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Hokkaido

Hakodate Panoramas

I’ve been experimenting with some photo stitching software, and have created some panoramas from photos that I took in Hakodate a week or so ago.  Three of the four were taken from the top of Mt Hakodate, and the fourth along the coastline at Cape Tachimachi, to the south of Mt Hakodate.  With a nice sunny day and a little digital enhancement, I think they’ve come up rather well!  (more…)

Hakodate

Hakodate is a city on the southern coast of Hokkaido, which used to be a 19th century trading port.  There remain foreign influences throughout the city, most visibly in the way of of colonial era buildings.   When Commodore Perry succeeded in opening up some trading ports in Japan, Hakodate was one of them.  It’s also a very scenic city, so the setting of old western-style buildings overlooking the harbour is a key city feature.

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Hakodate from above

I’ve been in Hakodate for a bit over am hour, and made a bee line for Mt Hakodate, which has a sensational they over the city. But be careful of those icy footpaths – they’re slippery! (more…)

Sapporo Snow Festival 1997

This week is the start of the Sapporo Snow Festival, and there have already been stories on the TV news of the giant snow sculptures ready for all the visitors. 12 years ago this week, I was there as a member of Team Australia, building a 3 metre high pair of gumnut babies in the International Competition.  It was during the year I was a university student in Chiba, and it was an amazing opportunity.

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