LOVING THE FOUR SEASONS: WINTER

As regions in Japan go from blazing colours, a frigid chill engulfs the whole of Japan, while you may not see sheets of snow in the metropolitan cities, areas surrounding mountains and northern regions are regularly covered by fresh sheets of snow.

As winter nears, the arrival of cranes spreads across Japan. They fly their way to Japan to winter here and in the spring return to their breeding grounds. From ages old, the Japanese have loved the sight of the noble-looking bird prancing in the snow. The love for these birds can be seen in the language, arts and culture as a symbolic representation of  longevity and good luck. To know more about the Crane, read the following article https://mosaique.life/Ruchira25/Tsuru-The-Japanese-Crane

Winter is also time for kotatsu, warm blankets and hot seated toilets! I will introduce few things to do and food to eat. 

KOTATSU: Heaters to keep the room warm, but the kotatsu is a small, low table with a heater underneath it, to keep your toes from freezing up, you can sit around the table to eat, sleep around and basically do everything possible in it.

The best luxury is the seat warming toilets in Japan. 

 

 

FOOD:

Oden, Nabe, sukiyaki ( hot pot): The main food that warms the body inside out, is the hotpot. Steamed meat and vegetables eaten from a earthenware vessel is a treat in the winter. Most foods during winter are all pot based with slight variations. 

Crabs and Fugu: Fugu is the dangerous, delicacy that Japan is known famously for, best tried with warm sake. Is the fish really worth dying for? Try it for yourself! 

Sweets: whether it is freezing hot or blazing hot, sweets are always there to keep us happy. The traditional hot sweet dish eaten is zenzai oroshiruko (sweet bean paste with mochi) 

 

 

Winter sports: All the mountains become ski resorts in the winter! Make a trip to a skiing resort and enjoy white mountain scenaries. Ice skating is really popular too.

 

Hot springs, onsen: Community bathing is an everyday lifestyle of the Japanese, but hot springs are best experienced when it's freezing outside right? Hot springs are said to have healing and stress releasing effects. If you're uncomfortable with community bathing, there are inns that offer separate baths attached to your rooms. Open baths can be enjoyed while gazing at pretty scenaries around.

Snow festivals andd Illuminations: Sapporo is known for its snow festival, exhibits made of ice and snow. Illuminations are spread acroos to spend time with your loved ones during christmas and new year.

As we come to the end of the series, i owuld like to say that whatever we may read online and watch, nothing beats the real experience of living in the place and feeling all the changes through your body. I experienced summer and autumn myself and  somethings i cannot put into words because only my body remembers the feeling of the air, the breeze, the landscape and the sounds. A full experience deserves time, and try to make time to really understand, when you go travelling.

 

India

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