Summer holidays 1999 - Intro - Yura -  Haguro -  Tazawako -  Oga Peninsula -  Atsumi


13th - 14th August

(A tough decision - should this page be green or blue?)

Atsumi is a real old-fashioned spa town. Many such places, like old-time seaside resorts in Britain, have fallen on hard times: those who would have been visitors thirty years ago have gone off to Saipan or Hawaii. We stayed in an ancient ryokan that looked exactly as I remember an illustration in my Naganuma Japanese textbook (which looked ancient, even twenty years ago), which just happened to be opposite a (modernish) hotel that had obviously closed for good. Yet, paradoxically, on the edge of the town was a sparkling new hotel complex, which was obviously hoping to find customers from somewhere.

Sorry, no pictures of the town at all. But in the morning we did the 'green' bit...

We climbed a good way up the "Three waterfalls" trail in the hills above Atsumi. The path was steep and overgrown, and we had several encounters with stinging nettles. (Which are very rare in Japan, and probably different from English stinging nettles.)

Anyway, we'd passed Ichi-no-taki, and Ni-no-taki, so I photographed what I supposed was No. 3 ... then a bit further on we found one labelled San-no-taki. Ha!

(High-quality image)

"Waterfall 2.5"

We finally left Atsumi around lunch time, and drove off down the coast. Between here and Niigata there is a long mountainous section, where the road winds along the base of cliffs and through numerous tunnels. Along the section known as Sasagawa-nagare we found a nice little beach for a final swim...

Obviously a different photographer this time...

This day was overcast again (which I blame for the pinkish tinge), but still blazing hot. Aki had made quite a bit of progress towards learning to swim, and we all got suntans of various shades. Here's a final look back at the beach...

Perhaps we'll sort those colour balance problems out next year?

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© Brian Chandler 1999