28 February, 2011

Hyogo Industrial Tourism Excursion

   The other day, I visited Himeji city for the Himeji Industrial Forum, and I joined the excursion that they offered. The excursion took us around to popular industrial facilities in the area. Currently Hyogo is putting in a lot of effort into “Industrial Tourism” to revitalize the prefecture by using the industrial facilities as tourist attractions.

      Inside Himeji Castle                         Himeji Castle in Restoration

23 February, 2011

Tasting Izushi Sara-soba in Izushi

   Izushi is a town in Toyooka city, located in northeastern part of Hyogo prefecture. Back in the day, this town prospered as a castle town of the former Izushi Clan. Many of the buildings that were built during that time still exist today, giving the town a nostalgic atmosphere. Also known as Little Kyoto of Tajima, the area is designated as an important traditional architecture preservation district. Izushi is also famous for its soba noodles, and there are about fifty soba noodle restaurants in the area.

              View of Izushi Castle Town                              Toyooka City Mascot, Gen-san Rice-Cracker

10 February, 2011

Spring Festival in Chinatown

 Eastern Asian countries such as China and Korea celebrate the lunar New Year. Along with Yokohama and Nagasaki, Nankinmachi in Kobe is one of the 3 biggest Chinatowns in the country, and a huge New Year celebration called Shunsetsusai, or Spring Festival, was held from February 3rd to the 6th.

                     Seian Gate of Nankinmachi in Kobe               Shunsetsusai