Backpackers Hostel "J-Hoppers" & "Hana Hostel"

Enjoy international exchange!!

We J-Hoppers Hostels are always happy to welcome Japanese customers with open arms as well as foreigners customers. Please enjoy international exchange!!

Enjoy international exchange!!

We J-Hoppers Hostels are always happy to welcome Japanese customers with open arms as well as foreigners customers. Please enjoy international exchange!!

Enjoy international exchange!!

We J-Hoppers Hostels are always happy to welcome Japanese customers with open arms as well as foreigners customers. Please enjoy international exchange!!

Enjoy international exchange!!

We J-Hoppers Hostels are always happy to welcome Japanese customers with open arms as well as foreigners customers. Please enjoy international exchange!!

Enjoy international exchange!!

We J-Hoppers Hostels are always happy to welcome Japanese customers with open arms as well as foreigners customers. Please enjoy international exchange!!

a trip to Nara

A day tripper!!
Recently, I visited Nara prefecture for the first time.
Things were much different than I expected. The train ride was about a half an hour and the ticket costs 690 yen. Unfortunately, my camera’s battery died after taking a photo of a big Buddha. The vibes were chilled out and the people were very nice, I would like to visit there again ere too long to see rest of the sight seeing spots. If one is looking for a place to relax and enjoy

TAKAMATSU 1 DAY TRIP!!

Hi there!

It's gradually getting warmar.Spring is near!!
I can 't wait cherry blossom season.......:)


About 2 weeks ago, the staff of J-hoppers Hiroshima and Hana Hostel visited Kagawa.
Kagawa is the home of SANUKI UDON which is very famous Udon in JAPAN.
We expected a long drive from Hiroshima to Kagawa,but it was only 2 hours and 40 mins by car . After we arrived in Kagawa, we visit to 3 famous Udon restaurants.


We are driving over the Seto Ohashi. It was cloudy.. What a pity!!


He is ' Kame ' who works as a night staff at Hana hostel. Drive safely:)



They are our staff. This is the first trip to Kagawa,so It is sooo exciting!!

We didn't wait a long time ,but there was a long line.
This is a long-awaited Udon.
Doesn't that look yummy?
The udon was sooo tasty and cheap!
I didn't think that it was going to be an easy trip from Kagawa to Hiroshima ...but it was and quite cheap with the ETC system and fun,too:)


I'm planning our next trip. There are so many places I want to go to that I can't decide where to go next:)















REAL natto


Natto is one of the most Japanese side dishes.
The basic explanation, please see the link:
http://j-hoppers.com/e_basis_eating.html#oh

Anyway, we can easily buy the sticky and smelly natto in every supermarket.Normally it is packaged into small sizes for each meal. But when I was a little boy 30-40 yeas ago, it was packed with straw.
In traditional way of Natto cooking is to boil soybeans and put them into
a tube made from straw to allow the natto fungus to propagate. The string on the straw tube is tightened and the soybeans ferment and get sticky.

The othe day I found old style natto sold on the net.
The factory

I internet-shopped some from them and tried.
See the Real Natto !

Traditional style package reminds me of good old Showa Period...


Fermented in straw

Great.
Eat with dried see weed and spring onion
(sometimes row egg)


Natto Brovo !
I love natto.

What's taspo?

How many vending machines there are in Japan! You may be surprised to see lots of them.
Vending machine is so useful, but it means that even teenager can buy Tobacco so easily.

Therefore, initiatives to prevent under-age smoking, operation of IC card system “taspo” for tobacco vending machines was started throughout Japan in 2008.
Nobody can buy a tobacco at vending machines without taspo card.
‘taspo’card can be issued only to adults aged over 20. To verify the age, you have to apply with your photo and ID such as car licence or health insurance card. Alien registration card is also fine.‘taspo’ cards are issued free of charge and there are no annual fees.

I am a smoker, but not in home for some reason. I personally prefer Mild Seven Menthol type. Mild Seven is in fact reputedly the third widest cigarette in the world behind Marlboro and Camel, and it has been a top seller in Japan.

Tobacco tax is approx 63%. This should be much cheaper than other countries.
The rule is also not as much strict as others, as well. Most of restaurants has a smoking seats. The places restricted for smoking in communal area is quite limited.

Enjoy your smoking during visiting Japan!
Hope not my wife will read this posting~~)

So early !






Last saturday I've seen my first plum blossoms of the year ! I can't believe it, we are only the 16th of February !





















Last year at the same date (17th of February) at the same place (Nijo Castle) I took this picture :

Ough !!












And the plum of the picture above looked like this :



... on the 11th of March only !!












Rush on your camera and go to the Osaka castle or Kitanotenmangu in Kyoto ... :-)

Boast about your strength!!



Godairikison ninno’e, the largest event in Daigoji, is held on Feb 23rd.

In recent years, “Mochi age riki hono” (power lifting a rice cake) has been famous. I’ll try to the contest on this year. In this contest, people try to lift a 150 kg piece of rice cake (wemen try to 90 kg) to dedicate power and pray for their health and happiness.

The winner can get big rice cake!!

It’s my turn.... might be.

Of course you can entry for the contest on that day.

(In that case, we are rivals. Why don't you wear your national team jersey! (like the W-cup?))

Oyster Festivals in Hiroshima





In February, every weekend oyster festivals will be held to thank the sea for its blessings in Hiroshima.

Within this coastal city, Hiroshima, oysters are one of the specialty food, fresh from the nearby Seto Inland sea. Hiroshima is a popular destination for oyster-lovers and even more so throughout the festival weekend.

You can enjoy fresh tasty oyster dishes at the outdoor stalls. Why don't you stay in J-hoppers Hiroshima and try some nice oyster dishes?! Don't miss the Oyster Festivals in Hiroshima!!


"Kure Sea Food Festival"
* February 11th (Wed) 10:00 ~ 15:00
* at Kure Central Park (10 min walk from JR Kure sta.)


"Miyajima Oyster Festival"
* February 14th(Sat)~15th (Sun) 10:00 ~ sold out
* near Miyajima ferry port
* website: Miyajima Tourist Association

"Oyster Charity Bazaar in Jigozen"
* February 15th (Sun) 9:00 ~ 13:00
* 3min walk from Hiroden Jigozen sta.


"Hiroshima Sea Food Festival"
* February 22th (Sun) 10:00 ~ 14:00
* 5min walk from Inokuti-Shyako bus stop

Free Noh in the presence of a former French Minister of Culture


If you ever dreamed of experiencing Noh for free in the presence of a former French Minister of Culture you may be fulfilled next Friday !

There will be a performance on the 6th of February from 18:00, followed by a small conference about culture in the current context of globalization, animated by Mr Jack Lang. He has been French Minister of Culture twice, from 1981 to 1986 and 1988 to 1993, and is still extremely active in lot of cultural activities around the world. This event will be held at 金剛能楽堂 (kongounourakudou).

It's free but you have to subscribe if you want to participate : send a email with an explicit title, and your name, profession, adress, phone number at LJ@2008genji.jp . There are very few places so do quick !!