Japan Guinness World Records: Oldest Living Man

Born in February 1903 in Soma (now Minami Soma), Fukushima, Momoi Sakari (百井 盛), is presently the world's oldest living man with the age of 111 (as of December 2014).

Mr. Momoi became a teacher and later worked as the principal of high schools in Fukushima and Saitama prefecture.

Can you imagine how it must be to experience more than 100 years of world evolution? How was the world 111 years ago?


A few important updates!

Hello everyone!

There is a couple of things which I have been introducing in the blog but still have not properly explained, so here it goes!

- The first one is directed to my fellow Portuguese followers, so forgive me for the message in Portuguese!

Estão a ver aquele botão ali à direita? Agora também podem seguir o blog The Rising Sky no MEO!
Há algum tempo criei um MEO Kanal para o blog e tenho estado a inserir alguns vídeos das minhas aventuras por cá. Espero que gostem!

Basta carregarem no botão verde e inserirem o número de canal 123797!
E não se esqueçam de partilhar com os vossos amigos!

- The second update is directed to everyone!

Recently I have been doing some running sessions alone or with some friends here in Tokyo, and I have been recording my progress with the Strava App! So I decided to create The Rising Sky Running Club so especially anyone with interest in this blog or in Japan and also running or cycling may share their sporting experiences, new roads they find, and so on!

You can find the Strava section in the right sidebar!

If you don't have the Strava App, visit the official website by clicking HERE!

- Last but not least, here is the third update!

Further below in the right sidebar, you can find some "badges" this blog has been receiving. The most recent one is this one:


Yes! "The Rising Sky" is now a Top Expat Blog from Tokyo Recommended by InterNations!

You can click the badge above or HERE to take a look at my interview!

Also, there is another update I did during this week, although it's not directly visible in the blog.
I have changed the hosting server of most of this blog's pictures, as they were not all together, so now I'm hoping that you get faster page loading speeds!

And that's all for now! Keep tuned for more updates!

Best Spot 18: Enoshima (江ノ島)

Map:


While not being very far from Tokyo (about one hour away), Enoshima (江ノ島) might be the total opposite of the Japanese capital.




Yes! It is still Japan!

This place is so peaceful, so calm and so beautiful as it is popular! Thankfully, I visited in a weekday so there were not many people around!




The island, situated off the coast of Fujisawa city in Kanagawa prefecture, has quite some nice attractions inside, such as the Observatory Lighthouse, a beautiful garden, streets that go up and down deep into the island, an awesome cave which is said to connect directly to Mt. Fuji (!!) and much more!

But enough of words. Please enjoy the pictures of this beautiful paradise.







(Yes! You can see Mt. Fuji from there!)

For more information, please visit the Fujisawa City Official Website below!


Best Spot 15: Kyoto (京都)

EDIT 22/11/2014: New pictures added! Check the Kinkaku-ji section and the bottom of the post!!

It's been a long time since I posted last Best Spot here, so here goes another one!

I was here digging around my old pictures from when I first came to Japan in 2011, and I found some quite nice ones from Kyoto! Let's take a look at this beautiful city! It will be far from complete but for now let's start!

Map:

Kyoto (京都市, Kyōto-shi) is a city located in the central part of the island of Honshu.
With a population of about 1.5 million people, Kyoto was formerly the imperial capital of Japan for more than one thousand years, and now it is the capital of Kyoto Prefecture.

With temples, parks, bustling business districts, markets, from regal estates to the tightly-packed neighborhoods, Kyoto is one of the oldest and most famous Asian metropolises!






As for major tourism spots in Kyoto, we'll start with maybe the most iconic one, Kinkaku-ji.




Kinkaku-ji (金閣寺, lit. "Temple of the Golden Pavilion"), officially named Rokuon-ji (鹿苑寺, lit. "Deer Garden Temple"), is a Zen Buddhist temple founded in 1397 by Yoshimitsu Ashikaga.

It is designated as a National Special Historic Site and a National Special Landscape, and it is one of 17 locations comprising the Historic Monuments of Ancient Kyoto World Heritage Site. It is also one of the most popular buildings in Japan, attracting a large number of visitors annually.



Below is a painting of the pavilion dated from before 1886, and a picture from the pavilion after the fire.



The present pavilion structure dates from 1955, when it was rebuilt after being burned down 5 years before.


Another one of Kyoto's must-go spots is Kiyomizu-dera.


Kiyomizu-dera (清水寺), officially Otowa-san Kiyomizu-dera (音羽山清水寺) is an independent Buddhist temple in eastern Kyoto. The temple is part of the Historic Monuments of Ancient Kyoto UNESCO World Heritage site.






It was founded in 798 (early Heian period), and its present buildings were constructed in 1633, ordered by the Tokugawa Iemitsu. There is not a single nail used in the entire structure. It takes its name from the waterfall within the complex, which runs off the nearby hills. "Kiyomizu" means "clear water", or "pure water".

Below is Otowa-no-taki (音羽の滝), the waterfall where visitors drink for health, longevity, and success in studies.


The large veranda in the main hall offers impressive views of the city!


To finish this guide, I'll include one more major spot, Nijō Castle.


Built in 1626 by the Tokugawa Shogunate (ordered by Tokugawa Ieyasu), the Nijō Castle (二条城 Nijō-jō) is a flatland castle, consisting of two concentric rings (Kuruwa) of fortifications, the Ninomaru Palace, the ruins of the Honmaru Palace, various support buildings and several gardens.

Below are some pictures of its beautiful gardens.





The surface area of the castle is 275,000 square meters, of which 8000 square meters is occupied by buildings.

It is also one of the seventeen assets of Historic Monuments of Ancient Kyoto which have been designated by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site.





Kyoto has many more famous places, but that's it for now! When I go to Kyoto again, I'll upload new pictures!

~~~~~

EDIT 22/11/2014: And here they are! Adding to the three new pictures of the Kinkaku-ji above, I'm going to write about a new place I visited in Kyoto recently!

The Ninna-ji Temple (仁和寺) was founded in 888, and is part of the Historic Monuments of Ancient Kyoto, as well as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.





Most of the original buildings were destroyed by a fire in the 15th century, and the present ones date from the restoration that took place in the 17th century.


I was very impressed by this temple, as it has a really... how do you say... holy? mysterious? heavy? peaceful? atmosphere. Kind of a combination of those. Really wonderful.

But if it is a really dense and sacred ambience what you are looking for, then behold the next spot!



Fushimi Inari Taisha (伏見稲荷大社) is the head shrine of Inari, the Japanese God of Foxes.

While I knew this place was really famous and I wanted so much to go, I didn't search much about it before going. And I was really surprised and amazed by the literally infinite number of torii gates there are in this shrine!



If you pass the shrine building and keep going forward, you'll quickly find there is quite a long path ahead of you. In fact, a 4-kilometer trail leads from the shrine to the top of Mt. Inari, passing by many smaller shrines.




Each one of these torii gates has the name of a company in it, as they are donated by those companies. Inari is also the God of Prosperity, so business holders worship it with hopes of bringing good fortune to their companies.




Really really beautiful. I would keep climbing it forever.

But oh well, there are so many perfect places in Kyoto that I can't count them all. Sometimes words aren't needed so just enjoy some more pictures below!