Okawachiyama, Saga. As soon as you get off the bus, sightseeing starts. You see the mountains in the background, narrow roads, pottery and porcelain everywhere, a stream and cute little bridges over it.
In addition to Chichijima, Hahajima is the only other Ogasawara island that is inhabited. Mount Kofuji is one of the hikes that can be done without a guide and at any time of the year. I would recommend you reserve 4-5 hour for this, as there are some beaches on the way that you can also visit.
Chichijima (Ogasawara) by Night: Stargazing, the Legendary Green Pepe and Releasing Baby Turtles Into the Sea
Because they are so far from any other land mass, local species have evolved separately from their mainland cousins and developed unique adaptations to their environment. I had two nights at Chichijima, so I booked two night tours: one for stargazing and one to see the island’s nocturnal wildlife.
There are only 2,000 people living in Chichijima and basically most shops, houses, restaurants, bars and accommodation are located along Omura district’s main road and the few roads parallel to it. You will not get lost and all these are within walking distance from each other as well as from Futami Port. So, what to do? I went for a bike ride.
With traditional houses built over 400 years ago surrounded by glorious foliage all around, the experience I had here was one I will cherish forever.
The Saga International Balloon Fiesta is on now and it’s a great time to visit Saga! This year the weather doesn’t even feel like winter yet!
The highlight of the festival are the huge floats, made using traditional materials and methods (like wood, washi paper, clay, lacquer and gilding) and each one has its own story. They range from colourful fish, to lions and dragons. At night they will have lanterns hanging from them…
Abashiri is located on the east coast of north Hokkaido and it was great to visit in the autumn. The pink coral grass can be seen at this time of year, and there are birdwatching opportunities as well!
During Obon In Nagasaki, the spirits of the deceased are transported on a symbolic spirit boat. Each family makes and personalizes the boats according to the hobbies, lifestyle and favourite things of the loved ones that have departed.