Scenes from Aomori, Japan

Earlier this year I went to Japan with my partner Ben for a much needed three week holiday. Ben had visited Japan before, but it was my first trip to the weird and wonderful nation. To kick off our trip, we headed to the prefecture of Aomori in the far north of Honshu.

We had planned the visit around the blossoming of the Sakura, or Cherry Blossom trees. And thankfully, they were in full bloom when we were there. We had not planned for nearly every shop and restaurant being closed - it was Golden Week, a series of public holidays where most people take annual leave. 

The city was a little lifeless with most people having skipped town. We discovered a Cherry Blossom festival was on in the town of Hirosaki and decided to head there the next day.

English is not widely spoken in Japan and we were basically the only Western visitors there.  And much to my surprise, under a Cherry Blossom tree, Ben and I became engaged. Below are a few of my favourite snaps from our time in Aomori - a place that will always be special to me.

P.S. Click here to read my travel feature on Japanese cat cafes. :)

 Theft rates are so low in Japan that's it's safe to leave your bike around.

Theft rates are so low in Japan that's it's safe to leave your bike around.

 Our first sighting of Cherry Blossoms trees, known as Sakura.

Our first sighting of Cherry Blossoms trees, known as Sakura.

 A beautiful flower in the city of Aomori.

A beautiful flower in the city of Aomori.

 The building in the shape of 'A' for Aomori.

The building in the shape of 'A' for Aomori.

 Some more Sakura flowers.

Some more Sakura flowers.

 Spring time in Hirosaki.

Spring time in Hirosaki.

 During Golden Week, bowling was one of the few places open.

During Golden Week, bowling was one of the few places open.