From Gojo, it is about 30 minutes to Asuka.
This area has many rock formations and kofun (tombs).
To get around we decided to rent bicycles.
It was a slight but steady incline to get from the Asuka station to the area we would be staying at near Oka dera (Oka temple).
Along the way we saw many rock formations, like those in the shape of monkeys called Saruishi. One in the shape of a cutting board called Oni no manaita (Devil's cutting board).
There was even one called Oni no Secchin (Devil's toilet)...eep!
as well as the tombs of many emperors/empresses of the past.
I didn't take many photos of these things as it seemed kinda creepy.
Lunch was at Tengyokudo, a maker of kuzu (arrowroot) for over 130 years.
I ordered their tonkatsu sandwich set...1900 yen (tax included).
This came with some soup, an all-you-can-eat salad bar and kuzu mochi (arrowroot).
Since Satoshi was still full from breakfast, he only wanted salad for lunch, so he took my salad bar portion and I just had the soup, sandwich and mochi.
The katsu was cooked perfectly and it was nice to get out from the heat of the day for a bit.
At Asuka-dera (Asuka temple), we saw the oldest buddhist statue which dates back to 609.
The priest there gave all the visitors a nice and easy explanation about the statue and temple.
It was so hot that we stopped in at Asucome to have some gelato at a kiosk called Genki na kajitsu kobo.
I had their Asuka Ruby (strawberry) smoothie. While Satoshi had their yomogi (mugwort) gelato. All the fruits used at this shop is grown at their farm...so good!
Then we went to check-in at the place we would be staying at, Minshuku Wakaba.
We left our bags and then walked up the super steep incline to Oka dera.
I loved seeing all these dahlia in their pond.
The 3-story pagoda and the view from this area, is something to see but you'll need to climb up some stairs to do so...
Since the minshuku we were staying at did not serve any meals, and most every eatery around us was closing at 17:00, we headed to 7-eleven to get some things for dinner and breakfast.
The items we chose had to be eaten as is, as there was no refrigerator for us to use. Nor was there anything to heat up foods with (though I did spy a microwave afterwards)...
Sharing two toilets with about 10 others, as well as taking turns bathing wasn't too bad, it was the smoking that got me.
The walls between every room were fusuma (literally paper doors), so whomever was smoking (constantly), the smoke would just waft into our room...*cough*
They really need to ban smoking in this country...
Another long day, with all the biking and heat from the day, I turned in before 21:00.
Stay tuned for the rest of our adventure...
Asucome (Genki na kajitsu kobo)
410 Asukamura Oka
956 Oka, Takaichi area