Here is the next installment of my Memories of Japan series: a peek at the sights of Takayama and the experience of staying in a ryokan! You can't miss it!
Following our stay in Hakone, we arrived eagerly arrived in Takayama. We stayed at the Ryokan Oyado Kot No Yume, a Japanese traditional hostel where you can enjoy tatami floors, thermal springs (onsen), gardens and sophisticated food with traditional dishes.
Just as we arrived, we were asked to take off our shoes and then we were offered some green tea. Then a kind guy asked us to follow him to what looked like a souvenir shop, and I thought “what a strange thing, doesn’t seem like normal Japanese behavior and I don’t want to buy anything!”, but he didn’t want to sell us anything! He just wanted asked us to chose a kimono for the traditional dinner we had booked.
We got to our beautiful Japanese room and… what a mess! I had no clue how to get into the kimono, so I was thankful a very kind lady came and help me.
My companion had no trouble whatsoever to get into his clothing though… he was a japanese hero.
We enjoyed a delicious dinner and went for a walk around town with our clothes. Very touristy, but I have to recognize it was a great night.
The next morning, we took a bath in the onsen and then we hired a couple bikes to go around the ryokan. It was amazing! We enjoyed seeing the typical houses, the narrow streets, the beautiful gardens and a few temples that conveyed a peace hard to find in large Japanese cities.
If you visit Japan, don’t hesitate to spend at least a night in a ryokan. There are a few that are really expensive, but you can also find some with more affordable prices and you will have a great time all the same. I would have liked more if the onsen in our ryokan were outdoors, but I still enjoyed the experience.
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