I went to Kumamoto, Japan (熊本) on my way back from Kagoshima a few years back. Kumamoto recently has had a big tourism boom thanks to local mascot Kumamon. Admittedly I was swayed by the Kumamon boom and decided to check out the city.

I found Kumamoto to be a small friendly city full of great local food and kind people. Its a city dominated by the largest castle in Japan Kumamotojo (熊本城), and has a large garden complex, Suizenji (水前寺公園) as well. Transit is by car of tiny street cars and the city felt like a large neighborhood. Every seller was kind and an old lady stopped and complimented on my Mariju nails. It was only a day trip, but I’d like to go back maybe during koyo and sample their ramen.

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Kumamoto Castle

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Lovely walk inside Kumamoto garden

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A cute matcha store

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From the top of Kumamoto Castle

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Shrine inside Kumamoto garden

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Cute giftshop outside Kumamoto garden featuring Kumamon

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The super convenient and cute light rail of Kumamoto

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Yomogi Ikinari Dango, a Kumamoto speciality of sweet potato and azuki bean.

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The great interesting flavors of Kumamoto’s own gelato. I got tomato. It was tasty and ate it while looking at Kumamoto castle.

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A frozen Ikinari dango eaten with the Kumamoto castle ticket

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Kumamon souveniers I bought for my friend Alice.

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Citrus stand inside Kumamoto gardens.

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People gearing up and me eating another Ikinari dango.

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Karashi renkon: The lotus roots, holes filled with the Japanese mustard mixed with miso paste, is battered and deep fried. It’s one of the most famous local dishes of Kumamoto.

It was suprisingly tasty!

I had such a lovely day trip I keep suggesting to my man to visit there again. He’s not very swayed but I promise Kumamoto is definitely a great stop if you’re heading to Kagoshima, Fukuoka or Nagasaki.

Why so long no posts Mitsu?

So your girl Mitsu made a post about oh woe I was going to quit blogging but blogging is important and we need more words and such and so forth and forthwith… Then what do I do after two measly posts? Take a damn break. Every blogger is hypocritical, every damn one of us.

Well I got older and somehow that meant a lot of busy birthday time and then my man got a job. A job that is in Atlanta. A job they decided they wanted him to start right away at. Houston to Atlanta sounds like no big deal since it’s still the South but America is just damn big. It’s 800 miles away or the equivalent of London to Stockholm or Tokyo to Kagoshima. Atlanta being a place I’ve never even visited before (unlike London, Stockholm, Tokyo and Kagoshima oddly…). So we had to drive out there find an area we like and a place we want to stay for at least a year… in two days. Madness!

But we did it and my new place will be awesome and maybe I’ll even post decorating and we’re slowly moving there so posts will stay hectic. My twitter is a billion times more updated on real life stuff and instagram is semi-updated. I also promised to post a place of my Houston digs on twitter so if you’re a curious bee you may want to check?  I need to edit pictures for the book review/summary but expect two posts of that soon(ish). Other than that lazy blogger is real life frazzled so give me some time.  :peace:

Kumamon has taken Japan by storm. He was originally the winner of the 2011 mascot contest and since then has become wildly popular. According to wiki “His success at the contest caused Kumamoto to gather ¥11.8 billion (US$120 million, GB£79 million, €93 million) in merchandising revenues for the first half of 2012”. When I went to Kumamoto in 2013 he was was everywhere in the city.

Official blog
Fan tumblr

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I wasn’t a big fan when I first saw him, but all the cute ufo catcher toys warmed me and then when I actually went to Kumamoto I was impressed by how much he was there and smiling. I think the statues and good are really cute. I got my friend the Kumamoto ramen since it’s a bit famous and my man a mascot t-shirt because it was a bit too cute.