Toji Temple and Flea Market

When we emerged from our Kyoto hotel in the morning we would look across the street and see this large wooden pagoda. Upon inquiring, we were told that it’s part of the Toji Temple complex.

Kyoto’s Nijo Castle

Around 1600, the Tokugawa family became the dominant power in feudal Japan. The Emperor was essentially a figurehead. The Tokugawas moved the administrative capital from Kyoto to Edo (Tokyo), while the Imperial Court remained in Kyoto. Nijo Castle, completed in 1628, was… Read More

Kyoto’s Shoren-in Temple

Shoren-in is one of the smaller Buddhist Temples in Kyoto, and it doesn’t draw nearly as many visitors as some of the larger, more famous temples. Its garden, though, is equal to that of any of the other Kyoto temples we visited.

Kyoto’s Kiyomizudera Temple

So after Kanazawa, we took the train to Kyoto.  Remember, this was in September of last year. Before it was Tokyo, Kyoto was Japan’s capital for about 800 years. Kyoto is to Tokyo sort of the way Boston is to Los Angeles…. Read More

Kenrokuen Garden

One of the reasons we traveled to Kanazawa was to see Kenrokuen Garden. It is officially designated as one of the Three Great Gardens of Japan. Why aren’t there officially Three Great Gardens of the United States? (Although if they were designated… Read More

Kanazawa’s Omicho Market

Visiting Omicho Market was definitely one of the highlights of Kanazawa. The market is a warren of narrow covered alleys lined with up to 200 stores. Judy and I love markets generally, and this is a good one. We went there every… Read More

Kanazawa Castle

OK, back to Japan. We left Tokyo, going by train to the much smaller city of Kanazawa, a historic castle town. One of the gates to Kanazawa Castle.

A Tokyo Power Garden

You’ve heard of the power lunch, power walk, and power nap, right? Well, Koishikawa Korakuen is a power garden. It was commissioned in the 17th Century by a member of the ruling Tokugawa clan. The name means “the garden for enjoying power… Read More

Rikugien, a Tokyo Stroll Garden

Rikugien was completed around 1700, commissioned by the son of a high-ranking official. Eventually, it was purchased by the family that owns Mitsubishi, then turned over to the public. This was our second visit to this garden, since we were here last… Read More

Visiting Tokyo’s Sensoji Temple

So when we left off telling you about our trip to Japan we had just gotten off the Sumida River water bus at the Akasuka stop. From there we were walking to Sensoji, one of Tokyo’s most venerable Buddhist Temples. Alas, it… Read More