After about a week of adventures, it’s time to move on to our third location! The last morning in our very nice hotel in Sendai was both fun and hectic. After a good breakfast with a variety of foods, we all packed up this morning to travel to Kanazawa.
Once we got to the station with our heavy luggage, we were able to get food from the many convenience stores around the station. We then took the bullet train network to our destination; we had to make one switch in Omiya, but we covered around 700 miles in about three and a half hours! It was amazing to see the bullet trains in person instead of on television or in movies. Both rides were very smooth and there weren’t any issues. On the ride to Kanazawa, there were breathtaking views of mountains that seemed to go on forever. On the train, there was time to catch up on readings, finish assignments due that night, or catch a little nap.
At around 2:15 p.m. local time, we arrived in Kanazawa and proceeded to the station, where the last member of our group finally met up with us! We walked to our hotel and checked in with our self-chosen roommates. Similar to the last hotel, our hotel in Kanazawa provides each person with a fresh pair of hotel pajamas as well as slippers.
After dropping off our luggage in our rooms, the group began walking to Kanazawa Castle! The walk was about 30 minutes, and we all socialized and took in the new city. After about 30 minutes, the group made it to the castle and the private garden and began to explore. The unique castle is not what one in Western society would think of as a castle with many intersections and built with a tall design. Instead, this castle was built as protection from invaders and is surrounded by moats and was split into nine areas for defense. Many areas of the castle were simply walls and gates, with the main family living in the honmaru, the main compound. This castle has gone through many different reconstructions over time. Both the castle and its garden were beautiful to see in the snow.
After seeing the castle, we took a long walk back to the hotel and went our separate ways for dinner. Some people went to a restaurant inside the hotel, and others went into town to eat sushi and other Japanese delicacies. Even with travel, today was an eventful day. On to the next!!