An Interesting Night

For dinner, we picked Uni Murakami. The restaurant owns a farm in Hakodate, and their sea urchins come directly from the source. Because aluminum (usually added as a preservatives) was not used in the processing. the sea urchins tasted much tender and sweeter. Truly melt in your mouth.

We had uni two-ways- sashimi styleIMG_4244 and as a gratin, baked in creamy Hokkaido sauce Continue reading “An Interesting Night”

International Snow Sculpture Contest

Twelve teams participated in this year’s contest. The teams are:

Australia – FrogozillaIMG_4215
Australia is the home to many deadly creatures. Luckily, the rare endangered Australian “Green and Golden Bell Frog” is not one of them. Humans have overtaken nature, clearing habitats, developing highways and cities; this sculpture is representing Frog`s Revenge! Fortunately, they only grow to 9 cm and will not eat you.

Finland – The Education of Life Continue reading “International Snow Sculpture Contest”

A Foodie’s day in Sapporo

After viewing the snow sculptures at Odori Park, I went to JR Tower ESTA to get my friend Akiko the ONE SWEET she really wanted.

There are thousands of sweet shops in Japan, most of them carrying regional specialties. If you see one that you like when visiting a particular area, get it. Don’t wait till you get to your last stop. You will regret. The Duty Free shop in Narita has only basic big brand stuff that are not really that interesting. Continue reading “A Foodie’s day in Sapporo”

Sapporo Snow Festival – Odori Park

The Sapporo Snow Festival (さっぽろ雪まつり Sapporo Yuki-matsuri?) is a festival held annually in Sapporo, Japan, over seven days in February. This year, the festival dates from 5th to 11th of February.

Odori Park, stretching east to west over 1.5km through the heart of downtown Sapporo, is one of the primary festival sites. It contains several large snow sculptures, hundreds of small sculptures made by organizations and citizens of Sapporo, a skating rink, a snowboard jumping platform, and a sliding area for children.DSC_3525

Continue reading “Sapporo Snow Festival – Odori Park”

February in Japan

We just came back from a fantastic trip in Japan!

February is still quite cold all over Japan. Unless you go somewhere south like Okinawa, the sakura flowers won’t blossom until late March. But there are still tons of places to visit, with cheaper hotel rates and less crowds.

I will write posts for each places we visited, but first, here is the highlight of our itinerary. Continue reading “February in Japan”

Winter in Mt. Rainier

There are three national parks in the state of Washington: Olympic, Mt. Rainier and North Cascade. Of the three, Mt. Rainier is the most popular among visitors. The best time to visit Mt. Rainier is summer, when days are long and wild flowers flourish the meadows in Sunrise and Paradise. Autumn can also be beautiful with colorful foliage, cool temperature and less visitors. Winter may be cold and harsh at Mt. Rainier National Park, but abundant snowfall creates spectacular scenery making it a popular place to enjoy winter activities.

Below are some tips I gathered from my visits this time of the year. Hopefully it will be helpful to other visitors.

Tip #1: Unless you arrive very early, avoid visiting the park on a fee-free day, or on the first sunny weekend after a long period of rain/snow. This is what you get, if you do:

gate

Tip #2: Always check the weather forecast and follow the park’s twitter feed for road closures. For instance, the gate to Paradise is closed today due to avalanche danger. If you were planning to head to Paradise for any snow activities, you may be disappointed.

Tip #3: Dress for the weather. And don’t forget sunglasses and sunscreen. Continue reading “Winter in Mt. Rainier”