Konnichiwa Japan

Its been a little under two weeks since we arrived Japan, we have settled into life well living in ‘The Dorm’ which is a lovely little self contained flat with everything one could need while staying in Japan.

Shishi mai – Traditional Japanese lion dance.  This particular lion dance originated in China.

Tondo Matsuri – Japanese tradition where a bamboo fire is lit and hopes and wishes for the year ahead are written on traditional Japanese paper, if the paper rises into the sky with the heat of the fire, the new year will be full of good luck.










Our first Saturday was spent on a coach trip with other international students from Sannomiya to a Japanese new year Festival and also to visit Ougo Hatiman Shrine near Kobe.


One of my favourite activities we got to have a go at while at the shrine was mochitsuki (Pounding a Glutenous rice into a dough with a large wooden hammer)

Tokikazu Nakayama

I also I met a new friend while on the trip, his name was Tokikazu Nakayama, his English was a lot better than my Japanese which was handy, we got on very well and he made a very good guide of all the Japanese traditions.

The highest point of the castle provided a fantastic vantage point over Sumoto City

Monday 12th of January was a Japanese Holiday, so we took the opportunity to go and see the Sumoto Castle ruins.

On Thursday and Friday we were introduced to the place we will be working for the next 4 months Kiseki no Hoshi no Syokubutukan or Miracle Planet Museum of Plants.

Our first day was spent taking a trip to Shikoko island the smallest and lest populated of the four main islands of Japan.  We visited a special orchid nursery where we took away some special pots in preparation for the orchid display near the end of January.

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On our way back to Awaji Island from Shikoko Island we stopped off at Ritsurin Garden one of Japans most famous landscape gardens, everything about this garden was beautiful. (The photos don’t do the garden justice)

The finished effect is quite striking, almost pineapple like.









On Friday we spent our first day working at the Miracle Planet Museum of Plants,  my job for the day was raising the canopy on all the cordyline’s in the tropical garden.


We have a very busy schedule here in Japan, but I am very much looking forward to seeing as much as possible while I’m here.





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