Yes, I know. it looks like a copy paste of a travel brochure of Japan. But it would not be a proper blog, if I didn’t put the famous Torii Gate of Itsukushima Shinto Temple here, right?
On the very last day of March this year, we woke up very early-again- packed our luggage to be posted to Kyoto (I will tell you why, later), did our breakfast which did involve more eatable Western things. Here, I want to give you an example of Japan people, how extremely polite. My parents did have a friend who lived about 2 hours drive away from Hiroshima. Since we were on a touristic tour, we did not have much time during the day to enjoy doing whatever we wanted. So what this gentleman did was, he came one day before to the very same hotel where we were, stayed overnight and did breakfast together with my parents. No way, I, or anybody around in our home country, would drive 2 hours, stay in a hotel and return next morning, for just to chat for a couple of hours with some guys, who he met in some course many years ago. It is extremely important for Japan people to give their time, effort or whatever, for the comfort or happiness of other people. This makes them unbelievably polite.
After a 50 minutes journey by bus and a ferry trip, we arrived the world famous Miyajima island, a “must visit” of Japan. Among the very many temples we have visited during our trip, by far the most interesting and scenic was this Itsukushima Shinto Temple. Not only the temple itself, but also the deers wondering around freely, make the island worth to visit.
And also the Cherry Blossom time. We were lucky to be there at the very right time.
Both the temple and the island itself has many gems to discover for us and our son. Nice traditions to explore and lovely colored trees are very much in harmony with the orange temple.
For instance an interesting way to combine a tradition and the fortune telling is: you put a money in a box, which gives you a random number, when you shake it. You open the the box with the given number and that’s it. Since you do not understand one word, you try to find someone to tell you what it writes, which is usually the hardest part.
And another nice tradition of the island is a kind of cookie called Momiji Manju, a puffy tiny cookie, with caramel, chocolate or almond topping inside. Very tasty. The road from temple to the ferry has many nice shops for souvenirs and these cookies.
This time of the year is also very popular for weddings. In many of the cities we’ve been we saw bride and groom on these traditional carriages or walking in the gardens of the temples, for photos with cherry blossoms.