Odawara Living 

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On the Coast, Near the Mountains and boasting great restaurants too, paradise?





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Minami Ashigara

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Japan Travel Guide

Odawara Guide

Hakone Guide

KevCon: Boardgames Weekend, Sept. 12th & 13th, 2009

KevCon fun starts on Saturday, September 12th and finishes at dinner time on
Sunday, September 13th.


3PM on Saturday


Kevin`s House
Address: Iizawa 242-23 Minami Ashigara City, Kanagawa
Email: greatpowers at yahoo.com

What to bring?

Your shoes, games, beer to bribe Kevin (optional)
We have the house to ourselves for most of the day so we can
get a lot of game playing in and say four letter words eh! I love
4 letter words like: four, dice, damn!

There are a few beds available on a first come first served basis.
Email me if you want a bed. If not bring something to sleep on--sleeping
bag etc. We have a lot of room. We have a Canadian,
Victorian style home imported from Cloverdale,BC.

How to Get There from:

Tokyo, Fujisawa, Atsugi, Machida, Yokohama or Sakhalin:
Take the Odakyu Line to Odawara and be sure to get into one of the
first four train cars as the train splits. Take a Kyuko (express
train) it has red kanji on the side usually next to the door up top.
It takes about 90 minutes. Bring a good book!

Get off at Odawara Station and transfer to the Daiyuzan Line. Get off
at Daiyuzan Station, it takes 21 minutes from Odawara. Take the only
exit, walk straight out to the main street out in front and head left
down that street through the traffic lights (under the covered
pedestrian overpass). Over the bridge and you will see our green
roofed house with "Kevin`s English School" signs plastered all over
the place.

How to Get There:

From Shizuoka, Nagoya and other points South: Take the
Tokaido line or the Shinkansen and get off at Odawara. Transfer to
the Daiyuzan line and follow the directions above (for Tokyo).

**The Shinkansen also stops at Odawara. You take a Kodama Super
Express. It takes about 39 minutes from Tokyo. Costs a little over
3,000 Yen one way.

Take a break from the city and see some mountain views and breathe some fresh air.

Feel free to pass this on to interested people. Games of all kinds
welcome. Bring whatever you would like to play, chances are, others
will want to play it too. We have three guest beds and some futons.
Bring a sleeping bag if you`d like. It is a nice area as well.
A great break from wherever you live with a great bunch of people!

Kevin Burns

Odawara Film Festival 

 Odawara hosts a film festival every fall--usually in late September to

early October.  See the Odawara Film Festival Cinematopia homepage for more  information (in Japanese).



Hakone`s Historical Old Gem: The Fujiya Hotel 

 by Shawn Thir

Lake Ashi in Hakone, photo by Kevin Burns

I stayed at the Fujiya Hotel in Miyanoshita as
well last year and it was great. Lots of history in
that place. What I found kind of weird was that even
though the hotel is in the middle of nowhere, everyone
spoke English. I didn't expect that. Aside from
that, I blew a ton of yen on the French dinner and wine
in the great dinning hall and thoroughly enjoyed the
meal(I should have brushed up on my formal dinner
etiqutte, though). What I really liked was the private
hotspring you can reserve(I think it is called the Mermaid
Bath). I believe it is something like 2000 yen for 40
minutes.The garden out back is great, too and the
cherry blossoms around the hotel would be something to

Originally posted at the Odawara Bulletin Board

Merry Lue`s General Store in the Odawara area (Minami Ashigara) sells food from home, antiques, games, toys, used clothes, stationary and other cute things for children. Shop at our location or online. We ship throughout Japan -- Online Store

Scrapbooking Club in Odawara 

by Kirsten

Scrapbooking is just starting to take off in this area!
If you are interested in getting to know other scrappers and joining
our get-togethers or workshops, you can contact me. There are various
groups, meeting at least once a week.

Crafty ideas, guidance, chatting, and fun in abundance!

Scrapbooking in Odawara
Email: kirwoest at hotmail.com


Nightlife in MA & Odawara

by Chris Weber

Odawara Nightlife
3 Chords
is near Wadagahara Station (Daiyuzan Line) Great live jazz!Highly recommended!

is within 2 minutes walk of Odawara station. If you walk outthe "Daiyuzan Line" exit of Odawara Station and turn left down the smallstreet running parallel to the trainline (what's that street calledeverybody? with an archway over the top of it... at least I think it has anarchway, but maybe that's only on the other end of the street).Spats

This google map points to the exact location of Spats down the stairs just next to Family Mart.

Cafe Ryo:
As well as Spats which has live music about 4 or 5 times a week, there is
Ryo Sakana Cuisine restaurant which has jazz once a month. Until June it was every Thursday, but they are gonna try every Sunday from July. I've been playing there once a month for the past year and a half and will be playing(trumpet + vocals) Please come along if you're in town. If anybodyin this group wants to come along, please come up and introduce yourself tome as I love to chat with people in between sets and after I've finishedplaying. Don't be shy!

How to get to Cafe Ryo?

 Ryo is just next to MacDonalds across the road from Manyo no Yu onsen. Youcan get the map on the website by clicking on the "information button" and then you'll see a small link for "access map" on the left hand side menu.

(Don't forget to print out the 300 Yen off coupon from the website ;)

3 is a small place near Midori-cho station on Daiyuzan (very close to Odawara station) just outside the station exit. They have a good jazz record and CD collection.

Other clubs in towns nearby:

Check out the area around the train stations in places such as Chigasaki and Hon-Atsugi.

Entertainment in MA & Odawara

The Minami Ashigara Cultural Centre and it's counterpart in Odawara host various events. Including concerts, plays and other events.

Daimyo Gyoritsu

Once a year during the winter Odawara hosts the Daimyo Gyoritsu which is a big parade of people in period costume. You can see what the Samurai looked like and perhaps watch an archery contest. This takes place around Odawara Castle. Ask your students about the exact date of this event. Check The Odawara Bulletin Board for event information.

The Odawara Jazz Festival

 is a big event and quite famous. You probably have to do
a web search to find information as the homepage address seems to change each year.
you can also ask about it at the Odawara Bulletin Board. Someone will know when and
where it takes place.

The Odawara Plum Festival:

 Is held from Feb. 1st-28th. You can see the beautiful plum blossoms at Soga Plum Woods in Odawara. There will be 30,000 plum trees in full bloom! Take your camera! The plum woods spread out from the foot of Odawara Castle and it offers a view of Mount Fuji. Soga is also the site of one of the three most famous vendettas in Japan involving the Soga brothers and contains many historic sites. During the festival, there will be local performing arts demonstrations, including the Odawara chochin (lantern) dance. For those less culturally inclined you can take part in the plum pit spitting contest! Be sure to take some tissue with you! When you tire of spitting you might enjoy trying some of Odawara's famous ume-boshi (pickled plum) at the concours. 


Site: Soga Plum Woods. Access: Shimo-Soga Station (located within the plum woods) on the JR Gotemba Line. For further details call Odawara-shi Kanko Kyokai 0465-22-5002. I imagine someone will speak English at this number. Note you don't go to the castle you must start from Shimo-Soga Station.