10/24 - ATAMI/MATSUSHIMA/MISAWA
After a REAL quick breakfast (10 mins to eat & 10 mins to get to the station), we left for our next destination - MATSUSHIMA (near SENDAI in MIYAGI Pref.) and MISAWA (AOMORI Pref.).
As you can see, we made it to ATAMI station in time. The KODAMA SHINKANSEN was due in at 7:31am. The ride is about 50 mins. to TOKYO. From TOKYO Station, we switched to TOHOKU HIYATE SHINKANSEN to SENDAI Station which is about two hours. Then the local train (30 mins.) took us to our first destination - MATSUSHIMA (literal translation: PINE ISLAND).
MATSUSHIMA (MIYAGI Pref.) is considered one of the "Three Views of Japan" (NIHON SANKEI) - locations that best represents Japan. The others are: MIYAJIMA (HIROSHIMA Pref.) and AMANOHASHIDATE (KYOTO Pref.). I have been lucky to cover two (MATSUSHIMA and MIYAJIMA).
After visiting the GODAIDO Temple, riding the 50 min. boat tour around the 260 islands of MATSUSHIMA and eating GYUTAN lunch, we headed back to SENDAI to catch the TOHOKU HIYATEI SHINKANSEN to HACHINOHE (one and an half hours). Then switch to local train (15 min ride) to MISAWA area for our final destination of the day.
Hosho made reservations at a huge hot springs hotel that included a dinner show. The dinner show is called NEBUTA Festival. See all those illustrations in the background? Those are called NEBUTA - they were creatures that were supposed to frighten off the enemies during war in the AOMORI area in the early 800s. Now they are floats depicting those creatures made out of Japanese paper with laterns lit inside.
What's a dinner show without audience participation?! Guess who got picked...both boys (Hiro is pictured behind his big brother). LOL!! In the last picture, a girl with the colorful KIMONO was there with a Korean film crew. Guess they were covering the hotel (it's famous for its hot springs and this show).
After a nice long hot bath, off to bed for another adventure tomorrow to Lake TOWADA.