I guess there’s always next year, though. I did manage to work in a quick trip to Nikko as a sort of consolation prize, which was nice. By the time we made it to Nikko (in the first week of December), most of the Autumn leaves had already fallen, which was kind of sad. Nikko is really beautiful in the Autumn, if you can survive the jaw dropping crowds, so I kind of regret that we didn’t make it there during the prime viewing season.
All was not completely lost, however. There were still a few isolated spots of colour here and there, and when we first arrived the sky was a brilliant blue and the sun was shining down from up on high, making for a perfect akibare (“clear autumn weather”) type of day. So at least we got a small dose of those oranges and reds I do love so.
By the time we made it over to the temple areas, however, the sun had retreated behind a cold, dark cloud cover and a quiet grayness descended over the entire region. This was especially true once we were deep within the tall trees that surrounded the various temples – at times it almost felt spooky (the lack of people around, and the fact that the sun sets around 4pm these days only contributed to the atmosphere).
On the other hand, Nikko definitely possess a somber charm all its own once the sky darkens and you start wandering amongst the silent grey rocks edifices of the unusually decorated temples (some of which are quite intimidating in size, especially the stairs). It’s a nice place to come and contemplate the quieter aspects of Autumn – and about as far away from the brilliant orange hues of other popular Autumn sightseeing spots (like Miyajima, for example) as one can get.
Speaking of Miyajima, this reminds me that I still need to finish up the last installment of the Great 2008 Cross-Japan Autumn Road Trip series. I’ll get on that in the next week or so, just as soon as I finish up adding a couple of long-delayed features to the Photo of the Day. So stay tuned.
More pictures after the keep reading link below.
Okay, that’s it for now. Thanks for reading!!
Now listening to: Tritonal feat. Cristina Soto – Piercing Quiet (original mix)