Friday, May 29, 2020

Tulips and Sakura・Fragrant Green Tea・Unagi (Eel!) and Gyoza ~ in Hamamatsu, Shizuoka

Unless your Japanese travel plans revolve solely around central Tokyo, it's quite possible you've heard the name Shizuoka when talking about Mount Fuji. But Shizuoka is a whole Japanese prefecture, and it has much more to offer than just half of Japan's famous mountain. This spring, the Japankuru team went to explore and learn more about Hamamatsu, a city in Shizuoka. The first thing we learned? Thanks to the city's status as a stop on the shinkansen line that connects Tokyo, Nagoya, Osaka, and Kyoto, it's extremely easy to get to! But more importantly, the city has a unique history closely linked to industry and manufacturing, and more recent status as a lakeside resort on the shores of Lake Hamanako (浜名湖, also called Lake Hamana). Hamamatsu is the birthplace of Honda and Yamaha, Lake Hamanako produces some of Japan's best eel and pufferfish, and in the fields of Shizuoka grows world-renowned green tea. Plus, more recently, the city has become a hotspot for beautiful flowers! So read on to find out just why you're going to want to add Hamamatsu to your next Japanese itinerary!

Friday, May 1, 2020

A Spring Day in Tokyo with TOKYO SKYTREE and Cherry Blossoms!

It's no surprise that so many people love visiting Tokyo during the sakura (cherry blossom) season. Fresh breezes waft pink petals and floral fragrances through the city air, making it a great time to enjoy both the flowers and Tokyo's most popular sightseeing attractions, like TOKYO SKYTREE! Standing 634 meters (over 2080 ft) over Tokyo, it's pretty clear to see why this tower is a must-see on any Tokyo itinerary. The best part of your trip to Japan might just be a day looking up at the sakura of eastern Tokyo, and then climbing TOKYO SKYTREE to look down on the cityscape below.