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Shizuoka Guide Travel to Japan

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12/27/2010 [Mon]

Walking around Mishima Station 3 – Gourmet in Mishima [Mishima]


Today, back from Mishima, I introduce some special foods available there. I for myself make it a basic policy to have specialties of the spot I visit to understand it more. You know, local food tells its culture, right ?^^
Now, what can we eat in Mishima ? First of all, I’ll take up “Mishima Croquette” that has become well known throughout Japan as one of the best among B-class Gourmet. It basically made from Mishima Potato harvested in the west part of Hakone. You can enjoy it as a snack or a side dish for meals. Around Mishima Station stand many croquette shops. I took some of them to satisfy my stomach while walking.^^



Next comes Fukutaro that I introduced in “Mishima Taisha Shrine”. It is tansy-mixed rice cakes with bean paste. It was originally a gift for celebration but it has become imperceptibly one for souvenir that represents Mishima City. You can buy it in a box, or eat it in at the Japanese teahouse “Fukutaro” in Mishima Taisha Shrine. 2 for ¥200 with green tea. It is very nice to take something sweet after good walking, isn’t it ?^^

After you’ve enjoyed Mishima enough, you may like to have a good dinner. Water from Mt. Fuji and Hakone is a natural bounty for Mishima City. They boast it and make the most of this paradise of aquatic lives for something special.
By the way, have you ever heard of “the day of Doyo-no-Ushi” ? It is a day of the ox assigned by the animal zodiac during the seasonal Doyo period and it comes once or twice by the seasons. Especially the day of Doyo-no-Ushi in Summer is well-known and some of you may know that we eat “Unagi” grilled eel on this day because it is said to be good for nutritional fortification to get the better of the summer heat.


So, why do you think I’ve told you such a thing ? Because Unagi is one of the specialties in Mishima ! They say eels in Mishima smell less fishy by letting it in the pure water from Mt. Fuji for several weeks. Still, nutritional value remains as it is. You can find many Unagi restaurants around Mishima Station. In this PDF are introduced 28 Unagi restaurants.





I stepped in one of them, after finishing my work, and ordered conventional “Una-don”, a bowl of rice with grilled eel. It tasted splendid with the scent of charcoal fire and tender texture. The meat was juicy with a lot of fat just as melting in my mouth. I finished it up in a few minutes. Maybe I should have enjoyed it better.^^;


Payable-by-tickets sign

It would be quite smart of you to find shops and restaurants where you can pay by “Tsumamigui Ticket”.^^ I paid all of them above by ticket on that day.
“Tsumamigui Ticket” is ¥1000 with tickets of ¥1100 and a good postcard. You can obtain it at Mishima Tourist Association in front of JR Mishima Station.
Anyway, when you visit Mishima for Hatsumode or anything else, please enjoy these gourmet specialties as well.

Bye for now !^^

“Shizuoka Guide” is our official English blog website for events & sightseeing. Always with you ! ^^

Posted by Satoshi Nihonyanagi at 17:17 Permanent Link

12/16/2010 [Thu]

Walking around Mishima Station 3 – Mishima Taisha Shrine - 2 [Mishima]


Now, we are in Honden area. The building in the center is called “Maidono”, a place for Shinto events. When we visited there, a couple was having a wedding ceremony. The Shinto priest told us that Matsuzaka, a pitcher of Major League, had wedding in Mishima Taisha Shrine, too.
In front of the Honden main hall, actually we call it “Haiden”, you know what we do, right ? Yes, toss coins and “bow twice, clap twice and bow once again”. Be sure you pray for the safety of your family or passing the exam, whatever, before the last bow.


In “Mishima Taisha Shrine Formal Visit Tour”, you can get inside the Haiden hall to have a traditional ritual by Shinto priests. We did, as well. It seemed to have taken every evil fortune away from me to have a happy new-year. After the ritual, you will get a talisman and others as in the picture. This talisman is one of our cultures. We put it on the wall of the room to pray every day instead of visiting the shrine.
Getting out of the Haiden hall, the priest took us to the back of Honden main hall, regarded as one of the most sacred places in the shrine, where general visitors can’t get in. Pictures not allowed. He told us, at the center of the backyard, that this is the gate for Konohana-no-sakuyahimeno-mikoto, the god of Fujisan Hongu Sengen Taisha Shrine and also the daughter of the god in Mishima Taisha, Oyamatsumi-no-mikoto.
So, gods have families.^^;


At the end of the tour, you will be guided to the Museum. On our way, he showed us a huge tree of orange osmanthus, designated as a natural treasure. It is said to have been there for more than 1200 years but not one of the 7 trees. It is quite mysterious that the criteria for 7 trees, 7 stones and 8 alleys have not been yet clarified. I’m sure it will give off fascinating scent at the end of summer.^^
So, the Museum. The admission is included in the tour fee. No payment. Please find the historically valuable materials and feel the history of Mishima as long as you like.


