• Asia,  Japan,  Travel

    Hiking 3776m up Mount Fuji

    The image of Mount Fuji comes to my mind when I think of Japan. It is Japan’s highest mountain towering at 3 667 m. For centuries this mountain has been a sacred site for pilgrims and a source of inspiration for many artists as well as poets. For me, it is a reminder of how perseverance and determination can help conquer what seems impossible. When I decided to climb to the summit of Mount Fuji, I was a very inexperienced hiker. I had never before climbed to such a high altitude. Mount Fuji has 10 stations along the route to the top. The majority of tourists or sightseers ride a…

  • Asia,  Japan,  Travel

    Himeji Castle: One of Japan’s most Exotic Castles

    Japan is an exotic country with a lot beautiful buildings, temples, and castles. While we were in Kyoto, Japan, we were determined to visit at least one Japanese castle. We eventually decided to ride the train to a small city called Himeji, which is located in the Kansai region of Japan. It was time to visit the largest, most popular, and best preserved castle in all of Japan! This is Himeji Castle. It is also referred to as Hakuro-jō (“White Egret Castle”) or Shirasagi-jō (“White Heron Castle”) because the castle’s white exterior design supposedly resembles a bird taking flight. The Himeji Castle, is one of the three premier castles in…

  • Asia,  Japan,  Travel

    How I Became a Geisha in Kyoto, Japan

    While we were strolling the streets of Gion, the most famous Geisha district in Kyoto, we luckily came across a Geisha parade. All the Geishas were dressed in beautifully ornate kimonos, and were walking gracefully in their high wooden sandals. Later that day we watched an entertaining show in which Geishas performed tea ceremonies, flower arrangements, and played musical instruments while singing. A Geisha, is a woman who is well-rehearsed in the arts of conversation, dance, and music. They are artisans who serve to entertain men. It takes a lot of training, hard work, and patience in order to learn and develop the skills required for becoming a Geisha. Before…