HOMEMADE BREADED FISH AND RICE WITH VEGETABLES

HOMEMADE BREADED FISH AND RICE WITH VEGETABLES

Here is a small meal idea for a weekday evening that will eat fish and vegetables recalcitrant!

We obtain a very soft fish coated with a crispy crust …

I usually prepare my rice in advance and warm it up in the microwave before serving.
For the breaded fish, I prepare it, I cook for 2 minutes on each side (on a pancake pan that requires very little fat) then I finished baking before serving.
In short, you will understand, a meal that simplifies life😉

TO PRINT

Homemade breaded fish and rice with vegetables

prep 

baking 

total 

portion  people

We make our homemade breaded fish because it’s so simple and so much better and we serve it with vegetable rice for a healthy and balanced meal!

Ingredients

For breaded fish

  • 500 g of cod back
  • 2 eggs
  • 100 g bread crumbs
  • 1 tablespoon flour
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil

For rice with vegetables

  • 200 g of white rice
  • 2 onions
  • 2 zucchini
  • 1 red pepper
  • 1 yellow pepper
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Espelette pepper
  • Salt

Instructions

Breaded fish

Cut the cod back into pieces, season and flour.

Pass them in the beaten eggs then in the bread crumbs (ideally 2 times to have a thick crust).

Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a pancake pan and cook the pieces of fish for 2 minutes on each side and place them on the baking sheet covered with baking paper.

Bake 12 to 15 minutes (depending on the thickness) in an oven at 210 ° C just before serving.

Rice with vegetables

Cook the rice as indicated on the bag then rinse with cold water to stop cooking and set aside.

Peel the onions and slice them finely.Peel the peppers and cut them in brunoise.Cut the zucchini into small cubes.Pel and degermer the garlic.

Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a frying pan and fry onions, zucchini and peppers until covered and over medium heat until vegetables are tender. Add crushed garlic and set aside. fire to make them lightly brown.

Add the rice, salt and add a little Espelette pepper (I sometimes add a little very chorizo ​​cut in very small pieces instead of chilli …)

Taste to correct the seasoning.

It will be enough to warm rice with vegetables in the microwave just before serving with breaded fish.

Where to stay in Paris and in which area to book my hotel?

stay in Paris and in which area to book my hotel

Paris, its lights, its great restaurants, and its magnificent monuments have always made you dream? If you do not yet know the little secrets of the city, and you plan to settle down soon, here is a small summary of the different neighborhoods and their characteristics that will help find the neighborhood that suits you best. 

Summary: 

The Latin Quarter: the historic charm of the student district

On the left bank, facing Notre Dame, is the Latin Quarter, which radiates with its beauty, history and culture. It is a student district where life is good, where the Parisian stress does not really affect because the streets and monuments are very many inspire calm and grace. Evidence of a rich past is present in the open, as evidenced by the arena of Lutetia, or the ancient walls of Lutetia still visible in the street Lacpede. The Sorbonne, emblematic university of France created in the Middle Ages and the grandes écoles of commerce, welcome students from all over the world and professors who contribute strongly to the warm atmosphere of the district. Libraries, small shops and restaurants are very cheap and will allow you to eat and go out easily without breaking the bank. Rue Mouffetard, pretty paved street that connects the Gobelins to the Pantheon, hosts a very nice market where it is good to stroll on Sunday morning before offering a visit to Notre Dame, the Luxembourg Garden, the Jardin des Plantes, or at the Institute of the Arab World. If you are looking for a little more frenzy, go for a walk on the side of Boulevard Saint Michel: there are books, movies, and vinyls of all kinds in the many cultural shops. If you are a fan of the art world, you will not be able to fall, because the Latin Quarter is home to a multitude of independent cinemas and projects many retrospectives that cities around the world envy us.

Finally, the Latin Quarter is the ideal base in Paris, whether with family, friends, or lovers, everyone will find his account and can enjoy a beautiful setting in everyday life.

Strong points:

A magical setting, monuments everywhere, a soft and warm atmosphere both quiet and festive. It is the dream district for a Parisian stay. The hotels are very numerous, and the restaurants and bars are not overpriced as is the case in the Marais for example.

Weak points:

Few weak points, if not the large number of tourists during the summer, and the rather noisy frenzy of Boulevard Saint Michel and Place Saint-Michel.

