July – August Holiday Trip: Hatcho no Yu

While in Japan we wanted to try a traditional onsen and we chose to stay two nights at Hatcho no Yu, a traditional ryokan onsen in the mountains north west of Nikko. The word yu means hot water and therefore also refers to the hot springs. The ryokan offers accommodation with an evening meal and breakfast each day but, at request, can also provide lunch. Sleeping is in traditional tatami mat rooms and bedding futons are folded away in a closet during the day. The cost is not low but they do offer good value. Their web site is http://www.8tyo-no-yu.co.jp/ it is only in Japanese but Google translations will give you a reasonable and sometimes amusing translation. If you want to book with them it is best to have a Japanese speaking person do it for you. We did find that staff did have a small understanding of English and with good will, sign language and a few Japanese words you will be able to manage. When we were there there was also a lady who speaks Portuguese. A good idea is to take some small items from your home area to use as gifts. The Japanese have a tradition of giving gifts and some small item will be more appreciated than a monetary tip.

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July – August Holiday Trip: Tokyo

The best way to avoid jet lag is to organise things in such a way that you arrive at your destination in the late afternoon or evening. That way you can drop into bed and sleep a full night to awake with your body clock re-set to the time zone in which you happen to find yourself.

I have to say straight away that I should have allowed at least one more day for Tokyo. Even with the above system one tends to get up late and by the time you have organised breakfast, come to grips with the local transport system, and conducted various financial transaction it is lunch time and you have already lost half a day.
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July – August Holiday Trip: Malpensa to Narita

Travelling from Northern Italy to Australia we find that Thai Airways is not only convenient and has an excellent service but has the natural advantage for us, and particularly Francesca, that it passes through Thailand.

Normally, when we are only away for a few days, we leave our car at one of the long term parking facilities near Malpensa. Two months of parking would be ridiculously expensive so we opted for a taxi from Lecco to take us to, and later collect us from, Malpensa. It should be added that we were travelling with about 25 kilos of luggage each due to the time we would be away and the many changes of season we expected to face. That is to say: rainy season in Japan and Thailand, winter in Southern Australia, hot and dry in Northern Australia and temperate at Brisbane in Southern Queensland. Fortunately Thai allows an extra 10 lilos of luggage for frequent flyers! We certainly would need it on our return trip.
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Hello world!

Welcome to my WordPress blog.

As a user of Joomla I wanted to try one of the alternative programs to see how it functioned. After a fair amount of research I decided to try WordPress.

So far I find WordPress an excellent system and relatively easy to use. Typically I have not read the user manual and there are a couple of issues I want to check.
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