Cool Things to do in Matsue, Western Japan

Matsue Castle, Japan

It’s home to one of the best castles in Japan. Home to some great modern art and a spectacular sunset. Home to amazing samurai history, delicious food and a short hop from one of the most beautiful Japanese gardens in the world – but when it comes to the average visitor’s plans, Matsue in Western …

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Motonosumi Inari Shrine: How To Find This Stunning Shrine in Western Japan

Shrine made of hundred red tori gates on a cliff

They have good dreams in Japan. Dreams that make things. Things like bright scarlet shrines that balance on the edge of craggy windswept clifftops. Scarlet shrines like the outrageously pretty Motonosumi Inari Shrine near Nagato in Western Japan. It’s a must see if you’re in the areas of Nagato or Hagi – and something to …

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Why a Hot Springs Hotel in Japan is a Brilliant Alternative to a Ryokan.

Traditional ryokan style room with tatami mat floor and a low table

I have a confession to make. There’s something about Japan that scares me… It’s something thousands of tourists do in the country every week, for some it’s potentially the highlight of their trip – yet, the very idea of it brings me out in a stress rash. I’m talking about staying in a ryokan – …

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Ainoshima: Fukuoka’s Cute Cat Island

Grey cat walking toward the camera on Ainoshima Cat Island japan

I’m surrounded by kitties – they’re sleeping in fishing nets, chilling out in wheelbarrows, prowling the paths around the bright blue, fishing boat filled harbour hoping for snacks or just sitting in the sunshine doing whatever cats who live on an island do all day. This is Ainoshima, one of Japan’s many cat islands – …

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Drinking With The Dead at The Deceased, KL

Cocktail served in a skull glass at The Deceased KL

I’m sitting on a bar stool thinking about who I dislike enough in my life to curse. Normally, propping up a bar contemplating ill on your fellow humans sounds like the result of a crappy day, but in this case, I’m on holiday and happy, but I’m drinking in The Deceased, Kuala Lumpur’s most spooky …

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The Stunning Adachi Museum of Art Gardens – Designed to be Viewed From The Inside

View of the Adachi Museum of Art garden through their frame like windows

Here’s a question…What do you do to encourage visitors when you build a museum containing some of the finest works of Japanese art in the midst of rural Japanese farmland? The answer, if you are Zento Adachi, a farmer’s son turned influential art collector, is to build one of the most beautiful gardens in the …

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The Tiny Kokura Restaurant That Changed Noodle Eating Forever.

Plate of Yaki Udon from the restaurant who invented it in Kokura, Japan

Today in Japan, and, in Japanese restaurants all over the world, the idea of frying udon noodles to make yaki udon is normal – but, if local legend is to be believed, we can thank a tiny 8-seater restaurant in Kokura, Western Japan for the invention of the dish. I popped along to try a …

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Booked to go to Tokyo in Golden Week? Don’t Panic

Mirrored shop front creating image of a crowd in Tokyo during Golden Week

Don’t go to Japan in Golden Week – say, every article, website and person who lives in Japan ever. So, imagine my horror when last year I realised I’d managed to do exactly that. Considering how many times I’ve been to Tokyo, how much time I spend reading about Tokyo or planning trips to Tokyo, …

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