Japan
Otaru

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    • Day43

      Otaru and its canal

      June 25 in Japan ⋅ ⛅ 22 °C

      🇨🇵
      J'ai beaucoup aimé Otaru !

      C'est une ville proche de Sapporo contrairement aux autres que j'ai pu faire dans la semaine.

      Otaru est connue pour son canal et son artisanat du verre, mais il y a quelques autres surprises aussi, il m'a suffit de marcher un peu dans les environs pour les découvrir ☺️

      Beaucoup de maisons et bâtiments d'époque ont été conservés, j'ai par exemple vu un ancien quartier des finances. Il y a aussi une petite ruelle avec de vieux livres et affiches de cinéma. Ça donne vraiment plusieurs aspects à Otaru, c'est très sympa.

      À la fin de la première journée, je me suis arrêté chez un caviste qui avait son propre restaurant franco-italien, et j'ai goûté le vin d'Otaru 🍷

      Grosse surprise au réveil, le staff de la guesthouse où je séjournais pour la nuit m'avait laissé un petit cadeau d'anniversaire, juste devant la porte de ma chambre 🎁
      J'ai été très touché : je restais à peine une journée, et je n'avait rien dit concernant mon anniversaire, ils ont trouvé ça d'eux même !

      Avant de reprendre le train, je suis allé dans la rue Sakaimachi, une rue assez vivante en journée car il y a pleins de petits restaurants, boutiques ainsi que des pâtisseries réputées.

      J'y ai trouvé une boutique de boîtes à musique, et je n'ai pas pu m'empêcher d'en prendre une. De nombreuses mélodies sont proposées (Ghibli, JPop, classique) et on peut même passer commande pour un morceau spécifique sélectionné dans un catalogue. Un peu à la manière d'un Karaoké 🎤

      Pour faciliter le transport, j'ai pris un modèle avec une peluche, mais il y en a de toutes les tailles et on voit très bien le mécanisme sur les autres modèles.

      🇬🇧
      I really liked Otaru!

      It's a city close to Sapporo unlike the others I went to during the week.

      Otaru is known for its canal and glass crafts, but there are some other surprises too, all I needed to discover them was to walk a bit ☺️

      Many houses and buildings have been preserved as they were before, for example I saw an old financial district. There is also a small alley with old books and movie posters. It really gives many different faces to Otaru, it's really nice.

      At the end of the first day, I stopped at a wine shop that had its own French-Italian restaurant, and tasted Otaru wine 🍷

      When I woke up in the morning, big surprise. The staff of the guesthouse where I was staying for the night had left me a little birthday present, right in front of my room door 🎁
      I was very moved: I was a very short stay, and I didn't even tell about my birthday, they figure it out on their own !

      Before getting back on the train, I went to Sakaimachi street, it's quite lively during the day because there are lots of small restaurants, stores and also famous pastry shops.

      I found a music box store there, and I couldn't help but take one. Many melodies are available (Ghibli, JPop, classical) and you can even order a specific one selected from a catalog. Like in a Karaoke 🎤

      For ease of transport, I took a model inside a plush, but there are all kinds and sizes you can choose from, and you often see the mechanism on the other models.

      🇯🇵
      次は小樽(おたる)、小樽です~ 🚉

      すごくいい町だよ!

      ゲストハウスもとても良かった!部屋は広くて、良く眠れた。それに、何も言わずにスタフから誕生日プレゼントをもらった🎁☺️
      優し過ぎると思った?信じられなかった!

      小樽には古い鉄道がある。ここは人々は散歩していました。いいデートのスポットだと思う😸

      電車に乗る前に、面白い店を見つけた。オルゴールの店だったからついに一つをかった。小さい豚のぬいぐるみ😁 可愛いでしょう?

      ビデオを見てくださいね 🎶
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      Traveler

      Bon anniversaire!!!

