Japan – Shimonoseki

This was our last day of traveling before heading back to Michiko in Yokohama City. We decided to hop the train and go to the very end of the Honshu region. There is Kyushu island that you can walk to from the mainland by way of an underground tunnel. This sounded interesting. Also, it is where you can get a ferry to South Korea. We thought it would be fun to say that we were in South Korea, but further research revealed that it was a 12 hour ferry ride…which we didn’t have time for! Oh well, next trip.

Another place of interest was the Karato fish market. Unfortunately, it was about 1:00 by the time we arrived and the market was pretty much closed up for the day. There were a few stalls still open but most of the action happens between 4 and 8 in the morning. Most of the stalls that were open had plates of sashimi displayed. Sashimi is a Japanese delicacy of very thinly sliced fish. It is served with either soy sauce or wasabi and simple garnishes like daikon radish. It wasn’t cheap either. The plate for 19,500 yen is $195.00! Blowfish is another popular dish here. At the boardwalk, there were blowfish statues and in the souvenir shops there were lamps made from blowfish. Blowfish are extremely poisonous and can only be prepared by licensed chefs. We chose not to sample this local cuisine!

From the market, we walked along the boardwalk and watched the large tankers from around the world enter the port under the Kanmon Bridge.
Eventually, we made our way to the Kanmon pedestrian tunnel. We wanted to walk under the Kanmon strait to the island of Kyushu. It was closed…we could have taken a bus but that didn’t interest us.

We started walking back toward the Karato fish market. I stopped at the Akana Shrine, along the way, for a stamp in my book. This shrine was dedicated to the eight year old emperor Antoku, who died in 1185 during the naval battle of Dan-no-ura.

From the fish market area, we got the bus back to the station and arrived in Hiroshima at 5:00. We walked to the Peace Memorial Park to see it lit up at night. I tried to get some pictures, but was unsuccessful because I didn’t have a tripod. Dinner was at a small vegetarian restaurant that I had read about in one of the brochures….nothing to write home about…small servings and a tad expensive. We walked 11 miles and 23,873 steps.

The next morning we got the train back to Yokohama and arrived there around 2:30 in the afternoon. We spent the rest of the day at Michiko’s condo. I learned how to make origami cranes….or at least tried!

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