The Hokkaido Shinkansen just opened on March 26th of this year, and we got to ride it! Howzdat, yah! It connects Hakodate on Hokkaido Island to Aomori on Honshu Island through the undersea Seikan Tunnel. It was a great start to the next leg of our tour . . . down through the Tohoku region and then ending in Tokyo.
The dude in the poster below is Shohei Otani . . . some awesome young baseball phenom. Here's what MLB.com has to say about him:
This was my ticket for the Shinkansen. The fare from Shin-Hakodate-Hokuto to Shin-Aomori was 2,810 yen.
I totally blew it and didn't get a picture of the front of the bullet train. I got the side. Ummmm . . . not quite the same, yah.
When we arrived at Shin Aomori, a whole bunch of us disembarked from the train, so it was crowded on the platform. Our tour guide, Reiko (circled), in her usual calm manner, led us single-file to an area where we could wait until the crowd dispersed.
It didn't take long. In no time, all 37 of us in a neat and orderly line U-turned our way and headed in the right direction.
Our bullet train ride took only 1 hour and 1 minute, but our bus with the bus driver and bus girl caught the ferry and wouldn't be arriving for another 2 hours.
No problem for Reiko. She just led our group to this area where we caught a train to Aomori Station, out next destination.
It was lunchtime when we arrived at the station, and lunch was to be on our own. Sweetie and I opted to grab a few musubi for a fast bite so that we would have a little extra time to do some shopping.
After lunch we met at the Nebuta Warasse Museum which was right across the street from the train station.
Two of my favorite apple juice were sold here for 400 yen. I usually pay around $7 for the same thing at Marukai.
The Nebuta Warasse museum is dedicated to the famous Nebuta Matsuri which is held every summer in Aomori. Several floats built for past festivals are on display.
I have choke photos of the floats here. I did cull out a bunch, but they're so awesome looking that I left a lot in.
Our hotel, the Aomori Sunroute Hotel, was not far away so after visiting the museum, we walked to the hotel. I'm so glad that we did because apple trees lined the street, and I was able to take a few pictures.
This is so amazing to me!
Apples! So WOW.
Here's our hotel. There were two 100-Yen stores nearby so after we checked in we immediately went to check them out.
And ummmm . . . where are the photos of the two 100-yen stores, you ask? Well, I asked myself the same thing. Apparently, I took none. Bah!
So we have to go straight to the dinner photos. It was a Western style fixed menu, and once again it was gooooood.
Would you believe this was my favorite dish? Raw fish salad again! Whaaaaaat?? How can?
Lastly, I wanted to tell you about rubber stamping in Japan in case you don't know about it. A lot of places have rubber stamping stations with stamps for you to use to document your travel. Sweetie joined in with some of the other ladies in our tour group last year and came home with quite a collection.
I wanted to do the same on this trip. It was fun looking for these stations wherever we went. We would get all excited whenever we found one.
Cute souvenir, yah!