The View From Osaka Castle

There seems to be a castle wherever you go in Japan, but Osaka Castle should be on your short list of must visit Japanese castles. Originally built in 1583, Osaka Castle is the main symbol of Osaka. If you happen to visit between late March and Early April, then you’ll be lucky to see the castle surrounded by cherry blossom trees. Now THAT would be pretty (and cost you a pretty penny).

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Itsukushima Shrine on Miyajima Island

As you travel through Japan, you will undoubtedly notice the many torii, or religious shrines. However, there is no torii more dramatic than Itsukushima Shrine on Miyajima Island. At low tide, visitors can walk up to the torii. At high tide, visitors enjoy the torii from a distance. When we visited, it was raining heavily. It was dark, gray, gloomy, and seemingly magical. Another UNESCO World Heritage site checked off of my list.

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One Night In Fukuoka

Ah, Japan. Last summer, I embarked on a multi-city jaunt through the Land of the Rising Sun. The trip was memorable for so many different reasons and as I get ready to revisit Japan, I thought it would be fun to share some of those memories.

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Chelsea Market: New York’s Most Famous Neighborhood Market

Chelsea Market is to New York City as Reading Market is to Philadelphia. If you enjoy food, then it’s the place to go. The market is located in the Meatpacking District (MePa) just across the street from Google’s New York offices. On the floors above the market you will find EMI Music Publishing,, the Oxygen Network, and, most fittingly, The Food Network. And just above Chelsea Market, on the 10th Avenue side, is New York’s elevated park, the High Line.

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Smorgasburg at Brooklyn Bridge Park’s Pier 5

I’ve been to Eat The Street here in Hawaii numerous times, and so when Michelle mentioned to me that we would be going to Smorgasburg, I thought I knew what to expect. I was wrong. Smorgasburg is bigger and grandeur, and for the die-hard foodie, it can be damn near disorienting. Mario Batali has called it “the single greatest thing I’ve ever seen gastronomically in New York City,” while the New York Times has described it as “the Woodstock of eating.” They are both right.

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