Yozakura 夜桜

14 08 2010
Sakura and Paper Lantern

Sakura and Paper Lantern

Sakura 桜 (Cherry Blossom) are beautiful no matter what time of day you view them, but there are a number of places in and around Tokyo that also have night ‘Illuminations’ of the blossoms.

There is even a special word for cherry blossoms in the evening – Yozakura 夜桜 (literally ‘night cherry blossoms’).  The illuminations range from the whole trees being spotlighted, to the more traditional, with lanterns hanging amongst the branches.

Toshimaen, Tokyo

Toshimaen Sakura Illumination

Toshimaen Sakura Illumination

Toshimaen is an ‘old school’ amusement park in Nerima with whole tree spotlights.  Normally there is an entrance fee to the park, but during the Sakura season, entrance from about 4pm becomes free for the night-time illumination.  In fact, inside and out of the park are a lot of Sakura trees, and the area is quite beautiful in spring (but then, I might be bias, I used to live there).

Kita Koshigaya

Lanterns and path

Lanterns and path

Sakura at Dusk

Sakura at Dusk

These photos are taken at Kita Koshigaya, a place I mentioned in my last Sakura post, from dusk to darkness.  Kita Koshigaya’s Illumination is more of the traditional kind, with paper lanterns.  You might notice on each lantern something different is written, these are the names of the people or the company that ‘sponsors’ the lantern.  It’s quite pretty, but also very hard to photo (especially on a windy evening)!

Blossoms in the dark

Blossoms in the dark

To see these photos in full, or see a few more not shown here, please check out my flickr set! Enjoy the flowers!

and so this is Christmas~

20 01 2010

About a month late…  but…  well…  anyway….

So with my parental units here for Christmas, my mother’s one wish was to have a ‘white one’.  And with that in mind, we planned to go to Yuzawa Onsen in Niigata.

Since we were away for Christmas Day, we had our family lunch of roast chicken on the Tuesday.  My local supermarket carried whole chickens this year, so it really was a proper christmas lunch

with pudding (^-^)b

The recipe for this pud is from Video Jug, and I highly recommend it.  Everyone (work mates too) said it was delish!

In the evening we went to the illumination at Tobu Zoo (because what’s Christmas in Japan without an illumination?).

The theme was ‘Four Seasons’ but really, they only focused on the cherry blossoms for spring (>_<).

Wednesday, Thursday and Friday were spent at the snow.  We had a good package, and despite none of us being able to ski or snowboard we had a good time.  Well, at least it was amusing for my parents to watch me fall down *trying* to snowboard…

To check out some more photos please head over to my flickr page!

French Kitchen

15 11 2009

Yesterday I met up with a friend for a bit of a going away lunch.  We went to French Kitchen, in the Grand Hyatt Tokyo.

French Kitchen is a great place to go on the weekend.  From 10:30 they serve a champagne buffet brunch for only 6300 yen (plus tax).  This includes a glass of champagne, buffet, main course and tea or coffee after-wards.  The buffet includes eggs done to your liking, the best french toast you will ever have, cheeses, salads, vegetables, fruit, desserts, and home-made ice cream!  It’s so lovely and enjoyable, I wish I had more opportunity to go!

By the time we had finished lunch and done some shopping it had fallen dark, and we were able to catch the Roppongi Hills Illumination for this year.  Once again if you are in Roppongi during the evening, Midtown does have the better Illumination, but the Mori Garden Illumination is quite pretty and romantic if you want to stop there for a little.