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!!

My summer vacation ~at Kumamoto~

Happy Halloween~~!!
Are you enjoying Halloween day??
We, Fukuoka Hana Hostel just had a Halloween party last night and had a blast!!!
I wish we can do this again next year!

Today, let me talk about my summer vacation...
I know it is already fall.. LOL

This summer, I was pretty busy and did not have a chance to think about going on a trip at all... but last month, my partner said that he wanted to go to Kumamoto! I got so excited and said "I am going!" right away!!
 I got so excited and said "I am going!" right away!!

We started our trip from eating Akaushi-don at Imakin Shokudo (いまきん食堂)

This gyudon is famous because the texture of beef is very soft and less greasy than other beef. It is introduced by medias many times so that people wait in a line for long time to eat the gyudon. I am not good at describing the tast.. if you are interested, please go and have it!

After having lunch, we visited Mt.Aso and Aso Cuddly Dominion. It has been at lease several years since I went up to Mt. Aso.  They used to let us go very near to the mountain to see caldera but not any more... which is very disappointing...

At Cuddly Dominion, we can see and play with animals. I really liked that we can feed bears!!

Other thing that I wanted to see in Kumamoto was Kumamoto Castle!!!
A lot of the guests stay with us told me that the castle is very beautiful so I always wanted to see it!!!!!

I was so excited that I finally saw it!! It was way bigger than I thought.

For visiting Kumamoto, there are bus, limited express, and Shinkansen from JR Hakata Station.
There are nature, historical buildings, and food in Kumamoto!
Please visit!!!!

Good season in Kyoto

This is Shige from J-stay.

Kyoto is getting cold day by day.
Leaves are changing color green to red.
Maybe, one week after good for sightseeing time is coming.

I am planning to go to some good autumn leaf spots in kyoto.
My recommend places are Nanzenji-temple, Arashiyama, Kurama-temple.

This picture is Nanzenji-temple when I go to there last year.

And some of temples and shrines have light up in night time.
Please go some of them after dinner or before dinner with beer or sake.

And this year, Nijo castle has a special event.
That is Art Aquarium.
It is open until December.

If you have some free time please check them.

Osaka Hana's common kitchen!

Osaka Hana Hostel has two common kitchens.
Both are useful, especially 2nd floor's one.
Big, fancy and opened.
Many people get confused because it looks like a restaurant.
But it is a just common kitchen.
All guests can use it for 24hours.

We have fridge, microwave oven and pot, of course.
Almost all kitchen stuff are prepared.
Seasonings like salts are also there.

Osaka has many delicious food, but please enjoy cooking in this big kitchen!
Not only Osaka Hana Hostel, other branches have nice kitchens as well.
Please feel free to use them! (^^)/

New Glico Sign

The sixth generation Dotonbiri glico sign has been lit up!

140000 LED is used for it.

Originally installed in 1935, the giant neon athlete on a blue track is a symbol of Glico candy
And now it's absolutely our symbol of Osaka!

The sign has been altered on several occasions to celebrate events such as the World Cup and to show support for the Osaka baseball team, the Hanshin Tigers.

Check new glico man maybe on the Hanshin Tigers win on Japan cup soon!!

Sayonara Mizzy!

Here's Mizzy from Hiroshima Hana Hostel.

Since I decided to follow my dream, I'm quitting Hiroshima Hana Hostel in November.
I met so many people from all over the world through working at Hana hostel.
My last day at Hana Hostel will be Nov.15th and I hope to see you before I leave!

I love Hiroshima Hana Hostel, my co.workers, and our guests.
Therefore, it was a hard decision for me.

Anyway, I would like to say thank you to all I met through this job.

My motto: working at the hostel was "There is no stranger here. Only friends who haven't met".

After work, I sometimes organized a little party to mingle with our guests in Hana Hostel and oh yea, it was definitely a great time!
I didn't feel like I just met with them at all.

