Do you like cake? I certainly do! How happy I was in December when the best cake shop in Hamada opened a new shop very close to my house.

Too close.

Kashinomi is about 10 minutes walk from the university. Go down the hill and take the first left after Iwamiru. Then take the first right. Keep going down the hill and you’ll see the cake shop on your right. It is a pretty little white building with a lovely garden.

And here are some of the cakes! My family and I ate them last week.

During winter they sell a nice chestnut cake. Instead of calling it Mont Blanc, they call it Sankaizan!

They also do great creme brulee.

But I like the walnut and coffee cake best. Delicious!

How about you? What is your favourite restaurant or cafe in the city?


On your doorstep (2)

This place is on your doorstep too. This is Sankaizan, the mountain behind the university. I climbed it with six of my seminar students last month.  It took one hour and 12 minutes from the monument on campus to the summit (the top).It is not a difficult walk. If you are very lazy, you can even drive most of the way and walk the last 20 minutes!

The view of the Sea of Japan and Hamada is spectacular. If you haven’t been you should try it. But please be careful of wild animals. Go with some friends and wear a bell or play music to scare away the bears. And don’t wear dark clothes because some bees attack dark colours. If you have black hair, you might want to wear a light-coloured cap.

At the top, there is a shrine. There is also a nice flat place to have a picnic. There is one picnic table with 6 chairs but you might be better bringing a sheet to sit on. It is easy for kites (tonbi) to steal your food if you sit at the table. Sit under a tree instead!

In this picture, we are just about to leave from the path in front of the gym.

And here we are, nearly at the top!

We played with bubbles before lunch. It was a great cheap day out.

On your doorstep

‘On your doorstep’ means that a place is very close to your home. This picture was taken in Iwami Seaside Park, or Kaihin Koen. It’s a beautiful park. The beach is long and covered in white sand. There are palm trees and the water is very clean. It’s a great place to swim in summer. You can also rent cabins cheaply if you want to stay over with friends and have a barbecue or do fireworks. There is NOTHING in the cabins so be sure to bring mats and sleeping bags.

I went to the park with some friends in the area. We cooked dinner and  enjoyed playing with bubbles and fireworks. If you haven’t been to this park yet, you should go this summer. It is one of the best things about Hamada.