Category Archives: chiba

Tokyo German Village – Winter Illumination

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Tokyo German Village is a park in Chiba, located about two hours from central Tokyo. The park offers facilities for families, flower events, a souvenir shop and German food. It’s not an educational place meant to teach you German – in many ways it’s very much a Japanese park.

Winter is time for the illumination festival when the whole park turns into an LED wonderland. Illumination festivals at parks like Tokyo German Village (Tokyo Doitsu Mura 東京ドイツ村) are usually more impressive than the festivals in central Tokyo. The festival lights and motives also change every year, encouraging people to visit the park at least once a year.

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This year’s Winter Illumination Shangri-La started on November 8 and will continue until March 31. The lights are switched on from 4 to 8 pm, last entrance is at 7.30 pm. Until early January, a shuttle bus will run from Sodegaura Station (Uchibo Line) to Tokyo German Village. The whole trip took me about two hours, but it was well worth it! Read the rest of this entry

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Chiba – The two-dimensional building

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Chiba City is not a tourist destination. Despite being the home of about 960000 people, it’s not well known for its sights. Chiba also has very little to do with the Chiba described in William Gibson’s cyberpunk novel Neuromancer.

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I had no fixed plan what to see in Chiba. I went to the Chiba Port Park around the Chiba Port Tower. It is a very interesting building, because it looks like 2D when photographed from the right angle. The tower has an observation deck and a coffee shop. I didn’t feel like watching Chiba from above, especially not at 3 in the afternoon.

Chiba is an industrial town. Read the rest of this entry

Nokogiriyama Hiking (part 1)

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You know, I’m not really a hiking person and I didn’t particularly liked it during class trips but I quickly volunteered for the trip offered by erm, well, that would be an advertisment, right? This big company which offers appartment, guesthouses and dormitories to foreigners also offers special events from time to time on a first-come-first-serve basis.

Nokogiriyama in Chiba prefecture was our destination and five empoyees of the company accompanied us, including Hyde from L’arc en Ciel (just kidding!) All had digital cameras and they surely weren’t afraid to use them 😉 We first went to Shinjuku, took a train to Shinagawa and then another one to Keihin Kurihama Station. The latter ride was quite long (about an hour). Some of us slept, others played DS, took photographs or were busy chatting with each other. I talked with two others about computer games and Odaiba (the artificial island with lots of amusement parks). Reaching our destination, we switched to the Keikyu bus line and I put my ticket in the wrong picket. During the bus ride I had a nice chat with Kelly, a US-american who lived in Wuppertal for a while, a city I visited last year (loved the penguins).

Anyway, at the end of the bus trip I thought I had lost my ticket but I found it again later – which didn’t stop on particular mean member of out tour guides to tape a retelling of the whole story on MiniDV. I still think that it will someday appear on YouTube. Everything will appear on YouTube one day 😉

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Arriving at Kurihama port we took the Tokyo bay ferry to Kanaya port. There, it was time for a group shot, followed by lunch at a Sushi restaurant. I don’t like fish much, but it looked very nice. I just seperated the fish from the rice and ate the latter one.

Sushi menu