Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Yufuin Part 2

(Better Know a City)

[Editor's note: still working through my old notes and pictures. This post originally took place a few months ago, but I'm just getting around to writing it now. I've still got one more of these coming on Nakatsue-Mura, before I retire my "Better Know a City" project.]

A British friend of mine in Tokyo was coming down to visit Yufuin for a day, and invited me to join him. I came along, and decided to grab my camera as well.

Truth be told, I was never very happy with my original post on Yufuin Town. For one thing, we spent half the day climbing the mountain, which I believe isn't even technically inside the town boarders.
For another thing, I didn't get a lot of good pictures. My camera was in the shop at the time, and I was reduced to taking only low-resolution pictures with my video camera.
If it were any other town, maybe I would have just called it good. But Yufuin is one of the most beautiful towns in Oita prefecture, and I've always wanted to try and get some better pictures that really capture the beauty of the place.

So, I tried to take more pictures this time around.
I still feel like I didn't really do the town justice. But trying to really capture a place on film is a loosing battle. I've tried twice now, and I'm going to call it good.

Anyway, here is Yufuin, Day 2, Sunday October 4, 2009

First of all, driving into Yufuin I had an opportunity to stop at a scenic overlook. From the mountain, I could take some pictures and video of the town below.

From here, I drove down to the main Yufuin station. While I waited for my friend, I walked up and down the streets and took some pictures.

Once I met up with my friend and his parents, we walked over to the pond, where I got some more pictures.

My friend really wanted to visit a certain coffee shop near the pond that his boss had recommended to him. My friend had the name of the shop written down on paper (from his boss) in Japanese kanji (pictograms).  However although both me and my friend could read Japanese reasonably well, these particular kanji characters were obscure enough that neither of us could figure out the proper pronunciation, which made it difficult to ask for directions.
We did eventually find it after walking around for a while.
(It turns out, I had been here twice before, but it was a very nice place, with a very nice atmosphere.)

Then we walked along the river, and I took some more pictures.

And as we walked back towards the center of town, I got one last picture.

...So, yeah, a few more pictures than the previous post. I still didn't really get out and explore much past the central tourist areas. And I still didn't really capture the place much on film. But for what it is worth, this is my take on Yufuin.

Bonus Pictures:
These were taken on the way into Taketa,

Link of the Day
Noam Chomsky: Government In The Future


Anonymous said...


Came across your blog when i searched for Yufuin as i am travelling there in 2 weeks time.

Read with interest about the coffee shop called The Kanji - do you have the address of the place as I can't seem to find it on the internet?

Appreciate any help or tips you can share.


Joel said...

Actually that's a mistake on my part. I should have used lower-case letters for the kanji. What I meant was the kanji characters (the Japanese pictograms) were so unusual we couldn't figure out how to pronounce them.
I'm sorry I can't be much help. It was a couple years ago now, and even at the time I didn't remember the address. It's up around the area of the pond, that's the best I can do.

Joel said...

Update: I've re-written those sentences to try and make it clearer. Below is how they originally read. The post as it reads now is (hopefully) clearer in meaning. Sorry for my bad writing.
My friend really wanted to visit a certain coffee shop near the pond that his boss had recommended to him. The Kanji was so unique that neither of us knew how to pronounce it, but he had it written down on a piece of paper. We walked around, and eventually discovered it.

Joanne Chen said...

No worries, thanks very much. Will show the locals there your photos of the cafe and maybe they can help.

Thanks again!

Joanne Chen said...

Think i found the cafe - check this link out

Looks similar to your photo :)


Joel said...

I checked the link and that is definitely it.
So it looks like the name is Sabotenjosajiki
Trip Advisor doesn't give a street address, but somewhere in Yufuinchokawakami. If memory serves, we had to do a bit of wandering before we found it. It's a nice place though, arguably worth the trouble. Good luck