Explore Echizen City, Fukui Prefecture
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A Tiny Shrine Under a Big Tree
Iiyama's nearly impossible to find Kumano Shrine
Kumano Shrine, under a keyaki tree with hydrangeas all around it.
Category: Culture, Historic sites, Sightseeing
Go to Iiyama's remote Karayama neighborhood and there is a surprise for you. Off the side of the main road going through this barely populated area, you may notice a large keyaki tree, ringed by blue-flower hydrangeas. A small Shinto shrine sits under the tree's huge boughs. This is Kumano Shrine, a delightful little spot to sit in the shade, relax and enjoy the quiet surroundings.

Iiyama's Ajisai-dera
A delightful spot for those who love hydrangeas
Hydrangeas cover the slope leading up to the temple.
Category: Culture, Historic sites, Sightseeing
One of the great things about getting out of Japanese cities is that you will ultimately find some wonderful and little known gems all over the countryside. One such treasure is Iiyama's so-called "Ajisai-dera", a small, mountainside Buddhist temple boasting hundreds of hydrangea flowers.

Saitama’s Rural Heart; Ogose City
Beautiful villages, long rivers and large waterfalls
The start of the course, several minutes away from Ogose Station
Category: Culture, Trekking, Historic sites, Sightseeing
With three waterfalls, beautiful little villages, hilly forests, long winding rivers and picturesque temples, rural Ogose City in Saitama Prefecture has something to offer everyone.

Peace Memorial Park
A testament to the victims of the first atomic bomb
The cenotaph for the A-bomb victims. A chest holds a registry of  victims who have passed. The Peace Flame and the A-bomb Dome can be seen through it.
Category: Museums, Historic sites, Sightseeing
Peace Memorial Park stands as a testament to the victims of the first atomic bomb in history and as a vow to protect and forge peace. 

Hida Takayama Teddy Bear EcoVillage
The world's first environment-themed teddy bear museum
Another photo stop with life-size bears 
Category: Museums, Historic sites, Food
Hida Takayama Teddy Bear Eco Village is the world’s first environment-themed teddy bear museum that delivers meaningful environmental messages through its treasured collection of heartwarming toys. Housed in a renovated 200-year-old gassho-zukuri traditional farmhouse, a thousand bears from ‘all walks of life’ aim to please even the most hardhearted of all.

Fujikawaguchiko Herb Festival
Hiking at the Foot of Fujisan
Seas of lavender at the Fujikawaguchiko Herb Festival
Category: Culture, Museums, Trekking, Historic sites, Festivals, Sightseeing
There's a multitude of things to see around Lake Kawaguchiko, including the annual summer herb festival, the Music Forest Museum and the Kachikachi-yama Ropeway.

Lu Xun in Sendai
Lu Xun, Fujino Genkuro and Tohoku University
The classroom in which Lu Xun attended from 1904-1905. You could appreciate the photograph of Professor Fujino, Department of Anatomy in the left.
Category: Culture, Historic sites, Sightseeing
Lu Xun, the great thinker and novelist in China, studied in Tohoku University from 1904 to 1906. You could still see the very classroom where the principle concepts of his masterpieces was conceived in the beautiful Katahira Campus of the University.

Dendengu Shrine & Horinji Temple
Giving Thanks For Electricity
Tahoto (Japanese pagoda)
Category: Culture, Historic sites, Sightseeing
On the precincts of the historic Horinji Temple, one can find the Shinto shrine known as “Dendengu”, which is devoted to Den Den Myojin (the ancestral god of electronics). Since ancient times, this shrine has been popular with the local residents until it was destroyed in a fire in 1864.

Electric bath at Funaoka Onsen
An electrifying experience in Kyoto’s iconic bathhouse
Entrance of Funaoka Onsen
Category: Historic sites, Hot springs
Located in the quaint northern suburbs of Kyoto, Funaoka Onsen was established in 1923 and is one of the most authentic old school bath houses in Kyoto. With a controversial decor, a sauna and seven leisure pools, you will soon find out which one has an electric bath!

Enoshima Island and Beach
Staying cool at Kanagawa’s best worst kept secret
The approach to Enoshima Island via a 600 meter bridge which links it to the mainland 
Category: Culture, Historic sites, Sightseeing
Despite being overcrowded, over commercialized and very touristy, Enoshima is still able to charm you. Perhaps its because of the great beaches and summertime vibe!

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