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!!

Looking for the Sakura Bloom!!

Hi. Hello, this is minasyo from Kyoto!!

It was very sunny day today. The cherry blossom spring season has come again this year!!

For the first time in a long time I got sunny day holliday!

I always go for a bike ride. And today I pedaled around Kyoto to see the cherry trees!!

First, I pedalled to Yasaka and Maruyama park(known for the magnificent cherry trees). The cherry trees have only partially blossomed so far. And then I pedaled for Path of philosopher's. The cherry trees have only partially blossomed so far,too…

I think the best time to view cherry trees in Kyoto is few days later…

On the way of my home we found a good cherry blossom!!

It was twilight of the breezy day. I found The cherry trees are in full bloom nearby my home…5 min walk form my home…I didn’t find it this morning…

Did cherry trees bust out today???...

Land on Battleship Island!!

Hi there.This is Chika from J-Hoppers Hiroshima guesthouse.

I took three days off,and then I visited to Nagasaki in early March.
I have been to Nagasaki before.However,there are still lots of places where I really want to go.

This building used to be a elementary and junior school!!

''Hashima island'' is one of the my destination.
''Hashima island'' commonly called ''Gunkanjika''(meaning Battleship Island)
Have you heard of Gukanjima before??
I had really wanted to visit the island since I saw the photo collection of the island.

The island's nickname came from its apparent resemblance to the Japanese battleship
Tosa. It also is known as the Ghost Island.

You can land on the island by a boat.It's not that you are able to land on the island everytime.
Depends on the sea wave,It is determine whether you can land on it or not.

When we took a tour,it was windy.So we were so worried that we could go or not.
However,I was very lucky to land on Gunkanjima on that day!!!!

We are soooo excited and impressed when we visited the island.
This building is the oldest reinforced concrete apartment in Japan.

If you interested in the island,you need to book a tour first.
They only have Japanese tour,however I'm sure that you would be enjoy visiting the island!!

Power of music !!


Do you like music??

I think music is a kind of magic and

it has a kind of power.

I found some beautiful songs on the internet.

These are also charity songs for the earthquake

disaster reconstruction.

⇒Akira Ishige 『Untitled』

⇒toe 『ordinary days』

I hope Japan will get energy back soon!!

The sequel of "What do you think about Japanese tradition and culture?"

Do you remember that I wrote an article with this same title on the 27th of January?

Haven't you read it yet? Then, please back to this page.

Anyway, after I wrote it, my big boss suggested to me that I add two more questions which were:
"What Japanese food did you try that you didn't like?"
"Please tell us about food from your country which other people don't like?"

I waited for about 2 months and now I'm giving you their answers..

Actually, we haven't got any answers to the 1st question.. can you believe everyone likes all Japanese food so far??? even Natto???

To the 2nd one, the answers are as follows:

Vegemite - Australia

Fried cricket (!!) - Philippine

Sheep's head (?!!) - Norway

Stir fried tree grubs (!!! ) - Philippine

・・・ what will happen if we ask them to have a party to cook their meal at J-Hoppers one day..

Happy Wedding !

Hi everyone.
This is Masa from J-Hoppers Hiroshima.

First of all, I would like to express my deep sorrow for the terrible conditions that have occurred in Tohoku region. My heartfelt wishes go out to all the people affected by this disaster. My prayers and condolences to those who have lost loved ones, friends and homes. It is a very sad and tough time to go through for us in Japan, but I believe we will recover and come back to the world soon! I will stand by victims through this difficult time and also support international travelers here at J-Hoppers Hiroshima!

We have a very happy news from Hiroshima as well!

One of the staffs from Hiroshima Hana Hostel, Yuko and her English husband, Tom had their wedding last Sunday!

It was such a special and lovely day.

Tom looked great in Hakama (Kimono for men) and
Yuko was amazingly beautiful ...