Meditation Retreat in India – The Inner Journey

Meditation Retreat in India - The Inner Journey

Today, the fourth day of the retreat, we have finally returned to the heart of the subject: Vipassana meditation. The first three days were just a preparation to strengthen and sharpen the mind. The Vipassana is to actually observe sensations throughout his body, by performing a sort of scanning from the top of the skull to the end of the feet. Sitting cross-legged and with eyes closed, you must review each part of the body, centimeter square per square centimeter, as a scanner could do, and observe all the sensations that emerge without reacting, whether pleasant or unpleasant. This neutrality, this detachment from the sensations observed, is what is called equanimity, a word very little used in French, but a very important concept in Buddhism. I will come back to it later. This is a notion that is best understood as the meditation retreat progresses.

From that moment, I have the impression to discover a new dimension of life. The meditation takes the form of a real inner journey, where as an explorer, I go to the discovery of sensations in every part of my body. It’s really different from what you can feel by playing sports, love or any other physical activity since you stay still and do nothing. In appearance at least, because even motionless, our body is actually very active and there is a lot going on, be it breathing, heartbeat, digestion, circulation of blood … A real factory to which we often pay so little attention. A force of work and training, it is a new universe that one discovers.

However, the eleven hours of daily meditation continue to seem endless. It’s hard to stay focused on observing your feelings all this time. The first three days my mind was bombarded with thoughts about my future. Now it is on my past that I reflect. To deceive the boredom, I remake in my head all the film of my life since my childhood until today. I go through all my memories: my school years, my family, my friends, my studies, my different jobs, my love life, my travels … I make a balance sheet on what I liked, not liked, succeeded , not successful, my qualities, my faults … I am conscious of not completely respecting the rules of retirement, since when I think I do not meditate, but I need too much to occupy my mind. Meditating almost 11 hours a day is above my abilities. Thinking is finally the only freedom, the only breach of the rules, that I can discreetly grant myself, since I have the right to speak, write, read or play sports, or nothing at all to tell the truth … Thinking becomes my only leisure.

A novelty in the planning: at certain times of the day you can choose to meditate alone in a cell, rather than stay in the common room. Cells of 2m2, with an opening at the top that lets in some light. At first, I take this as a liberation! Nobody to watch us if we follow the right position. I can sit cross-legged, leaning against the wall to relieve my back; I even use it to sleep, lying curled up on two cushions that I recovered in a shed. But over the days I have less and less desire to sleep. I was tired at first but not anymore. I begin to depress sitting alone in my cell. I imagine what prisoners or hostages held in such a small space might have felt. In fact, I realize I’m complaining for not much. My safety is not threatened, I am fed my fill, and I know that all this ends soon. I can not imagine what those who have lived through this for years have endured.

Finally I prefer to meditate in the common room. The presence of the group gives me more motivation. The instructions for meditation are always the same: observe his feelings from head to toe, while remaining as impassive as possible, that these sensations are pleasant or unpleasant. I must say that it is rather the “unpleasant” that dominates, with the pain that persist in the knees, legs, back, by dint of sitting all day. Especially since on the fifth day, a new rule adds to the exercise a little more. Now you have to be able to sit for an hour sitting cross-legged without moving and without opening your eyes. It’s an hour long without being able to move. It’s called “sitting with strong determination”: sit down with a strong determination. An exercise also intended to strengthen his spirit. At first it’s difficult. At the end of a quarter of an hour I have the circulation which cuts in the feet, I am obliged to extend the legs. Then I can hold half an hour, then three quarters of an hour. It’s an audio tape that tells us that an hour has passed and we can finally get up. We must meditate without opening our eyes, so impossible to look at the time. As I go along, I develop the awareness of passing time while keeping my eyes closed. A few minutes away, I know we’re at 15 minutes, 30 minutes, 45 minutes … It’s an audio tape that tells us that an hour has passed and we can finally get up. We must meditate without opening our eyes, so impossible to look at the time. As I go along, I develop the awareness of passing time while keeping my eyes closed. A few minutes away, I know we’re at 15 minutes, 30 minutes, 45 minutes … It’s an audio tape that tells us that an hour has passed and we can finally get up. We must meditate without opening our eyes, so impossible to look at the time. As I go along, I develop the awareness of passing time while keeping my eyes closed. A few minutes away, I know we’re at 15 minutes, 30 minutes, 45 minutes

Escapade in Saint-Malo, spa and sand yacht

Escapade in Saint-Malo, spa and sand yacht

The advantage of many traveling around the world is that one re-discovers one’s own country with a new eye. After three months of traveling in Japan , I was actually taped by the city of Saint-Malo. I went there for a very specific reason: this is where the 4th edition of the Travel Bloggers Fair took placeFrancophones. It is an annual meeting that brings together travel bloggers and tourism professionals, and to which I am faithful, as much to find budding bloggers always a little scattered around the world to reflect on the evolution of this new profession and make new contacts. These few days at the Salon des blogueurs were an opportunity to combine business with pleasure and discover the city of Saint-Malo, its ramparts, its winding streets and beach

Visit Saint-Malo: culture, sport and relaxation

The city Malouine, as it is also called, offers an ideal mix between culture, sport and relaxation, since one can deepen its historical culture, do water sports and relax with thalassotherapy treatments.

