Ageo Cherry Blossom Festival

The Ageo Cherry Blossom Festival is held in two different locations in Ageo. One is the grounds of the Ageo Bunka (Culture) center and the other is Maruyama park. When my kids were toddlers Maruyama park was one of our favourites for “hanami”, picnicking under a blooming tree, both forRead More →

Hanami BBQ Shinrin Park

Hanami BBQ Shinrin Park 2019 – From Saturday March 16th until Sunday April 14th you can enjoy a barbecue under the cherry blossom trees in Shinrin Park. The park hosts barbecues in all seasons except winter, but it is only during this particular period that you can barbecue with bloomingRead More →

Umerin and Mini SL at Ogose Bairin best flowers 2019 plum blossoms ume

Ogose Bairin is one of three big plum blossom forests in the Kanto area. Bairin 梅林 is the Japanese for a plum grove, or quite literally a plum forest. The whole of Ogose is a virtual plum blossom forest, you can see stretches of beautifully gnarled tree trunks donned inRead More →

Glamorous Hyde Park Sayama Inariyama Park

Glamorous Hyde Park is an initiative by Inariyama Park to enjoy a living area in the great outdoors. Essentially it is day glamping, the term coined for glamorous camping. Hence the park uses the word glamping in this annual seasonal event. Please note it is only available on Fridays, SaturdaysRead More →

Saitama Norin Park

Saitamaken Norin Park is a prefectural agriculture and forestry park in Fukaya City.  There is quite a lot to do at Saitama Norin, if you’ve planned in advance and booked to pick fruit and/or take a class. On the weekend they have the very popular mini steam locomotive. There isRead More →

tsurugashima park

Tsurugashima Sports Park isn’t a particularly large park and, if you are not playing sports, nor is it a particularly engaging park. However, it has two things going for it; cherry blossoms and a splash pool. The park is useful for locals as it has walking courses, a tennis courts,Read More →

Unusual komainu

Komainu The guardians of shrines, Komainu are usually referred to as lion-dogs in English. They are the guardian stone statues you see near the entrance to a shrine. One on either side of the walkway. One if male, one is female. Commonly one, believed to be the male one, hasRead More →

Beppunuma Park playground

Beppunuma Park – With Sakura season just around the corner I’ve been thinking of cherry blossom spots I wanted to visit and/or revisit with the kids. Beppunama Park came to mind as a great park for kids and a renowned cherry blossom and hanami spot. It is ideal for hanamiRead More →

hatsumode saitama kitain hatsumode Japanese new year tradition

The Japanese New Year tradition of Hatsumode – Hatsumode is the first visit of the year to a shrine or a temple, an important and much practiced tradition of new year celebrations in Japan. There are many shrines and also temples all around Saitama where you can practise Hatsumode. TechnicallyRead More →

Shoden Temple

Komazan Shoden-in Shorakuji commonly spelt Shotenin in English stands proud at the top of the Koma peak in Hidaka. It is like a beacon for all enthralled by religious architecture. It is easy to spot it from a distance with its impressive temple structure, but more so thanks to theRead More →