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For Mother’s Day, my family went to the sightseeing city of Aizu-Wakamatsu.  This is a map.

I had been in the Aizu area long, long ago when the school I was working at went on a school trip there.  The school was in Chiba (near Tokyo.)  So if people in the Tokyo region are choosing it as their destination, you know it has got to be good!  I remember the school trip focussed on nature–we visited volcanoes and lakes.

This Mother’s Day trip was a daytrip to the city itself.  I had heard a lot about Aizu-Wakamatsu and really wanted to go.  When we got there, I discovered that of all the cities I have visited in Fukushima Prefecture, this was the most tourist friendly as far as maps, guidebooks, information, etc, go.  (And I have been to all the major cities, so that means most likely Aizu-Wakamatsu is THE most tourist friendly.)

The power plant was on the east coast, and the Aizu area is in the west part of Fukushima Prefecture. So if you are “disaster” sightseeing, this is not the place for you.  But it’s a great place with lots of history, so I definitely recommend it.

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That is the castle in Aizu-Wakamatsu City.  The castle’s name is Tsuruga-jo.  The original castle was torn down in the 1800’s so this is a replica. Inside there is a museum.  At the top, you have a great view.

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This is a poster from one of the recent NHK dramas, Yae no Sakura.  She is supposed to be Niijima Yae, a fearless warrior from the Aizu area.  You can read more about Niijima Yae here.

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Here is a gift shop near the castle.

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This is sort of funny.  If you follow my blog, you may remember I mentioned that the newspaper said that Japanese toe nail clippers make great gifts.   And I was sort of joking, saying that they need to have Hello Kitty on them before I buy them as a souvenir. Well, here we are!  Souvenir nail clippers!  They are cute, aren’t they.