An Easy Kyoto 4 Day Itinerary for Autumn (or any season!)

Kyoto 4 day itinerary in autumn

Kyoto blew me away. Japan’s ancient capital is a mecca for temple lovers, with so many magnificent historical structures that the city was sparred during WWII campaigns. The city without any doubt deserves a top spot on your Japan travel itinerary. There are so many things to do in Kyoto that you really need four …

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Japan’s Sacred Kumano Kodo Walk in Winter

Kumano Kodo in winter

The Kumano Kodo is a network of pilgrimage trails that connect various Shinto-Buddhist sites in the mountainous Kii Peninsula south of Osaka and Nagoya, and is considered one of the world’s great pilgrimages that travelers can easily join. These expansive tracts of wilderness are replete with spiritual sights that have attracted pilgrims for 1000+ years, …

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Kumano Sanzan and Ise Grand Shrine: 4 Gorgeous Temples on the Kumano Kodo Pilgrimage

Kumano Sanzan and the Ise Grand Shrine

In 2018 I visited Wakayama, a remote and wild region of Japan south of Osaka and Nagoya, to walk parts of the Kumano Kodo, a network of ancient pilgrimage trails. These trails are easily accessible, making them one of the best pilgrimages in the world for travelers. Besides these amazing hot springs at the eastern …

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Yunomine Onsen and Four Other Awesome Wakayama Onsens

Yunomine, one of the best Wakayama onsens

Hikers doing Japan’s Kumano Kodo walk, a network of trails that follow a pilgrimage route going back over 1000 years in Wakayama prefecture south of Osaka and Nagoya, are rewarded with a plethora of hot spring baths along the trail. After tramping up and down forested trails all day long, one of the best things …

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A Taiwan Dong Ding Oolong Tea Review

In order to put one of my new favorite oolong/wulong teas, Ai-Want Formosa Tea‘s 2015 Winter Dong Ding oonlong tea, to the ultimate test, I’ve decided to take extreme measures. I am going to carry out a trial on the pickiest, most captious food and drink critic that I know: my Taiwanese father-in-law. You’ll have …

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