Four ‘Easy’ Winter Overnight Trips from Tokyo

With Japan’s compact size and amazing transportation system, there are thousands of possible overnight trips from Tokyo. However, there are dramatic differences in cost, ease of access, and foreigner-friendliness. Here is a list of the most foreigner-friendly locations close to Tokyo that seem a world away, but are actually easy to reach & explore. #1 … More Four ‘Easy’ Winter Overnight Trips from Tokyo

3 Day Self-Drive Vacation in Kyushu’s Kumamoto

Only two hours from Tokyo by plane, Kumamoto Prefecture, on the island of Kyushu, is a fantastic choice for a two night / three day get-away.  Although the sightseeing choices are endless, here is an itinerary that I personally enjoyed and would recommend to those who really enjoy driving.  As Kumamoto does not get much … More 3 Day Self-Drive Vacation in Kyushu’s Kumamoto

Hiking & Sightseeing in Oku-Nikko, Tochigi Prefecture

To experience a foreigner-friendly beginner hike with amazing views, especially in autumn, head to Oku-Nikko, or ‘Inner Nikko’, in Tochigi Prefecture. Although possible to do in a day trip, I highly recommend an overnight stay in order to experience more of what the area has to offer.  From Tokyo, it also takes over three hours … More Hiking & Sightseeing in Oku-Nikko, Tochigi Prefecture

World Heritage Site hunting in Shingu, Wakayama 

Recently, many foreign tourists travel to Wakayama Prefecture to visit Mt.Koya and the famous Kumano Kaido. Most are unaware of Shingu, a lovely little city that has its own collection of impressive sightseeing spots, including sections of the famous path and other related World Heritage Sites. Most of Shingu’s attractions are centrally located and can … More World Heritage Site hunting in Shingu, Wakayama 

Kyoto ‘Top 3’ Recommended Courses for First Time Visitors

I’ve walked these areas again & again – and never get tired of them! However, with the overseas tourist crowds these days, I just skip the really famous temples (Ginkakuji, Kiyomizudera…) and focus on exploring everything else. Gion’s Kenninji Temple 1) Philosopher’s Path Take a taxi to Ginkaku-ji Temple. They will drop you off at … More Kyoto ‘Top 3’ Recommended Courses for First Time Visitors

Fukushima City & Nihonmatsu City           Overnight Sightseeing Tour

Goshikinuma The Tokyo American Club has been supporting Fukushima through volunteer projects over the past few years. In appreciation, the locals encouraged us to return as tourists. In May 2016, I co-led a tour for the TAC Women’s Group to highlight some of the prefecture’s wonderful sightseeing spots. If you really want to support the … More Fukushima City & Nihonmatsu City           Overnight Sightseeing Tour