Emily in Japan

Emily Gillmar:

I deliberately set my expectations low for our first family trip abroad. Luckily, our 5-year-old turned out to be a trouper, and I think she might love traveling in Japan almost as much as my husband and I do. Taking fast trains everywhere while eating bento was part of the fun.

We revisited some favorite destinations – Kyoto, Kamakura, Tokyo – and made it to the Inland Sea to view the art museums and installations on the islands of Naoshima and Teshima.

Photos, l-r:

1 – I’ve seen Kyoto’s Kiyomizu-dera with its dramatically elevated terraces before…but not with this huge and elaborate scaffolding for roof repairs.

2 – After visiting a few beautiful but very crowded shrines, we were happy to spend time at the peaceful Honen-in temple above the Philosopher’s Path in Kyoto.

3 – Teshima Art Museum – watching the water droplets in this perfect setting was mesmerizing. We stayed for over an hour and wished we could’ve stayed longer.

4 – When I stopped to take a picture of people planting rice in a paddy, the friendly farmers waved us over to help.