Present Situation & Tour Photos, 18 Mar 2020

Present stituation

Given this situation due to the COVID-19, schools, universities and colleges are closed and big events are requested to refrain from holding by Prime Minister Abe. And we have lost most of foreign tourists who visit other countries.

However, I still had some foreign tourists who wanted to join my tours and I successfully ran all those tours and they enjoyed it.

Here in Japan, we have relatively fewer infected and dead compared to many other countries, thanks to their hard work who work at medical centres and our efforts of keeping hands clean with soap and alcohol and wearing a mask when go out. Actually, I haven’t got infected though I have had the chances to go visit touristic places.

We have alcohol bottles set at many entrances of restaurants / convenience stores / department stores / any public buildings for hand washing. I would like to tell you that this is considered to be the way we Japanese have practiced to keep ourselves clean and healthy. And I believe this is the best way to protect yourself and people around you. Follow us.

Let me show you how I enjoyed running tours in February and March despite this situation, as follows.

Tour Photos

Above are a DJ group “VIZE” from Germany. Check them out on Spotify!



The end of Tsuyu – Rainy Season –

JMA, Japan Meteorological Agency, announced the rainy season was over on 13 July in the southern Kyushu and 20 July in the northern Kyushu. We are happy to welcome the beginning of summer! But be careful, these days summers are getting much hotter than what they used to be. In my childhood, summers were like 30 – 32 degrees Celsius (86 – 90 F) at the highest air temperature, but in the recent years it can reach 36 – 38 C (97 – 100 F) . So those of you who are planning to visit Japan should be well prepared for the heat, you can get heatstroke. To prevent it, you should wear a hat / cap, sip water / sport drink, take a break in the shade once in a while, for example. Moreover, it’s so muggy, steaming hot until the mid September. You should also prepare spare clothes.

Fukuoka – Yatai –

After visiting the Shinto shrine, we got back to hotel to prepare for the next tour. Next one is a night hike to “Yatai”. Why not visit Yatai when you visit Fukuoka! Yatai is a street stall which serves such as Ramen, Oden, Yakitori or their own creative cuisine and so on. They are allowed to open Yatai during the night from 7 pm (occasionally 6 pm) to around 1-2 am (depending on Yatai or situation) along the sidewalk / pavement in a particular zone of some downtown districts in Fukuoka city (refer to the following map). As Yatai is a mobile stall, so it takes a couple of hours to build. It’s everyday! They cannot leave the stall on the street. We left the hotel at 8:30 pm, but if you would like to avoid the hustle and bustle, you should be there until 7 pm.


-Nakasu district (中洲)-,130.4048429,16.25z/data=!4m5!3m4!1s0x354191945703f0ef:0x493bab3ab7cb237d!8m2!3d33.5916586!4d130.4078325?hl=en

-Nagahama district (長浜)-,130.3869778,15z/data=!3m1!4b1?hl=en

-Tenjin district (天神)-,130.3869778,15z/data=!3m1!4b1?hl=en

-Maidzuru district (舞鶴)-

Fukuoka tour – Dazaifu Shrine –

This is about a guided tour I did for a German family the other day.
After the series of earthquakes we had to reorganise the tour schedule, one day in Fukuoka. That was a really exciting experience for both of me and the guests! After I picked up the guests at Hotel Nikko Fukuoka, we headed for Dazaifu shrine which is one of the most important Shinto shrines in Japan because the person enshrined at this shrine is the God of STUDIES, whose name is “Sugawara no Michizane. If you try to translate his name into European language, it would be “Michizane de/van/von Sugawara”, for your information. He was a minister who lived in the 8th century in Kyoto, but was kicked out of Kyoto by his rival ministers and clans. He was renowned for his talented skills of hand writing calligraphy knowledge of ancient Chinese philosophy and politics. Many students visit this shrine before they take entrance exams for high school / college / university, and I did it when I was 15 years old before the exams in February, it’s 25 years ago and the God helped me pass the exams, of course I made a lot of efforts.


The access to this shrine should be easy if you take a city express way which runs over the city area. Get off at Dazaifu IC, the shrine is only a few minutes away. Walking through and browsing the shops sitting both both sides of the street, here are local souvenirs of Fukuoka. Their recommendation is “Umegae-mochi”, rice cakes consisting sweet red bean paste inside. The legend says the God who was a minister lived in the end of 8th century, gained his health by eating this when he was sick.


Walking through the shopping street and bridges built over a pond, we got to the shrine building. First thing we needed to do before entering the shrine was purification ritual called “Chouzu / Temizu”, practising an easy motion. At the main shrine building, we prayed for good things in front of the God of studies, this is not only a making wish but also a promise or determination to yourself. It goes like, “I’ll finish that this year”, “I’ll pass the exam, watch me” for example. And then walked around in the shrine area seeing other smaller shrines and beautiful old trees. Two of the camphor trees planted behind the main shrine are called “Meoto Gusu”, meaning “a couple of conjugal camphor trees”, a symbol of good married couples. Japanese visitors tend to take photos in front of these trees in memory of their travel. Other smaller shrines are also fun to visit and see. Each of them has a god enshrined, some of them are family members of Michizane’s

_IMG6548Meoto Gusu_IMG6545

Next time, I will post the rest of this tour on my blog. Hope you check it out.

Walking through the shopping street to the shrine, footage.