Saint-Malo is a city with a very rich maritime history. Jacques Cartier , Duguay-Trouin , Robert Surcouf … We have all heard of these famous explorers and privateers who have sailed around the world. These three were from Saint-Malo and it’s fascinating to discover their history. The explorer Jacques Cartier “discovered” Canada (well after the Vikings anyway …) in the 16th century and the pirate Duguay-Trouin seized Rio-de-Janeiro in 1711. Unlike pirates, the Corsairs had the authorization of the King of France to fight and seize the wealth of enemy ships. It was also in Saint-Malo that was born the famous writer François-René de Chateaubriand, who was also a privateer and a great traveler.

To visit Saint-Malo, the ideal is first to go around the ramparts , to realize the unique situation of this fortified maritime city. Then we can stroll along the streets, while planning a visit to the castle , which houses the museum of history of history of the city, the Cathedral of Saint Vincent , where are the graves of Jacques Cartier and Duguay-Trouin and at the house of the corsair, the Hotel Asfeld , which was the house of François Auguste Magon de la Lande, a corsair of the King and merchant of the East India Company

Where to stay in Kyoto 4 cheap and typical Japanese hotels

stay in Kyoto 4 cheap and typical Japanese hotels

Japan has a reputation as an expensive country, but nevertheless it is still possible to travel there without breaking the bank. To reduce the budget spent on accommodation, I propose a list of four cheap hotels in Kyoto (from 15 to 30 euros per night for low season rates). They are all equally typical, Japanese style, because it is a shame to travel to Japan by sleeping in impersonal hotels that could be found anywhere else in the world. I spent ten days in Kyoto and I will give you all my tips in a future article. Warning: if you go to Kyoto during cherry blossom, the hotels are full well in advance and the prices are much higher.

A capsule and spa hotel

The Centurion Capsule & Spa is one of my favorite hotels in Kyoto. A mix between a capsule design hotel and a spa with a jacuzzi and sauna area, modeled on Japanese onsen, the thermal baths. Very new (opened in 2016), this is a very clean property with English speaking staff at the front desk. There are several ranges of comfort for capsules and it is also possible to book family rooms for 4 or 6 people. There are mixed floors, and others reserved for men or women. Rates start from 2,500 yen per night and per person (about 21 euros)

Common room on the ground floor, wifi throughout the hotel and coin launderette. One can put his valuables in coded lockers and leave his suitcase in front of his capsule. Located in the basement with the spa area, the showers are separate men / women: you have to undress in the locker room and go naked, like the jaccuzi and sauna. This is the same principle as in the Japanese onsen, the thermal baths.

Most:

  • Very good situation on Shijo-dori, between Karasuma and Kawaramachi railway stations, and very close to Nishiki market, a district with lots of restaurants and bars to go out at night.
  • The spa area open until 1am. A real pleasure to swim in the evening in the jacuzzi with massage jets. As in the onsen, the water is enriched with radium, which gives it therapeutic virtues.
  • A yukata , a kind of light kimono, is provided free of charge for the duration of the stay. You can put it down to take a shower at the spa. Typical Japanese experience guaranteed!
  • Full of beauty products are provided, including shower gel, shampoo, conditioner, moisturizer, skincare oil, toothbrush, hair dryer, and even straightener …
  • Luggage storage free. I was able to leave my suitcase there for two days to go to Osaka.

The least:

  • The capsules are not very well soundproofed . They are closed with a thin sliding wall and you hear the sounds of passage and the neighbors snoring.
  • There is little room to store his belongings . You must leave your suitcase or backpack in the hallway.
  • The capsules are a bit ventilation . Better not to be claustrophobic, but that’s the lot of all capsule hotels.