They always bring us peace and happiness.
We are all really happy for their special day!

to YUKO and TOM
Thank you for the wonderful wedding!
May you have a long and loving life together.

My first blog

Hola amigos!!!

Allow me to introduce myself and my current situation, since this is my first blog.

I was working at a school in Mexico for one and a half years beginning in January, 2008.
85% of the students were from North America, and the rest were from Europe, Japan and South Korea.

During the summer about 100 people were studying at the school, which was the oldest language school in the town.

However many American students, who were the lifeline of the school, cancelled their plans to come to Mexico as a result of the United States financial crisis in autumn 2008.

In addition, public safety has deteriorated as a result of the drug war along the border between Mexico and the U.S.A.
Even more students from North America left Mexico because of constant U.S. reports of bad news from Mexico.

Lastly, Swine Flu hit Mexico in April, 2009.

In the end, there were only five students who remained at the school.

In reality, there was no panic in Mexico. The Mexicans did not even wear masks.

They just stopped going out to the bars for a few days. This is very unusual for Mexicans, who love eating and drinking with their amigos.
So life continued as normal, at least in the town where I lived.

A friend of mine went back to Japan on his parents orders, but unfortunately Swine Flu began to circulate around Japan immediately after he returned home.

That was the moment I realized that there is nowhere absolutely safe in this world.

I left the job in Mexico, and while I stayed in San Francisco for several months and had a lots of fun, I got news that the school had closed due to financial trouble.

I'm from Kobe.
When I was in the six grade of elementary school, The Hanshin Earthquake occurred.
I didnt even understand what I was afraid of.
My knees trembled all day long.

All the basic services in Kobe were disrupted, but my mom said to me,

Your family and the house are safe, so look for something you can do to help.

I went to an assembly hall with my sister.

can we help with something?
The women, who were preparing supplies for distribution, said that they didnt need our help.

Before long, we found a poster asking for volunteers for the Kobe City hospital, where I was born.

We took water jugs from the water cart and carried them to each floor of the hospital.

"What a good girl!"

Some of the patients said to me, and I was a little proud.
I also got excited because I got to see the room for new-born babies.

I kept helping at the hospital in the mornings, even after school had restarted.

I finished helping after water once again began flowing from the faucets.

Even though it was a small accomplishment, I did what I could do.

Videos of the large earthquake and tsunami were broadcast all over the world.

Miyagi and Kyoto seem the same to foreigners who don't know much about Japan.
A negative impression has spread about Japan
because of the earthquake and concerns over radiation from the nuclear plant emergency.

Unfortunately, foreign tourists may not choose Japan as a destination, with the exception of those people who have a specific reason for visiting.

The travel industry in Japan has entered a black hole.
However, I am working hard to make guests feel welcome in Kyoto, despite the disaster, and emphasize the high energy of the people of Japan.

That is what I can do.

Amor y Paz,

Jack Johnson concert

My friend and I went to Jack Johnson concert 2 weeks ago.

Do you know about Jack Johnson?

He is an American folk rock singer-songwriter, surfer and musician.

I used to listen to his songs a lot while I was in Australia and New Zealand.
I am a big fan of him and listen to his music while I work in the morning.

He came to Japan for this new album↓

I am sorry that I can't show you how good the concert was with photo.
We really enjoyed ourselves.

California and Mexico

Wasabi Burrito!?!?! I was so curious how the taste is, but I ended up eating just a a california Burrito since I disparately wanted the one. I'll definitely try it next time.

Tijuana!!! it's been more than 3 years. I came down here for my friend's birthday Party.
It was super fun this night. I learned lots of Mexican slangs. tequila, tacos y burritos! viva Mexico.

Pacific Beach like old times. It was simply beautiful. walking around and got a suntan. I wish I could be here this summer as well. I love the sounds of beach. I even like the smell.

This 9 days vacation was absolutely fun. I really appreciate it.
Thank you Nori Manabe san and Ranna!

Spring will come....

