Monday, June 07, 2010

asa-ichi and kanazawa

The next morning started quite early, we had a large breakfast featuring a soft boiled egg, dried pufferfish which was heated on a wire grill and other items (top left photo).

After breakfast we got ready and checked out raring to see the morning market. When we got there not many vendors nor customers had arrived so most of the vendors were calling out to us to come check out their wares.

This market is for locals as well as tourists, it was neat to see all the grannies chatting with each other.

We found a vendor selling dried fish and other dried seafoods, and picked up this dried tako (octopus). (top right photo). (I'll show you what I did with this in another post.)

One of the places Satoshi wanted to check out was this museum dedicated to Go Nagai (bottom right photo), a manga writer who is from Wajima. I think some of his works are Mazinger Z & Cutie Honey.

We paid 500 yen (about US$5) each for admission and what a let down (in our opinion). For one thing, no photos allowed, not even with the huge Mazinger Z in the lobby area.

There are some figurines and an area showing some of his cartoons but that was it, nothing more to see. Total waste of money in our opinion. (Though I did snap a photo of a little statue they had in the hallway between the two buildings of the museum, I'll show it to you on Flickr).

We did get to try some taikoyaki, these are round treats filled with things like sasagi beans, tiny shrimp, custard or sweet bean paste (top left photo). We tried the sasagi beans (black eyed peas) and tiny shrimp. 100 yen each. These were delicious, though we would've liked more shrimp.

Since we had some time before meeting up with our tour group, we popped into Chabo 3-chome for some coffee.

We liked the retro-feel of this place. (bottom right photo).

After coffee, we met up with our tour group and headed down the coast to Kanazawa.

Our first stop was a parking area called Togi. Here we were able to pick up some cider made with Oku-Noto salt...250 yen (about US$2.50)

We enjoyed the sweet salty combo of this. (top right photo)
At this parking area, we also saw the longest bench in the world...460.9 meters (about a quarter of a mile) (top left photo)

We also got some arare (bottom right photo), perfect for snacking on our long bus ride...350 yen (about US$3.50) and some squid-sesame senbei (crackers) 350 yen (about US$3.50, not pictured)

Our next stop was Ganmon (literally stone gate) and lunch. To see the stone gate we boarded a boat and took a 20 minute ride around the bay. 900 yen (about US$9) per person. (top right photo) Little boats can pass through the opening but boats as big as the one we were riding could only go up to the mouth of the entrance then had to back up, which is what we did.

Another thing we were able to see from the boat was the oldest lighthouse in Japan. Called the Old Fukura Lighthouse (not pictured), this structure is over 500 years old. Until recent years, this lighthouse was used and a couple of feet away is the new lighthouse.

After lunch, we passed by Hatagoiwa, a pair of rocks "tied" together with a large thick rope. (bottom right photo)

Our next stop was Myojoji to see their 5 tiered pagoda. The roofing in this temple complex is a technique called Kokerabuki. They use Japanese cedar or Sawara cypress and split the wood into thin boards 3 millimeters thick, 10 centimeters wide and 20-30 centimeters long.

They then layer these pieces, overlap them and fasten them with bamboo nails. By doing this, there is a gentle curve to the roof. (top left photo)

Our last stop before Kanazawa was the Chirihama Driveway. This is 8 kilometers of hardened sand that you can actually drive on.

Even our tour bus was okay on this sand. (bottom left photo)

It was a great tour.

At Kanazawa, we had some time to wait for our train connection so we checked out their omiyage annex and picked up a few snacks and some items to take back with us.

One thing we tried while waiting was the Okiagari monaka by Urata (top left photo), this sweet has a wafer shaped like a daruma (think Japanese weeble-wobble) and filled with sweet bean paste...105 yen (about US$1)

We also tried Suehirodo's Tamahime temari...157 yen (about US$1.57) This sweet is only made for Kanazawa's Hyakumangoku Festival (which was taking place the next day!).

The Hyakumangoku Festival commemorates Maeda Toshiie's entrance to the Kanazawa castle in 1583.

This sweet was steamed and filled with sweet bean paste. On top were some colorful fu (dried wheat gluten) and gold leaf. (bottom right photo)

We had a great time, I hope you did too, the weather was spectacular and we had lots to eat and see.

I'll share some of our omiyage (souvenirs) in another couple of posts.

Chabo 3-chome
2-47-1 Kawai-machi
Wajima, Ishikawa
Phone: 0768.22.5793

JR Kanazawa Omiyage Annex

JR Kanazawa Omiyage Annex


jalna said...

I really enjoyed this tour. Thanks Kat!

Anonymous said...

Yum! I'd love to have your breakfast. ;-)

Wonderful photos! Thanks for taking along with you. That was fun. ;-)


Rowena said...

Fantastic trip with all sorts of places and goodies. Yep, I just have to get to Japan one day. And the photo with the chatting grandmas....too cute!

K and S said...

Glad you enjoyed it Jalna :)

Anytime Paz :)

Thanks Rowena, those grannies were the best :)

Take care everyone!

KirkK said...

Love the photos Kat!

K and S said...

Thanks much Kirk :)

Take care.

Deb in Hawaii said...

I almost feel like I was there. ;-) A great tour and a fun trip.

K and S said...

I am glad you had fun too Debinhawaii :)

Take care.

Andy said...

It seemed like you missed the festival in Kanazawa. A pity.

It's a great opportunity to take a lot of photos of the street parades.

p.s. if you have time please check out my site and maybe comment since I am posting about food and drink in Kanazawa

K and S said...

Thanks Andy, will check out your site!

Take care.