The Five Star Vagabond

Super travel tips, all road tested by David Herd. I'm an Australian guy who moved to Thailand in 2011 & still travel the world as often as possible.

Ski Japan Hakuba Happo-one

March 6, 2016 by David Herd

Ryokan Shirouma-so

Ski Japan Hakuba Happo-one Ski Japan Hakuba Happo-one Winter Resort has many good hotels as you would expect, Shirouma-so is a modern Japanese ryokan (inn) combining both traditional wood and modern Japanese ”Wa” architectural styles, resulting in a creative and beautiful design This traditional hot spring hotel is surrounded by trees and only 10 km from Mount Shirouma and 12 km from Lake Aoki.

The mountain awaits

Hakuba Happo-one Winter Resort  The ryokan is 500M away from the main ski resort called Happo One so it’s an easy walk to and from the lifts at the base, only takes 10-15 mins.  Very quiet with no line ups at any of the lifts jut jump straight on every time.

Nice rooms

Ski Japan Hakuba Happo-one  Shirouma-so is a traditional Ryokan, rather than a hotel, you have traditional room and the beds are put out a night on the floor. Shared showers plus it has a Onasen (bath house) in the basement, and a very traditional Japanese breakfast as you would expect. Use this link for an exceptional room rate.

Small rooms

Ski Japan Hakuba Happo-one All hotel rooms in Japan are rather small and this is no exception.

Hotel restaurant

Ski Japan Hakuba Happo-one

In my book there is no better food in the world than Japanese.

Wonderful Japanese food

Ski Japan Hakuba Happo-one Over the centuries Japanese people have made eating and food an art form.

Hamish Elton

Hakuba Happo-one Winter Resort My friend Hamish is building up his strength for the slopes. I introduced him to Japanese culture in October 2015 and he is now hooked.

Big dump last night

Ski Japan Hakuba Happo-one What a day time to hit the slopes.

Bus snowed in

Hakuba Happo-one Winter Resort

Ok folks time to break out the shovels.

OK team lets go

Hakuba Happo-one Winter Resort Adam Fletcher is a close friend of Hamish and hails from Melbourne.

Here is the team

Ski Japan Hakuba Happo-one Well, it’s certainly not the A team, like his golf Hamish needs a little improvement to his downhill slalom technique.

Hamish’s speciality

 photo Happo One Hakuba Nagano 5.jpg If taking “selfies” was an Olympic event Hamish would certainly be a medal contender. 🙂

Ski Japan Hakuba Happo-one          Ski Japan Hakuba Happo-one          Hakuba Happo-one Winter Resort

Where are all the people?

Hakuba Happo-one Winter Resort According to Hamish 80% of all the skiers were Australians who were enjoying both the fabulous conditions and lower prices than Australia.

Catch me if you can Hamish

Ski Japan Hakuba Happo-one

No doubt about it, the boys really looked the part.

Ski Japan Hakuba Happo-one

Hakuba Happo-one Winter Resort Only four hours by bus from Narita airport in Tokyo.

Selfie bomb

Ski Japan Hakuba Happo-one Adam is wise to Hamish’s love of selfies, so he successfully bombs this one. 🙂

Thanks for visiting Hamish’s Ski Japan Hakuba Happo-one photo blog.

Granbell Hotel

Shibuya Chaotic Scramble Tokyo

If you would would like to stay at Shibuya I got an excellent deal booking through this Agoda link.

Here is my favourite Japanese song.

         Checkout some more of my terrific blogs on the links below.

