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On the bullet train

 Handsome kimono

Getting into the spirit

Himeji Castle

Tsukiji fish market


Cherry and rape blossom in Tokyo

Anime and Manga Culture Tour

March 2007



The first tour this year was tailor-made for a 16-year old! A birthday present for Trace, a great lad from Tampa, Florida, who has a passion for things many 16-year olds tend to manga, anime, ninja, games the wonderful thing about the week Trace spent in Japan was how he saw things in the broader Japanese cultural context and rapidly took an intelligent interest in all things Japanese, from Japanese language and history to the local food.


The local Japanese-style accommodation in Tokyo was also a hit. The challenge for Hike Japan was to arrange the tour locally with less than a weeks notice in the early cherry blossom season!


Fortunately, having made all the relevant bookings, the tour went like clockwork. Both Dad and son had a fantastic time. We kicked off in Tokyo before heading to Kyoto , Nara , Osaka , and Himeji . The itinerary included visits to the Tezuka Osamu Museum in Takarazuka, the Toei Movie Studios in Kyoto and the Philosophers Walk in Kyoto , Himeji Castle , the Akihabara, Omotesando, Asakusa, Shiodome, and Ginza areas of Tokyo , and the Great Buddha Shaka Nyorai statue in the Todaiji Temple in Nara.


Whilst some of the games software for the latest games was only available in Japanese, suitable souvenirs and gifts for friends back home were duly purchased from Akihabara, or Electric City '. Trace was also taken by a handsome second-hand kimono in Kyoto (see photo). Mount Fuji obligingly lifted her skirt of clouds for us to reveal a sublime, snow-capped summit. A which sight invariably inspires hastily taken snaps from the bullet train.


Trace made a video recording of the tour. We look forward to seeing Japan through his eyes in due course.


Seeking enlightenmentat Nanzenji Temple

Brothers in arms

Creating an animation

Yasukuni shrine matsuri

Tokyo Tower

Meiji Shrine

All smiles!

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