Happy 2017 FEA!
I hope everyone got to go on a crazy unique adventure over their winter breaks! I know some friends who went to South Korea for a few days or even returned home to see their families!
My friends and I decided we wanted to save the crazy trips for our two-month break between first and second semester. We chose to take a day trip to Gifu, which is about forty minutes north of Nagoya.
In Gifu is the gorgeous Gifu Castle on top of a very high hill. We also went to pray at the Inaba Shrine. In Japan, it is a custom to participate in かつもうで the first shrine visit of the new year. Although this was a few days after January 1st, there were many people at the shrine to participate in their own first visit.
We ate at a small quaint cafe called Komeda Coffee at the base of the hill. Finally, after taking a zip-line up to see Gifu Castle, we went to an onsen called Nagaragawa Hot Spring! If anyone doesn’t know what an onsen is, it is a Japanese hot spring, where men and women can go and bathe and relax in different types of baths. Some examples are ice baths, electric baths (Sounds scary right?! But it’s good for you!), salt baths, saunas, and so on. The real scary part is the fact that you are required to be completely naked in a room full of other women. Of course, the men and women are separated, but there’s always a strange feeling as a foreigner to be nude in a sort of public setting!
All in all, it was a very relaxing way to spend the day over a chilly winter break! While it isn’t as cold as it is back home, I still miss springtime! Although it wasn’t a crazy vacation, but it was definitely unique and beautiful.
That tiny building up there is Gifu Castle! It’s farther than it looks…
I hope everyone had at least one relaxing day on their breaks!
I now have my final exams coming up next week!! It’ll be a busy week for me!
Until next time FEA!