For a change here are some photos taken on a recent weekend trip to Ura Bandai, the weather not good unfortunately.
One of the Goshiki Numa (the Five Coloured Ponds)
My Mum was very excited to find this when she first came to Japan.
It's a wild, climbing hydrangea, the forerunner of the cultivated ones.
The walk through the Five Coloured Ponds is about an hour and a half one way.
A ride back on this bone-shaker, the Bear Bus, is good fun.
View from the venerable Ura Bandai Kogen Hotel (Mt Bandai in cloud, unfortunately). Lovely walk round the lake (30 minutes). Show your thanks by having coffee and cake (900 yen) or lunch (curry 1,300 yen) in restaruants with this view.
This is the walk round the lake at the Kogen Hotel. With its ferns and lush vegetation, it feels like a primeval forest
|The Morohashi Art Gallery. Mainly Dali sculptures with some Impressionists.
Interesting building, well-maintained river flowing through the grounds.
Il Regalo, the only restaurant open at night apart from the hotels.
Excellent Italian food and wine. Also a hotel.
|The outdoor bath at Bandai Royal Hotel
|A bit further afield, the outdoor bath at Tamuraya Ryokan in Numajiri Onsen. The hotel is run down but it's near the source of the hot spring and the water is hot, cloudy, slightly sulphury and tingling to the taste.
|and autumn is not far away .....