Top 3 Secret Places

Good morning everyone,

Yesterday wasn't as nice as I was expecting. It was pretty cool in the morning with the rain. It did warm up a bit in the afternoon though and the sun actually came out. Today will be really nice-it'll be sunny and 18C. Tomorrow will be cooler and will rain all day...of course it will. It's the one day this week that I have time to go for a run...ha ha! Then Friday will be the coldest day of the week with a high of only 11C before the temperatures climb back up to the mid and high teens for the rest of the weekend and the beginning of next week. 

The bad weather stopped me from going for a run, but it didn't prevent me from hopping on my bike and heading to the 'Kaki goya' in Kusatsu. It was good! You definitely don't go to a 'goya' for the atmosphere! Ha ha! But the oysters were big, fresh, and cheap-they were about half the price I paid for oysters in Miyajima!

The next list is about the top 3 'secret' places in Japan. I'm not sure how they determine the criteria for this. How can a site be a UNESCO World Heritage site and be a secret? Or how can a place become popular and still be a secret? Anyway, here are the top 3 secret, but not-so-secret places in Japan...

About 10% of people said that they wanted to visit these three Japanese villages known for being well off the beaten path.
 
Shirakawa Village in Gifu Prefecture is a UNESCO World Heritage site and is especially popular to visit in the winter time when snow coats the unique thatched roof houses.

▼ The thatched houses of Shirakawa

2014.01.10 no. 6 shirakawa gifu top 3

Iyayama Village in picturesque Iya valley has become a very popular tourist destination for its vine bridges and untouched natural beauty.

▼ Iyayama Village scenery

2014.01.10 no. 6 tobusomething tokushima top 3

In the middle of Kyushu Island, the mountainous Shiiba Village can only be reached by windy roads through the dense Miyazaki Forest.

▼Shiiba Village

2014.01.10 no. 6 shiiba miyazaki top 3 



I don't know about the last place. The other two look 'picturesque', but the one in Kyushu doesn't look any different from about a hundred other villages I've either driven through or gone to for a race! Ha ha! Does the fact that it's hard to get to make it worth seeing? I guess that means that the Hiroshima Driver's Licence office must be worth visiting, because it's a huge pain in the butt to get to! Ha ha!

Seriously though, the houses with the thatched roofs in Shirakawa look neat and interesting, but the other two...I could take them or leave them...

Has anybody been to Iyayama or Shiiba? Am I being too harsh? Are they really worth visiting? Are there any other places in the middle of nowhere that you would recommend?

Have a great day!

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