⇒  Book a stay at the Centurion Cabin & Spa Kyoto

The Kyoto Ryokan Capsule is an interesting mix between two types of typical Japanese accommodations: the capsule hotel and the ryokan, the traditional Japanese inns. You can sleep in a capsule with a tatami floor. It is a rather upscale capsule hotel, with very comfortable capsules and a good mattress. There are bathrooms and individual showers. You can also book private rooms with futon for those who want more privacy. Rates start from 3,500 yen (approx. 30 euros) per person per night. The hotel is located next to JR Kyoto Station. It’s a plus if you arrive and leave by train, and it’s convenient to take public transport to visit Kyoto and the surrounding area, but it’s a bit sad as well

5 tips for choosing a good hotel in New York

5 tips for choosing a good hotel in New York

For the best stay in New York, the choice of hotel is far from trivial. Here are my tips for making the right choice!A room at the Cambria Hotel, a beautiful address in the heart of Midtown.

If I propose you this article it is not without reason: at the beginning of November 2017, a young couple going on holiday in New York launched a call for help on our Facebook group Destination New York … Sophie and her friend had reserved to Blue Moon Hotel, an establishment that turned out to be absolutely despicable: “It’s a disaster! Sophie says, “It’s a dormitory with cockroaches !!!! Fortunately, thanks to the mobilization of the group, they were able to find a much more suitable hotel and enjoy New York. To avoid such a mishap, here are my 5 tips!

1 / Follow the recommended hotels

  • To choose a good hotel with your eyes closed, you can first follow the list of  recommended hotels in New York . This list includes hotels that enjoy excellent feedback from the blog team and members of the forum. The list goes from 2 * to 5 * to cover all budgets.
  • This list is obviously updated regularly, as and when feedback from each.

2 / Consult the reviews!

  • Before you book a hotel, check the web to see what people are saying! In particular, you can find the opinions of New York Forum members in the hotel tests section .
  • And if you do not find an opinion on a hotel that interests you, do not hesitate to send a call on the forum, in the Questions section before leaving for New York .

3 / Beware of prices too low

  • In terms of hospitality, the rule is simple in New York: the higher the prices, the higher the quality is at-go, and vice versa. A hotel at 50 € per night will never offer you the same services as a hotel at 150 € per night. If the price is unduly too low, it is because there is an eel under rock!
  • It is therefore necessary to compare prices to have a general market trend when you book. This will allow you to locate the hotels in relation to each other.

4 / Privilege a good location

  • For a good stay in New York, I advise you to choose the location of your hotel with care. If this is your first time in New York, I highly recommend choosing a hotel in Manhattan, the heart of New York.
  • The advantage of having a hotel in Manhattan is two-fold: you will live in the heart of the action, with New York at the bottom of the building, and, given the dense subway system in Manhattan, you’ll be necessarily close to a metro station. The ideal to discover New York!

5 / Contact the hotel in case of question

  • If you have any doubt about the hotel you intend to choose, do not hesitate to contact reception, by e-mail or by phone. This will allow you to remove any doubt, for example on the bathroom, the view, the location. Prevention is better than cure ! If the hotel is unable to respond to your requests, beware.
  • By contacting the hotel in advance, you can also request a room that will best meet your expectations, be it high floor or with views or quiet.

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My advice for visiting the castles of the Loire

My advice for visiting the castles of the Loire

Visit the castles of the Loire, it is one of the great classics of travel in France. I had been there several times as a child and a young adult, but not for a long time … After returning from a long trip to Japan and before flying to Guadeloupe, I wanted to rediscover this beautiful region of France, with an incredible historical and cultural heritage. I drove away with my father, without planning too much in advance, to make room for discovery. Here are some tips that I can give you to prepare for such a trip to discover the castles of the Loire.

This is the most delicate part! There are dozens and dozens (if we count only the main ones), located essentially from Blois to Tours. Better to avoid wanting to see too much because otherwise we no longer enjoy visits. The ideal I find is to see two castles a day, or even three at most. Do not forget that visiting the gardens often takes as much time as visiting the castles themselves, finally when the weather is nice of course. This is certainly my top 6 castles not to be missed.

The most beautiful: Chenonceau

If there was only one to see, for me it would be the castle of Chenonceau. Nicknamed the “ladies’ castle” because of the women who built and inhabited it, like Diane de Poitiers and Catherine de Medici, it is just sublime with its arch that spans the Cher River. Special mention also for gardens, and when you cross the other side, you can walk in the forest or on the banks of the Cher.

