When visiting Japan in early 2023 I exposed 8 rolls of film, this is a collection of pictures from that trip.
If you have been following my Analogue Adventures lately you already know some of these pictures from previous articles covering different films.
Here I will tell you which places I took those pictures and which areas I think are worth visiting.
If you want to have a good view at Mt. Fuji, Fujikawaguchiko is the place to visit. That is when the weather is good, which wasn’t really the case for us. In the picture above you would be seeing it if it wasn’t covered in clouds.
So we used most of the time to check around and also had a look at some of the local temples.
On the last day around sunset time we finally got a look at Mt. Fuji:
We were also a bit early for the cherry blossom in this area.
If you are from the western world and you have never been to Japan, what comes closest to your idea of Japan is probably Kyoto.
Kyoto is home to several of Japan’s most famous sights and at seemingly every corner you can find a new temple to discover. A few notable ones: Kinkaku-Ji (Golden Temple), Daigo-ji, Nanzen-Ji and Daikaku-Ji:
The latter is also close to the Arashiyama Bamboo forest and the famous Togetsu-kyo Bridge:
And here we were also lucky with the cherry blossoms:
If you need to prioritize and you cannot visit everything in Kyoto I would say don’t visit Nijō Castle. Compared to Japan’s more famous castles like Matsumoto or Himeji it isn’t as impressive and you are also not allowed to take pictures inside.
Osaka is Japan’s second biggest city with 2.7 mio. residents. To me it mostly had the charme of an industrial city and next to Kyoto it simply wasn’t as impressive.
Dotonbori is a shopping/restaurant street and all the restaurants with their spectacular facades were definitely worth a closer look though – especially at night.
Another area that might be worth visiting is Ebisuhigashi where there are also a few nicely decorated shops:
Compared to Kyoto and Osaka, Takayama felt surprisingly calm and laid back. I mainly came here for the historic part of the town and it was definitely worth it, albeit the modern flooring ruins the impression of a historic town a bit.
Our short stay was enough for us to became fans of the local Hida beef.
Hida village is a huge open air museum. We actually didn’t expect much of it, but we were greatly surprised by its size and all that there was to see. Information was also available in English. We definitely learned something there.
We wanted to visit the Joshinetsu-Kogen National Park as well as Matsumoto castle so we also found our way to Nagano in the Japanese Alps. There are some nice landscapes here and we were really lucky with the cherry blossoms.
The city of Nagano wasn’t all that impressive, but there were still some nice corners to discover.
The Zenko-Ji temple is of notable importance as it allegedly houses Japan’s first Buddha statue, it is not on display for the public though.
Toyko is huge and I have only seen small portions of it. We spend most of the time in Shibuya and Shinjuku and our hotel was in Ginza.
The Senso-Ji temple is probably Tokyo’s most famous one. You can also find a lot of souvenir shops and bars here trying to appeal to the tourists. Having visited some of Kyoto’s temples before this one wasn’t all that impressive though. On the way we also got a good look at the Tokyo Skytree.
One morning we visited the Tsukiji fish market. It used to be much bigger, but now the real fish market has been moved to Odaiba, but that one isn’t really open to the public.
One day we made our way to the Imperial Palace and stopped by at the Tokyo International Forum on the way.
I also visited plenty of camera stores, but you definitely need to compare prices and most of the small shops don’t offer tax free shopping and demand paying in cash. You can find more information on the camera shops of Japan in this article.
On my trip to Istanbul I “only” carried one analogue camera which meant I always only had one ISO setting available. Here I carried two analogue cameras and always loaded them with different films, this gave me a lot of added flexibility which I enjoyed a lot.
Unfortunately it also meant carrying even more stuff which I didn’t enjoy.
And then there were some places we went where I wasn’t willing to rely on analogue cameras exclusively, e.g. the teamlabs Planets museum or the national park with the snow monkeys, so I carried and used a digital camera as well.
Not sure yet how I will arrange that on the next trip.
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- Lens aberrations explained
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