Our current hotel does not have Internet access, so this is just a quick update from the Internet cafe in Fukuoka. When we got to Hiroshima, we checked into the Oriental hotel, which is very nice, but the rooms are quite small. It seems that the farther south we go, the more compact everything gets. The bathroom is now so small and advanced that I’m pretty sure they borrowed it from an airplane.
On the first day, we headed out to Miyajima island. We rode the tram for about 45 minutes and then the ferry took about 10 minutes to get us to the island. We saw the large shrine with the floating Torii gates, but because it was low tide, they weren’t floating. Then we hiked up to the top of the mountain and had a great view of all the little islands around. In the late afternoon, we hiked back down, visited a huge Buddhist temple, and came back to the Torii gates in time to see them surrounded by water. They really do appear to be floating.
The next morning, we woke up early and went to the Hiroshima peace museum. It’s a very nice park, although obviously the content is fairly sobering. We had to check out at 11, so our visit there was brief. We headed back to the hotel and took our suitcases to the train station, where we found another shinkansen to Fukuoka. Upon arriving here, we actually walked straight to the hotel. This was the first one we managed to find without any wrong turns. It’s also the last hotel, so I guess we won’t get a chance to prove it wasn’t luck. Now that we’re on Kyushu, our bathroom is from the space shuttle. It’s so compact that it doesn’t even have a separate shower. There’s a knob to divert the water from the sink to the bathtub. Not only that, but we found a grocery store finally. In the train station.
Tomorrow we plan to head to Oita for the hot springs, and the next day we hope to visit Kagoshima and see the volcano. Then it’s back to Osaka where we’ll have Internet access again, so there may be a final update before we return to the USA.