Congratulations to all Japan holiday makers who were landed safely at Narita International Airport from Sydney. JQ25 landed on Friday night 14/11/2014 at 20.25pm (Sydney time) after 7.25 hours travelling time from Cairns to Japan, it left Cairns at 13.00pm the same day. Ealier, the group took JQ925 flight at 6.00 from Sydney to Cairns, it was a long day for all and Ngoc was so tired, she slept so deeply on that night of arrival in Tokyo!
Today the group will travel to Hakone which is part of Fuji-Hakone National Park, less than 100km from Tokyo. The town is famous for hot springs, natural beauty and the view of near by Mt. Fuji. Hakone is one of the most popular destination among Japanese and international tourists looking for a break from Tokyo. It's a beautiful Sunday morning in Tokyo, they plan to catch bullet train to Hakone. After spending more time in the morning in Tokyo for sightseeing and having a good lunch they left Tokyo for Hakone at about 12.00pm on a bullet train to Odawara and continued to Hakone by bus to finally reach Hakone late at 5.00pm!
Hakone is located in southwest Kanagawa Prefecture, by Lake Ashino. Even now, the remains of the old Tokaido checkpoint can be found here, and the place is also one of Japan's most famous hot-spring locales. In the Edo period, Hakone was famous for the severity of the inspection to which travelers were subjected at its checkpoint and the difficulty of crossing its mountain range.
Source: The Fifty-Three Stations of the Tokaido Road by Ando Hiroshige.
The word Kanagawa remains in use to this day, as the name of the prefecture. It's said that the area's name originated from the old spelling for Kanagawa ("Upper river"), which marked the boundary between present-day Shinmeicho and the older Shinmachi. The word Kanagawa has been spelled with various combinations of characters (including "Hunting-field river" and "Gold river"). Following the arrival of Commodore Perry's American fleet in the end of the Edo period, when the country was compelled to "open up" under international pressure, it was here that the various related treaties were signed, making Kanagawa a significant place in modern Japanese history. Source: The Fifty-Three Stations of the Tokaido Road by Ando Hiroshige.
Janine is really happy with travelling around in Japan, she likes the food there so far, hot springs bath she had was so hot but very refreshing, she said. Today, they continue the trip to explore Hakone's historical attraction and the famous Mt. Fuji by bus.
Lake Ashinoko was formed in the caldera of Mount Hakone after the volcano's last eruption 3000 years ago. Today, the lake with Mount Fuji in the background is the symbol of Hakone.
Hakone used to be an important checkpoint to control traffic along the Tokaido, the highway which linked Tokyo with Kyoto during the feudal Edo Period. Today, a short, cedar lined passage of the old Tokaido and a reconstruction of the Hakone Checkpoint are located between Moto-Hakone and Hakone-machi along the shore of Lake Ashinoko.
Mt Fuji The Highest Mountain in Japan.
Very interesting video about Mt. Fuji with Hiroshi Tashiro who has been researching the mountain with passion for decades. Embedded HTML code provided by courtesy of Japanology Plus / YouTube.
The group check-out Palace Hotel this morning to explore Hakone further.
I had not heard from them for a whole day today until Janine sent home her photos at 11.30pm! On leaving Hakone, they took ropeway to Odawara (where the Tokyo train terminated last Sunday on the way to Hakone) visiting geyser and local towns. In the evening, they took a bullet train to Kyoto where they checked-in hotel for the night.
Having a relaxing day they took a bus visisting Ohara which is a suburb of Kyoto.
The group had a great day exploring Kyoto which is named the World's Best City in the Travel & Leisure World's Best Awards 2014!
Janine's missed home so much so I sent her her these photos found in our garden this morning while watering plants to combat 40c heat wave hitting Sydney today!
The group arrived to Hiroshima hotel late last night from Kyoyo. Today they continue visisting attractions in Hiroshima and will go back to Tokyo at the end of the day.
Adagio (tommaso albinoni)
La catedral - preludio (Augustin Barrios Mangore)
Etude in E minor (tarrega)
Etude 84 (sagregas)
Janine played 'The man I love' at concert
Estudio v (F.sor)
Aubade (Rene Bartoli)
Bien Nho (Trinh cong son - arranged vo ta han)
Study in a (matteo Carcassi)
Romance (Rene Bartoli)
My dear sweetest sixteenager,
Dear Sweet 16 Amanda,
Dear Janine, Happy 17th! I hope this year is filled with more funny / weird smiles and scissors, paper, rock losses (for you). Enjoy being 17 because you only have a year with the pretty age until I get it.
Dearest Janine, Wish the 17th year is full of excitement, successes and happiness. Mum and Dad are proud of you: a very happy, healthy and talented young lady. All the best for your future.
Dear Janine, I am so happy to see you growing up today. It just likes yesterday that I took these beautiful childhood photos of you with lot of fun and happiness. I am so proud of you the way you've grown up so healthy and happily and always shown your decent commitment toward school's achievements. Keep up your good work, Janine: Wish you lot of happiness and successes on your sweet gold 17th birthday.