Showing posts from May, 2017

A few days in Nagasaki, Kyushu, Japan

A few days in Nagasaki, Kyushu, Japan
We walked down the spiral entrance path in the peace memorial hall in Nagasaki.The years were written on the walls around us, 2017, 2010, 2001, 1995, 1990....We were counting the years backwards,Spiraling downwards,We were walking backwards in time....
Back from the present year of 2017, Back to the year the sky over Nagasaki turned ash black....Back to 1945....
A wall clock was frozen at the exact time of the blast.The time was 11:02am, August 9th, 1945.
If only we could walk back in time so easily....Just as we were walking down that spiral path...

Ureshino Onsen, Kyushu, Japan

Visiting Ureshino Onsen, Kyushu, Japan
When we looked into the idea of visiting the town of Ureshino Onsen during our two week trip around Kyushu, we were attracted by the soft, silky quality of the hot spring waters, and by the fact that the region is well known for its production of high quality green tea and porcelain pottery.
But when we arrived in Ureshino Onsen, it quickly became apparent that this town is very different from other small Onsen towns.There is no lively Main Street with cafes and specialty shops, no shops selling local ceramics or snacks, nor anything to attract the foot traffic of eager tourists.In fact, we saw almost no other tourists in town, which we knew was impossible, judging from the large number of hotels and Ryokans around town.
In fact, our hotel, the Hamilton Hotel Ureshino, asked us to change the time of our breakfast preference, since they were already full for the time we selected.
Our hotel is a western style hotel with a colonial design and lots of da…

Kurokawa Onsen, Kyushu, Japan

Visiting Kurokawa Onsen, Kyushu, Japan 
It was a cold morning when we got off the bus at Kurokawa Onsen.The bus ride from Yufuin to Kurokawa Onsen had been a short, one and a half hour, pleasant drive through the green scenery of hills and rivers.
The hilly village of Kurokawa Onsen intentionally has no big concrete hotels with hundreds of rooms, but only smaller Ryokans set along the river, surrounded by forests.  They have decided to preserve the feeling of a centuries-old Onsen town by carefully restricting any new buildings that are proposed.  
There are a few short, steep and narrow streets lining the tiny village, and the morning mist was still blanketing the old guesthouses.
We left our backpacks at the coin lockers next to the bus stop and went for a stroll around the village.There were only a handful of shops and a few small eateries, all of which were still closed.Most guests in this small hot springs town eat at their guesthouses.
In order to encourage greater tourism, twenty se…

The Onsen Towns Of Yufuin and Beppu, And The Stone Buddhas Of Usuki, Kyushu Island, Japan