Trip Start May 20, 2012
Trip End Sep 04, 2012

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, Nagano Prefecture,
Saturday, June 23, 2012

When we booked this part of the trip on Hostelworld, it seemed like we were headed to Nagano city but it turns out we were headed to a place called Matsumoto in Nagano prefecture! We now know that Nagano is both a city AND a prefecture. Luckily our laundry took two hours to dry and we had plenty of time to straighten out the details before we left Kyoto!

We arrived to be greeted by a very nice host in a beautiful mountain town. It was the opposite of Tokyo and Kyoto - small buildings, not too many people, hardly any traffic! We stayed at place that was called a Ryokan. It was very spacious and we had a terrific view outside. Our hosts were super kind, they even picked us up by car from the train station!

We visited the town castle, supposedly the oldest wooden castle in Japan. We used the FREE bicycles they have stationed around town to get there. That's right, anyone can borrow a bicycle for free! They are stationed all over town. They come with an easy ring lock that you can use to very quickly secure your bike in any location! They even have a headlight that is powered by turning the wheel, whoa!

Another amazing Matsumoto experience awaited us at the castle: a FREE, personal, english language tour! The castle was quite beautiful and it was fun to climb all the way to the top.

We visited an art museum with some wild sculptures by an avant garde artist, apparently she has polka dot hallucinations. The museum had a wonderful courtyard filled with giant polka dotted flower sculptures, sort of like a Dr Seuss creation but less cuddly for sure!

Matumoto was quite relaxing, really, and it came at a good time in the trip because our next stop will be CHINA!
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marcia bernhard on

Wie schön zu lesen und natürlich auch zu sehen, wo ihr seid und was ihr treibt.
Und jetzt geht es weiter nach China. Es wird immer interessanter :-)
Liebe Grüße von
Marcia und Winfried
PS Ich schreibe Ihnen gleich eine E-Mail mit interessanten Infos. Deutschland sucht Ingenieure!

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