Friday, April 30, 2010

Before I went to China I took a quick weekend up to Nikko with my good friend Marie (pronounced Mah-ree-ae).

Nikko wasn't really on my radar of places to visit in Japan until I read a book on early Japanese American relations and it said that the must see sights for early American tourists were Nikko, Fuji, and Kyoto. So on Friday night we hopped on the overnight bus to Tokyo. After breakfast at McDonald's (and some freshening up in the bathroom) we took the train from Tokyo to Nikko. Then it was another bus to see Lake Chuzenji where we wandered around, shopping and visiting a local temple.

Lunch on Saturday. Nikko is famous for yuba-soybean paste dried and rolled into noodles.




On Sunday we got up and made our way to visit the famous Tosho-gu temple. It differs from other Japanese temples in its ornate decorations and colorful carvings. Since it was a holiday weekend it was packed but we still had a nice time. We even managed to do a little geocaching.









I like how someone created this small turtle. :)


After the temple we headed over to the Kinugawa Onsen area to try some more modern attractions. The first was a maze. The told us that the average time to get through it is 40 minutes but if you made it in less than 20 then you could have a free drink afterwards. Marie and I thought we were way above average and we totally had this. Then we got in there and realized we would be lucky to make it out in under 40 minutes. We got through in 43 minutes.

At the start.

This is when we realized that this wasn't going to be easy.

DSCF0895 DSCF0896
A give up door and a sign saying we went the wrong way.

Then we went to the Trick Museum. It wasn't really a museum but they had lots of paintings on the wall that played with perspective. They encouraged you to take lots of different and fun pictures. We only had an hour before they closed and even though we could have definitely stayed a lot longer we took advantage of the little time we did have. It was really really fun. After the Trick Museum we grabbed dinner and then found a hotel that had an onsen. Our feet were aching and it was nice to soak and relax.






Monday morning we woke up and caught the train back to Tahara. Tuesday I went to work and Wednesday I caught a flight to Beijing. I'm almost caught up on my travelogues, but not quite yet. I still have the Ninja Festival to post about and Monday I'm going to Hamamatsu to see the Kite Festival and Tuesday I leave for Seoul, South Korea for 4 days. So much to see and so little time. Sometimes I think 3 months is too long to wait to go home and other times I wonder why I didn't re-contract to stay another year.

1 comment:

  1. Hello Jen,

    I just stumbled on your blog and I just had to comment! I loved all the pics. I would so have failed the maze- I have no sense of direction, whatsoever, lol.

    Oh and now I really wanna go to the Trick Museum!
    Totally cool :D

    Thanks for sharing :)