Tsukiji Fish Market

Another awesome place checked off the Bucket List – Tsukiji Fish Market. Enjoyed a lovely sashimi and rice breakfast then toured the market with Dad & Paula during their visit.

Just to show you the kind of things you could buy there.. live eels included. We showed up at the end of the market, so just had a quick tour around as the men cleaned up. man pushing cart

A man pushing a cart through the market.

men at fish market

Men at the Tsujiki Fish Market in Tokyo

tuna heads

Leftovers! Fish remnants are transported away. 

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Tokyo, again.

Tokyo is becoming one of my favourite cities. It’s easy to navigate, foreigner friendly (for the most part), and there are endless things to see and do.

This trip to Tokyo with Dad & Paula involved seeing a lot of the main sights, including ones that Katie and I checked out in November, like Asakusa, and some new sights, such as 47 Ronin.

We stayed at the swanky Inter-Continental, Tokyo Bay, Hotel in a room with THIS VIEW:

inter continental hotel tokyo bay viewThe view from the hotel. Jealous?

We indulged on a river cruise, complete with a geisha who served us sake, and treated us to a traditional dance:

river cruise geisha tokyo

Our walk/subway tour  also took us to some cool places like Asakusa:

Asakusa in Cherry Blossoms
outside Asakusa, Tokyo

And another view of Tokyo’s Sky Tree,

And dinner at a random izakaya, which turned out to be quite the experience as the menu was written entirely in kanji, so I just pointed at things, made a vague attempt to read them, and surprised us all with what I ordered! The waiter constantly replied “hmmm, I don’t think you’ll like that, but okay” to everything I chose, but it was all delicious!

Paula and Dad enjoying beer & sake at the izakaya

Another thing off the to-do list: See Mt. Fuji! It barely peaked out of the clouds for us so we could see it in all its glory. Little fact for you: Fuji is taller than Whistler, a fact we had to look up during the trip! It doesn’t seem that high, but I guess it is!

mt. fuji

On our Mt. Fuji day trip we also stopped by a nearby spot famous for its sulphur springs (recall Japan’s most famous: Beppu!). Here black eggs are hard-boiled in the springs, and we were sure to try them!

black eggsDad and the black egg.

black egg

Me holding up the egg with the springs in the background.

Other cool, noteworthy adventures include seeing 47 Ronin and drinks at the rooftop bar in the Inter-Continental Hotel. Be sure to check up on my flickr account if you’d like to see all the photos!

Cherry Blossoms at Matsuyama Castle

My favorite season in Japan has come and gone already. It seems as the weather gets warmer, time flies by faster. Cherry blossom season is incredibly short, a few rainy days or a busy week at work and you’ve missed it. I was travelling with Dad and Paula around Tokyo for the peak of it in Matsuyama, but we managed to get back in time to see some blossoms still on the trees. I wanted to capture Matsuyama castle surrounded by the blossoms, so here are a few photos of the short-lived, beautiful sakura.

view of matsuyama city
cherry blossoms
dad & i at the castle
castle, sky, and blossoms
sky and blossoms
whiter coloured blossoms
stone wall and castle

It’s hard to believe that is was my last sakura-season in Japan. Now rainy season is creeping up on us and after that will come the intense heat of the summer and my return to Canada. This time of year more than ever I feel like “the days are long but the years are short,” as we put in our time in the office, with not much to do, living for the weekends when we can explore, spend time with our friends while we can, and take in these last few months in Japan.

Until next time,

Rachel

Okunoshima

A few weeks ago, Futoshi and I went to Okunoshima, also known as “Rabbit Island”. The island is densely populated with wild rabbits, which obviously meant I demanded we go, especially as it was within driving distance from us in Matsuyama.

okunoshima rabbits

The island, as promised, was filled with adorable rabbits to chase and feed. But, Okunoshima has another claim to fame as well. In 1925, the Japanese Army began a secret program to develop chemical weapons on the island. In order to keep it secret, the island was removed from maps. Between 1927 and 1929 the island produced over six kilotons of mustard and tear gas. At the end of the war, documents concerning the island were destroyed, and the gas was disposed of. The island is now home to a Poison Gas Museum which shows how poison gas affects the human body and a history of the plant that once existed there.

abandoned building windows
abandoned

The abandon buildings certainly have add an eerie feel to the otherwise adorable island. The remains were fascinating, and the island beautiful, and the rabbits adorable, so it definitely made for an interesting day trip!

okunoshima
rabbit island
okunoshima
rabbit eating carrot
hello rabbit
converse and rabbits
ocean okunoshima

As always, thanks for reading! I am enjoying the warmer weather we are experiencing, hope home is warming up as well! I have more posts to catch up on (including Dad & Paula’s visit) so hopefully will have the time to get those posts up this week! Happy Monday!