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In Japan almost everything takes on a certain artistic quality, and manhole covers are no exception. The artwork on Japanese manhole covers varies from city-to-city.
Some covers display images representative of a city's unique culture, while others display icons that are representative of the function of the hole they are covering, like those for the fire department....
Japanese manhole covers are so interesting,so next time you find yourself wandering the streets looking for something artistic, make sure you take a moment to look down .....
the link below is for MANHOLE tours...but only in japanese....
Updated Mar 26, 2013
Address: look out for them at every "prefecture street city
Kawagoe is a city of nearly 350,000 citizens in Saitama Prefecture, just an hour outside of Tokyo by train. The town is most famous as Koedo, or Little Edo, due to its resemblance to Tokyo in the Edo Period from 1603 to 1868.
The most famous area of town is Kurazukuri Street, which is line with shops in old Showa-era warehouses. Confectionery Row, or Penny Candy Lane, is a favorite of children due to its 12 or 15 old-style candy stores selling traditional and modern candies and toys. The Bell of Time, originally completed in 1644 and rebuilt in 1894, is the city's symbol. Kawagoe Castle dates back to the 1400s, but was largely dismantled in the 1870s.
The best part of Kawagoe? Without a doubt, my favorite thing in Kawagoe is Coedo beer. It is relatively cheap in town (300-400 Yen for a can or bottle), and it is delicious.
Updated Feb 21, 2013
Tokyo is the capital of Japan and, with 35 million people, the largest metropolitan area in the world. Japan is home to 68 Fortune 500 companies, with 47 located in Tokyo, the most of any city in the world (in comparison, New York City has only 18 Fortune 500 companies and Seoul has just 12).
Tokyo has something for everyone: busy shopping areas, famous nightlife, historical sights, quiet parks, and amazing scenery. Most visitors will find plenty to keep them busy, if they can find their way around the complex web of neighborhoods that make up Tokyo.
Below are capsules of Tokyo's major neighborhoods to help plan a visit to the fun and exciting city of Tokyo.
Central Tokyo - There is no "downtown" in Tokyo, but the core of the city includes Chiyoda & Chuo (meaning center). This area features the massive Imperial Palace, the national government buildings, the city's famous shopping area called Ginza, Tsukiji fish market, Akihabara electronics market and historic Tokyo Station. This is a good place to start a visit to Tokyo.
Shinjuku - Shinjuku is known for having the busiest train station in the world, and it is the home of Tokyo's city government. Shinjuku also hosts Tokyo's red light district, a gay area, a geisha district, some traditional nightlife in Golden Gai, the city's Korean neighborhood, & Tokyo's largest collection of skyscrapers. No better place to learn about the variety of Japanese nightlife!
Asakusa - Asakusa is a bit quieter than many other neighborhoods, but it has a few not-to-be-missed attractions like Sensoji Temple, the Nakamise-dōri shopping arcade, and the Golden Poo (aka Asahi Beer headquarters)! Close by is the Ueno area, including the Ameyoko market. A perfect spot to shop for traditional gifts and see a great Buddhist temple.
Shibuya - Shibuya is most famous for its shopping, but also has one of Tokyo's large concentrations of love hotels. Not far from central Shibuya is Harajuku, home of famous Takeshita Street, where Tokyo's youth converge in costumes. Also a major shopping area and home of the great Meiji Shrine and and Yoyogi Park. Come here to learn about the Japanese youth and do some shopping.
Roppongi - Roppongi is one of the most famous neighborhoods for Western-style nightlife. It has a bad reputation for being dangerous late at night, but it has been improving in recent years with the addition of the upscale shopping area called Roppongi Hills. Adjacent to Roppongi is a much quieter and very friendly neighborhood called Azabu. To the north of Roppongi is Aoyama Cemetery, a large, quiet park-like burial ground. Perhaps the best, and most comfortable, place for a Westerner to unwind.
Western Districts of Tokyo - The Tokyo Metropolis is massive, stretching 90 km from end-to-end. The western districts of the Tokyo Metropolis, including towns such as Hamura and Okutama, are much more tame than the big city, and you can find plenty of open space such as parks, mountains, golf courses, lakes, temples, and biking trails. The western part of the city is perfect for a more quiet day with a bit of nature.