Besides it, I've taken our guests to Karaoke, bars, clubbing, drinking by the river in the peace park, drinking at Hiroshima Port, and beer garden.

Oh...My liver is
But all of those times are so memorable and super fun!
I hope our guests also enjoyed their stay with us! :D

I appreciate all the opportunities I got in this job.
It was a special time for me.

Thank you very very much to the guests who already stayed with us and the ones who will be staying with us in the future!

Though I am leaving Hana Hostel, I'd love to drop in and mingle with Hana's guests sometimes.
So I hope to see you oneday.

Hiroshima Hana Hostel

A few thoughts on riding a bicycle

The bicycle season in Takayama is approaching its end as winter is just around the corner. I have been warned that it is near suicide riding a bicycle in the winter season not so much because of the snow covering the ground, but more because of the icy surface.

So I have been working pretty hard, practicing a few tricks. One is riding the bicycle with one hand, the other holding an umbrella, shielding your body against the rain. It may sound easy for many daily bicycle users, but to me, it was super scary and challenging. But I am happy to announce that I have more or less mastered this. The turning point came on a rainy day, when I was having an internal debate of whether to ride the bicycle or walk home. I was tired that day, and there was nothing I wanted more than to head home and have a hot shower. Thus, I summoned up my courage to give it a shot. I was grabbing the umbrella as well as the bicycle handle so tightly that my hand hurt when I arrived home, safely and in one piece, thanks God. But I was so scared of losing balance that I was going at turtle speed. But this story taught me that under extreme circumstances you will always be able to unleash your superpower hidden inside you.

The other trick I have yet to master is pushing a bicycle and sliding your body on it in a fluid motion. It looks so cool and every time I see people doing it I cannot help but look on in admiration, especially when it is elderly people pulling this off.

UNIQLO open in Osaka, Umeda on the 31st of October

Have you ever shopped at UNIQLO?

That is one of the famous clothes shop in Japan. And I like this shop a lot!
You have seen this sign:)
They sell good quality clothes and goods for reasonable price.

On the 31st of October 2014, UNIQLO OSAKA will be opened in Umeda, it is the center of Osaka City.
They open 10am- 9pm on the opening date. (Normal operating hour is from 11am - 9pm)

We have a big UNIQLO in Shinsaibashi (near Osaka Hana Hostel)
and this one will be closer to J-Hoppers Osaka!

The building is 4stories and the store space is about 3,000㎡ !!
And they have large space for the clothes for kids.

It takes 3minutes from Hankyu Umeda Station but you can walk from any subway stations in Umeda or JR Osaka Station!

Please refer the google map as below;,135.4992551&q=34.7054426,135.4992551+%28%E3%83%A6%E3%83%8B%E3%82%AF%E3%83%AD%E5%A4%A7%E9%98%AA%29&iwloc=A&z=16&output=classic&dg=brw

They have staffs who speaks English, Korean and Chinese. So they help your shopping!

●Operating Hour : 11am - 9pm

If you get there early enough on the 31st of October, you might receive some presents from them!

Let's enjoy shopping !!!

Time flies like a arrow Koi'n Yano Gotosi

I'm Kimie from J-Stay

After short summer (Actually we had only 10 days sunny days in Kyoto.
How goes on this plant. ;(

Anyway our favorite season, Autumn arrived.
I felt aroma of  flower of Kinmokusei (orange osmanthus) make me feel coming autumn. 
In Japanese there are some phrase for describing Autumn, 
"Autumn is good for something."
Autumn is good for appetite, reading, sport and Love as well : )

For me it is the best season for enjoying traditional Japanese culture. 
Last Sunday I went to ENRIAN Temple in Arashiyama to join tea ceremony my teacher organized. 
According to Buddhism philosophy ENRI means leaving the everyday world and enjoying life in mountain and nature like a hermit. 
Historically Saga Arashiyama was the place to leave from center of Kyoto (Capital) for people who lost struggle of power and demoted position. 
So it was quite close from the JR station. Even though it takes only 15 minuets on foot. 
it is so quiet place. 
So I felt as if I had left the everyday world like a monk.

