Sunday, April 26, 2015

Japan 2015 Day 10 - Hiroshima - Miyajima the Orange Torri Gate

Hiroshima is a busy city the people is moving around so fast, the cyclists were fast and skillful as we were closing into Hiroshima Station for our visit to Miyajima Island.
The fare from Hiroshima to Miyajima Station
A local train before the JR to Miyajima Station.

Getting to the jetty for a short boat ride to the island.
This way please, arigato gozaimasu.
We were slowly approaching one of the top three scenic spots in Japan i.e. Miyajima Island.
It is an Island of Gods on the beautiful Seto Inland Sea. 
Our bagged Brommies properly secured as we were ferried to the island.
It was peak season the crowd slowly move out of the boat into the island.
Our bikes unfolded and ready to see the beautiful scene of Miyajima.
Oh deer, Jo being officially welcomed into the island.
This is not in Canada it's in Japan. This park is full of Momiji maple leaf trees- especially beautiful in fall when the leaves burst with color or in Spring when the park is light pink with cherry blossoms.
It is a romantic and historical island where Itsukushima Shrine, a World Heritage site, is located, along with the Virgin Forest of Mt. Misen, and numerous preserved shrines, temples and historical monuments.
The huge red Tori gate in the water in front of Itsukushima. The Tori and floating shrine as well as many of the other temples, shrines and pagodas on the island are said to be in their original state from the Heian period. 
Some information of the many deer found on the island. They are really greedy animals watch out for your sweet corns.
Since the Kamakura period, the community of Miyajima has been gradually developing, and there is an atmosphere of subtle simplicity in daily life unique to Miyajima. 
Roaming around these places with our Bromptons was so cool and we get to see many corners of the area.
A well maintained stream with crystal water water flowing down.
And a colour bridge over the stream.
There are excellent old fashioned techniques used in the building structures, unheard of historical monuments and legends, and a touch of the islander’s lives on the island. 

I really enjoyed exploring this part of the old Japanese community and I love to imagine myself moving through this surroundings back in the olden days.

A stop and rest to have a drink and watch the crowd slowly changing. It's in deed a popular tourist spot.
It was time to tickle our taste buds with some local street foods.
A duel between a pork and beef yakitori.
Now for another popular savoury in Miyajima and it's oyster time.
BBQ-ing some fresh oysters, the sight of it can make you drool... 
Big and succulent oysters really for you to taste it.....mmmmm so yummy.
The Five Story Pagoda is a stunning vermilion masterpiece. Built in 1407, the pagoda reflects construction techniques typically associated with Zen Buddhism. Located to the left of the giant torii gate and atop a hill, the pagoda soars high into the sky.
The water has slow receded and people can actually walk to the iconic gate. 
We have to say good bye to this heritage site and it has been a satisfying visit and a great experience for us. Sayorana.
A view through the driver compartment of a local train.
In the morning we were in a calm and relax atmosphere and now we were into another world of a rush community, welcome back to Hiroshima.
I always admire these fashionable ladies on two wheels they are fast and skillful. This is part and parcel of their daily life.
Hiroshima (広島市) is the capital of Hiroshima Prefecture, and the largest city in the Chūgoku region of western Honshu, the largest island of Japan. It is best known as the first city in history to be targeted by a nuclear weapon when the United States Army Air Forces dropped an atomic bomb on it at 8:15 a.m. on August 6, 1945, near the end of World War II. The city's name, 広島, means "Wide Island" in Japanese.
We spent some time at the Hiroshima Peace Memorial (広島平和記念碑), commonly called the Atomic Bomb Dome or Genbaku Dōmu (A-Bomb Dome), in Hiroshima, Japan, is part of the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park
 Hiroshima Peace Memorial was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1996. The ruin serves as a memorial to the people who were killed in the atomic bombing of Hiroshima on 6 August 1945. Over 70,000 people were killed instantly, and another 70,000 suffered fatal injuries from the radiation.[1]
I pedalled all the way to Mazda Plant thinking that I can visit Mazda Museum but were unable to do it for two reasons one it was late and two one needs to register before going there. Maybe a next time.
Another night in Hiroshima, time flies and a new encounter awaits tomorrow.

Japan 2015 - Day 9 Matsuyama - Hiroshima

"Ohayou gozaimasu (おはようございます)Matsuyama, we actually do not have to worry too much about our bicycles getting lost in Japan. It's safe like they used say.

We found out that we went to the wrong Onsen last night and now we were back to the same area for Dōgo Onsen (道後温泉) the hot spring in the city with remarkable long history in Matsuyama.
Dōgo Onsen is one of the oldest onsen hot springs in Japan, with a history stretching back over 1,000 years. Let's get naked in the public and have a good bath.

The last time the Emperor visited Dōgo was in the 1970s, but the curious can peek into the rooms (15 minute tour without bathing: ¥250 adults, ¥120 children.) There is also an exhibition room that features artifacts from the various stages of Dōgo's history. There are two types of baths in the honkan for both men and women

If I can I want to be a part time rickshaw worker outside Dogo Onsen.
By the way the Onsen we fisrt visited the night before.
Though it was a brief stay at Sen guesthouse we will definitely remember this place and thank to Matthew and Nori. Hope to see you again.
A brief rounding at Matsuyama where we were trying to get to Matsuyama Castle.
Matsuyama Castle (松山城, Matsuyamajō) is one of Japan's twelve "original castles". It is located on Mount Katsuyama, a steep hill in the city center that provides visitors with a bird's eye view of Matsuyama and the Seto Inland Sea.
I gave up hiking up to the castle but instead I was at the bottom keeping an eye on the baggage and the bikes.
Matsuyama is another clean and beautiful city.
Our bus tickets from Matsuyama to Shin-Onomichi, our original plan was to take a train to Imbari then a bus to Onomichi but was told that there are bus services straight to Onomichi.
This restaurant at Matsuyama Station looks interesting, let's have brunch here.
I just could not resist the ramen while Jo was trying to avoid it as much as possible.
A side dish of fried chicken to satisfy our appetite.
Exactly on the dot the bus arrived and we were on the way to Hiroshima.
Let relax and in no time we will be in Hiroshima.
I could smell trouble on the way, the bus was going to Shin-Onomichi Station and not Onomichi Station these are two different places. We got no choice but unpack our bikes upon arrival at Shin-Onomichi and cycle to Onomichi Station.
After cycling for 5km to got to the right place and we were slightly wet with the last minute rain.
We could have travel straight to Hiroshima but we could not because we have kept some of our stuff in the locker here. These are intelligent lockers, they know that you have kept your things for more than 24 hours and you have to add coins to open it.
Our fare to Hiroshima from Onomichi.
Our departure from Onomichi Station, bye bye and I hope I can come back to this station again to see more of this cycling haven.
We need to catch a local train to Mihara before boarding a JR to the final destination of the day.
Here we were in another city in the night going through tunnel and short cuts before we could get into our warm bed.
Finally we found the hotel, another great place to stay in fact this was one of the best place we have stayed.
A place for a good and cheap meal.
Both the pork and beef were gorgeous. 
A quiet city saying good night.
おやすみなさい - oyasuminasai