Author: Tom Shuttleworth

Photo of the Week: Industrial Tourism, Tokyo, Japan

  Industrial Tourism Tokyo Japan   It’s an oft-overlooked fact that Tokyo is a city by the sea, and to be honest, it’s easily done.  Visitors to the world’s largest urban area spend most of their time trying to keep from drowning in an ocean of metropolitan pleasures that encompass the mad kaleidoscope of rabid consumerism, zen artistic minimalism, ancient tradition, world-class gluttony, and outright sleaze!  Catching an ocean breeze and feeding the gulls seems to be the last thing on most people’s minds.   Whilst there are pockets of entertainment on Tokyo’s shores, the landscape is largely dominated...

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Headed West: Rural Travel in Japan's Noto Peninsula

  Headed West: Rural Travel in Japan’s Noto Peninsula   It’s easy to get caught up in the industrial/entertainment juggernaut that is the East Coast of Japan. The mind-bending neon and manga inspired mayhem are all consuming and distract from the fact that Japan has a West Coast, too. So it comes as a surprise to find ourselves in the city of Kanazawa, understated transport hub of the West Coast scene, and gateway to Japan’s Noto Peninsular. Japan’s largest protrusion pokes out into the Sea of Japan like a craggy old grandma’s index – wrinkled, crusty, and tough-as-old-boots after...

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Photo of the Week: The Peak District, England

Photo of the Week: The Peak District England “When I was here, I wanted to be there; when I was there, all I could think of was getting back into the jungle.” says Martin Sheen’s Captain Willard in the prelude to an infamous moment of method acting/nervous breakdown at the start of Apocalypse Now. OK, so my existence in the urban, err, jungles of Tokyo is a long way from Vietnam, and the home I long for is England rather than Ohio. Still, the sentiment remains the same. Upon reaching the age of reason, I spent much of my...

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Your Guide to Oxford, U.K.

Often synonymous with its university, the bell chimes of Oxford’s spires ring to the sounds of elitism and wealth.  It is a city that has produced some of the world’s great leaders and/or some of its biggest rogues, and for most British school kids its university is a seat of learning to be aspired to but not one that they will likely enter.     Your Guide to Oxford, UK   For the traveler though, Oxford is a city rich beyond avarice with accessible attractions that rival nearby London.  Here, distracted by churches, museums and colleges that are older...

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Photo of the Week: Nankinmachi in Kobe, Japan

Nankinmachi in Kobe, Japan After Japan was bullied out of its self-imposed isolation in the mid 19th Century, the port city of Kobe in southern Honshu became one of the nation’s first cities to reluctantly open its doors to the outside world.  The usual hotchpotch of merchants, empire architects, bon vivants, and religious crusaders rocked-up to get their share of the spoils and in doing so laid the foundations for what remains one of the most cosmopolitan areas of the country.   European and American traders settled in splendid residences ‘up on the hill’, where after a day’s wheeling...

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