Shibu Onsen – Hot Baths & Snow Monkeys

japan shibu onsen

Many visitors to the Snow Monkeys in Japan, often come in on a tour bus and leave the same day. But if you have the time, you’ll get so much out of staying a night or two in the nearby traditional town of Shibu Onsen.

Situated about 35km from Nagano, the small town of Shibu Onsen sits in the Japanese Alps next to the slightly larger town of Yudanaka. It is full of traditional wooden ryokans (traditional inns) and onsens (hot baths).

Continue reading “Shibu Onsen – Hot Baths & Snow Monkeys”

Where To See Geishas in Kyoto

There’s just something magical about seeing a flurry of vivid, silk kimonos breezing through the streets of Gion in Japan’s cultural capital, Kyoto.
The click-clack of wooden geta (sandals) on cobblestones and the tinkling bells from hair decorations accompany the young women, the geishas of Kyoto, that are carrying on one of Japan’s most celebrated traditions.

In this article I’ll give all the tips on when, where and how to see them, along with a few etiquette rules regarding the geishas in Kyoto.

Continue reading “Where To See Geishas in Kyoto”

How to See Part of a Traditional Japanese Wedding

Before my first trip to Japan in 2009, I watched the movie Lost in Translation, it was probably responsible for me actually booking the trip. The cinematography was intoxicating but there was one scene that I just really, really wanted to experience in person. When the main character Charlotte goes off exploring Kyoto, she comes across this really quiet shrine and witnesses a traditional Japanese wedding procession. The bride was wearing a giant white hood and a white, silk kimono and looked completely ethereal. I needed to see this in person but I didn’t know how.

Continue reading “How to See Part of a Traditional Japanese Wedding”