In Japan there is a city with the citizens who trust each other. It seems that they drink water from one source that flows along their houses. As well, they wash hands after the meals in the same places. Satoyama in translation means an ideal place for life in harmony with the nature. It is situated in Northern prefecture Gifu that is isolated from the rest of the world with the mountain tops and rice fields.
The city Satoyama is cut into two parts with Seto river. It used to be a wide channel that divided citizens to Samurai and peasants. The Samurai built sturdy and rich houses whereas others constructed small houses along the water on the opposite side. Today near the river, on both sides, every day children are crowding with bread crusts. The kids feed colored carps for which Seto river became a house. The fish is not afraid of people and takes food from the arts without hurry, swimming along the channel. Apart from that, there are lampreys, crabs, pigfish, and other living creatures in the water.
However, only carps feel the biggest confidence. Also, people are glad to see them in the houses. All the residential areas are equipped with the swimming-pools that are constantly full with the flowing water from Seto river. It takes these waters from the swimming pools in the main channel. Actually, such floods of water are the part of private possessions. The swimming-pools in the houses of Satoyama plays a very important role in the life of citizens. In such a water the vegetables are washed along with greenery, there dishes are washed after the meal. Most often the citizens of the city eat rice, meaning, a lot of boiled seeds come to the water. Nevertheless, they don’t tamper it but serve as the nutrition for the carps. The indicator of purity in Seto is the unique type of candle fish without scale that resides only in the pure sources. The surface of the flood also plays significant role. It has almost been covered with the thick layer of seaweeds. In the daylight the plants emit bubbles of oxygen raising at the surface of the water and cleaning the water with the oxygen.Photo c1.staticflickr.com
Satoyama is special not only because of the river flowing across the residential houses and vivid participation in the process of biotic community. The city is surrounded by the rice fields, there are many vegetable beds. In the forests nearby there are mushrooms and fruits that also serve the food for the locals. The wood is used by the citizens of Satoyama for new buildings and biomass what is the only source of energy for Satoyama citizens, in its turn. The citizens of Satoyama are sure to have got everything necessary for life. They are able to live in a calm manner in their almost perfect world even not taking the blessings of civilization.Photo nippon.com
Such an isolated life traditional for ancient Japanese villages has recently been actively supported by the government of the country. It gives possibility to people to do for a living not getting the outside help. In Japan which generally depends on the import of nutrition and energy it is the relevant question. At first, it is benevolent for the health of the people who reside in less stressful environment and, gradually, attract new tourists in the country. Apart from that, the government of the country has invented strategy or, how it is also called in Japan, reconstruction of transformation to the eco-settlements.Photo jlgc.org.uk
The interest to the true-circle processing lifestyle in Japan is growing. The hundreds of tourists come every year to look how and what the ‘isolatos’ live. The office clerks from the neighboring Kyoto come to rest from the city vanity. Many of them for the first time take bicycles while everybody who wants that are able to help the locals to dig their vegetable gardens or catch a carp in the river. In the center of the settlement there is museum of folk crafts. It is prominent not only with its exhibition pieces but also because it is done without any nails. The builders gathered it like a puzzle using the ancient technique of Japanese masters. Those who are hungry take river fish in the small hasheries, houbamiso that is prepared at the leave of magnolia and drink sake.
Ice cream with a taste of horse meat, pickled insects, fish with deadly venom, etc – Japanese cuisine has things to surprise, amaze and shock you with. And truth be told, enumeration of these dishes doesn’t help my appetite at all. But we are not after exotic stuff. True culinary tourism is an attempt to comprehend mindset and feel national distinctive color through traditional cuisine – not try most exotic dishes.
One of the smallest capitals of the world – Malé – offers to have a look at the country’s, not 5-star hotel’s, places of interest and to get closer to life of ordinary Maldivians, not people from a room next door. First association that comes to mind at the mention of the Maldives is something azure and pastoral.
Its sounds penetrate the heart, stop the flow of thoughts and cause the blood to move in some kind of magical rhythm. It's a roll of thunder. It gives the shivers. It's a secret. Japanese drums in their homeland are elevated to the rank of cult. Without them, not a single official event is possible, their melodies delight the hearing during joy and help to experience sadness.
The Senegalese capital of Dakar is not only the most important city of West Africa, but also a city of extremes, a fascinating introduction if purpose of the trip is to "get acquainted with the Continent, but gently and smoothly". In addition to many civilizational and habitual to modern people attributes of life, every moment you feel spirit of Africa, at once both intimidating, romantic, off-beat and deeply alluring.
