Hello! Its been a while since I dabbled in Friday’s Footprints, so I thought I would take a break from vegetables and wander back to Japan. Right now my sister Rosemary and niece Emma are holidaying there so I am feeling a bit Japanese-Homesick.
Its been a couple of years now since Jeff and I were last in Japan – for those of you unaware, I have lived in Japan for around three years total (about 4 trips). Since Jeff arrived in Australia and married me, we have been back three times to tour about. I love the people, culture and food very much!
We did this fabulous little hike between two old post towns in the Nagano prefecture, Magome & Tsumago
Post towns were places that travellers in earlier days could rest and eat on their way, possibly as merchants heading to larger cities to sell their wares. These two towns are beautifully preserved in the Edo period style (1603-1867) Power cables and other such modern sights are mostly hidden from view, which gives a visitor a feeling of stepping back in time.
We started in Magome. A quick cup of tea with our lovely friends, Megumi and Yusuke who we had been staying with before setting on our nearly 8km hike down to Tsumago.
The path was fairly easy and quite varied underfoot. Sometimes it followed the road and sometimes veered off into the forests
Being in Japan in autumn was beautiful and in November there was a lot of fabulous colours to admire
Every now and again the path would take you through a small village. We loved seeing the rural homes and gardens.
Every now and again we would find a sign updating us on how far we had to go
Other signs made us giggle
On occasions we got to meet up with locals as we passed through the villages
Shrines, large and small were also a common sight along the way.
The path continued to twist and wind through the forests, out past rice fields and by farmhouses.
One of the cool things about the homes, was the decorating of their front doors or walls with all sorts of quirky items. Passers by could enjoy seeing what residents had created
After a really wonderful hike through the forests we arrived at Tsumago, a beautiful post town, gorgeous streets and shops.
Funnily enough we ran into our friends again who should have gone home several hours before!! Apparently it was their first time to the area and loved it so much they spent the whole day!
We found our way to our fabulous little guest house and got sorted out by getting our beds out of the cupboard – haha – yes, futons.
Megumi and Yusuke had very very kindly dropped off our main bags earlier so we didn’t have to carry them on the hike.
Dinner was included with the price and offered a really interesting selection of foods, which were pretty much all delicious! And to be honest, the fried grasshoppers were awesome!!!
Not having walked around enough, I went for a night walk around the town, which had practically closed down with hardly a soul on the streets. It was very restful
It was such an enjoyable part of our trip around Japan – we totally recommend it! 🙂
Hope you enjoyed the tour