      7/5/22Reply
      Traveler

      ラピュタ✨

      7/5/22Reply
      Traveler

      Je répond un peu tard mais c'est énorme cette petite attention (le cadeau au réveil), je n'ai jamais vu ça ^^ Si tu as laissé ton passeport ou carte d'identité en te présentant, ils ont peut-être vu ca à ce moment-là

      7/9/22Reply
      Traveler

      Mais oui !! En plus je l'ai pas précisé, mais j'ai également été surclassé, donc ça et le cadeau pour quelqu'un qui reste uniquement une nuit ! J'y repasserais pour offrir un cadeau en retour, ça me fera une excuse pour revenir à Otaru

      7/9/22Reply
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    • Day70

      Otaru, 2nd and 3rd time

      July 22 in Japan ⋅ ☁️ 20 °C

      🇨🇵
      Retour à Otaru pour une journée.

      Je ne sais pas si vous vous souvenez, mais la dernière fois, j'avais reçu un cadeau d'anniversaire à ma plus grande surprise. Un moment totalement inattendu et qui s'ajoutait à une très belle journée à Otaru.

      Et bien, j'ai décidé d'y retourner, et j'ai vécu une nouvelle fois de précieux moments. Il va y avoir de la lecture, car j'ai plein de choses à raconter 😁

      J'ai acheté un JR pass pour voyager sur une durée de 4 jours. J'avais prévu une journée à Otaru, puis de prendre le train pour Sapporo le lendemain pour aller à mon cours de japonais du matin.

      À Otaru il faisait beau, et chaud ! Alors, je me suis acheté une glace... de 8 étages 😂

      J'ai ensuite visité le musée de la boîte à musique. Je n'avais pas eu le temps de voir ça la dernière fois, et c'est encore plus impressionnant que la boutique que j'avais visité. D'ailleurs, des boutiques de boîte à musique il y en a d'autres, et j'ai encore craqué !! 😅

      Dans une boutique un peu particulière, d'anciens instruments fonctionnant sur le principe de la boîte à musique étaient exposés : un orgue automatisé, un ancêtre du jukebox, avec des disques perforés, un mini orchestre, etc...
      À certaines heures, on peut assister au fonctionnement de ces instruments. Je vous laisse découvrir cela en vidéo.

      Mais la vraie surprise, c'était ma nouvelle guesthouse. Vraiment géniale. Au moment où je suis rentré, j'ai compris que c'était différent de mes précédents logements.

      L'intérieur est rempli d'objets, de souvenirs, de mangas. Partout. Il y avait aussi un chien et un chat 😸
      La guesthouse est plutôt spacieuse, il y avait des chaises et coussins dispersés un peu dans toute la maison. En gros, la maison entière était un espace de.partage et de détente.

      Je me suis absenté un moment pour aller faire un onsen (vous commencez à me connaître !)

      À peine rentré, j'étais invité à prendre une bière et discuter avec les quelques personnes qui discutaient sur la terrasse (en japonais). J'ai appris que le festival d'été d'Otaru se tenait les jours suivant, un festival attendu car cela faisait 3 ans qu'il n'avait pas eu lieu (merci le COVID). Et, au bout d'un moment, nous avons entendu des tambours ! C'était les répétitions de Taiko (tambours) pour le festival ☺️

      Ensuite, j'ai passé une super soirée dans une pizzeria du quartier, avec un patron qui préparait la pizza devant nous, au rythme des tambours (les répétitions continuaient).

      Je voulais voir au moins une partie du festival et prolonger les bons moments passés dans la guesthouse, donc je me suis arrangé pour revenir le lendemain, après mon cours ! Et oui, j'y suis retourné, parce que 😁

      Je n'ai malheureusement pas vu la parade du festival, mais l'ambiance était très prenante.

      Bref, je garde d'excellentsouvenirs de ces 2 jours à Otaru, décidément c'est une ville que j'adore.

      🇬🇧
      Back to Otaru for one day.

      I don't know if you remember, but last time, I received a birthday present, to my greatest surprise. It was a totally unexpected moment, added to an already nice day in Otaru.

      Well, I decided to visit a second time, and once again I lived some precious moments. I have plenty of things to tell, si there it will be quite long to read 😁

      I bought a JR pass to travel for 4 days. I had planned a day in Otaru, then to take the train to Sapporo the next day in order to attend to a Japanese class the morning.

      The weather in Otaru was nice and quite hot ! So I bought myself an ice cream... with 8 layers 😂

      Then, I visited the music box museum. I had too little time to see it last time, it's even more impressive than the store I visited. Speaking of stores, there are multiple music box stores out there, and I once again, I couldn't resist !!! 😅

      In a particular store, old instruments working on the principle of the music box were exposed: an automated organ, an ancestor of the jukebox with perforated discs, a mini orchestra, etc...
      At specific hours, you can see these instruments in action. I recorded a bit of what I saw.