Reserved for tea ceremony "Kettle for Tea is ready" 
Felt if I had back to the past
Really Cared Japanese Garden 

Felt if stars of leef are shining 
This Path will escort you to paradise 

Enri An will be opened for public viewing from 1sh November to 7th December for Momiji, Colored leafs. 
The picture on the following link is like one peace of Dream. I remember the scenery of FilM  " DREAM" by Akira Kurosawa.
I won't miss it.

About Japanese philosophy we explain  aging as example change of four seasons. Autumn is the age of climax of one's life for death, winter season.  
Time flies like a arrow. Recognized that  Presence is important for us. 

Entrance of tea room the room with glass 

Prohibited to take picture in side of tea room. Definitely I had relaxed time with delicious tea and sweet with beautifu decoration, l scroll picture, incense box.

Autumn is the longer than spring. Please enjoy lot of event in Kyoto. Keep on!


Motor vehicle trip

Hi this is Matsu.

Andres from Czech Republic left J-Hopper Hida Takayama and stayed for 2 weeks.

He has been traveling in Asia for 3 months only by  motor vehicle.

He rent a motor  bike  in Osaka .It costs you about 13000yen per month。 It is way cheaper than train or car.

I think  motor  bike is a good choice to travel in Japan.
You can travel to  remote areas that you can not go by train or bus.
Renting a motor bike is not popular in Japan.

I hope more shops will  open for that

He left Takayama with his Sarubobo. I hope he will enjoy the rest of your trip

Hiroshima HANA

Hello! How are you doing? I’m Tomomi from Hiroshima HANA!

Many typhoons hit Japan this year, but the last one is over now and this week the weather will be great. Yay!

Hiroshima HANA Hostel is just about 5 mins by foot from Hiroshima Station. However, sometimes it can be quite tricky to find HANA Hostel, especially at night.

So here are some pictures that show you the way to HANA Hostel. I hope this will help you to find us!

Coming from the South Exit of Hiroshima station, please turn left.

On your left are the coin lockers and a police box (where you also can ask for help)

Please cross this street. To your left is be a bookstore.

Please keep straight. There is a Ramen restaurant (Izakaya) on your left..

Please then turn left.

Do not cross the railroad, but keep straight.
Please turn right at the next corner.

Almost arrived. Please turn left after the parking space.

Hana Hostel!!
You can aslo check the way on our web site: How to get to Hiroshima Hana

People tend to ...

Hello!  This is Asuka from Kyoto Hana Hostel.

How are you doing?
It is strange weather nowadays in Japan.
Lots of typhoons, eructation, earthquake and so on.

It is middle of October and fall.
It is said that people tend to enjoy reading, eating and art in fall.
Needless to say… I enjoy eating lol

It is easy to go to Gion area from Kyoto Hana Hostel.
I often go there after work to have lunch or shopping.
I went to Ichibakoji, Japanese restaurant which is famous for grilled food and beer!
The point is that the atmosphere is very nice there.
Some guests ask us good restaurant, so I highly recommend there :)

It is getting cold outside, so it makes me want to eat something hot.
I gained weight, so I have to be on a diet though…
I can’t stop it lol

Hope I will not upload picture of food and talk about food in next blog lol

Have a nice day/night and eating in fall ;)

Bye now!

