Yamaguchi – a place of hospitality

31As a part of the SWY we had local program in variable prefectures of Japan. Ukrainian and Brazilian national teams were send to the Yamaguchi prefecture.
This place is relatively warm in comparison with the Northern Japan and we really felt it during the first 2 days. The next 2 days were impressing us with unstable weather like snowing during 2 minutes and than changing into sunshine.
We had very fruitful time during the 4 days spent in Yamaguchi. There was no time to stop wondering about all the attractive sights which we got to see in this beautiful city. Excitement was overloaded and I would gladly share the best places which I was so lucky to experience.
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Airport of Yamaguchi
The 1st on the list was Rurikoji Temple Pagoda which has been designated a national treasure is considered to be one of the Japan’s Three Famous Pagodas due to its beauty.

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We tried traditional cuisine, special for the Yamaguchi area “Kawarasoba” – local dish which is consists of tea-buckwheat noodles, meat and other ingredients served on a heated tile.

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Wearing traditional clothes in Kimono Dress-Up at Saikou-tei was pretty cool experience which helped us to feel the Japanese style. Wearing this beautiful outfit made us feel the tiny beautiful woman inside which was strengthen by photo session in the beautiful Japanese garden.

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We’ve got a flashback into the childhood in since & technology museum, where we had fun like children. There are so many interesting and unusual things which can’t leave any adult indifferent.

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Visiting Mazda factory in Hofu. It was interesting to know that the car is being produced within 15 hours at the factory. There are many of working spots where people have to do same work which is repeating every 10-15 min from the very beginning. They have limited time to do their responsibility until the next car will come.

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Tea ceremony at Yamaguchi Saikotei which was established as a restaurant in 1877. Here we were participating in tea ceremony of drinking matcha green tea. Beautiful ladies in kimono served us sweets and only after tasting them they offered us tea to drink. There is a special set of rules how to drink tea, how to accept it and how to appreciate the cup after tasting it.

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Hofu Tenmangu – Japanese first Tenmangu Shrine, where the God of learning is enshrined. Traditional architecture for Japanese culture but so unusual for Europeans made us fall in love with this place.

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If you are in Japan you need to try at least once a grand bath. Grand bath reminded me about our Ukrainian bath, but there are some differences which inspired me to use it. First you have to take a shower and after you can dive into the hot water spring. In our case we had two of the pools one inside and another outside. It was such a pleasure to sit in a warm bath and watch the stars.
Motonosumi Inari Shrine in Nagato. The shrine consists of 123 red tore gates from the Japan sea side. On the rocks you may observe a spring which occurs only in winter time.

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Apart the entertainment activities we had a chance to represent Ukrainian team at the Yamaguchi prefecture. It was a great pleasure to meet with Mr. Shoichi Hayashi, Assistant General Director of the Tourism, Sports and Culture Department  in Yamaguchi. Our delegation was able to present Ukraine and have a speech in a prefecture office.

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In the evening our national team had another official activity – SWY reception in Yamaguchi where Brazilian Ukrainian and Japanese people met together to talk, communicate and show their arts and culture. Our national team prepared a very popular song, the melody of which is known by the one of the Christmas Carols. On the welcoming reception we were able to try various Japanese cuisine and also join the traditional dance with all the guests.

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These 4 days really made a great impact into our cultural understanding of Japanese culture and traditions and I have to admit that Yamaguchi prefecture has a lot of things to offer to visitors.
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