If you get the chance to visit Fushimi Inari at New Year, you definitely should go! It will be extremely crowded, but the atmosphere is wonderful and there are so many interesting things to see! People pray for the coming year, buy a fortune paper, and maybe a snack from one of the food stalls. If you visit in the evening, it's fun to climb the hill through the tunnel of lantern lit torii, and see candles burning on small altars.
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I fell in love with Japan long before I came here in 2003 to teach English, and it has proved to be a lasting romance. I love the history, the traditional architecture, the food, the strange and sometimes ridiculous contrasts, and the beautiful countryside. I lived in Shiga prefecture for one year, and in Kyoto for nine years, and now I live in Machida in Tokyo. I've traveled a little in Japan, but not nearly as much as I'd like to. I like traveling by train, but my favorite way to travel is bicycle.