a day in okutama

Happy belated Mountain Day! To celebrate, we went to Okutama・奥多摩 , Tokyo Prefecture. It took a bit over 2 hours to get there from over the other side of Tokyo, so we were up at 5:45 on a Saturday morning. We managed to get seats on the trains, which was my number one concern of the day and the trains are cool, so not a bad place to be in the middle of Japanese summer. When we arrived, they were gearing up for the festival, with stalls lining the streets but they weren’t open whilst we were there.

This month I’ve read a book called Shinrin-Yoku: The Art and Science of Forest Bathing by Dr Qing Li and feeling inspired, decided to get to the forest to destress along with my husband.

We walked on the Mukashi no Michi trail for, oh I don’t know, it must have been around 15 minutes and then decided it was too hot to move any further and stopped at the second bench we came to and made the decision to forest-bathe sitting down. There was a little stream that we could hear and all the birds and insects, along with a gentle breeze, it was almost perfect.

For lunch I had diligently searched, vegetarian Okutama and came up with Cafe Kuala and had the curry and pancakes. I’d just go for the curry if I were you, which was lovely.

After lunch, we wanted to go down to Hikawa Gorge where we could see people sun-bathing and swimming in the water. It was quite busy but we managed to get a space on the sharp rocks and pebbles to dip our feet in. I’d recommend going with sandals that can get wet if you want to go in. Also, everyone there seemed to have the perfect bodies so there was no way I was stripping off. Some boys were swimming but I don’t know how, it was freezing!

After that we headed back to the train and got it to Tokyo Station where we got off and headed back to our new favourite, Soranoiro. I had the same as last time but my husband’s soy milk-based soup noodles were divine. A bit spicy but I can’t handle heat very well so for most people, I would say a none issue.


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