Small lakes of Nara

Nara is well known for its historical sites like the Todai-ji temple, but the city also offers gorgeous parks to explore. The area around those small lakes was especially enjoyable with the reflection of the bridge and Cherry blossom trees (Sakura) on the water. I could also hardly resist to take photos of newly-weds during their wedding photo-shoot.

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Yurikamome train line, from Odaiba island (Ariake) to Shinbashi stations

Here I post this video for train lovers, it is the full ride from Ariake station on Odaiba island to the Shinbashi terminal in Tokyo. I wish to make a shorter version in the future to only show the major highlights of this ride like the Telecom centre, the Fuji Tv building, Rainbow Bridge, etc. I think the Yurikamome train is one of the most exciting train rides in Tokyo since you can see so much from the elevated train tracks!


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Image courtesy of Wikipedia


Gaijin-San's theater

Kobe Herb Garden

One of the most beautiful vista of the city of Kobe is seen from the Kobe Herb Garden. A ropeway ride links the Kobe shinkansen station to the herb garden. After a short cable car ride to the summit, an all-you-can-eat restaurant using fresh herbs, a foot onsen and of course the herb garden itself are open to visitors. A must-see on any fair-weather day!

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Todai-ji (東大寺)

The largest statue of Buddha in the world is located under the roof of Todai-ji temple. The statue measures about 15 metres high and is estimated to weigh about 500 tonnes (500000 kg) . To cover the massive statue, the temple is of large dimension, perhaps one of the most impressive historical site in Nara.

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Tamukeyama Hachiman-gu (手向山八幡宮)

The Tamukeyama Hachiman-gu shrine is located slightly uphill so it offers a great view of Todai-ji and the western side of Nara.

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Walking in Gion during Sakura (cherry blossoms) season (祇園)

During the Cherry Blossom (Sakura) season in Japan, many Japanese wander the street to enjoy the scenery, creating a very interesting atmosphere. For this photo session, I used one of my favourite technique, walking randomly in the streets until some scene catches my attention. Observing what the locals do, and joining them is an interesting cultural experience. Several shots were taken while sitting, fully relaxed, along the banks of the river.

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Where to see Geisha in Japan? In Kyoto Gion district!

Geishas are traditional female entertainers in Japan. Meeting with a Geisha is definitely expensive: one may expect to spend several thousand USD for an evening. For those who may not be able to afford, there are opportunities to catch a glimpse of Geisha’s elegance as they wander in the streets. One of the best place to see Geishas is in the Gion district of Kyoto. Many Geisha establishments, luxury restaurants, and tea houses are located in the area and therefore the chance of seeing Geishas is quite high. I highly advise to wander the streets of Gion at around 6:30 PM and later for the best chance to see them. For about one hour and a half spent in the district, I could see about 10 of them. Taking pictures is another story: Geishas walk surprisingly fast and look down most of the time so I advise to be very alert since you might have only a few seconds to get a good shot. If you want to know the name of the Geishas you have seen, posting your photos on Flickr might be useful. Many Geisha enthusiasts over there will enjoy identifying them for you!

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