Japan food series – Bento, the convenient and tasteful Japanese boxed-meal

The Tokyo station is a crazy maze! Japanese people walk around like ants, workers in Keep reading

Hiking from Magome to Tsumago: timeless Japan

With the 4-day-Yari-dake hike we have just finished the day before, and still being used to waking up at sunrise, we decide to go for an 8-km stroll between the timeless villages of Keep reading

Temple hopping in Kyoto: top 10 & travel tips

I am biking like a mad woman on the sidewalks, with my knees almost hitting my chin at every turn of the pedals on my ridiculously small bicycle, ringing the bell to warn pedestrians in the busy streets, who weirdly enough do not seem surprised by that tall Dutch woman showing off her bicycle skills on that tiny Japanese bike. Overtaking herds of tourists, I am temple hopping in Kyoto! Keep reading

Where to go skiing in Europe: the Austrian or French Alps?

My face hits the white cold substance when I fall down as my body gets out of control going down a small hill in the mountains of Austria. I have the hardest time getting up without falling again, as my feet are in the most uncomfortable shoes to which the rental skis are attached. I am surrounded by people who speak a language I cannot understand and during the lunch break I eat food I have never seen before: I was three when I started to learn how to ski… Keep reading

Japan food series – Sushi

As we have demonstrated it by now in our Japan food series, it is not all about sushi’s! But a trip to Japan without trying a sushiya would be incomplete! Keep reading

Japan food series – Kaiseki

A true dining experience (comparable with Michelin-star restaurants), haute cuisine and the crème de la crème of Japanese food, serving, atmosphere and presentation: kaiseki is a must for Keep reading

Japan food series – Tempura

Tsunahachi in Shinjuku, Tokyo has been serving one of the finest tempura in the capital for almost a century. We had to try it! Keep reading

Capsule hotels, or morgue-drawer accommodation! 

While preparing our six-week trip to Japan, I remember that day I hoped would never occur Keep reading

Japan food series – Tonkatsu

It is dark outside when we arrive in front of the sliding doors of a tiny restaurant in the centre of Takayama. Keep reading

Japan food series – Yakitori

Ozu, Shikoku, 9PM on a Saturday night. A green cotton fabric outside the door of a small shack and a Japanese paper lantern. We get in. Keep reading

Japanese food series – Ramen noodles

We have a love & hate relationship with ramen noodles! Keep reading

Japan food series – Soba noodles

While noodles are often associated with cheap ramens for students, we have discovered a wide variety of them in Japan. They come in three kinds: ramen of course, but also Keep reading

An exhilarating hike in the Japanese Alps

“Okay, don’t panic! There is a stone about 20 cm below your left foot, and a cavity for your left hand behind that rock. Yes, slightly lower. That’s it! You can put your weight on it.”

I don’t see anything but the mountain ridge on the horizon above that rock I need to descend from and a lethal ravine below my feet, while hanging on my arms trying to divide my weight at best. My legs start shaking when I feel the stone underneath my right hand moving! My 12+kg backpack drags me down and bruises my hips and shoulders, limiting my degrees of freedom. I really wish I had a parachute or a zip line… For a few seconds, I don’t see how I can help myself down safely and I fear for my life. Keep traveling!

Japan food series – Yatai

Street food is not that common in Japan: yatai or food stalls popping up in the evening Keep reading

Tsukiji fish market and tuna auction, Tokyo

2:35 a.m. A soft knock followed by “hello, good morning”. I slowly emerge from my capsule. Keep traveling!

Earthquake in Tokyo!

We are on the 4th floor of a building in the Ikebukuro district of Tokyo, just a few minutes after arriving in town. Seated at a table, suddenly, the ground under our feet starts shaking. We are hearing screams, the pieces of furniture are moving around Keep reading

Japan food series – Okonomiyaki

Even if okonomiyaki can be found all over the country, it is one of Hiroshima’s specialties. So once there, around lunch time, we walk to Okonomi-mura. There, Keep reading

The magic of Kokedera, the temple of moss

The monk is wearing a dark kimono and tabi, the split toe socks. He opens his arms to invite us on a small path surrounded by more than fifty shades of green. Keep traveling

One thousand paper cranes: commemorating the 70th-year anniversary of the dropping of the atomic bombs in Japan

One thousand paper cranes,
folded by Sadako with all her hope. Keep traveling