The largest: Chambord

The castle of Chambord, built at the request of François 1st, is the accumulation of all superlatives. With a total of 426 rooms, it is the largest of the castles of the Loire. Its huge park which is a hunting reserve is also the largest closed forest park in Europe, with an area similar to the city of Paris. Its facade with its hundreds of richly carved chimneys and capitals is spectacular. In addition, there are horse shows and raptors.

The most «architecture»: Blois

To visit the royal castle of Blois is to discover in one place a vast panorama of the history of French architecture, from medieval style to classical style, passing through Gothic and Renaissance. The kings who have successively lived left their mark, with the most famous François 1st, the famous spiral staircase in an open tower. This is a visit where you have to take the time to read all the explanatory panels.

The most beautiful interior: Cheverny

Architecture less spectacular than its neighbors, the castle of Cheverny is the one with the most beautiful interior and the most beautiful furniture. The most unusual: Hergé was inspired to create the castle of Moulinsart in the famous comics Tintin. You can also visit an exhibition devoted to comics.

The most beautiful gardens: Chaumont-sur-Loire

The castle of Chaumont-sur-Loire is worth the detour, not for the castle itself, but for its gardens. Every year, they host the International Garden Festival, from April to November. Far from the “French garden” style of the other castles, it is an exhibition that shows the contemporary landscape artistic creation. Really amazing and surprising to discover!

The most beautiful waterfalls to see in Iceland

The most beautiful waterfalls to see in Iceland

Iceland is one of the most beautiful destinations to see waterfalls. Difficult to find a country with a higher concentration of waterfalls, all as spectacular as each other. With a territory over 11% covered by glaciers, melting ice is an inexhaustible reservoir to supply all these waterfalls. Here is a small inventory among the most beautiful waterfalls in Iceland … A good red thread to discover the country through its most spectacular sites. Warning! It’s wet! Better to have a good rain poncho to get close to the risk of being completely soaked!

Gullfoss

Gullfoss is one of Iceland’s most famous waterfalls. Its name means “fall of gold”, because of the rainbow that one can often see there when the weather is nice. The power of the cascade releases a large volume of water vapor that gives iridescent colors to the sky. Located near Geysir, Gullfoss gave its name to the ”  Golden Circle  “: these three major sites in the vicinity of Reykjavik with Þingvellir, Geysir and Gullfoss. It is also the main stumbling block of this waterfall: with such a reputation, it is one of the most visited places in Iceland. Suffice to say that in summer, there is a crowd on the paths that line the waterfall! But with its different levels, which tumble through a canyon over 2km, the show is still at the rendezvous

Seljalandsfoss is a waterfall located in the south of Iceland, along the road n ° 1. This is not the most exceptional at first sight, but its main interest is that it is the only one in Iceland where you can pass behind the waterfall. There is a small path dug into the cliff, which we see well in this photo. It’s pretty slippery and better to plan a good k-way but it’s very impressive to go behind the curtain of water.

Special mention for the small camping Seljalandsfoss where you can pitch your tent overlooking the waterfall located next door. It’s a good place to stop for the night. It is also not very far from the pier to go by boat to the Vestmann Islands (15 / 20km). That’s where I hitchhiked to take the boat

Skógafoss is one of Iceland’s most majestic waterfalls. It is located in the south of the country, along the circular road No. 1 150km from Reykjavik. It is powered by the melting of the glacier Eyjafjallajökull , whose volcano had paralyzed the European sky in the spring of 2010. This is one of the most popular waterfalls in Iceland, so there are people! Better to come early in the morning or at the end of the day, otherwise it is the parade of buses all day long.

I advise to hike that starts at the top of the fall. We pass in front of twenty waterfalls. For good walkers, you can go to Fimmvörduhals, the pass that separates the two glaciers (about 8h A / R). Otherwise on two days of walking (or a day for the rapids), it is possible to go to Þórsmörk . Skógafoss is the point of arrival of the famous 5/6 day hike from the Landmannalaugar.

As in Seljalandsfoss, the campsite is located right at the foot of the waterfall. On the other hand, it is better not to pitch your tent too close, unless you want to see the inside look like Niagara Falls … Anyway, it’s nice to fall asleep with the dull roar of the fall of water in the distance.

HOW TO CHOOSE A HOTEL WITHOUT A BAD SURPRISE WHEN TRAVELING?

CHOOSE A HOTEL WITHOUT A BAD SURPRISE WHEN TRAVELING

For many people, choosing a hotel is simply part of preparing for a trip, it’s a decision like any other, just like buying a plane or train ticket! After all, what matters is what you do in the city you visit, right?

