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Goin’ Japanesque!

Part 2 Dango, Jizo, Onsen: How Will You Enhance Your Trip To Mifuneyama Rakuen?

Continuing on from Part 1, here is your long awaited guide on how to coordinate your trip to Mifuneyama Rakuen. Here we go! 

 

1. Haginoo Ochaya Tea House

萩野尾 御茶屋

This building is by the pond within the garden. It was built in the late Edo Period. It is said that at that time, it was a villa of the Nabeshima family (refer to Part 1). Now, it is a tea house that is only open to the public for a limited time, during the spring and autumn festival seasons. 

hagino-o-chaya
Nearby there is a wisteria tree that is 170 years old, while gazing at it…

dango-set

Tip 1
Konacha (dust tea) and kushi-dango (dumplings on a skewer)!

Here’s an article on Kushi-dango: Japan’s cute, strawberry daifuku! Lightly sweetened but delicious confectionary!

There is a saying in Japan “Hana yori dango”, (literally “dumplings over flowers”). This may be just the situation it’s expressing. 
What it means is that even if there is a wonderful view of flowers around you and you are in awe, once you see the dumplings in front of you, you forget all about the flowers. 

 

2. Chaya Bar

茶屋バー

The Chaya Bar is actually the same place as the Haginoo Ochaya tea house mentioned above. At night it turns into a bar.

chaya-bar
In the spring, you can gaze at the cherry blossoms like this…

chaya-bar4
In the fall, you can gaze at the changing color of the leaves like this…

chaya-bar2chaya-bar-at-night

Tip 2
Enjoy this mystical illumination while enjoying a drink.
This is actually a bar for guests staying at the Mifuneyama Kanko Hotel so if you want to visit the bar, please check with the hotel first. 

 

3. Gohyakurakan

五百羅漢

gohyakurakan1
The Gohyakurakan is made to represent the concept in Buddhism of 500 disciples worthy of respect gathering together. It can be seen not only here but in some other parts of Japan as well. “Gohyaku” means 500. 

The Gohyakurakan of Mifuneyama was made 1300 years ago when the distinguished Buddhist priest Gyoki entered the mountain, carved 500 of these statues and placed them in the grotto. It is amazing that this is from 1300 years ago, but it’s also amazing that there are 500 of these stone figures.

Tip 3
Rows and rows of stone statues….

gohyakurakan 1

 

4. Takeo Onsen (Hot Springs)

武雄温泉

The Takeo Onsen is a hot spring of 1300 years of history. The retro feel is awesome!↓

takeo-onsen
They say there are records of Date Masamune and Miyamoto Musashi bathing here.

Here’s an article on Date Masamune: Sendai Tansu: Highest Quality, Traditional Handicraft – Must-see when Combined with Japanese Food!
Here’s an article on Miyamoto Musashi: The Shimonoseki Strait Festival: Time Travel to the Edo Period!

Tip 4
The Japanese style of enjoying the hot spring is to bath in the open-air bath during the cold season. Some may even enjoy a little Japanese sake…not too much though! haha

takeo-onsen1
Bathing in the open-air bath of Takeo will help you sleep well. Get some good rest in the futon in a Japanese style room so you’re ready to get back on the road tomorrow.

With our 2 part story on the Mifuneyama tour and you shouldn’t have any troubles awaiting you!

Information: Mifuneyama Kanko Hotel

Address: 4100 Takeo-cho Takeo, Takeo-shi, Saga Prefecture
Access: refer to Part 1
Phone: 0954-23-3131
Official Website: http://www.mifuneyama.co.jp/

Related: Part 1: Get Your Yukata ON! Summer Mode ON! And Head Off To The Tanabata Festival!

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Kimi

About the author

Kimi is a Japanese living in Tokyo. She has spent half her life living overseas in New York, Los Angeles and Hong Kong. Her hobbies are traveling, eating, drinking and beautifying. She enjoys yoga and has a daily goal of running 6.5 km to offset her love of beer and junk food.

View all articles by Kimi
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