Build your cities on the slopes of Vesuvius!, Nietzsche exclaimed in a prophetic ecstasy. Gloomy pathos of the philosopher could be hardly understood by the residents of the Japanese city of Kagoshima, located at the bottom of the caldera Aira resulting from the explosion about 22 thousand years ago. Farmers were hoeing edges of the hollow from the Bronze Age, as usual fending off the ashes scattered in the air.
Macbeth Castle, mountains, hospitable pubs serving tasty snacks, fragrant distilleries and, of course, the famous Loch Ness monster – all that is concentrated in one place, the Scottish city of Inverness and its surrounding area. As regards tourism Inverness is significantly behind Aberdeen and Edinburgh, to say nothing of Glasgow...
So, to wash your hands, you have to leave indoor slippers before bathroom threshold, step into the bathroom, slip into the special footwear, wash hands, remove those special bathroom slippers, and switch for indoor slippers when re-entering the living area. Earlier, probably in jest, Oba-san warned me that if I step onto the living area in the toilet slippers, he will tell me about hara-kiri rules.
If what they show in cinematograph is true than a typical samurai appears to be austere, taciturn and even slightly unsociable person. But this image in actual fact doesn’t get in line with reality... You don’t believe it? Our journalist Elena Rasenko suggests you make sure of it for yourself.
It is just as hard to imagine a Japanese who doesn’t eat fish as to picture a Scott who doesn’t drink whiskey. OUTLOOK journalist Elena Rasenko will tell you about a unique place where successors of samurai purchase fine seafood for their tables.
If you like having rest in Bulgaria but haven’t picked a town to stay in, try and do it in Balchik. It will suit those who value cozy yet non-costly trips without a flow of holiday-makers and an empty pocket afterwards. And the town’s ancient age together with unique landmarks will create a great alternative to sun and sea bathes.
OUTLOOK journalist Elena Rasenko came back from Japan and launches a special series of articles devoted to this country. Warning for very sensitive readers: Beware! After reading, you will get a keen desire to break away, buy a ticket and fly to such a marvelous and fascinating Land of the Rising Sun!
For 1 month spring has been reining our planet, now just watch warm coats to change for thin jackets, cold and mediocrity for the bright sun. And, of course, what sort of spring it could be without green trees and beautiful flowers? Well, in order to make your expectation of long-awaited colours and flavours less agonizing...
The Japanese are one of those peoples who zealously respect the ancient traditions. They respect old age, being interested in ancestors and often know the family ancestry by heart. With such a worldview, it is not surprising that a unique technique for the restoration of kintsugi appeared exactly there. Read about it in OUTLOOK.
If you see gloomy brown buildings, dark reddish buses, sky covered by grey clouds, and in the morning it is already drizzling so that no umbrella can save you from getting fully wet - your dream has come true, you are in Edinburgh! However, there is a good news: this city hosts the best pubs, has almost no unemployment and is packed with the world's largest number of architectural monuments.
Everyone knows that being in Scotland you should try whiskey, in France you should taste wine, and in Japan t is all about sake. But few people think about national soft drinks. They were created by peoples with far more practical intentions - refreshing and burning, repelling from the climate features, possessing nourishing properties.
Euphoria comes with freedom, masterpieces are in museums, and fantastic architecture is done by human and nature… Netherland capital Amsterdam is famous and unknown simultaneous. It might sound strange but Netherlands are not visible in this cosmopolitan and tolerant European city. So, we will try to search for it in the suburbs of the capital, particularly, in the village Volendam.
Lighthouse - this word evokes beautiful associations: sea adventures, storms, huge ships. And we do not want to dispel these thoughts, but rather to add fuel to the fire. There is a great amount of them in the world, they are striking by their beauty and inimitable. Today we are sharing with you the quintet of amazing lighthouses!
Jamaicans like rum, marihuana (hardly anybody seems to be bothered by the fact that it isn’t officially legal there), Bob Marley and… attending churches. They also wouldn’t mind winning several Olympic medals as well as competing for a crown of a beauty queen. Today we get acquainted with peculiarities of both serious and funny Jamaica.
In this day and age, it is difficult to surprise anyone, especially an urban resident, with some large department store or market, since nowadays one can buy everything from a humble convenience store next door. However, the iconic bazaars and flea markets are still operating across the globe, they are famous in legends and described with delight.
The well-known saying goes: east is a delicate matter. All-in-all, it is true as evidenced even by details. Due to specific climate, eastern women have similar type of appearance, and their nations are united by close cultures. Therefore, they prefer the same beauty standards. Women are supposed to be modest, to dress so as to completely or almost completely conceal figure.