2015 Rice Terrace Tour of Japan | Kujukushima from Ishidake Observatory

Jun 17 | Evan | No Comments |

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The last sunset of the 2015 Tanada Tour of Japan was spent at Ishidake Observatory to see views of the islands of Kujukushima.  It’s a popular spot for sunsets and also a spot that was used for the opening scene of the film, “The Last Samurai.”  The observatory does get crowded with photographers and the space isn’t huge, so if you plan on going here, best to get there early.

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We arrived at at Ishidake Observatory about 2 hours before sunset and there were already some photographers there waiting.  There was still space for our group touring Japan to take photos, but for some photographers that came too late had to squeeze or find another place that wasn’t ideal.

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I love the way the water looks after the boats pass through…

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And finally a few panoramic photos of Kujukushima taken with my iPhone…

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For the 2015 Rice Terrace Photo Tour of Japan, we also visited Doya Tanada, Hamanoura Tanada, Warabino Tanada and Mikaeri FallsNijinomatsubara, Jufukuji and  Yumiharidake Observatory for Kujukushima.  Interested in joining a future Tanada Tour of Japan?  Contact me today to start your experience for Japan!  Overall, this group tour of Japan focusing on the rice terraces of Kyushu was a success and besides making some great photos in Japan, we had a great time and ate (too much) delicious sushi and more!  Next up is the 2015 Fall Tour of Japan!

2015 Rice Terrace Tour of Japan | Kujukushima from Yumiharidake Observatory

Jun 16 | Evan | No Comments |

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Our escorted tour of Japan continued from Karatsu in Saga Prefecture to Sasebo of Nagasaki Prefecture.  The hotel our group stayed at was next to a nice observatory with great views of Kujukushima.  Having such a nice place within a 5 minute walk from the hotel was very convenient for taking photos not only of the islands of Kujukushima but also the observatory offered nice views of Sasebo.  The views of Sasebo and the port were more interesting to me here, so that’s why you don’t see any views of Kujukushima in this post.  Don’t worry though, in my next post of Ishidate Observatory there will be more photos of Kujukushima than you probably want to see!

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This view is also very nice in the evening with the lights of the city, but the evening we were here, it was too cloudy to see all of the mountains in the background. Yumiharidake-Kujukushima-JapanPhotoGuide-08

For the 2015 Rice Terrace Photo Tour of Japan, we also visited Doya Tanada, Hamanoura Tanada, Oura TanadaWarabino Tanada and Mikaeri Falls, JufukujiNijinomatsubara and Ishidake Observatory for Kujukushima.  Interested in joining a future Tanada Tour of Japan?  Contact me today to start your experience for Japan!

2015 Rice Terrace Tour of Japan | Jufukuji

Jun 15 | Evan | No Comments |

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During the day for our group tour of Japan in Sasebo, we decided to visit a small private temple in Nagasaki called Jufukuji in Emukae Town.  During May and again in Autumn, the temple lays down acrylic panels inside to create a water-like reflection of their beautiful Japanese garden and rock garden.  The staff there was really kind to our group and even helped us to take some nice photos with the owner posing for us for a few minutes!

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The temple grounds of Jufukuji are small but well kept and interesting, especially when they do the special reflection boards!

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For the 2015 Rice Terrace Photo Tour of Japan, we also visited Doya Tanada, Hamanoura Tanada, Warabino Tanada and Mikaeri FallsNijinomatsubara, Ishidake Observatory for Kujukushima and Yumiharidake Observatory for Kujukushima.  Interested in joining a future Tanada Tour of Japan?  Contact me today to start your experience for Japan!

2015 Rice Terrace Tour of Japan | Warabino and Mikaeri Falls

Jun 14 | Evan | No Comments |

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On our last day in Karatsu and before heading to Nagasaki, we had light rain and mostly cloudy weather.  We decided to go to Mikaeri Falls, which is about 30 minutes from Karatsu.  I had visited Mikaeri Falls last year during the hydrangea festival, which was beautiful, but too crowded!  This time, because of the weather and being too early for hydrangeas, our group touring Japan basically had the waterfall to ourselves to take photos of.

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Close to Mikaeri Falls is another rice terrace, Warabino Tanada.  Since we were close by, maybe 10 or 15 minutes by car, we decided to scout out Warabino Rice Terrace to see the water situation.  Each rice terrace has a slightly different planting and water filling schedule, so sometimes its difficult to know the water situation without actually visiting.  Warabino is a HUGE rice terrace and there were still many that had not been filled.  Even with many of the rice terraces not filled with water yet, we were able to find enough for taking some nice photos given the conditions that day!

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For the 2015 Rice Terrace Photo Tour of Japan, we also visited Doya Tanada, Hamanoura Tanada, Oura TanadaNijinomatsubara, JufukujiIshidake Observatory for Kujukushima and Yumiharidake Observatory for Kujukushima.  Interested in joining a future Tanada Tour of Japan?  Contact me today to start your experience for Japan!

2015 Rice Terrace Tour of Japan | Niji no Matsubara Beach and Forest

Jun 13 | Evan | No Comments |

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The hotel the group tour stayed in was just a short walk across the street from the famous beach in Karatsu, Nijo no Matsubara.  In addition to a nice beach with islands in the ocean and mountains to the sides, there is a forest of pine trees just off the beach that is worth exploring as well.

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We started taking photos on the beach for sunrise and then made our way back through the forest to take more photos.

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After the sunrise photo session, the group went back to the hotel for some breakfast and rest before sightseeing around Karatsu.  We went to Karatsu Castle and also to Takatori House.  Takatori house was spectacular but doesn’t allow taking photos inside.  Takatori House does include a guide with admission so if you have any flexibility in your schedule, I’d recommend calling the Takatori House to see if the English speaking guide is available.  There are so many interesting facts, art, details and more that we would have missed without our guide.  The inside of Karatsu Castle is a museum with details from history of the Karatsu area.  It’s fairly interesting but my favorite part was the view from the top!

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For the 2015 Rice Terrace Photo Tour of Japan, we also visited Doya Tanada, Hamanoura Tanada, Oura Tanada, Warabino Tanada and Mikaeri Falls, JufukujiIshidake Observatory for Kujukushima and Yumiharidake Observatory for Kujukushima.  Interested in joining a future Tanada Tour of Japan?  Contact me today to start your experience for Japan!

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