Around mid fall I went to two popular places that one is “Tomioka silk mill” ( http://www.tomioka-silk.jp/hp/en/index.html : world heritage site) and another one is “Kusatsu onsen”. My focus from the first was Kusatsu but the mill is located on the way Kusatsu from Tokyo then I stopped at there. Maybe your brain is being blank now like what is it that mill. What for? Well see.. honestly I don’t know well but surely it is for making silk related industry. Anyway I’ll tell you my experience at mill with pictures. After that I’ll spread out and share my day trip experience at Kusatsu which is in the next article.
First we took a car to go to Kusatsu via Tomioka silk mill from Ikebukuro(Tokyo). Basically how we know the way to goal destination was just using cell’s navigation. we took one stop at service area(rest area) on highway where I took above picture.
Variety of stuff is served in here such as food, souvenir and useful goods for car travel.
Yes, the starbucks is in everywhere. Here as well.
This isn’t directory related our trave right now but there is charger installed for 100% electronic car. We might use this facility in the future…
After driving one and a half hour we pass the exit of highway. Since this car doesn’t install ETC device(http://www.go-etc.jp/english/index.html), we paid hand it over at exit lane.
Then we looked up for parking lot but we couldn’t find lots. There is several but all of them are run by neighborhood. So you can find this type of sign above picture and your pay for people who is standing or sitting around there. I paid 300 yen this time. (Cash!)
By the way notice that roads around the Tomioka silk mill were closed to car for certain range of time. I seems this happens everyday.
OK, I got gate for silk mill. Somehow there is a Japanese old type post next to gate..
Here is. How look inside of Tomioka silk mill. It was literally historical library.
Depending on time, a demonstration was given how to make silk string from white cocoons manually.
This type of facility seems popular for elderly person. They were watching video for making silk process in this image.
Of course souvenir shop in it. Maybe you can find something good ones at shops inside. It is where the silk mill so there is a lot of something made of silk(cocoon).
After left the Tomioka silk mill, we stepped in Ōmura shiten (http://www.silksoba.com/index.html : Japanese only) to have lunch where serves Soba related and Donburi(food in a bowl) mainly. By the way you can find Noren that is pointed by red arrow on above photo left. If there is Noren in front of entrance, it means this cafe is on business. On the other hand( right bottom picture ), if there is no Noren, it stands for not on business now. This is part of Japanese culture that you can use to figure out whether on business or not even just glance at.
The picture for each food on menu make us easy decision or image. Yes quite cool I think.
I had “sōsu hirekatsu don set” for 1100yen. Doesn’t need to say but it was quite tasty.
Then we started heading for Kusatsu onsen with full of stomach. We didn’t look up how to get Kusatsu from here because were completely relying on google map navigation by cell and it did great job actually. To be continued in the next Kusats article. (Day trip to Kusatsu onsen from Tokyo through nature)