Tagged with "japan Archives - Roving Wanderer"
Aug 23, 2012 - Musings    No Comments

Travel Experience: Top 6 Things to do in Japan

If you are ever in Japan, it might be a little overwhelming deciding what to do. I was lucky enough to have some one guide me through the areas and also fortunate enough to stay with family. While some of my favorite memories of Japan are of the food that I ate, there’s a lot more to the country than just eating…I think.

6. Visit a Shrine

Ise Shrine

You don’t have to visit all the shrines in the area, but there are definitely some amazing ones out there. If you’re in Kyoto during the fall, the Kiyomizu-dera temple is a sight to behold. It’s a bit of a climb, but the view is definitely worth it. One of my other favorites was the Ise shrine in Honshu. Like most of the shrines, the Ise shrine is surrounded by nature, but there’s just something incredibly mystical about the area. Maybe it’s because the shrine was built to worship Amaterasu, the sun goddess, or maybe it’s the fact that we saw a very rare ceremony occurring that day. Either way, it was definitely worth the bus ride and wait.

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Aug 16, 2012 - Musings    2 Comments

Travel Experience: The Path to Becoming a Maiko

Yes even the back of your neck is painted white

When most people think about Kyoto they think Geishas. Before they become the glamorous geishas, though, most start off as maikos. The most important thing to dispel about geishas and maikos is that they are NOT prostitutes, at least not true the geishas and maikos. They are more or less entertainers trained in the arts of tea ceremony, dance and music. Maikos can range in age from 15 to 20. Any woman older than that is deemed too old to be a maiko, but can become a geisha without any training as a maiko. For maikos and geishas, there is generally a year long training session where the women learn the various aspects of hospitality, traditional dance and playing the shamisen. Lucky for me, there are plenty of places scattered in Kyoto that offer you the Maiko experience without having to train. All it takes is a kimono, some white make up and lots of hair wax.

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