Among my (Japanese) Souveneirs

Having decided that sentimentality has to give way to practicality when one has downsized and lacks room, I am making strenuous efforts to clear away the bits and bobs that one brings back from one's travels.  I’m not talking the sort of souvenir that one puts on the sideboard or has pride of place in … Continue reading Among my (Japanese) Souveneirs


An article in The Guardian (UK) a few days ago alerted me to the fact that the world’s biggest fish market is about to close.   This is the Tsukiji wholesale Market in Tokyo where Japan’s obsession with seafood is transformed into an operation worth almost 2 billion Yen a day (about £15.5 million). But Tokyo’s … Continue reading TOKYO’S FAMOUS FISH MARKET

The Japanese Doll Studio

Lured into the shop, Doll Studio Tomo, by the window display, we found a veritable heaven full of dolls, about 90 in total, each with individual costumes, differently patterned, each doll with a slightly different face, expression and posture. These dolls have the faces and forms of young children, each one the product of carefully selected materials and technical skills, but their facial expressions, attire, and their postures project the image of an ideal child.

MIYAJIMA – Beautiful Island in Japan

Miyajima is considered to be one of the three most scenic spots in Japan and I’m not going to argue with that. I was bowled over by it, Besides, it is a World Cultural Heritage site and continues to attract more visitors year by year. The island is regarded as a holy shrine of Shinto by the Japanese. Part of the city of Hatsukaichi, Miyajima is located off the coast in the Seto Inland Sea and is easily reached by tram, train, and boat from Hiroshima for those wishing to experience a complete contrast to that city. The journey takes approximately 1 hour

HIROSHIMA – August 1945 and TODAY

It was Sunday,August 6, 1945, and a hot midsummer sun shone from the blue sky over Hiroshima, Japan. It had been a night of constant alerts with sirens warning of planes overhead but in the morning the all-clear sounded. The streets were full of people, workers returning from night shifts, day workers on their way to take their place, military workers, factory watchmen, women shopping, secondary school children making fire breaks, all, we can suppose, weary after a sleepless night.

JAPAN: Walking in the Japanese Alps

The area of Kamikochi is simply stunning with an amazing variety of bird life whose sweet song hangs in the air from morning till night. Wild macaques (they do not interfere with visitors because people are careful not to feed them) play on the paths in family groups and among the trees along the river. As we stroll along, the babies peek from their mother's arms with big black eyes.


The lack of permanent buildings and monuments is because the houses burnt down regularly as they were traditionally made of wood, and because frequent earthquakes made the use of stone too dangerous.

TOKYO – Soaring Towers and Electronic Delights

From bonsai in lush landscaped gardens, to kimona-clad beauties shopping in Ginza, and from pale green tatami mats in Ryokans to exquisite floral arrangements, Tokyo, as well as reaching into the future, is picture-book Japan come to life. This is the first stop on a tour that will take in stays in some of Japan's … Continue reading TOKYO – Soaring Towers and Electronic Delights