Two weeks have passed since a series of strong earthquakes hit Tohoku region on March 11th.

Yesterday , we had snow.

I was looking files contained in the folder in my laptop.
The one folder was full of "Pink color".

This is Japanese apricot.

I took this photo on the 10th April 2010.

Weeping cherry tree
( at the kindergarten behind of J-Hoppers Hida Takayama )

The cherry blossom at the Post office.

Spring will come.
I believe that we (Japan) can get through this situation.
Many people pray for Japan.

I hope spring flowers bring a smile to everyone's face.

Flowers of March

In Okazaki shrine, some flowers to appease our mind from all the sadness and worrying of recent events.

Japanese Quince.
At first we thought about plum and were very surprised by the color. Flowers are easy to mistake. Quince jam is my favorite.

Other Japanese Quince.

I remember going every year to some secret place in the woods where there was a lot, to make a big bouquet and offer it to my grand mother.

Pink Plum.
If you get married in Okazaki shrine you will have the opportunity to plant your own plum in the garden in memory of the event.

White Plum.
Cherry are previewed to blossom in Kyoto from the 29th. There are so many places to enjoy them in the ancient capital. Please come and let us recommend you some of the best spot and our secret gardens.

Dear friends,

Who expected this kind of terrible earthquake and tsunami hit Japan..

I was listening to the radio at the kitchen yesterday.
The radio program I listened was very nice.

They were talking about how people around the world feel and look this awful disaster.

I was surprised that every country, every people really worried about us.
Though this disaster stroke Japan, you felt this accident was happened in yours.

World newspapers picked this topic on the top, and aired this grievous accidents everyday.

" I m very shocked.." " It is not somebody else's problem” Your messages encouraged us so much. Furthermore, I was very glad that you actively participate in the fund-raising campaign. I felt NO borders, NO difference in race.
Thank you very much for your corporation! and worries about J-hoppers.

And I heard you praise Japanese have good manners because people who are in shelters wait for their turn to get food or water for long time.
Thanks to them, Japanese got your praise.

I think they do not need to keep up, people who are out of this disaster area have to work hard, especially me.
The electricity isn't completely working in Tokyo area, but compared with their situation, it is not so bad .
Appreciate we are in great surroundings and think about what can we do for them.

I wish I could delivered this food.
Wish you and your friends join the campaign to raise funds and huge donations create their future.

Thank you , J-hoppers

Thank you for visiting hiroshima peace park!

Hi there. It has been getting warm in Hiroshima♪
spring is coming sooner!

3 girls from America checked out this morning to visit Hiroshima peace memorial park.

They made 1,000 folded cranes during there stay at J-hoppers Hiroshima.
That's so great!!
Origami paper cranes symbolizing hope and good luck.

and The park is just 5 min walk from here.

Thank you for staying with us ,Erika,Karen,Caroline!!
We hope to see you again!!!!!!!

Adrian's Bread lecture

Hello from J-Hoppers Kyoto♪

We would like to tell you about our special day.

We had a guest from France, Adrian. He's a baker in Paris.
He was very kind and lectured us how to bake bread the other day.

I've never tried to bake bread in Japan.
Therefore, I was happy that I could do that here.
You don't need to prepare special ingredient.
Just scale the ingredient almost the right amount.

He brought his own equipment for bread.
It was quite useful and better than using your own hand to mix them up.

this was the hardest part that is kneading a dough.

↑well, he is a professional.... ummm?
Ooopus !He's not a professional for bread...

↑He is the professional as you can see.
It was very fast to put the air in and kneading a dough.
It become as baby skin when it's ready.

See? I was quite serious to learn how it should be.

Here are our bread!!!!

They were soooo good !
I'll try it again by myself sometime soon.

It took us about 5 hours.
However, we had very much fun with you, Adrian.
Thank you very much for the time.
We hope you make people happier with your bread.

Also, thank you very much for the lovely drawing .

Ciao from Azusa