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vagabonds3 "Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry and narrow mindedness." Mark Twain

The Zen of Takayama

JAPAN | Monday, 19 August 2019 | Views [135]

Boy under Willow Tree, Takayama

Boy under Willow Tree, Takayama

I HAVE TO WONDER HOW WE MISSED HIDA TAKAYAMA last time.  It is arguably one of the top destinations in Japan, even if there isn’t a festival going on.  Takayama sits on the shoulders of the Japanese Alps and at 550 meters elevation, provided a needed respite from Tokyo, both crowd- and weather-wise.  


                      "Furui machinami" in the Sanmachi-suji district

This is still high-season to be sure and Japanese families our out in force.  But Takayama’s picturesque 17th Century lanes, markets and other sights just eat them up.  Most of the Occidental (accidental?) tourists seem to be from Spain and Italy.  Americans, as usual, are scarce.

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    Hida Kokubun-ji                            Three-storey Pagoda

Today was a day for getting our bearings.  As was the case in Tokyo, just around the corner we stumbled upon Hida Kokubun-ji, Takayams’s oldest temple.  It is nestled under a 1200 year-old gingko tree and attended by a three-storey pagoda.  Fire destroyed the original 8th Century temple — what’s left today is only 600 years old. 


     Our landmarks, Red . . .                     and Green

We wandered aimlessly past saki breweries, cafes, and old private houses, furui machinami, of the Sanmachi-suji district, stopping here and there for interesting photos.  Since we can’t read the street signs, our landmarks became the red bridge, the green bridge (our street) and the river market.  

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   Sneakers                                        Rolling Soba Noodles 

Traveled in the opposite direction, a street can feel like a completely new experience.    So many things you missed before like the row of kids’ sneakers or the guy who makes soba noodles rolling away  We were a bit concerned, however, when we saw two guys with what looked like a geiger counter.  Probably nothing to worry about so just think peaceful thoughts.


                                            The Zen of Takayama


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John and Connie, Sheikh Zayad Grand Mosque, Abu Dhabi

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