In reality, not quite! Good accommodation can make your trip even more enjoyable … and a bad experience can ruin your stay. This is worth asking the question: how to choose a hotel?

The choice of the hotel, essential for a successful trip

You may not realize it but choosing a quality hotel allows you, for example, to feel welcome , to start the day with a hearty breakfast, to have a good night’s sleep that allows you to better enjoy your days, to ask you at night in a comforting cocoon, to receive lots of tips and tricks to enjoy your stay … Small things, in itself … but that do a lot of good when we think back to his trip as a whole !

Conversely, poor accommodation can ruin your vacation.

I remember staying with a friend in a youth hostel when I was a student, the staff treated the travelers as no-goers and I was treated to a great “Slutty thing, move your bag” then I was queuing down the hall outside the front desk for check-in. I still remember it and I remember how much it hurt me and ruined my holiday.

Choosing a mediocre hotel is sometimes a bad night’s sleep because the neighborhood or the neighbors are noisy, ending up in front of the door late at night because the reception is closed and the night watchman does not answer, having a smell of pipes in the room or a bed of dubious hygiene, dying of hot or cold for lack of being able to regulate the heating or the air conditioning …

I even had some funny anecdotes : for example, I stayed in a hotel where the toilet bowl had been installed too close to the door, it was literally twisting to enter the room ^^

It’s been a long time since I made a “bad choice” so I’m going to share with you some tips learned along the way to find the perfect hotel !

Discover a traditional Japan with 5 places to visit in Okayama

Discover a traditional Japan with 5 places to visit in Okayama

Visiting the Okayama region of Japan is a real off the beaten track experience. Few foreign tourists stop there, while it is a prefecture easy to access, halfway between Osaka and Hiroshima and one hour by plane from Tokyo. A thousand miles from major modern cities, you can discover a traditional Japan, which perpetuates the ancestral arts such as ceramics for the tea ceremony or the manufacture of samurai swords … There are surely more than five places to visit in the Okayama region, but those are the ones I had the opportunity to discover.

1 / Korakuen Garden in Okayama

The Okayama Korakuen Garden is not very well known by foreign tourists, but is visited by Japanese tourists since it is considered one of the three most beautiful gardens in Japan. For my part I discovered it in summer, but it is also a sublime place in autumn and spring with cherry blossoms. It was built 300 years ago by the feudal lord of the region. With a surface of 13 hectares, you have to take your time to visit it, and stroll among the ponds, lawns, and tea houses. There is even a rice field, a tea plantation and a small theater where there are occasional performances.

To take a break during the visit, you have to go and drink a traditional Japanese green tea, matcha, in a tea house. Some people do not like the bitter taste of the drink, but I love it. In the height of summer, as it was 35 degrees, we could also drink it fresh with an ice cube, but I’m not sure that it respects the very serious protocol that normally frames this tradition.

2 / The black castle of Okayama

Right in front of the Korakuen Garden, Okayama Castle has the particularity of being black, which is infrequent for Japanese castles. The visit of the interior is especially interesting for the magnificent view that one has at the top of the castle, both on the garden and the city of Okayama. The golden gargoyles in the shape of fish that line the roofs of the castle are quite unusual.

3 / The traditional district of Bikan in Kurashiki

Located 10 minutes by train from Okayama, Kurashiki was my real favorite in the area. The main interest of the city is the traditional Bikan district. Located along a canal lined with weeping willows, it has a lot of charm and cachet. Historically, Kurashiki specialized in the rice trade and there are still plenty of rice fields in the surrounding countryside. The merchants used the canal to transport the goods. Today, the old warehouses where rice was stored have been transformed into museums, art galleries and souvenir shops.

There is also a fairly well-known art museum in Japan at Kurashiki: the Ohara Art Museum. Japanese tourists come to see the collection of European art collected by the rich textile merchant Ohara Magosaburo, including Picasso, Monet, Matisse or Cezanne … But for a European tourist, the most interesting part of the museum it’s the one devoted to Japanese art. There is a whole section devoted to contemporary Japanese art and it is the one that I found the most remarkable.

There is also a beautiful Shinto shrine to discover, provided you have the courage to climb the steps that lead to it: the Achi Shrine. 1700 years old, it is located at the top of Mount Tsurugata, from where we also have a beautiful view of Kurashiki. It’s really something that I love in Japan: for a moment, it feels as though it’s cut off from the world and the sounds of the street when you find yourself in a temple.