Thawing out on the stove train through Tsugaru

Travel Mar 30, 2018

Thawing out on the stove train through Tsugaru

by Dan Asenlund

In his 1944 semi-autobiographical "Return to Tsugaru," Japanese author Osamu Dazai (1909-48) revisits his native Tsugaru, a peninsula in northernmost Aomori Prefecture and, apart from praising its people, has mostly unflattering things to say about the place. Forty years later, British writer Alan Booth ...

Hakone: a paradise for the 'onsen' aficionado

Travel Mar 25, 2017

Hakone: a paradise for the 'onsen' aficionado

by Hiroko Kimura

Those seeking to escape the hustle and bustle of Japan's big cities will find what they are looking for in a hot-spring paradise hidden deep in a forest. Located about 90 kilometers west of Tokyo, Hakone in Kanagawa Prefecture is a famous onsen (hot springs) ...

Salt-stained and steamy: life in Izu's lush torrid zone

Travel Oct 15, 2016

Salt-stained and steamy: life in Izu's lush torrid zone

by Stephen Mansfield

The Izu Peninsula, just two hours from Tokyo by train, is cherished for the slightly higher temperatures it enjoys compared to the capital. Mild winters and picturesque vacation homes attract the wealthy, brightly lit sanatoriums and retirement complexes draw the elderly, and white-sand beaches ...

Kyoto promoting hot springs as additional tourist attraction

Travel Jan 30, 2016

Kyoto promoting hot springs as additional tourist attraction

Kyoto is promoting an additional attraction little known to date — onsen, or hot springs. The city of Kyoto has 15 sources of hot springs featuring hydrogen sulfide, natural radium and other ingredients, and there are a total of 22 spa resorts, according to the ...