Tsujunkyo Bridge

– A continuation of the last story –
After leaving Heitate Shrine I visited Tsujunkyo Bridge.  Both are located in Yamato-cho.
Tsujunkyo Bridge is Japan’s largest stone-arch aqueduct bridge, which was built in 1854 for water supply to local farmers. For more information  please click Japan Web Magazine.

通潤橋

Fancy meeting Kumamon there!
矢部のくまモン

Fortunately, I was able to see the waterfall which is a rare occurrence.

Advertisements

A Spiritual Place – The Heitate Shrine

The other day, I drove to a country side “Yamoto-cho” where it took an hour and a half to get from Kumamoto city.   There are several sightseeing spots in Yamato-cho.  One of them is the Heitate shrine.   Most people living in Kumamoto don’t know it.   However it is famous among some Japanese because it is known as a spiritual place, where a mystic force provides energy, good luck and healing to a person who stands there.   It seems that many people outside Kumamoto visit there.

You have to go up a long stone stars to reach the shrine.

幣立神宮

This is the main shrine.

幣立神宮2

The history of the shrine is written on the board.   It has a long history as nobody knows when it was founded.   It worships several Shinto gods.

幣立神宮3

There are many huge trees around the shrine.   Somehow I felt refreshed.

幣立神宮5

幣立神宮6

幣立神宮7

幣立神宮9

The Shinto priest was performing a purification ceremony.    Some Japanese go to shrine to pray or purify something such as wishing their happiness, good health, or exorcising a person or place of evil spirits.   I’m not a religious person, but I have also gone to a shrine for a purification ceremony a few times before.

幣立神宮4

The Keroro Tram

This post is about Kumamoto where I live again.   In Kumamoto city, the tram cars run around downtown.    I sometimes see a tram painted colorfully.   The other day, when I was driving my car,  the Keroro tram passed by me.   Have you heard  “Sgt. Frog” (Keroro Gunso)?    It is a popular cartoon in Japan.     Check out Wiki.    This comic artist grew up in Kumamoto.

SN3Q0306

Here is another Keroro tram.    I watched Sgt.Frog on TV for the first time when I traveled to Hong Kong.   He seems to be popular even overseas.

SN3Q0357

In the tram, Keroro announces the next stop.   His voice is very cute.

Forest Bathing

As I wrote in the last post, I climbed Mount Kimpo in June.    In fact, I also went to a river last month.   My daughter wanted to go somewhere richly endowed with nature.   So we decided to go to Kikuchi Keikoku where it takes one hour drive from my house.

KikuchiGlen

Kikuchi Keikoku is located close to Mount Aso area in Kumamoto, Japan.     There is rich nature there.   You can enjoy forest bathing,  which means spending some time in a forest for the health benefits such as relaxation.    It is famous for a good spot to play with water in summer.  You can walk in the shallow stream.    In fall,  many people come to see the autumn foliage.

SN3Q0375

SN3Q0366

The water is very cold and clear.   There are several springs, which create the stream.

SN3Q0370

I think these pictures can’t convey the atmosphere to you enough without the sound of the stream.    I should have brought a video camera.    Instead, I link a YouTube video.

Mountain Climbing

Have you heard of Yuichiro Miura?   He is a famous skier and mountaineer in Japan.   In May, he successfully reached the summit of Mount  Everest (8,848 meters) at the age of 80.  To read his amazing story, please click here. Mail Online    The news of his accomplishment inspired me.   I climbed a mountain twice last month, but the mountain I chose was Mount Kimpo near my house which is only 665 meters above sea level.   I also drove  halfway up of the mountain. lol  There was  beautiful scenery of terraced rice paddies along steep hills at the base of the mountain.

mt.kimpo1

Hydrangeas are a typical flower in the rainy season, June.  They were blooming beautifully.

zfc4002

Why don’t you listen to the birds singing while you read?   I recorded the melody of the little cuckoo and bush warbler.

After parking my car, the picture below is the place where I started climbing. There were two course: the easy and the hard trail.  Of course, I chose the easy one, but it was still a little hard for me. The distance to the peak was only 1.3 km though.

mt.pimpo3

I enjoyed being immersed in nature.  The cool breeze was comfortable.

mt.kimpo4

The trail was steep, stony and slippery.

mt.kimpo5

I took a little break.  A whole view of Kumamoto city and  the Ariake Sea can be seen from the mountain.

mt.kimpo6

Finally, it took about 45 minutes to reach the summit.    There was a shrine at the top.

mt.kimpo7

By the way, I came across an interesting creature on the trail.  At first, I thought it was a blue rubber hose, but then it moved!

Collaboration between Kumamon and Hatune Miku

The Hatune Miku version of “Kumamon Dance” was released this month.    Miku just sings the theme song.   I want her to dance with Kumamon.   Kumamon is very good at dancing.    His dancing looks very cute.   I wonder who the man inside the stuffed suit is.   For your information, Miku sings the song of Bon Dance Festival of Koshi City in Kumamoto.   Additionally, Kumafes that I mentioned before will be held this year again.    Kumamoto might be a unique place.

Kumamon Did Bungee Jumping

I heard the news that Ituki village advertises for people to do bungee jumping.    Ituki is a quiet, small country village, located in Kumamoto, Japan.    The village will put on the bungee jumping event during 16-31, March.    The height of the bridge is 77 meters.    If you want to dive, check it out.  bungyJapan     Last summer Ituki held it for the first time.    Kumamon did bungee jumping at that time.    As for Kumamon, please read the previous post      What a brave man wearing the stuffed animal suit!