Konnichi Wa

On the 18th September, seven students accompanied by Mrs Catherine Gillespie, Mr Paul Grealy and Mrs Robyn Topp, departed Coolangatta Airport for two action packed weeks in Japan. Our tour started in Osaka where we enjoyed the high tech rides of Universal Studios and visited a variety of museums, a samurai castle, traditional markets and modern shopping centres. In contrast, the highlights of our stay in Kyoto included a variety of traditional temples and shrines such as the gold-walled Kinkakuji and Fushimi Inari with hundreds of red tori gates. The students enjoyed trying out the many secret passages and trapdoors of the ancient ninja house.

A visit to the Peace Park and Museum in Hiroshima is always a sobering experience and listening to Mr Masada, a survivor of the bombing, deepened our understanding of the effects of the bombing. A highlight of our visit to Miyajima Island was making momiji-manju, a special cake of the area. The chocolate centres were a hit. We visited several famous areas in Tokyo; the Imperial Palace, the Ginza, Sensoji Temple at Asakusa, Akihabara with its electrical goods stores, Meiji Shrine and the trendy shopping area of Harajuku.

The final days of the tour were spent at Fujisawa Shoryo High School, our friendship exchange school, where Mr Hiroshi Miyagi organised a varied schedule of sightseeing and school activities. Mt Fuji was spectacular on the day of our visit.

The students are to be complimented on their good behaviour and spirited participation. Sincere thanks to Mrs Catherine Gillespie and Mr Paul Grealy for their assistance during the tour.

Mrs Robyn Topp - Head of Department-LOTE

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