Hiroko Kimura

For Hiroko Kimura's latest contributions to The Japan Times, see below:

The <I>sakura</I> front sweeps across Japan

| Apr 6, 2014

The sakura front sweeps across Japan

Spring — the season of sakura (桜, cherry blossoms) — has finally arrived and the entire country has been transformed into a fairyland tinted pale pink. In a heartening season of renewal after winter’s chill, a wave of sakura washes over these islands. Usually ...

Genius reflected in art of glass

Mar 18, 2005

Genius reflected in art of glass

An inspirational new attraction is coming to Hakone, the highland resort in Kanagawa Prefecture renowned as a stomping ground for the rich and famous. In addition to its luxury hotels and ryokan, the curative powers of its spa water and astoundingly beautiful scenery, Hakone ...

Pristine paradise an hour from Tokyo

Feb 18, 2005

Pristine paradise an hour from Tokyo

Thanks to the newly opened Noto International Airport, Noto Peninsula in Ishikawa Prefecture is now just a one-hour flight from Tokyo, making one of the Hokuriku region’s most popular tourist spots — famed for its hot springs, local festivals, beaches and mountain scenery — ...

Hitting high spots in Hakone

Nov 5, 2004

Hitting high spots in Hakone

Autumn is probably the best season for travel, with the weather turning cooler but not too cold, and leaves imbuing the landscape with a rich kaleidoscope of color. Hakone in Kanagawa Prefecture is one of the best places to admire the autumn hues. And ...

Here's to the mother of all matsuri

Oct 15, 2004

Here's to the mother of all matsuri

Although Japan has a wealth of interesting festivals celebrated up and down the archipelago, taking in only a few requires considerable planning, effort and money. There is a short-cut, however. The 12th All-Japan Festival of Folk-Performing Arts, scheduled for the weekend of Oct. 22-24 ...

On the path of poets

Aug 20, 2004

On the path of poets

Utter silence, Piercing the stone walls, The cicada’s cry Gathering the rains of May, How swiftly it flows, The Mogami River Matsuo Basho (1644-1694) Many people know that these two haiku are among the most famous by Japan’s legendary poet Matsuo Basho, but probably ...

How green is my Happy Valley

Jul 30, 2004

How green is my Happy Valley

While Tokyo is unbearably hot and humid in the heat of the summer, in Karuizawa verdant grass and moss carpet the floors of forests and the mountain air is perfumed with the scent of larch leaves and wild flowers. The area is a little ...

Getting to the top in Japan

Jul 2, 2004

Getting to the top in Japan

There is a Japanese proverb that says only a fool has never climbed Mount Fuji — or has climbed it twice. The 3,776-meter dormant volcano, referred to as Fuji-san by Japanese, is the nation’s highest mountain and one of the best-known symbols of Japan. ...

Blossom, blossom, briefly everywhere

Mar 19, 2004

Blossom, blossom, briefly everywhere

Yes, the sakura has for ages been the favorite of our people and the emblem of our character. . . . But, its nativity is not its sole claim to our affection. The refinement and grace of its beauty appeal to our aesthetic sense ...

Creature comforts fuel business boom

Feb 29, 2004

Creature comforts fuel business boom

The growing popularity in Japan of dogs as pets has turned its pet industry into a lucrative market in which suppliers and sellers are eagerly competing to offer products and services from the pet’s cradle to its grave. According to Yano Research Institute, pet-related ...