Philippine National Hero Bust at Hibiya Park, Tokyo

Bronze bust of Dr. Jose Rizal 🇵🇭❤️🇵🇭on the perimeter trail at Hibiya Park next to the Imperial Palace. This was added (during the 1998 Centennial Anniversary of Philippine Independence) to the 1961 historical marker on the site of the Tokyo Hotel, where Rizal stayed in 1888 before heading to Europe. . Upon exiting the Hibiya…

Hidden Nature Trail in Tokyo

Dogs do it, ducks do it, even little kids do it, let’s do it, let’s nature walk! If like me, you are trying to resist the temptation to shop, Todoroki Valley is a great healthy alternative activity (at least an hour or half a day if you like to linger) on a relatively easy-to-tread one-kilometer nature…

Secret Tea House in Omotesando, Tokyo

When you cross the threshold behind the flower shop facade, you cross over to the secret world of the Aoyama Flower Market Tea House. These await you…. The outdoors indoors… a short yummy menu (handsome Frenchman not included) using vegetables, herbs, and flowers… beauty on the walls, tables, and food… The beautiful ambience is almost…

Yay Sakura, Yaezakura at Hama-rikyu Gardens

The multi-layered late-blooming variety of cherry blossom at Hamarikyu Garden is stronger and comes in a vibrant pink! Yay for late bloomers! If you are one, may the Yaezakura encourage you in this growing stage to be patient as you wait for your perfect time to bloom! 🌸😍🌸 7 Fun Facts About the Hama-rikyu Gardens:…

Sapporo Clock Tower, Odori Park, Former Hokkaidō Government Office, Sapporo

Sapporo’s recently refurbished Clock Tower… Odori Park Tower… Former Hokkaidō Government Office… are just minutes away from one another and walkable from Sapporo Station. It’s so relaxing to see the birds unhurried and unworried (taken at the Former Hokkaidō Government Office compound).   Do Not Worry Matthew 6:25 “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your…

Sakaimachi-dori Street and Otaru Canal

Otaru is a charming little harbor city less than a half hour by train from Sapporo; in light of this, it has become a “bedroom community” or commuter town wherein people live here while working in the now more-crowded ( and more pricey) urban center of Sapporo.  Preserved historical buildings throughout this city has given…

Sankaku Market Otaru, Hokkaido

Food, Glorious Food in Otaru. 4 kilogram live crab! Succulent, fresh crab (loved the legs more than the body meat here), melt-in-your-mouth (even if slightly firm) chu toro, and other seafood! The rice: nakakainis sa sarap! This meal at Sankaku Market, just steps away from Otaru train station—- one of our best and most fun…

Hokkaido Historical Village Winter (Kaitaku No Mura)

Hokkaidō Kaitaku no Mura is one of the best places to visit near Sapporo where you can get a feel of old Japan, Meiji and Taisho periods through a beautiful nature walk.  I first visited here last summer with glorious flowers embellishing the path and a trolley train traversing the main road. I still feel…

Winter Lavender, Hokkaido Japan

What to do in “Lavender Country” in winter? Smell the lavender! Tomita Farms is spectacular at the height of summer lavender season with seas of the purple flowers swaying with the wind. In the thick of winter with the barren treescape when snow covers the fields outside and the meandering mountain slopes beyond… …there remains…

Snowmobile Snowcapade, Furano Hokkaido

Snowmobile Tips: *Dress appropriately. They say there is no such thing as “too cold weather,” only “wrong clothing.” *Right handle = accelerate . *Left handle = brakes *Stay 100 meters away from other snowmobilers *Oops, did I say turn on the engine? Patrice and I on the snowmobile. I overcame my fear of driving it…

Snowshoeing at White Koala, Furano Hokkaido

Benefits of Snowshoeing: Nature Therapy Fitness Forest bathing Detox 2 things made Snowshoeing easier on my 2nd try: 1-Choose a snowshoe not too big 2-Use walking sticks (with snow basket) Biru-san, our snow forest guide, said: *use waterproof winter jacket & pants *waterproof winter boots only *mind the Left and Right snowshoe. *put boot far…

Furano Tour, Winter Edition

Do you know your CQ (Cheese Intelligence)? 🧀 At Furano Cheese Factory, you can take an electronic quiz to find out! 😂 Hokkaido’s yummy dairy comes in different forms here. Squid ink cheese among many flavours 🧀 , creamy milk🥛 , milk pumpkin cheese or corn ice cream 🍦 . My favourite this visit is…

Surprise at Ningle Terrace, Furano, Hokkaido, Japan

The original weather forecast didn’t include snow; snow started melting early February instead of mid-March. Still, since “setting sail” for Sapporo, how we wished the Lord would let it snow. As if on cue after setting foot at the Ningle Terrace parking lot, we were suddenly startled by a sweet snow surprise… …❄️which set the…