We got up a little early in the morning and went to the Kyoto station to go to Nara. On the way we stop in a “combini” and buy breakfast there. There are two trains that go to Nara the express that take about 50 minutes (attention this leaves platform # 8!) And the commuter train that takes almost double (platform # 10).
In the previous post about Jaisalmer, I explained that Mahendra's wife taught us how to dress the sari. In addition to paying close attention, we recorded a video that I preferred to put in a separate entry so that it did not go unnoticed: What I had always asked about the sari and had not dared to ask: Where can I buy the sari?
From Tokyo you can make several excursions: Yokohama, Hakone, Mount Fuji and the five lakes ... We have opted for two due to lack of time: Kamakura and Nikkô. Kamakura was the capital of the country between 1185 and 1333, and is famous for having two of Japan's oldest Zen monasteries and a huge statue of a Buddha (Daibutsu).
Nikkô is another of the most popular excursions to do from Tokyo. Nikkô was founded more than 1,200 years ago by a Buddhist priest named Shôdô Shônin, who built a temple on top of a mountain. Centuries later Ieyasu Tokugawa had a temple built that would be his future mausoleum in 1617.
For two days we will visit the center of Honshu. This area is full of mountains, valleys and small charming villages. We have opted to visit Takayama and Shirakawa-go one day, and the Kiso Valley the next. In one day we have decided to visit Takayama (high mountain) and Shirakawa-go.
I suppose you will have noticed that in the tickets I make few specific references about what we will visit, and that is what we reserve for when we write the travel diary. What we were talking about the other day is what we would not visit in Kyoto. Not because it is not worth going, but as I have already gone, we prefer to take advantage to see new things.
Formerly, in the feudal era, there was a road that linked Edo (Tokyo) with Kyoto. This road passed between the mountains and the Kiso Valley, unlike the subsequent route that goes along the Pacific coast. As the road used to be on foot or on horseback, this route had 69 post-villages.
As I mentioned in a previous post, we will take advantage of our stay in Kyoto to make various excursions of one or half day. One of them will be to go to Himeji and Kobe. At 55 minutes with the Shinkansen Hikari (departures at 9:49 and 10:49, among others) is Himeji Castle (Himeji-jo).
For 74 years, Nara was the capital of Japan and luckily it still retains some great gardens and temples. In Nara you can see the Todai-ji Temple completed in 752, and famous for its Great Buddha. But what I really want is to see the "vultures" of Nara. It is not that this beautiful city is full of these birds of prey, if not some beautiful deer that chase anything in search of food.
Finally we leave Barcelona for Indonesia and stop in Doha with forty minutes late due to some problem X. The more than six hours of flight to Qatar were quite heavy because there was only one central television with bad programming, but at least the food made up for it.
To conclude the stories of the trip from India, Gloria has made a great video summary with the images of the trip. Ten minutes that synthesize the best of this great trip to which we put an end today. I hope that when you see it you feel like visiting this amazing country. It has been nine months publishing the stories.
One of the things I like to do most when I travel to a country is to know more about its traditions. In India I made a video of how to wear a sari with Mahendra's wife dressing Sonia with one. Now we bring you a video to learn how to wear a yukata. This time I do not speak with a pluralistic mayestático, but it has been a team work, since to make the video I have had the knowledge and know-how in the traditional Japanese world of Míriam Boher and the art of editing videos of Gloria Llobet .
After a long and tortuous investigation, we were able to find out that the sidewalk from where our bus left from the Novena metro was the opposite of the hotel. We finally got on it and, when we were going to pay, the driver told us that, unless we had a prepaid card, we had to give him the exact rate, since the drivers have no change.
I had wanted to visit Singapore for a long time. I was fascinated to hear about an Asian country with such cultural diversity and, finally, in February of this year I had the opportunity to make a short but very profitable visit. By saying that in Singapore English, Chinese, Malay and Tamil are spoken as official languages, and that Buddhist, Muslim, Christian, Hindu and, to a lesser extent, Taoist and Confucianist religions are practiced, one can already get to the idea of cultural variety in which Singaporeans are immersed.
Although you are still assembling the puzzle of the route, we will most likely go from Tokyo to Kyoto directly. As I still do not know if it will be at the beginning of the trip, and taking into account that of the 20 days that we will be there we will only have Japan Rail Pass for 14 (because it is two weeks), I have been looking for the cheapest way to go.
This morning I went to open a checking account in Citibank for the trip. "And why?", You may be wondering. Basically for comfort and "just in case." The good thing about Citibank is that its customers are automatically worldwide. That means you can get money from any of its ATMs in any country without being charged commission.
Two and a half hours away from Hiroshima you can take a ferry and navigate to Shikoku Island. Basically, the grace of going to Matsuyama lies in visiting the Doge Onsen. This famous spa founded in 1894 is one of the oldest in the country and its hot springs flow for over a thousand years.