By the way, Mishima Taisha Shrine has 2 sources of water. One is from Mt. Fuji, which is definitely drinkable. And the other is from Hakone, which is not somehow. Interesting, isn’t it ?^^
After the museum, we had a specialty of Mishima Taisha Shrine at a Japanese Teahouse. Fukutaro, rice cake mixed with tansy with bean paste, is very popular and famous in Mishima. Only ¥200 for 2 sticks, coming with green tea ! You can also buy them for souvenirs. It’s very nice they accept payment by Tsumamigui-ticket.^^


So, how do you like this tour ? Mishima is only within an hour from Tokyo. Please visit Mishima Taisha Shrine for the Tour or Hatsumode. In the tour, you will have a help in English, Chinese or Korean, if the staff of Mishima Tourist Association is available. For further information, please contact Mishima Tourist Association.

Have a good day !^^

Mishima Taisha Shrine
Access from JR Mishima Station : 15 minute walk
Open Hours : 7 days a week
“Mishima Taisha Shrine Formal Visit Tour”
Tour Fee : ¥800 ( Museum admission included )

“Shizuoka Guide” is our official English blog website for events & sightseeing. Always with you ! ^^

Posted by Satoshi Nihonyanagi at 12:45 Permanent Link

12/14/2010 [Tue]

Walking around Mishima Station 3 – Mishima Taisha Shrine - 1 [Mishima]


Do you know what the largest event for Shinto shrines is ? It is Hatsumoude, the new-year visit to the shrine. Here in Mishima, there is a Shinto shrine that attracts the largest number of people in Shizuoka every year. That is, Mishima Taisha Shrine. And today, I introduce the Formal Visit Tour so that you can get deeper in our culture.
At 13:00, I was in front of Mishima Taisha to join the tour. A Shinto priest was there to guide us. We had a little talk after saying hello and moved toward the Honden main hall. On our way, he told us about the history of the shrine and legendary stories associated with trees and stones of hundreds of years ago.


Mishima Taisha is said to have 2000 year history with 2 Gods, Oyamatsumi-no-mikoto and Tumihayae-kotoshironusi-no-kami. Forget about these long names. I can’t remember them, either.^^; Now, in Mishima, it is said that there used to be 7 trees, 7 stones and 8 alleys. The picture is one of 7 trees, of 1000 years old. The common ordinary stone half in the ground is also one of 7 stones, called “Cow Stone”. It is very intriguing that not all trees, stones or alleys have been confirmed yet. Curious mystery.^^


In the shrine, there stand 10 kinds of cherry blossoms and attract people from the middle of Jan through the end of Mar.

Now, yes, the formal way of worship in shrines. It’s almost the same as the way I told in the article Fujisan Hongu Sengen Taisha Shrine. In walking on the approach, be sure not to keep the center of it. That is the passage for Gods. So we walk on the right or left but the right side is said for upper class. That comes to, yes, we’ve no choice but to walk on the left side.^^;


Walking for a while, you will see a water place with many ladles on it. This is the place where you purify yourself before entering the main area.
Take a dipper of water with the right hand and take one step back so that the water isn’t spilled into the basin. Now rinse your left hand with slight water, and right hand in the same way. Then rinse your mouth, carrying water with your left hand, and the handle with the rest of the water. Now you are entirely eligible for stepping forward.^^


Can you see, in the picture, people walking through the center of the gate ? That is for Gods. I would recommend you to pass through the left as I’ve explained. Anyway, I hope you enjoy our Japanese Culture.^^

Bye for now !


Mishima Taisha Shrine
Access from JR Mishima Station : 15 minute walk
Open Hours : 7 days a week
“Mishima Taisha Shrine Formal Visit Tour”
Tour Fee : ¥800 ( Museum admission included )

“Shizuoka Guide” is our official English blog website for events & sightseeing. Always with you ! ^^

Posted by Satoshi Nihonyanagi at 16:58 Permanent Link

12/13/2010 [Mon]

Walking around Mishima Station 2 – Rakujuen Park [Mishima]

In June, 2010, a monkey appeared in Mishima city to attack general citizens. It was reported that more than a hundred people had been raided by Oct. No one was allegedly dead or severely injured by good fortune. The task force member was organized and finally she was captured, on Oct 10, after 4 month long escape, by being shut in a room by a family.


Just in front of Mishima Tourist Association is an entrance gate of Rakujuen Park. Originally, it was a mansion of Komatsunomiya-akihito-shinno, a family of the emperor, and now it’s been administered by Mishima City. You can ask for free brochures in English, Chinese and Korean at the reception desk.
Passing through the gate, I walked in a small wood to the square. I was so lucky to come across chrysanthemum festival ! They were soooo gorgeous, especially with a castle that was temporarily built as an image of Matsumoto Castle. I saw many visitors taking pictures in front. I strolled around for a while and found a crowd before a cage.



