B1 Intermediate US 83 Folder Collection
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- You can eat at a department store,
pray at the Meiji Shrine,
and then go to a love hotel.
- No, let's not talk about it, okay.
(energetic exotic music)
- Hi, I'm Rie, I was born and raised in Japan.
- Hey, I'm Sean, and I'm from New Jersey.
But I'm a frequent traveler to Japan.
- First city is Tokyo.
- For most international travelers,
Tokyo is the most easily accessible airport,
so I think a lot of people fly into Tokyo.
It's the main capital of Japan,
and it's where there are the most people.
- You can buy anything in Tokyo,
from like super cheap stuff to most expensive stuff.
My favorite place in Tokyo
is a basement of department store.
There are a bunch of food,
so it's kind of like a fancy food court.
Japanese food to, like, international food,
and I just love visiting there.
- Yeah, Tokyo's the center of a lot of culture and art
and architecture, and I think it's one of those cities
that most people just know.
So, I don't think we have to talk too much about Tokyo,
but it's-- - Yeah.
- You should just go.
- Yeah, just have fun. - Just like that.
- Eat, play, love. - Don't need any more.
Eat, eat, pray, love. - Eat, play, love. (laughing)
- In Tokyo.
You can eat at a department store,
pray the Meiji Shrine,
and then go to a love hotel.
- No. (laughing)
Let's not talk about it, okay.
So, number two, Kyoto.
There is a bunch of temple and shrines you can visit,
and it's very old-school Japan,
like if you think about Japan as a place of samurai
or ninja, Kyoto probably fills your fantasy. (laughing)
As a location-wise, 'cause there it's like
all temples and shrines.
- Historically, the capital was in Kyoto,
and then it got moved to a place called Edo,
and Edo is now known as Tokyo.
So, Kyoto is where the historical capital is,
which means that's where a lot of the temples were built
during the era that that was the center of the country.
So, as a result, that means that you have
a lot of amazing history in Kyoto,
all the way from temples like Kinkakuji,
which is the golden pavilion,
to Kiyomizu-dera, which is a beautiful temple on a hill.
- They have a different kind of food than Tokyo,
so it's a little bit more refined?
It's like as a Japanese traditional cuisine.
I feel like dashi forward, it's a little bit less salty
or like strong flavor, it's more like a little bit retained.
So I like to eat udon in Kyoto,
'cause dashi and it's, I feel like it tastes better.
I have favorite place in Kyoto, like you said--
- [Sean] What is your favorite place?
- Have you been Fushimi Inari shrine?
- [Sean] Yes!
- So, Fushimi Inari shrine, when I first visit,
it overwhelmed me.
There are thousand of red gates along the path,
so you are kind of like walking underneath of that gate
and it's just like really beautiful.
So if you go Kyoto, visit Fushimi Inari shrine.
- I decided to stop by Fushimi Inari shrine
for a 10-minute walk and didn't realize
how long it actually is.
And it just kept going and then two hours later,
I had climbed a mountain.
- (laughs) Yeah.
- It's a good thing to check out.
- So, number three, Hiroshima,
where I was born and raised.
Hiroshima is west side from Kyoto and Tokyo.
There is an island called Miyajima Island
and it's beautiful, especially during springtime
and cherry blossom, you can see.
But going to Miyajima, you have to take a ferry.
It's like whole, though, the experience,
it's just like amazing and fun.
And I've been recommending it to my friends,
like whenever they ask me like
where should I visit in Japan,
and I recommend going to Hiroshima and Miyajima.
All of them so far said Miyajima
was one of their most fond memory from their trip to Japan.
So, maybe it's gonna be yours.
- Miyajima also has deer.
So, the thing about the deer.
Japanese deer in Miyajima
and this other area called Nara, which is near Kyoto.
They're a little bit magical,
so not are they just heckin' cute,
if you walk up to a deer, they'll bow.
- [Rie] They bow because they wanna eat.
- Oh, they want the food, yes, yes.
- Yeah, but also, Hiroshima is famous for okonomiyaki,
which is savory pancake.
There is two style of okonomiyaki,
one is Osaka and one is Hiroshima.
I am very passionate about okonomiyaki,
this is my soul food.
So Hiroshima style is layered,
so it's a layer of like crepe and cabbage and noodles.
Noodle is the most iconic factor
of Hiroshima style okonomiyaki.
And then eggs and scallions and sauce,
it's so good.
So whenever you go to Hiroshima,
try any store, try okonomiyaki.
