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No place like home...Thank goodness !!! For those of you that know us, you'll already know the story, basically we decided that we've both worked enough (I've been working for 11 years, Danielle for 11 Months) and that we deserve some long overdue R&R and decided to take in some sights....enjoy

The Scenery Speaks for itself.....

JAPAN | Thursday, 26 July 2007 | Views [1171]

I LOVE THIS PLACE!!

We arrived at Matsumoto in good time, had a MOS Burger (traditional Japanese Burger - apparently!), got lost trying to find our Guest House and were amazed by the sheer beauty of the mountains that surrounded us!

Our guest house was lovely, all wooden and overlooking a river, with the Japanese Alps in the background! They also provided bikes, so that was our new form of transport around Matsumoto for the next few days! It was lovely being able to ride around the town!

The first day we arrived we hired a car (a nice little luxury as we had gotten away with using our out of date rail passes to get to Matsumoto)and drove along the Venus Line. The Venus Line is basically a road that takes you through the mountains, with spectacular views below, although we couldn`t technically `see` these views because they were covered with cloud (but we knew they were there all the same!).

After driving around for the morning we headed for Kamikochi (the Japan Alps national park) and got a bus in. The uphill tunnel going through a mountain to get to the entrance of the park is so old there is not enough ventilation; the cars cause so much smog you can`t see in front of you - so cars have been banned! 

To say I was blown away was an understatement! It was the most beautiful place I have seen in my whole life (I think I could actually have cried I was so taken aback!). The mountains were covered in melting snow as the sun had finally decided to come out to see us!! I can`t describe it, just look at the pictures (which don`t do it justice though to be honest!). One of the best days I`ve had in Japan, just a shame we didn`t go for the whole day (although don`t think James could have taken that - I was in a very snappy happy mood, tripod and all sorts were in use!!).

Matsumoto itself is a beatiful town, another one that has done well from being bombed to the ground during WWII. On the 24th July there was a Shinto carnival where men carried shrines through the small streets and just basically got drunk on lots of sake!!! We had a glass, well James did, I dropped mine all over myself whilst trying to drink and control a bike!!

We took a casual bike ride into town and saw the castle in the sunshine, very pretty! We even bought burgers and corn on the cob and were overjoyed to actually be able to cook something other than a pot noodle for ourselves!

And that`s Matsumoto - come here if you can!!

James and the beautiful alps

James and the beautiful alps

Tags: Mountains

 

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