Miyamoto Musashi Died On June 13, 1645. Considered one of the greatest samurai of all time, Miyamoto Musashi’s reputation has grown to mythic proportions over the years, despite much of his life remaining a mystery. The undefeated swordsman, master of strategy, calligrapher, painter, writer and martial arts icon, Miyamoto Musashi was born towards the end… Read More Reigando Cave and the life of Miyamoto Musashi
The first Kamakura Shogun, Minamoto no Yoritomo, was born on this day, May 9, 1147 Yoritomo’s paternal grandfather, Minamoto no Tameyoshi was head of the noble Minamoto clan, while his maternal grandfather, a member of the illustrious Fujiwara clan, was the chief priest at Atsuta Shrine, Japan’s second most venerated Shinto Shrine after the Great… Read More Minamoto no Yoritomo
Miyajidake sits in the northern region of Fukutsu city about 1 hour from central Fukuoka. It is famous for the ‘road of faith’ and stairs leading up to the main temple which look out directly to the sea about a kilometre away. More on this later. Sunsets around October are supposed to be really beautiful.… Read More Miyajidake Shrine, Fukutsu City, Kyushu.
Hitoyoshi Castle is not as well known as other castles such as Kumamoto or Nagoya but the history of this castle is much longer and has quite an interesting story. It is ranked in the top 100 castles of Japan probably due to its long history and importance for administration and trade in central Kyushu. … Read More Hitoyoshi Castle Ruins, Kyushu
My friend William Baerg is a contributor for the Kumamoto International Facebook page and has nicely agreed for me to post an article on my blog. Tani Tateki (谷干城) was a military leader during the Meiji Restoration who was for a crucial period in charge of the defense of Kumamoto. Even under mustache standards of… Read More Tani Tateki – Kumamoto Castle defender during the Seinan War.
I haven’t done a post for a while about one of my favourite Ukiyo-e print series. So lets have a look. It is print #35, Narai Station, currently Narai town in Nagano Prefecture. It is a beautiful little town in the Japanese Alps and it still has the old Edo period feel to it. It… Read More Keisai Eisen – Kisokaido Narai Station, Print #35.
I visited Shiga back in 2016 in January. I was expecting it to be cold but I was pleasantly surprised when I woke up in the morning. A fresh layer of snow had fallen in the early hours of the morning which was great. Walking around on the fresh snow is great but unfortunately it… Read More Himure Hachimangu, Omihachiman, Shiga.