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Fright Nights Around The World

Posted October 28, 2010 by BookingBuddy

Sugar-skull1 Take a quick look around, and it should be pretty obvious that Halloween is just around the corner. Shops are stocked with plastic skulls and pumpkins, while little kids (and the occasional longsuffering pet) are dresses as witches, goblins, and Darth Vader. This spooky holiday is very popular both in the UK and in the United States, but isn’t celebrated worldwide. In fact, there are many other versions of Halloween all around the world.

Hungry Ghost Festival, China

Chinese communities celebrate the Hungry Ghost Festival on the 15th day of the seventh lunar month. The festival is the culmination of the Ghost Month, when the deceased are thought to roam the earth. You’re likely to see huge banquets being prepared – these are then offered to the spirits, along with offering of incense.

 

Day of the Dead, Mexico

The Mexicans honour their deceased relatives with one of the most colourful celebrations around. It falls on November 2nd, and many families visit cemeteries to clean up the graves and leave offerings. Sugar skulls are given away, and pan de muerto, a sweet bread, is baked and eaten.

 

Bon Festival, Japan

The Bon Festival is a time to honour one’s ancestors and clean their graves. It is also believed that the spirits visit their altars at this time. The Bon Odori, or Bon Dance, is also performed during the festival, and often features a singer who performs traditional min’yo folksongs. 

 

(Photo: matcmatters.matcmadison.edu)

Breaks In Tokyo – Tokyo Hotels

Posted June 10, 2010 by BookingBuddy

Tokyo  The thriving metropolis of Tokyo is a favourite holiday destination for many, and it’s easy to see why. It’s a city of contrasts – the huge city is one of the most populated centres in the world, yet there are many tranquil pockets of greenery to be found everywhere. Seek out the latest fashion or technology in the popular shopping districts of Shinjuku and Harajuku, or discover Tokyo’s history in historic centres such as Asakusa and Ueno. Before you leave, remember to spend some time sampling Tokyo’s cuisine. The sushi is justifiably famous, but there are all sorts of less well-known snacks and dishes to try out too!

 

See

Ghibli Museum – Studio Ghibli has charmed the young and old alike with their whimsical, heart-warming films, so a visit to this museum is a must if you’re a fan. The museum was designed by Hayao Miyazaki himself, and features both permanent exhibitions, and a series of special shows dedicated to animated films. Fans of Ghibli’s movies will recognise the large, plush toy ‘catbus’, and the giant robot soldier from Laputa, Castle In The Sky. Tickets to the museum can be purchased from Lawsons convenience stores around Tokyo.   

 

Eat

Daiwa Sushi – You may think it’s insane to queue for an hour (at 4.30am, no less) for some sushi, but the sacrifice will be worth it when you receive your sushi. Daiwa Sushi in Tsukiji Market, Tokyo’s famous fish and seafood market, so the fish is as fresh as it gets. Opt for the omakase (chef’s choice) and feast on the fruits of the sea presented to you on little lacquered plates. The selection depends on what’s available that day, so your breakfast may range from razor clams, ruby-red tuna, succulent prawns, sweet grilled eel or fish you may not even know the names of.

 

Stay

Sumisho Hotel – Sumisho Hotel is situated in the centre of this busy city, but you’ll feel like you’re in the serene Japanese countryside once you’ve entered it. The hotel looks and feels like a tradition ryokan, or inn, and has a selection of Western-style rooms, or Japanese-style rooms with futon mattresses. The Japanese-style rooms look traditional, but are equipped with all the latest modcons, and seem very spacious, especially once the futons are rolled away. Relax in the hotel’s baths after a tiring day trekking through the city, or enjoy a sumptuous meal in the attached restaurant. Room rates start from £75. 


Check here for Tokyo travel information.

(Photo: infohostels.com)

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