Keihoku cherry blossom information 3 "Weeping cherry at suspension bridge"
Today I introduce you a great hanami spot."Weeping cherry at suspension bridge" in Uogabuchi Keihoku.This cherry was planted by grandfather when he was twentys.So this cherry tree should be about 60 years old.This picure was taken on April 5th 2018. This suspension bridge is a bit scary because it shakes when walking on.Even in not cherry blossoms season, it's nice to take a look the suspension bridge. It would be nice to have picnic there. And fun to ride a bike along the riverside. There are other cherry blossom spots downstream of this spot too.Uogagasu Suspension Bridge 22 Yamakiha, Shuzan-cho, Keihoku, Ukyo-ku,kyoto-shi About 3 kilometers from Woody Kyohoku(Near bus terminal you can rent bicycle.) 5 minutes by car, 15 to 20 minutes by bicycle, 40 minutes on foot.
Satoyama cherry blossom information 2
Did you know there are many species of cherry tree in Japan?I know only "Someiyoshino" , "Shidare zakura (weeping cherry)", "Yae zakura" "Yamazakura(Moutain cherry)".But there are about 600 species.They bloom defferent timings in all season.But of course, many species of cherry bloom in spring time(March and April). I found a cherry blossom at river side in Shuzan Keihoku.I thought it is plam tree, becourse I thought it is bit earlly to bloom for cherry.(Generally plam trees bloom earlyer than cherry tree.)This cherry must be a early blossoming specie.Do you know how to distinglish between plam blossom and cherry blossom?This picture is cherry blossom.The tip of cherry flower's petals are spirited. This picture below is plam blossom.The tip of petals are rounded and you can smell sweet smell of plam.They look very similer but they are slightly defferent.And cherry trees have more blossoms than plam trees. Nearly full bloom.This one is another species. Not ready yet.Please check the Have an old cherry tree in Satoyama all to yourself to get to know good cherry blossoms viewing spots and restaurant information in Keihoku.
How to get around in Keihoku by local bus
One day, my friend asked me "Could you tell me how do I get around in Keihoku, if I go there without car ? "And my answer is "There is local bus called 'Furusato bus' that can take you everywhere in Keihoku" (Bus with green lines) None of the Furusato bus drivers speak English, but it could be fun to communicate with them. You just need tell them your destination very simply and clearly. It would be easier for them to understand if you point where you want to go on a map. The bus is used by students and elderly people mainly. I'd like non-local people to use Furusato bus more to keep the bus running.If no furusato bus, it's very hard for people who use it.It's not so busy on day time. Bus drivers should have some time to help you out. Places where we have introduced on this blog are always near bus stop. So It won't be too difficult. You'd better to check the bus schedule at bus terminal or at a bus stop. Because if you miss a bus, then you need to wait a bus for another hour or longer time. Now you can servive and enjoy Keihoku bus trip. So please visit Keihoku to see the real country side of Japan.(Photo is Keihoku bus terminal)How to access KeihokuTake JR bus of Takao/Keihoku Line from Kyoto station (terminal no.3) via Omiya, Nijo and Enmachi station. Shuzan terminal is a final stop and it takes around 1 hour 30 mins from Kyoto station. Transport fare costs 1180 yen, or you can use Japan Rail Pass.
Zazen meditation at Eirinji temple
To introduce the spirituality of Japan, we went to Eirinji temple to experience the "Zazen" meditation with the university students from the US. Eirinji temple is one of a Japanese Zen-Buddhism sect called "Soto". The Buddhism training of Soto, it's not a training for get a spiritual awakening, everyday life is the Zen training. They not only sit and meditate. They spend whole day with Zen manner. The chief priest told us about Zen and how to sit while"Zazen" meditation. Then we practice Zazen all together. In Zazen meditation of Soto, we sit and look the wall and gaze at one point. We did a 15min meditation twice. We also tried a walking meditation called "Keihin ", between the Zazen meditation. Zen meditation is not a regular tour option. But we are planning to offer this special experience to everyone who comes to Keihoku. So please look foreword to it and participate the tour if it comes up!Please checked other article about satayama educational tour ①, ②, Takimata waterwall treking
Takimata waterfall trek
There are many trekking course in Keihoku called "Kyoto trail". One of the popular course is Takimata waterfall trekking. You can go there in 30 to 40 mins on foot from Hosonoguchi bus stop. A strong typhoon hit Keihoku last year, and the trek got wilder, but it got to be more fun to me. 5 years old child could walk the trek with support of adult. We took university students from US to the trek the other day. They seemed to have really enjoyed it.You can be healed by walking in forest. Let's shinrinyoku together!(forest bathing.) And you can purify your body by bathing in the basin of the waterwall as well! But it freezing cold in winter though.
SATOYAMA educational program②
I used to be a backpacker and I have been asked these questions "What do you believe?", "Tell me about Japanese religion.".But I could not answer those questions clearly, and I felt ashamed myself.Shinto and Buddhism are two mejor religion in Japan.Shinto is an indigenous religion which worshiping for nature and ansesters. And Buddhism was introduced from China in the 6th century. Since then, the two religions have been co-existing harmoniously. Sometimes I see a buddha statue in grounds of Shinto shrine, and a small Shinto shrine in grounds of Buddhism temple. So most Japanese consider themselves Buddhist, Shintoist or both.And, as a culture, ideologies and teachings of the two religions are definitely blend into our life.You could feel and understand more about Japanese spirituality by being at a shrine or a temple not just reading.
SATOYAMA education program ①
University students majoring in psychology from Kentucky, USA, participated our satoyama experience tour. They were expected to learn the spirituality of Japan and satoyama. The tour was three days 4 night. We share the living life in satoyama and spirituality through the lecture, experience and interaction with local peoples. ScheduleDay 1. Introduction of Keihoku-spirituality of living life in satoyama, Keihoku. Day2. Visit Kuzu shrine. Waterfall trekking. Soba lunch at local restaurant. Sake tasting at local brewery.Visit the local Japanese confectionary.Visit Kayabuki-no-sato (thatched house village) in Miyama. Day 3. Experience Zen meditation in Eirinji templeNatto mochi and Keihoku soup cooking workshop.Chopsticks and straw craft making workshop. Visit Jyoshoukouji temple.Day 4. Feedback workshop Why don't you come and visit Satoyama Keihoku.If you want experience real spirits of Japanese coutryside satoyama!
Sake tasting experience
We have a local sake brewery in Keihoku called "Haneda syuzou " which established hundred twenty years ago.Haneda brewery use traditional method to brew sake, using under ground water from mountain around and locally grown sake rice.It's very important to have a cold weather to have slow fermentation to brew good sake. The brewery has many variety of sake and my favorite sake is called "Hatsuhinode".I love the taste also the meaning of the name. "Hatsuhinode" means the sunrise on New Year's Day. So every year l drink it on New Year's Day. You can taste many varieties of sake for 500 yen in there. While tasting, Ms. Haneda tells you about how they make sake. Then you can more enjoy the tasting and you will be a sake meister after joining the tasting.And off couse you can buy a sake there.Why don't you visit Haneda brewery and taste sake if come to Keihoku?It only takes 4 minutes from Shuzan bus terminal. We also visit Haneda brewery in Satoyama cycling tour. Please check here for more cycling tour information.