Apparently 85% of the Japanese population own a bike and they all look pretty much like this!  Its a cultural icon in its own way… Standard purchase – Bike, basket, rack, lock, stand, bell, light. Upgrades include one or more child seats (hence the name). Anyway, great for whizzing round town, groceries, taking photos… just getting around really… The road rules here…

Continue Reading

History, Japan, Otawara & Nasu (local area), Tochigi Prefecture, Travelling Japan

Poppo Dori

While out walking I came across a bike/pedestrian trail track with lots of statues and odd artefacts along the way. Investigation turns up that it’s called Poppo-dori and is what is left of the old Toya Tetsudo (Toya railroad), which ran 24.4km from Nishinasuno to Nasu Ogawa, in the 1920-50’s and used to carry timber, rice, wheat, fertilizer, and agricultural crops…

Continue Reading

Japan, Otawara & Nasu (local area), Tochigi Prefecture


One thing I really miss is good bread, I’m not a huge fan of the light, sweet bread common in Japan.  So I was excited when I heard about a bakery called Namakemono (which means “Lazy Baker”) about 4 km from here that makes beautiful bread, European style… Apparently it opens Wednesday to Sunday at 4.15pm and closes about an…

Continue Reading

Japan, Onsen, Tochigi Prefecture, Travelling Japan

Aoki Onsen

Aoki Onsen is just over 1.5km from home… Probably my closest onsen.  Its behind the Aoki hotel…  When you walk in (after taking your shoes off – of course) there is a machine in front of you and you put your 500Yen in or note if you haven’t got change and get a ticket, which you then hand to the…

Continue Reading

History, Japan, Onsen, Tochigi Prefecture, Tourist attractions


 Drove to Nikko for a couple of days over the long weekend in March.  It was still pretty cold in Nasu and snow was forecast for the Nikko region.As it turned out the weather turned really bad on the drive up and we didn’t get to do much sight seeing.. Almost no visibility and raining on & off..  We drove up the…

Continue Reading

Japan, Travelling Japan


 Shirakawa (白河市) is a city located in the southern portion of Fukushima Prefecture. Its actually the next stop after Nasu on the Shinkansen line..I went there to visit the Castle, known as either Shirakawa castle of Komine Castle… However, i didn’t realize that the March 2011 earthquake had caused significant damage and it was closed. Shirakawa was known as the gateway to the old Mutsu Province of Japan. Up to…

Continue Reading