Japan
Shimane

Here you’ll find travel reports about Shimane. Discover travel destinations in Japan of travelers writing a travel blog on FindPenguins.

6 travelers at this place:

  • Day13

    Light rain this monring as I head off to Izumo taisha, reputedly the oldest Shinto Shrine and the birthplace of Japan. It is said that all the kami, or gods, visit here together one month in every year, known as the 'month of the gods'. In the rest of Japan that month is known as the 'month without gods'.

    It is a spectacular shrine in a spectacular setting with superb buildings in the 'hioku-irimoya-zukiri' style which I really find appealing for its simplicity, grace and sense of mystery and magic. This place is also known as the shrine of marriage and relationships and is dedicated to Okuninushi no Mikoto the god of marriage. When worshipping here it is common to clap four times, rather than twice, two for you and two for the other; the object of your heart.

    The light rain actually adds a bit of atmosphere and grey skies are always good to bring out the colours in a photograph, especially the greens, of which there are multiple shades in this forested, mountainous place. The central compound is unfortunatly inaccessible to us mere mortals but what can be seen is spectacular and the main compound with its arched roofs and flying cross pieces is ringed by smaller shrines and other things like lots of statues of bunny rabbits in various poses. How cute or 'kawai' as they would say here.

    In the afternoon its back to rainy Matsue and I figure I'll visit the Shimane Art Museum and head of in the pouring rain with my trusty travel umbrella... only to find on arrival that the Museum is closed on a Tuesday...duh! Oh well I'll save it for tomorrow, I think, and promptly head off to the nearest giant shopping mall; sprawling multi floored temples to mass consumption which every city has many of.

    Tomorrow is another day and I hope the weather clears as I want to visit Matsue Castle and take a boat tour around the city on its many canals and rivers. Matsue is known as the Venice of Japan. Its also known for its amazing sunsets over lake Shinji so it would be pretty ironic if I come all this way and don't even see the sun let alone a good sunset.

    Fingers crossed!
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  • Day15

    Adachi Museum of Art

    May 11, 2017 in Japan

    I keep thinking I have discovered japan's most beautiful gardens, Katsura being the most recent, only to be surprised by even more beautiful locations. The Japanese Gardens that now have to be exceeded are those at the Adachi Museum of Art near Yasugi in Shimane. I found them just stunning and set within the context of an Art gallery made them even more beautiful somehow. The art on display was pretty spectacular in and of itself but the gardens all around and the way they are incorporated into the gallery display spaces and the overall Museum is amazing.

    But be a judge for yourself from my photos below. They don't really do them justice but I think you will see the beauty. I would love to return here in all 4 seasons to see how the gardens change.
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  • Day14

    Up early today, the forecast is good! Breakfast at the hotel then off for a brisk walk up by the lakefront and across lots of bridges to the Matsue Castle grounds. There are only 12 Castles remaining in Japan, most having been destroyed during the Meiji Restoration. I have visited 6 so far and will visit one or two more on this trip. Today it was the turn of Matsue Castle. Not the largest or most imposing - Himeji takes that accolade - but with a beauty and authenticity that immediatly make it one of my favorites. Inside is a veritable history lesson with many suits of samurai armour, minature models of Matsue in different eras and lots of original artefacts as you climb up the levels to the top floor. The top floor is open on all sides for some stunning views out over Matsue and environs. Really helps appriciate the city and its many canals.

    The grounds also contain two Shrines, the most famous of which is the Jozen Inari Shrine filled with thousands of fox statues of every shape and size and some clearly very ancient. Its amazing to think that these places have been here for many hundreds of years, especially coming from N.Z. where almost nothing is more than 150 years old.

    I take a boat ride around the canals in a boat whose roof lowers so it can get under low bridges. Lowers so much I have to lie almost flat on the floor of the boat. Everything in Japan is made for small flexible people not large inflexible ones like me. The bus seats are so small I have to stand even when the bus is empty :-)

    I wander aimlessly around the city streets exploring and come across many Temples. In fuedal times they served a military purpose too, being situated in strategic spots that were easily defensible.... and many 'monks' were actually troops in disguise. There is a whole area of them the 'teramachi' among a network of canals that served to defend the city and make it difficult for attackers to get anywhere near the Castle.

    After lunch I head off to visit two 'Art Museums' but they deserve a post all of thier own :-)
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  • Day14

    Landed

    April 6 in Japan

    We're in Japan.

    Getting off the boat here was a lot faster and less stressful. The tour guides assembled by the doors, the Korean tour parties assembled themselves upstairs, and the 11 foreigners (9 Russians and us) were herded to the front and whisked off the boat before we could interfere with the elaborate queuing systems that were clearly abpit to be implemented.

You might also know this place by the following names:

Shimane-ken, Präfektur Shimane, Shimane, Prefektur Shimane, شيمانه, Şimane, Шимане, Prefectura de Shimane, شیمانێ, Prefektura Šimane, Gubernio Ŝimane, Shimane prefektuur, استان شیمانه, Shimanen prefektuuri, Préfecture de Shimane, Tó-kîn-yen, Prefektura Shimane, Prepektura ti Shimane, Prefettura di Shimane, 島根県, ខេត្តស៊ីម៉ាណិ, 시마네 현, Šimanės prefektūra, Simanes prefektūra, शिमाने, Wilayah Shimane, ضلع شیمانے, Prefectura Shimane, Симане, Šimane, Префектура Шимане, Shimane Prefecture, Shimane prefektur, Mkoa wa Shimane, Префектураи Шимане, จังหวัดชิมะเนะ, Prepektura ng Shimane, Префектура Сімане, 岛根县

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