Updated Feb 18, 2013
If you're the preson that likes to put things off do not put this one in the back burner. "Climb Mt. Fuji"... I've put this off since July 1992, on the 27 July 2006 "I climbed the rock and it was great". It was one of those thing that you will never forget...
Updated Jan 3, 2013
Address: MT. Fuji Japan
Otaru is the most 'Westernized! part of Hokkaido, building wise, with a canal parallel to its water front. It famed for its sea food and glass work but there are other quaint attractions, too, like the clock museum/shop. It is a very interesting place to visit and I would certainly go back to Otaru if I were to go to Sapporo, again: great place! Very picturesque, too!
Btw you don't need to take one of those tours promoted for Otaru. I did it as a day trip by train from Sapporo station and got a map from the information office at Otaru station (which advised me I can do it myself) and walked down to the canal and walked about Otaru before taking a regular bus back to the station.
Written Oct 21, 2012
Kyoto is the historical and cultural soul of Japan. The sights are so many one could easily spend 2 weeks here and just scratch the surface. if your thinking of going to Japan put Kyoto on the top of the list.
Written Jun 24, 2012
Tokyo, the captial of Japan is a great palce to see the most modern of japan, Huge display screens and neon lights everywhere, then around the corner a tranquil temple. If your interested in modern architecture, culture and shopping then Tokyo is the destination.
Written Jun 24, 2012
Kochi is a small town on Shikoku - the smallest of Japan's four islands. The train journey to Kochi from Okayama was spectacular as you travel through a stunning gorge with fantastic scenery. Kochi has a little bridge called Lover's Bridge with a little monument to two ill-fated lovers who died rather than give up their love. It also has a very pretty castle. We arrived at the castle after closing time, but were pleased to find we could still wander around the castle grounds. The grounds were very pleasant with several statues and lots of colourful flowering shrubs. There is a moat around the bottom of the castle. ApparentlY Kochi Castle is the only Japanese Castle where you can easily take a picture with the castle and its main gate in the same shot. When you climb up to the castle itself, you'll be rewarded with good views over Kochi. Dusk was falling as we left the grounds and the lanterns were lit up in the trees. A very pleasant and peaceful experience.
Updated Jun 23, 2012
Kobe may not be the most fascinating city in Japan, but it has enough to merit a visit and it is a good base for exploring the area. We've stayed in Kobe twice - both times living in the Holiday Inn Hotel which is near Shin Kobe Station. Both visits we have had a Japan rail pass and found Kobe an excellent location from which to enjoy a variety of day trips.
Kobe itself has a cable car- in Japan they are called ropeways which will take you up the mountain behind the Shin Kobe station. There are good views; there is quite a nice herb garden and a little statue donated by the people of El Salvador in sympathy for earthquake victims the world over.
Kobe is famous for having experienced a devastating earthquake in 1995 in which around 6,000 people died and Kobe was left in ruins. There is park by the seaside in Kobe near the Port Tower and Maratime Museum where some of the earthquake damage has been retained as a memorial. Lamp-posts bend at odd angles and the paving stones are broken in this area.
Kobe was also one of the first areas of Japan to allow foreigners in and if you wander around the Kitano-Cho area (to the right as you leave Shin Kobe Station) you can see many old European style houses in which the rich foreigners once lived.
One last sight - behind the Shin Kobe Station there is a path leading up to a waterfall. It's worth having a quick look at.
Updated Jun 23, 2012
For an unusual trip in Tokyo, take the train to Sugamo Station and go to Jizo dori. This street is known as Harajuku for old ladies. While Harajuku is a trendy young people's shopping area with all the latest in fashion, Jizo dori sells everything the elderly could ever want, including shop after shop of rather large bright red thermal underwear. Red is thought to have heat inducing properties.
There is also an interesting temple in this area - Kogan-ji Temple. the temple has a statue outside it. Legend states that if you are afflicted with pain on part of your body and wash the corresponding part of the statue,s body the pain will disappear. You'll see a long line of people next to the statue waiting to do just this.
Keep wandering down Jizo dori and you will eventually come to one of the stations on the Toden Arkawa Line - Tokyo's last remaining tramway. We took a ride to the last stop just for the fun of travelling on it.
Back on the underground Sugamo is one train stop away from Komagome which has a beautiful garden called Rikugien Park. The park has a beautiful central lake. Apparently there are famous scenes from Japanese poems set out in miiature around the gardens. Beautiful.
Updated Jun 23, 2012
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