I am based in Sydney, but also travel worldwide.
My aim is to be in the moment and capture love stories artfully and intentionally. Preserving emotions & focusing on the mood and feel.
You can check out more about my why here.
Previously…The story started from our stay in Shinjuku for one night so I can rest from the red eye flight from Sydney earlier this year. Our original idea was heading to Hakuba by train straight away but then we found that I got pregnant. Gotta take care of this mama’s flesh, right? And that’s one of the best decisions we had ever made…I just couldn’t sleep on the plane…literally crashed after seeing Robot Restaurants Show…
Any tips taking train to Hakuba? Well, all you have to do is just go down to Shinjuku or other major/centre train station, queue up in the visitor centre/tellers then they are more than happy to help you. Really that simple. The only difficult part was we kept getting confusing about the exit name/number near our accommodation, took us a while to figure out how to get to the main hall. Just keep it in mind that it takes 4-5 hours to Hakuba….
You might be wondering why did we choose Hakuba instead of Niseko? Oh well, this is because…………WE HAVE BEEN TO NISEKO! We were simply love trying different places (have to make flight tickets worthy! ), life is so short and there are so many beautiful places awaiting ahead. It’s just more interesting to have a comparison sometimes, isn’t it?( I am not talking about love by the way) And if you want my opinion on which snow field is better, this post might be super long. They are just so different!
Long story short, below are the photos I took during the train trip to Hakuba, and I hope you will like them. I normally took lots photos while transferring because that’s when you can see some local places, raw residential areas and even just the transferring experiences it selves. Sometimes those dramas that happened during transferring are even more memorable to us, it added spices to the overall experience, and made all the destinations seem more precious, don’t you think?
What about you?! Do you take much photos while transferring? Or you prefer a magic door that you can open up then turn out to be somewhere instantly?
Stay on route;-)
Train experiences in Japan really varies to us. It can get very hectic in the city since train is the major public transport in Tokyo. But train down to Hakuba was really quiet, and even made you think the time has slowed down.
Will you care if that darn cord/line right in your way when you take a photo? I used to get annoyed but now I think it’s part of being authentic and memories shouldn’t be faked.
Another interesting composition. When you try to capture photos on a fast moving object, it’s really hard to think about your composition, it’s more like fishing. You grab it quickly while you can. Now we have these 2 trees right next to each other, cute.
After we changed the train after Matsumoto station, we got on a very fancy train with these two grandma/mama reciting/podcasting a book for everyone. I think they were telling the stories because they were making expressions and sound effects to make listeners interested. Don’t think this would happen in other countries….
I can’t recall the name of this train station, but this station was really close to our destination Hakuba, it made me really excited by just watching the landscape changing and we know we are almost there!
As you can see, this train was very new, big and nearly no one!! Feel like our private train!
It’s always a great feeling that you finally can get out of train station after a long trip, even the train is warm and comfy. Maybe it’s the typical excitement to the unknown places, maybe it’s simply the adrenaline towards adventures ahead, who knows? We are on holidays.
Honestly, we got on the train seamlessly so all we got were the doughnuts from Mister Donuts. (Please make sure you try them when you in Japan, they tasted very different to Western styles.) Then, bang! 5 hours train, and picky like us, we wanted a real deal, a hot, homey meal to fulfil our empty soul/stomach. We ended up eating upstairs of a big souvenir store on the right. Can’t wait any longer.
This restaurant seemed open quite many years, you can see from the traditional style (especially toilet) and to me, food was hitting the spot, hot and local produced rice. Asians know their rice, and Hakuba rice is awesome. Short, chubby and very white, the most importantly, I like it.
To a small town like Hakuba, and to a old and traditional running restaurant, they seemed a bit short of staffs. But I was quite happy for my choice. To Andrew, the meat eater, he doesn’t like the fact that in Asia, meat is not the major role in a meal…
Our resort is located a bit on the edge of the Hakuba village, but they operate multiple shuttle bus every day to the town. To a pregnant woman like me, it was perfect for chilling out and doing not much.
Because it’s not right in the heart of Hakuba village, so they provide everything that you can think of. You can hire the snow gears right at the resort entrance. There were lockers for your gears as well, super handy.
I will write a full post about this resort. I normally don’t write these kind of post, but I took crazy lot of photos in this resort because it’s just really beautiful and full of surprises.
I can watch the snow all day long. With a cuppa in hand, now I am in heaven.
Aka Innes is a Sydney based wedding & Editorial photographer, capturing wedding memories for free-spirited, adventurous couples in Australia and worldwide.