibition consists of the evolution of man (Darwinism, sorry all religious people who think otherwise), how all mammals and animals connects together, how man conquered space and also an interactive exhibition of physics for children, where they can play with the laws of physics and have fun. The drawbacks of the museum are twofold, one is the entrance fee (1300 yen!) and the second is the lack of English explanations. If you have time enough you can rent a considerably cheap audio guide, and then spend the day in the museum, but if you want the rapid version you have to make do with almost zero (maru) explanations. A bit tedious, considering they boost to be Japan's leading Science Museum. The architecture picture is from Ginza, I just had to show it.
In the scenic park of Koishikawa Kurakoen I spent little more than one hour. It was relaxing to walk around and I stumbled onto a photoshoot with two Kimono/Yukata clad females and a bunch of guys with cameras. The park is really nice and I understand why they chose this place as their backdrop. There was also a cool bridge that was called "full moon bridge", the bridge is a half moon but the reflection in the water makes it a full circle.
It was time to see the Imperial Garden. A beautiful lamp post and the Ninomaru Garden are two of my memories. The main lookout post is where the old tower burned down in a great fire (Meireki) in 1657 if I remember correctly. I lost the informative leaflet, unfortunately.
Taken at the Edo-Tokyo Museum it displays a model of the old Tokyo, when it was still Edo. The interesting part of this museum is that it is a walkaround place where you really feel like you are a part of the history. The look-into booths they have, displaying real homes in the past, both in the 17th century as well as during the WWII (1940s), are really "alive" and gives you good insight into common people's lives in past ages.
Sunday, August 20
Yay, what a weather! Checked out the Shukkeien garden in Hiroshima before leaving for Onomichi and its lovely seaside. Mount Senkoiji-san is not so high, ~170m, but you have to climb the bare stone to get to the top, and ropeways are for sissies... :-) Btw, did you know you have to buy an Entrance Ticket (140 yen ~ 10 SEK) if you want to leave a Shinkansen station in between switching trains... Cheap firm, almost like SJ.
Saturday, August 19
...renders you somewhat warm. But what a sight! When I got down I realized the tourist agency mentioned the way up was closed (could have fooled me!) due to landslides after the latest typhoon (Thursday). :-) 2.4 km of stairs and steep terrain takes the energy out of an office rat, tonite is time for Okii Okonomiyake Hiroshima-style...
Friday, August 18
Tokyo was too quiet and sunny, so now I am heading to the southeastern Honshu and Hiroshima, where 24 hrs ago a typhoon created 'gale' strength winds.. A bit shaky weather system can be expected... This weekend will be spent in Hiroshima where the US dropped the first A-bomb (Genbaku) on August 6th, 1945. 200,000 casualities reported.
Tuesday, August 15
Upper left a business building, upper right a personal home in the forest (look above the yellow house to the left) and to the left a building that seemed a hotel. The name of the last read "Elsa Kamakura". A lot of interesting buildings, too bad it was dawning already when I left the beach.
Sunday, August 13
If you are looking for any type of knife or other (medieval) weapon (except guns), this is the place for you. Located not far from the Great Buddha of Hase in Daibutsu, I could not stop myself from taking a picture of one of the 3 walls covered in arms of all kinds.
Great Buddha of Hase is nothing else but a great (13m) bronze statue of Buddha. It has stood here since 1252, it survived a tidal wave in 1498 that swept away the temple surrounding the statue, and in 1923 the great earthquake shook and ruined the foundations of the buddha, yet the body of the buddha remained intact. Restorations have been made on the face and body (latest 1960), necessary as the statue is standing outside all around the year.
Saturday, August 12
Wednesday, August 9
Here is the missing photo: Right in the heart of Tokyo you find Odaiba, the green island with the protective past. The fortresses were once used to protect from invaders from the Sea, but are in these days green, lush and pretty.