Photo essay: Kyoto without tourists

Travel Jun 6, 2020

Photo essay: Kyoto without tourists

by Oscar Boyd

It is rare to see Kyoto’s most popular tourist spots with so few people, but due to COVID-19, the number of visitors to Japan, and to Kyoto, has plunged to record low levels, leaving many of sightseeing destinations deserted.

Gujo-Hachiman: Travel along the rivers of time

Travel Aug 16, 2019

Gujo-Hachiman: Travel along the rivers of time

by Stephen Mansfield

Perhaps it is the gurgling brooks that feed the town's roadside culverts, the colorful, vaguely Pyrenean window boxes, or the friendly, natural disposition of the locals — Gujo-Hachiman seems a place where people's spirits are pitched a notch or two higher than elsewhere.

The 'washi' paper trail: from the tree to its many purposes

Travel Jan 7, 2017

The 'washi' paper trail: from the tree to its many purposes

by Stephen Mansfield

Stepping off the bus at the Gakko-iriguchi stop in Higashi-Chichibu Village in Saitama Prefecture, the first things to strike the eye are high-flying clusters of balloons, suspended like colorful dirigibles. Here, the workshops and exhibition spaces of Washi-no-Sato, a well-known papermaking center tucked into the ...