Subtitles section Play video Print subtitles Hey guys, good morning. Today I'm in Yamagata Prefecture. In shown a town which is pretty close to the coast on the Japan sea side of Northern Japan. This has actually become one of my favorite spots in Northern Japan this year. I've been out here a couple of times to visit my friend Nowitzki who is from this area and I just fell in love with. It is so gorgeous. Today, I'm actually joining a cycling tour of the area. We're going to cycle through the countryside and make some stops at a different site, Seeing spots along the way and basically just get to know the area a little more. We're starting off somewhere where I'm going to make a present for my grandma actually. So let's go do that after the major restoration in the late 1800s. The Samurai of the Shonan area had to give up their sword fighting days and find a new way to live. The two major exports at the time were raw silk and tea. So they decided to transform the Shonan area into what has now become one of the most famous silk producers in all. So I have to choose the color now and it's really hard if you only use the natural sakura color. This is what you will end up with golden yellow color. But if you add some other dice to it, you can kind of make it more slightly on the pink side, which I think my grandma would like my grandma likes it. It's a pretty pink color, which she wears a lot. So I think it's perfect alright now for the best part. We're picking up our bikes. These are electric bikes that we're using today. I absolutely love these. If you get kind of tired riding throughout the day, you just turn the electric boost on and it's super easy. Honestly joining a cycling trip for the day is not only the perfect way to experience the japanese countryside, it's also a really great way to meet new people and make some new friends. Our next stop is Hanabusa soy sauce brewery, which was founded in 18 23 and has been passed down for 15 generations. What makes this brewery so special is how committed they are to continuing the traditional manufacturing methods. Ramen restaurants in the area proudly display made with Hanabusa soy sauce on their shop signs as it's known for being especially delicious. It's over 100 years old. It's really cool. It's so different than the other soy sauce factories I've been to. So yeah, we're gonna get a little tour of the place and then we're going to do some tasting and I can't wait because it smells amazing in here. Okay, so the first thing we're going to try is this cognac that's been stewed in soy sauce. We're about to eat the famous Shona persimmons. They're dried and this is my favorite way to eat them because they become so sweet. No, that was delicious. Everything was so good and I'm definitely gonna come back here and buy a bottle of soy sauce because I don't want to go back to using my usual soy sauce. This is so much better. She's going to give me some Hoshi ga key to hang up on my porch and dry them myself in Morioka. Yeah, it is. Alright, next stop is lunch. I'm getting hungry after all this bike riding. It looks so good. I love hummus and it doesn't really exist in Japan except for when you go to like specialty cafes, we're gonna eat this super quick. That was one of the best meals I've had in Japan actually that was amazing. The vegetables tasted so fresh. I'm really excited about that. I feel good and healthy now and we're about to cycle for seven km. So, so this is so koji temple, it's so nice. It feels so refreshing because it's in the shade and it's just surrounded by streams, little fountains. It's beautiful here. I've never been here before. We're going to have a little tea break here, have some macha and we're going to do a buddhist meditation activity called Shake Yo you guys will see a little bit more about that when we do it. Mm hmm. Hi. So today we are trying out shake Yo, the mindful tracing of the buddhist sutra is using a calligraphy pen originally started as a way of spreading the teachings of buddha. Nowadays, Shakya is practiced as a way of relaxing and purifying oneself both mentally and physically. regardless of your beliefs. Many buddhist temples in Japan offer this experience for their visitors. All right. It's much of time. I've been looking forward to this. I love much so much and the view of this garden is just perfect. Couldn't ask for anything else. And they've given us these cute little sweets to eat along with the teeth. I've never had these before. I think they're like a powdered sugar. Yeah, they're like a powdered sugar candy that balances out the bitterness of the green tea. Really good combination. That was so nice and relaxing. I really recommend dropping into a buddhist temple. If there's one in the area that you're visiting, you can just pop in, have some match to enjoy the beautiful views in their gardens. It's really common for them to have a little activities like that that you can enjoy here. We're off to watch a maiko performance now, which I've actually never seen before. So back during the Edo period, Sakata City, this area here was a famous shipping ports. So because of that they had a really thriving entertainment industry including geisha and maiko performances and some of those establishments are still around today and that's where we're going now. We're going to a place called tomorrow and we're going to see a Maiko performance Morning. Thank you. Yeah. And that concludes our tour for the day. That was so cool to see the micro performance. I've never seen one before and I expected it to be more subtle, but apparently the style of dance that they use up here in Sakata is a little more lively and yeah, it was um, it was really beautiful to watch. Their singing was just like I was blown away by that. If you guys are interested in doing a similar bike tour to what I did today, I'll have the information down below in the description box. So please do check it out. Thanks so much for watching guys. I hope you enjoyed and I'll see you again very soon.