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Japan, I really had few preconceptions about the country and it's people. Obviously my motorcycling interests and in particular all things Honda tended to color my interest in the country positively. In the spring of 2010 I visited mainly the Tokyo, Narita, Mito and Motegi areas of the country, by no means a true representation of the entirety of Japan, nonetheless it gave me a reasonable indication of all things Japan.

I will admit I have come away somewhat confused, on the one hand much of Japan is truly beautiful and totally unique, Shrines, Temples, Cherry Blossom time, Festivals and Mt. Fuji to name but a few. However, the general untidiness, unkempt roadways, poor signage to attractions and almost maniacal installations of services in heavily populated areas defied belief, in particular electrical services. In hindsight I expected Japan would be a very tidy, totally organised, clean country in 'all respects' given the quality, finish and attention to detail of their vast array of consumer products, this is simply not the case.

I have recorded some of the highlights of the trip and trust they are of interest. Note that I have covered my visit to the Honda Collection Hall at the Twin Ring Motegi motor racing circuit elsewhere, link here...


TOKYO:  The capital city of Japan, Tokyo is a very busy, modern city serviced by a vast array of underground transport systems. The Imperial Palace is located in the heart of the city, Disneyland and Disneysea are also located very close to the city centre, adjacent Tokyo Bay.


The Imperial Palace


NARITA-SAN SHINJOSHI TEMPLE:  Located incredibly close to the heart of Narita and in easy reach of the Narita Airport, the Shinjoshi Temple, Three Storey Pagoda and the massive gardens around these buildings were the highlight of Old Japan. An absolute must on any visit to Japan.


A truly beautiful building set high on a hill in Narita


NARITA TAIKO DRUM FESTIVAL:  An annual event, the drum festival is held in the grounds of the Shinjoshi Temple! An amazing group of performers gathered over a two day period. The sound, at times DEAFENING!! Of course this was so unique to Japan and was a tremendous event to witness. Simply fantastic!


An awe inspiring sight


MOUNT FUJI:  Wow, this was some undertaking. Train travel of various forms including the fabulous 'Shinkansen' Bullet train, followed by the obligatory bus tour allowed reasonable viewing time at the mountain which is actually an 'active' volcano reaching some 3,776 metres. The last recorded volcanic eruption occurred in 1707.




On to 'more' of the Japan - Click here....


Copyright 2013   Derek J. Hanbidge,  (aka Deejay51),  all rights reserved.
Revised: August 25, 2013.

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