So, it has a small zoo, Animal Square ! I saw lesser pandas, capybaras, alpacas, wallabies and other animals. Not very stimulating as lions and tigers but I felt somehow at ease with these animals lying about or eating grasses under the sun.
Then, I found a larger crowd. There she was ! Yes, the monkey ! She was caged after captured and named “Lucky” among public naming. Now, she’s become the hottest animal in Rakujuen Park. You have to be patient until she shows up because she has not yet been accustomed to be seen or observed in public. Wild animals should live in the wild maybe but it might be happier to be fully fed by humans.


Now, let’s go on. I passed through the animal square and the Museum of History and Folklore, and walked in the Japanese garden-like yard. That way led me to Rakujukan, the very mansion of Komatsunomiya-akihito-shinno. It’s built very simple but gorgeous of the tea-ceremony house style, opened to the public 6 times a day at 10:00, 10:30, 11:00, 13:30, 14:30, 15:00. Its garden is also spectacular ! The pond is not merely a pond. The water comes from Mt. Fuji ! It seemed just like a mirror, clearly reflecting the mansion and its surroundings with blue sky. And you know what ? A watchful visitor would realize something about the ground. Yes, it is of lava. Rakujuen Park is such an extraordinary spot !


It took me about 1.5 hrs. Almost being late for Mishima Taisha Shrine Formal Visit Tour ! I’m on my way out from the south exit to the narrow alley.
Next time, I will report Mishima Taisha Shrine.

Have a good day !^^


Rakujuen Park
Access from JR Mishima Station : 1 minute walk
Admission : ¥300 for adults over 15 /¥50 for children over 4
Open Hours : 9:00 – 17:00(April - Oct)/9:00 – 16:30(Nov - Mar)
Closed : on Mondays, Dec 27 – Jan 2nd

“Shizuoka Guide” is our official English blog website for events & sightseeing. Always with you ! ^^

Posted by Satoshi Nihonyanagi at 17:09 Permanent Link

12/10/2010 [Fri]

Walking around Mishima Station – Mishima Tourist Association [Mishima]


It was a beautiful morning. I visited Mishima City to see a staff of Mishima Tourist Association for the information about “Mishima Taisha Shrine Formal Visit Tour”.
Within 1 hr from Tokyo by Shinkansen Super-express, in the east part of Shizuoka, it is. The station itself is kind of a small park and I saw many people sitting on the bench around trees. Good to see. Beside JR Mishima Station is another station for Izu-hakone Railways bound for Shuzenji. Remember ? ^^


Mishima Tourist Association is just around the corner of the street. It won’t be difficult to find it only if you remember this picture. I stepped in it. A staff, actually the executive director, showed me in the office. You know what I did first, right ? Yes, brochures of foreign languages ! He arranged them for me. English, Korean, Chinese, good enough for you reading my report. ^^  What is more, they also speak these languages ! So, be sure to visit and ask them whatever necessary before you get lost.


Today, I have 2 points that I’d like to report you. As I’ve told you at the beginning, “Mishima Taisha Shrine Formal Visit Tour” started in Aug, 2010 and they’ve been expecting more than 1100 customers by Feb, 2011. Actually, I was there to join the tour. It’s simple. You ask for the application form by phone, fill in it with necessary information and fax it to them. The tour will become effective with more than 5 customers. If it is confirmed, follow their instructions. Only ¥800 for 50 minute tour in Mishima Taisha Shrine and its Museum. Payment shall be done on the spot at Mishima Taisha Shrine. No extra payment. I have good news here. In case you, I mean someone who doesn’t understand Japanese, join it, a staff of Tourist Association will attend and help you as an interpreter. It’s definitely a good opportunity to understand Japanese culture, right ? Please see this page for further information. Or wait for my next update.^^


Next, I’ll show you a good-buy ticket, though valid only in Mishima, for the better tour. It’s called “Tsumamigui Ticket” which means “ticket for snack between meals”. Originally, it was made for Mishima Croquette that has drastically become famous as a B-class Groumet made from local potato. I’ll report it as well with Unagi the eel that represent the best of Mishima’s gourmet meal. This ticket come with a good post card as you can see from the picture. Ticket of ¥1100 for ¥1000. You can save ¥100 ! Available at only Mishima Tourist Association. But be sure that not all shops and restaurants accept payment with this ticket. You will have a map that shows affiliated stores.
Oh, yes, one more thing. They offer bicycles free of charge ! I mean, human power bicycles. They have electric as well, ¥500 for 3 hrs, ¥1000 for one day. It would become a really unforgettable tour to pedal around Mishima on a fine day.


Next time, I’ll report “Rakujuen Park”.

Bye for now !^^

Mishima Tourist Association
Access from JR Mishima Station : 20 seconds on foot
Open hours : 9:00 – 18:00 /7 days a week
Mishima Taisha Shrine Formal Visit Tour

“Shizuoka Guide” is our official English blog website for events & sightseeing. Always with you ! ^^

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Posted by Satoshi Nihonyanagi at 11:19 Permanent Link