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Asakusa and Tokyo River Cruise

Asakusa is an area enjoying overwhelming popularity from visitors worldwide. The area gives us a good example of Shitamachi, eastern downtown near Tokyo Bay. There is following facous red gate “Kaminari-mon” (Thunder Gate) and Asakusa temple “Senso-ji”.


Top photo is a scene of New Year festival of Asakusa temple. There are so many small and good traditional stores around approach. Especially, 1-3 of January is very crowded for new year visit.

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In Asakusa,  there is an interesting traditional restaurant “Asakusa Bell”. You can eat “Tokyo SkyTree Omelet-Rice” (photo below). Also, in this building, you can see the legend of Japanese TV Talents ! In Asakusa, you can have pleasant experience of good old days of Japan.


If you walk to Sumida river side, you can ride on River Cruise ship “Himiko” (or Hotaruna). It seems like a space ship of SF. It takes 50 minutes and 1,560 yen from Asakusa to Odaiba, Tokyo bayside area.


Around Asakusa ship port, you can see “Tokyo Sky Tree” and buildings of Asahi Beer.


In this river cruise, you can see overview of Tokyo from river side. Center of following photo is, “Tokyo Tower”.


At the end of this cruise, ship approaches to Raibow Bridge. It is most famous and big bridge in Tokyo.


Ship goes through under Rainbow Bridge. It is amazing sight !


At last, ship arrives Odaiba.  Odaiba means base place of cannon. It is created to attack Perry when he came to Japan in 1854, in the period of national isolation.


Cherry Blossoms in Kawazu, Izu, Japan

Kawazu-zakura, one type of Japanese cherry blossoms, is well-known for its blooming period and its marvelous color. It starts flowering early February, while the other types have yet to bloom with a lot of buds on every branch. Many of the cherry blossoms seen everywhere in Japan have pale pink, nearly white, petals, but Kawazu-zakura in deep pink gives people a strong impression.


It takes about 2.5 hours to travel from Tokyo (Japan) to Kawazu by train. There are thousands of cherry blossom trees along the river as well as around Kawazu station .

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=> You can check blooming status in this year !

You can enjoy walking around the area for about three hours, surrounded by splendid cherry blossoms.


Nice  color combination: cherry blossoms and colza.




The cherry blossoms in Kawazu begin to bloom two months ahead of those in Tokyo.  Kawazu-zakura  is a good news for people waiting for the coming of spring.

The following photo shows the original tree of Kawazu cherry blossoms. All of Kawazu-zakura were propagated from cuttings of this original tree. I believe that the cherry blossoms in Kawazu are worth seeing for visitors coming to Japan in February.

=> Cherry Blossoms in Tokyo and Maihama



Autumn Leaves in Karuizawa, Japan

Here are photos of autumn leaves seen in Kumobaike pond, Karuizawa, Nagano. Karuizawa is very famous place as one of Japan’s summer resorts close to Tokyo, but it is also a nice spot to visit in autumn.


A monitoring camera, Karuizawa-Kusabana-kan, is watching the pond all through the year. You can decide when you should visit the pond, seeing the current color of the leaves.

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It takes only one hour to travel from Tokyo station to Karuizawa station by JR Shinkansen Super Express.  You can fully enjoy Kumobaike pond as one-day trip, but of course I would like to recommend staying in Karuizawa for a few days. You can find a vast outlet mall in front of Karuizawa station, where many people gather to spend a nice holiday. If unfamiliar with volcanoes, you can learn a lot about it at the sight of Oni-oshi-dashi.

The beauty of red leaves is amazing. Have fun , taking an hour walk around Kumobaike pond!


There are so many ducks on lake. It is so beautiful because red leafs reflects to lake surface.


If you walk from Karuizawa station to Kumoba-ike, you can find so many red trees around road.


I think, Karuizawa Kumoba-ike is the most beautiful autumn leaves in eastern Japan.



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