2015年11月30日

'Sanjo Ohashi' bridge running over 'Sanjo' street in Kyoto spans 'Kamo' river.

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The de facto capital Edo, present Tokyo, and theoretical capital Kyoto, successive emperors' dwelling place, was connected by two highways from the 17th century to the 19th century. They are 'Tokaido' highway and 'Nakasendo' highway. To be more precise, they were running between 'Nihonbashi' bridge in Tokyo and 'Sanjo Ohashi' bridge in Kyoto as shown in the first picture.
Together with Nihonbashi, as this bridge was the most important bridge in Japan, it has long been repeatedly maintained and reconstructed by government money since the 17th century, and the present bridge was reconstructed in 1950.
In this connection, the river beach near this bridge, called 'Sanjo-gawara', is well known for an execution site as well as the place where severed heads of criminals were exposed to public view. Many well know criminals are included. In addition, as this neighborhood is dotted with many traditional 'ryokans' as shown in the second picture, this vicinity was important transportation crossroads.

Licensed tour guide/travel consultant,
Masahisa Takaki.

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posted by masahisa at 12:14 | Kyoto | このブログの読者になる | 更新情報をチェックする

2015年11月26日

'Mt. Kaimon-dake', which rises on the southern tip of the 'Satsuma' Peninsula, is an active volcano, 924 meters high.

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There are 110 active volcanoes in the volcanic country Japan, 17 of them are in Kyushu. Talking of the volcanoes in Kyushu, the world's largest class volcano 'Mt. Aso' is well known though, this small Mt. Kaimon-dake should be noted. As the shape is conical, this independent peak is also called 'Satsuma Fuji'. ('Mt. Fuji' in Satsuma, present Kagoshima)
From a park at the foot of it, a spiral path up the mountain is in good condition, so people can enjoy 3 hour mountaineering. The picture shows the distant view of Mt.Kaimon-dake across Lake Ikeda, a caldera lake formed by the collapse of another volcano. This lake is the largest lake in Kyushu, the bottom of which an underwater volcano 150 meters high stands.

Licensed tour guide/travel consultant,
Masahisa Takaki.

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posted by masahisa at 16:58 | Kyushu | このブログの読者になる | 更新情報をチェックする

2015年11月18日

"Suizenji-Jojuen", commonly known as "Suizenji Japanese Gardens", in Kumamoto City originated from a small tea house built by "Hosokawa Tadatoshi", the first feudal lord of the Kumamoto domain, in 1636.

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Suizenji Japanese Gardens in the residential area near the heart of Kumamoto City is a "daimyo garden" which was designed centering around a pond filled with the welling up water from Mt. Aso volcano. This garden is also designed following the scenic spots of the "Fifty-Three Stations of Tokaido Highway". The mound in the center of the first picture is likened to Mt.Fuji. The third feudal lord "Hosokawa Tsunatoshi" completed this landscaping work around 1700, however the original symbol of this garden, "Suigetsutei" tea house, was reduced to ashes due to a civil war in 1877. At the site of this tea house, "Kokondenju-no-ma" was relocated from Kyoto in 1912, as shown in the second picture.
*Kokondenju-no-ma is a historical house, where "Hosokawa Yusai" the father of the Hosokawa clan, who was a wellknown poet, taught the essence of how to compose poems to the royal family in Kyoto.
This garden is designed to be enhanced by it surroundings, such as the distant view of Mt. Aso, but many high-rise buildings are disturbing that benefit now.

Licensed tour guide/travel consultant,
Masahisa Takaki.

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posted by masahisa at 15:51 | Kyushu | このブログの読者になる | 更新情報をチェックする