      But the real surprise was my new guesthouse. Really amazing. The moment I walked in, I realized that it was different from my previous accommodations.

      The interior is full of objects, souvenirs, manga. Everywhere. There was also a dog and a cat 😸
      The guesthouse is pretty spacious, there were chairs and cushions scattered around the house. Basically, the whole house was a space for meeting other people and relaxing.

      I went out for a while to do an onsen. (Yes, I like onsens).

      As soon as I got back, I was invited to grab a beer and have a chat (in japanese) with the people sitted on the terrace. I learned that the Otaru summer festival was taking place the next days, an awaited festival because it had not been held in the last 3 years (thanks to COVID). And, after a while, we suddenly heard Taiko (drums) ! It was to prepare for the festival ☺️

      Later, I had a great night at a local pizzeria, with the owner making pizza in front of us, following the rythm of the drums (the rehearsals were still going on).

      I wanted to see at least some part of the festival and extend the good times in the guesthouse, so I planned to come back the next day, right after my class ! Yes, I went back, just because 😁

      I unfortunately missed the festival parade, but the atmosphere of the festival was really there.

      I have many great memories of these 2 days in Otaru, it's a place I really love.

      🇯🇵
      小樽(おたる)もう一回!

      今回は新しいゲストハウスに泊まった。一泊だけ…と思った。

      でもね、色々あった。

      いい天気だったし、温泉に入ったし。そして、ゲストハウスで、本当にいい人に会った。みんなは優しい。日本語だけで話した。
      ちょっと難しいけどとても楽しかったよ。😁

      そして、次の日は小樽祭りが始まると聞いた。その日、日本語の授業のために、札幌に戻る予定があった。

      けど、終わりたくなかった。ゲストハウスの人ともっと話したかった。お祭りを見たかった。

      そのために、授業が終わってからもう一度小樽に行った。

      2日だけだったけど、本当に楽しかった。
      Read more

      Coucou Romain bien Otaru, c'est super gentil petit endroit, tu as eu raison d'y retourner [Taline]

      8/2/22Reply
       
    • Sep18

      Otaru

      September 18, 2019 in Japan ⋅ ⛅ 20 °C

      Our first port of call in Japan was Otaru, a port city on the northwestern coast of the Sea of Japan. It's not as well known or populated as Sapporo, 25 kms to the east, but it is a charming place to visit.

      When we arrived, we had to go through Japanese immigration where we were photographed, fingerprinted and briefly interviewed by the local authorities. With some 2500 passengers to process, some people didn't disembark until almost 11:00AM. Fortunately, we only had to go through that exercise once on the trip. In any case, even the last person to leave the ship would have had plenty of time to visit all the highlights.

      After nine days at sea, it was nice to get back onto solid ground for a few hours. We wandered through the market and visited the music box museum, where they sell boxes ranging in price from about $25.00 CDN to over $10,000.00!!! For that kind of money, you'd best really like the tune it plays.

      Right in front of that museum is a steam clock very similar to the one located in Vancouver's Gastown district. In fact, Otaru's clock was a gift from the city of Vancouver in 1994.

      We strolled along the Otaru Canal, which was built in the first half of the 20th century. At the time, when entering the port, large vessels were unloaded by smaller ships, which then transported the goods to warehouses along the canal.

      The canal became obsolete when modern dock facilities allowed for direct unloading of larger vessels. A portion of the canal was restored in the 1980s instead of being landfilled, while the warehouses were transformed into museums, shops and restaurants.

      But what struck us most on our first day in Japan were the eye-poppingly high prices, particularly of produce. At the markets, one can purchase a slice of melon, similar to cantaloupe, for ¥500 or about $6.25. The entire melon was selling for ¥3,000 or almost $37.00 CDN!!! A handful sized bunch of grapes was ¥700 and a beautiful looking peach was ¥550. We vegans would have to come out of retirement to be able to afford to live there.

      We initially thought these prices were so high because the shops and markets are located in a touristy part of town. However, we learned later in our travels that those prices are pretty much the norm. Yikes!

