Yokohama Chuukagai (Chinatown)

Today I woke up to bright, clear blue skies and sunlight streaming in through the windows.  Compared to the last few weekends, which have been gray and rainy, it was a very pleasant change to behold.  Weather-wise, it was actually quite warm in the sun, and all in all a good day to be outside walking about.  We made our way up North to Yokohama, and being the Chinese New Year had recently taken place, we thought it fitting to visit Chuukagai (Chinatown).

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Instead of shops full of counterfeit designer watches and handbags, Yokohama Chinatown is largely comprised of restaurants (Chinese food with a Japanese twist) and souvenir shops.  Today was quite crowded–as evidenced by the above photograph–so making our way through the streets was a bit challenging.  We did, however, manage to make our way over to the Mazu temple, which is dedicated to the goddess Mazu, who gives protection for safe transit on the high seas.  Image

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After visiting and paying respects to Mazu, we continued on to the Kwan Temple, dedicated to Guan Yu, a famous general who played a significant role in the collapse of the Han Dynasty.  He was elevated to the status of deity under the Sui Dynasty, and is worshipped as a saint who blesses those who observe the code of brotherhood and righteousness (with respect mainly to warriors).

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Once we had our fill of Chinatown we made our way back to Minatomirai, the Yokohama cosmopolitan zenith.  Our friend had been very adamant earlier in the day that he was on a mission to find the fabled Krispy Kreme Doughnuts shop; lo and behold, after much searching it was found, and the day ended successfully, donuts and all.

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