Buffet at an art museum

I had my first buffet in Takayama at an art museum, giving me a chance to unleash my pent-up appetite for unlimited good food, its manifestation so apparent that my friend, horrified witnessing my devouring one plate of food after another, went so far as to describe me as a monster which gobbles up everything that meets its eyes. The buffet is quite reasonably priced, offering a nice selection of relatively healthy dishes, with fresh vegetables as the main draw. I was most impressed by its pumpkin soup, and salad, though its bread, whether home-baked or not, also deserved some praise. Unlike Hong Kong’s buffet battlefield, with limited seats and few guests there, we were mercifully spared the hassle of vying with each other for food and of keeping a nerve-racking and close watch on the kitchen door, from which, if it were in Hong Kong, a waiter might emerge anytime with a fresh plate of oysters or lobsters. Adding to its appeal is the absence of time limitation, meaning you can theoretically enter with an empty stomach at 11.30 am, the starting time, and launch a three-and-a-half-hour marathon of punishing non-stop eating, or a more humane one with regular breaks, until the waiters, forcing a smile and making a mental note of putting you on the blacklist, politely ask you to leave. The museum currently offers this lunch buffet only on Tuesdays, but a waitress hinted at the possibility of introducing it on other days as well as in the future. I will definitely come back again.

Autumn Appetite!!

In Japan, we say autumn is a perfect season to have a good appetite.

There are bunch of foods in season.

Also, we could store up energy for coming for cold season.

I'll show you beautiful foods pictures here in Takayama.

"Saury" is one of seasonal fish in Autumn,
I recommend to have it Sashimi style.

Bottom left, you will see another fish is called "Iwana"
It is river fish, we put it to hot sake and make special one is called "Kotsuzake"

Bottom right is "Curry Udon" It makes you warm!!

 I made original blend spice curry using fresh veggies!!

Bottom right :
There is nice buffet at "Hida Takayama museum of art" Every Tuesday

I feel the season whenever I have fresh veggies.

Upper right: It is craft beer in Gujo Hachiman.
You can find local craft beer everywhere in Japan.

I hope you'll enjoy "Autumn Appetite" in Takayama!!

Baseball Game!!

Hello from Hiroshima Hana Hostel, it's Kana here.

Typhoon is approaching to Hiroshima this weekend.
Even though there is a awesome event this weekend....SAKE FESTIVAL!!!!
You can taste hundreds of different Sake and local food. I feel really sorry for the people who were suppose to come...Fes might be cancelled because of YOU typhoon....GO AWAY!!!!

The season for the baseball is finishing soon.
Speaks of baseball is Hiroshima fans! There are a lot a lot a lot of them.
One of our housekeeper is one of them, so she organised for our guest to go and watch the baseball game couple times.

She even prepared the uniform for the guest!

At first time, our guest was little confused and embarrassed about how we cheer the player but they just follow how we do and ended up cheering together in our way!!
Drink a lot! Cheer a lot!
Everybody was really satisfied this unique experience.

Why don't you join us next year!? Guarantee for awesome time!

Chillelaxing time on the other day in Hida Furukawa

Hi, it's Misa!
I'm going to write about the other day when I did some nice BBQ (more likely to be a outdoor cooking) on my day off.

I mostly spend my day off having relaxing and chilled time.

On the other day, I went to a park my neighbor ( I think even not many local people don't know the place...!) to do some fancy BBQ with my friends in Hida Furukawa.

There is a spring running very clean and fresh water came from mountains running all the time, even in winter. We washed some vegetables with that very fresh and clean water, and cook them in various ways, made them into salad, "ajillo(Spanish dish)"!!

Whilst having very nice time there, we even happened to see a serow (Kamoshika, which is nationally protected spices) came down from a mountain. (Sorry, the photo is dark!!)

I'm really lucky to live in the town where I can easily access to the places having a really "chillelaxing" time surrounded by beautiful nature.

These kind of places is a little bit difficult to access by public transportation, but hopefully I' like to introduce not only sightseeing spots but also that kind of places to our guests who come to Hida Takayama/Furukawa, and make their trip much more fun and memorable one!

Rental bicycle!!

Japanese autum season is so great!
Temperature is nice and weather is almost sunny!

 I recommend waling or cycling to refresh yourself!
 We have 3 rental bicycles!

1 hour is 100yen.
Over 5 hours use is 500yen.

You cannot book in advance, please ask the receptioner when you want to rent.

It is easy to move around!  Handy and good experience!