- And also, Hiroshima, I think internationally is known
as a place where the atomic bomb was dropped
in World War II, and so when you visit,
you can also visit the dome that was
at the ground zero of that detonation
and you can also visit the museum,
where they talk through what happened
and you can learn about that history.
And so, it's a bit of a sobering, reflective experience,
but it's a really important one for everybody to go through.
- Yeah, I think it's one of the most important museum
you should visit in the world.
So, I highly, highly recommend to go to that museum.
So, number four is Naoshima Island,
which located in Okayama prefecture.
So, Naoshima Island is a art island.
Young people didn't wanna stay in Okayama,
so they are losing a bunch of young people,
so they wanted to bring back young generation
and also tourists, and they decided to build museum
in this island, so you can go to museum
called Chichu Museum where you can see Monet's painting.
You can see it under natural light,
so there is no lighting,
but their floor is also marble white,
so it's so beautiful.
There is also like bunch of different art installations,
so just spending a day in that island, it's fun,
and especially if you love art,
spending time in Naoshima is so much fun,
so I highly, highly recommend.
There is another island called Teshima.
They have another museum
and there a huge concrete art museum,
and there is water is coming from the floor
and the little water drop is moving toward to the center
and it's just so calm, it's, that's it.
And it sounds boring, but it's so amazing,
and everyone is like spending their time their own way.
- So it's a room-- - It's concrete.
- Where there's water.
- It's like flooring.
But it's so calming! (laughs)
So some people are just laying down, having a nap,
and some people are just watching water drop is moving,
that's me. (laughs)
It's so much fun, I can spend whole day in that museum.
- That's painfully Japanese.
(laughing)
- The last one is Okinawa.
It was such a different culture
and it almost has a tropical island feeling.
It's super different than Japanese mainland culture,
so it's very interesting to visit,
even as a Japanese native person.
I felt almost like visiting foreign country.
- Okinawa was an independent kingdom,
and similar to Hawaii, it got colonized by Japan,
and is currently where there's a US military base.
And so, because of that, it is a very, very separate culture
and a very separate feel from the mainland.
So it's a good place to go to visit
to experience Uchina culture.
Uchinanchu are Okinawan people,
Uchinaaguchi is the language.
And so, Okinawa has like a distinct history
that's really, really important to learn,
but it's also the site of some beautiful music.
There is like an amazing art culture down there,
the food is great.
- Okinawa consist bunch of different island.
There is a island time, right?
So, when I was in a tour,
we stopped by this little, like, souvenir shop.
And there was a lady who owned this shop.
She was playing sanshin,
which is their traditional instrument.
And one of her customers started sing,
like playing flute, I think.
SO he would start playing flute,
and she start singing,
so like, I don't know,
that's what happen often, like,
how many times if you go visit a little shops,
people start playing music.
It's just different and I had such a great time,
so I wanna recommend you guys.
- Okinawa has a really awesome musical tradition
and art tradition, and so if you go out there,
you're gonna find a lot of really unique culture
that you're not gonna get anywhere else in the world.
Bonus location! (claps)
Yakushima, Yakushima's an island to the south.
It rains, I think, 70% of the time.
So it's all mossy, it's a bunch of mountains,
it's really beautiful and green.
But this island is most known for a tree.
So a lot of people go there to see this old tree
because it's estimated to between 2,000 and 7,000 years old.
It's called the Jomon Sugi, the Jomon refers to
an actual era in Japan.
To get to this tree, you have to wake up
at three in the morning, get on the mountain by five AM,
and then you are hiking for nine hours, round trip.
And I highly suggest you do it.
So you're gonna walk along like a trail
like train tracks that were used to get lumber
from the top of the mountain down.
And as you're walking, you're gonna encounter monkeys,
you're gonna encounter deer,
you're gonna encounter frogs.
It's like animals all over the place.
And as you're walking, it's gonna get,
you're gonna end up having to like climb for real,
for real, but as you're doing that,
it's just gonna be mossy and beautiful
and there's gonna be these trees all over the place.
And I highly, highly suggest it.
And when you get to the tree, you are very tired,
and your feet might hurt, but it's totally worth it.
So, those are our recommendations,
but we're still figuring this out,
so if you have a recommendation, put it in the comments,
let us known where we should check out next.
- Bye! - Bye.
(warm soothing music)
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5 Places You Have To Visit In Japan From Locals

83 Folder Collection
Courtney Shih published on February 12, 2020
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