Sunday 17th July 2005

My first ever proper visit to Kobe, which turned out to be quite a nice city actually.

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11:55:46 A stock picture of Chie looking at a map, somewhere in Kobe - outside Oishi station I think.

12:11:37 A bridge, and I think that is the sea beyond.

12:18:27 This was where we were coming to visit - the Sawanotsuru sakagura, now a museum.

12:18:54 I never grow tired of pictures of these sake barrels.

12:33:53 Chie and a giant rice cooker.

12:34:18 Some other kind of tub thing.

12:35:00 Me and a barrel - I love barrels!

12:35:16 Some more barrels and stuff - taken by Chie.

12:38:41 A model of a boat used to carry sake - you can see lots of little barrels on it.

12:44:16 This is koji (or is it moromi?) - the sort of rice cake stuff used to make sake.

13:10:46 This is me suffering a bit from the heat at Oishi, the station nearest to the Sawanotsuru sakagura.

13:46:25 Me and Chie waiting for a table for lunch at a restaurant called Al Centro in the JR Sannomiya station.

13:51:34 The decor was quite swanky inside - Kobe is famous for being fashionable, and I'm assuming this is an example of this phenomenon.

13:55:04 Chie and our respective lunches, very nice too.

14:20:18 Me attempting to melt a large block of ice with my finger, as you do.

14:20:28 The bloke in the red outfit here was emptying out the water, created by people trying to melt these blocks of ice - what a job!

14:25:00 Another picture of Chie looking at a map, in Sannomiyacho.

14:33:28 Kobe's Chinatown!

14:33:33 Another picture of me at the entrance to Chinatown.

14:38:31 Chie amidst the bustling main street in Chinatown.

15:18:47 This is taken from the top (24th floor) of Kobe's city hall building, from where there are some great views out over Kobe.

15:18:58 For some reason the colour was a bit funny here - perhaps because of the glass, or perhaps the lighting inside the building.... or maybe just the heat...?

15:19:43 More views out over Kobe...

15:20:00 ...and more - and look some mountains in the distance.

15:21:02 When in Seattle, one of my taxi drivers had mentioned Seattle was twinned with Kobe or something - a little display case in the city hall seemed to confirm this!

15:21:13 It's an odd coincidence - I was standing at the foot of the Space Needle just five days earlier!

15:22:02 More views from the other side of the city hall.

15:22:12 ...and yet more.

15:58:35 A random picture of a busy intersection next to Sannomiya station in Kobe.

16:28:29 We'd decided to get the bus back to Hiroshima to save money - I was surprised to find a very good coach service goes direct from Kobe (Sannomiya) to Hiroshima, without stopping anywhere else. It takes twice as long as the shinkansen, but only costs half as much...

16:45:33 The view from the coach not long after we left the coach station. Note the big stone fish.

16:45:44 A not-that-grat picture of a famous Kobe landmark - the Port Tower - obscured by a couple of roads.