      After seeing and visiting all we wanted to see, we made our way back to the ship and chilled for a while before dinner.

      Although Otaru was very pretty, I think if we pass this way again we'll probably hop on the train to Sapporo, which likely will have a little more to offer.
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    • Day27

      Leaving Otaru

      September 3, 2019 in Japan ⋅ ⛅ 22 °C

      We pull away from the dock with waves from the local people. The tug slips in behind us and follows us thru the entrance channel. When we are clear of that, the tug pulls alongside and the pilot jumps from the ship to the tug. We sit in brilliant sunshine on the rear deck of the Promenade as Otaru slips into the distance.Read more

    • Day494

      Otaru

      September 12, 2018 in Japan ⋅ ☀️ 12 °C

      This small town on the coast is famous for its’ seafood, historic stone buildings and a very scenic canal. We really enjoyed our brief time here walking along the canal and a pretty path along the old railway line, drinking local beer and sake, and admiring the beautiful, old buildings that lined the quaint streets and alleys. Glass making is a local specialty and a very good museum highlighted some of the world’s best glass making traditions, including an amazing display of Tiffany glass (which we weren’t allowed to photograph, unfortunately) displayed in an impressive old, stone bank.Read more

      Lucinda Ayers

      Haircut!!!

      9/16/18Reply
      Dobbs Away II

      Yep! It was time

      9/16/18Reply
       
    • Day26

      Otaru, Japan

      September 24, 2014 in Japan ⋅ ☁️ 21 °C

      We are so happy to get to Japan! After being on the cruise for so long, we were looking forward to some good Japanese food. We had our first of many real Japanes Ramen to come, and a really really goof fish cake!Read more

    • Day11

      Otaru

      September 14, 2016 in Japan ⋅ ☀️ 20 °C

      We travelled from Lake Toyako to Otaru today. We found this place called Otaru Asari Classe Hotel, which is located in the hills about 30 mins bus ride from Otaru Station on a bus. This place must be pretty busy in winter for skiing.
      Otaru is a port city and feels very different to Lake Toyako.

      Some pics from Otaru. I liked what someone did with the climber plants.

      Received an email about a job interview today.

      This place where we are staying at has an outside bath. I had a bath outside in the soft rain. So very nice. For dinner Jeff and I ate delicious sushi. I ate sea urchin for the first time ever. It was nice but I still don't understand why it's such a big deal. Jeff had nice sake.

      Day 2 in Otaru. Today we had a 'home day'. We did some laundry, went to a stretch class at the hotel (which was pretty weird), spent some time at the gym, bath and at a restaurant in the hotel. Spent a lazy but a nice day. We both read quite a bit today.
      Read more

      So you have ticked sea urchin off the list of things you have never tried. I don't mind sea urchin if good quality, but I like kani miso much more. Oh yum.

      9/20/16Reply
       
    • Day12

      The Famous Otaru Canal

      May 20, 2016 in Japan ⋅ 🌙 16 °C

      Today we took in more of Japan's west coast, we headed up as far as Shakotan and then worked our way back to Otaru which is famous for its canal & glass art. Lots of tunnels along the way and still quite a bit of snow on the peaks. Also still very warm, it was 26 degrees mid afternoon. Janet's elusive search for 'special' Japanese socks has also finally been realised. Tomorrow we move location and our accommodation as we are staying in a Ryokan for Janet's birthday. Will update you WiFi permitting tomorrow.Read more

    • Day16

      Otaru

      March 30, 2019 in Japan ⋅ ⛅ 3 °C

      Otaru est une ville touristique à 40min environ de Sapporo. Ce port était autrefois appelé le "Wall Street du nord" et comprend en plus de son jolie canal de nombreux établissements bancaire construit dans un style occidental. On y retrouve principalement des magasins de verres, de boîte à musique et des pâtisseries! Nous avons donc déambulé dans les rues par un beau soleil, goûtant des spécialités et récupérant des souvenirs. Nous avons aussi visité une ancienne banque avec une intéressante exposition sur la modernisation du système bancaire au Japon entre 1880 et 1950.Read more

    You might also know this place by the following names:

    Otaru, أوتارو, Отару, اوتارو، هوکایدو, QOT, 小樽市, 오타루 시, Отарү, Otaru-chhī, โอะตะรุ

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