Saturday, May 24, 2008

Nara

Well, I'm back in Imaichi, after 6 days of traveling, it's nice to be staying put for a bit! The trip all in all was great, though I did find it quite tiring, especially the last couple of days.

After I blogged on Thursday, I joined an Australian couple I met at Yougendou and we headed to an Izakaya across the street for some drinks and grub. It was really nice to be able to have a normal conversation after days of limiting myself to my meager Japanese and small talk with random people who would approach me. A couple of hours later, we wound up back at Yougendou, which has a small dinner bar on top of being an AMAZING guesthouse, and closed that place out. Yougendou (www.yougendou.com) was one of the highlights of my trip. Really nice place, great breakfast, fantastic staff and the owner was great to talk to as well, being an 11 year veteran of Japan. I highly recommend it to anyone spending time in the Nara\Osaka vicinity.

Friday morning, I reluctantly checked out of Yougendou, said my goodbyes and headed to Nara station to lock up my bags (locker fees now up to 1200 Yen for the trip, not all that bad) and begin the trek around Nara Koen.

The sights in Nara are mostly concentrated in Nara Park, which is kind of a double edged sword... on the one hand, it makes for great walking, on the other after a week of walking, I'd had enough! I should have rented a bike like I'd initially planned... dumbass... anywho. I'm going to have to cut this short and do kind of a photo dump here, we have a busy day ahead of us with a trip into Utsunomiya for lunch with Ray and his family, and dinner with some other students\staff from AEON. Cheers!



The Daibbutsu-den at Todai-ji, largest wooden structure in the world.


450+ TONS of bronze went into this massive statue.




Deer roaming Nara Koen








Little mob of elementary students who significantly slowed down my walk back to the station!

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