             Lisbon                                 New York                       Airole Italy     

Lisbon restaurant            Wall St New York            Airole                         

             Menton                          Pattaya Storms                   Shibuya Tokyo

French Riviera            Pattaya Thailand            Shibuya Tokyo                 

        Hong Kong                        Florianopolos                         Dubrovnik

Kowloon Hong Kong           Joaquina Beach Florianopolis            Dubrovnik


 Great hotel room rates anywhere in the world if you book
                                                through these links below.  Book now & pay later.
                                                                 Plus free cancellation .?
                                                       Bangkok Hotels                    Pattaya Hotels
                                                  Amazing Bangkok busses               Amazing Bangkok busses


Pattaya webcam


That’s all folks

David Herd Thailand

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Wan Chai winter Hong Kong

April 19, 2014 by David Herd

Wan Chai winter Hong Kong in mid February, it was so cold, you must be joking I thought. Last week the temperature was 18 degrees, when I arrived it was 8. The first stop on my “seven Super Cities” adventure in a city I had not visited since 1980, 34 years ago.

Wan Chai Hong Kong

Wan Chai winter Hong Kong

Wan Chai Hong Kong is one of the busiest commercial areas in Hong Kong with offices of many small and medium-sized companies. Wan Chai North features office towers, parks, hotels and an international conference and exhibition centre. As one of the first areas developed in Hong Kong.

Gloucester Rd Wan Chai

Gloucester rd Wan Chai Hong KongWan Chai’s Gloucester Road, a east-west trunk route along the northern coast, is connected to Cross-Harbour Tunnel, the first undersea tunnel in Hong Kong. This tunnel is connected to the south by a direct viaduct from its landing point on Hong Kong Island to the Aberdeen Tunnel towards the southern coast.

Opposite my hotel in Wan Chai Hong Kong

Wan Chai winter Hong KongProstitution has been one of the oldest occupations in Wan Chai. There are numerous historical accounts of women trading sex for western merchandise, especially from visiting sailors who got off the trading ships and visited this area.

Lockhart Rd Wan Chai

David Herd Thailand

 In the 1960s, Wan Chai became legendary for its exotic night life, especially for the US servicemen resting there during the Vietnam War.

One Aussie, one Kiwi & 3 Filipinos.

Wan Chai winter Hong Kong For bars, restaurants and night clubs Wan Chai Hong Kong is a great part of the cityThe area towards the western end of Lockhart Road, including a small part of the parallel Jaffe Road, is one of Hong Kong island’s two main bar districts (the other being the more upmarket Lan Kwai Fong in Central). Once considered primarily as a red light district, this area is now more diverse with bars, pubs, restaurants and discos.

A number of the raunchier bars still remain, however, their doorways festooned with women from Thailand and the Philippines. The famous novel and film “The World of Suzie Wong” sets many scenes in this area. The bar district has been popular with visiting sailors and navies, when Fenwick Pier, west of the Hong Kong Exhibition and Convention Centre, was in use as a military pier.

Wan Chai ferry

Wan Chai ferry Only a 10 minute walk from my hotel to the ferry.

Short ride across the bay

ferry Kowloon About a 30 minute ferry ride to Star terminal at Kowloon.

Hong Kong bus

David Herd Thailand

Or is it a tram?

View of Hong Kong island from the ferry.

Hong Kong islandThe island is home to many of the most famous sights in Hong Kong, such as “The Peak“,Ocean Park, many historical sites and various large shopping centres. The mountain ranges across the island are also famous for hiking. The northern part of Hong Kong Island together with Kowloon forms the core urban area of Hong Kong.

Hong Kong island from the ferry.

Wan Chai winter Hong KongThe island is often referred to locally as “Hong Kong side” or “Island side”. This description was formerly applied to many locations (e.g. ‘China-side’ or even ‘Kowloon Walled City-side’) but is now only heard in this form and ‘Kowloon side’, suggesting the two sides of the harbour.

Star Ferry pier in Kowloon

Star Ferry pier

Quite a contrast between these two vessels. 

Star Ferry Pier

Star Ferry PierThe “Star” Ferry Company, is a passenger ferry service operator and tourist attraction in Hong Kong. Its principal routes carry passengers across Victoria Harbour, between Hong Kong Island and Kowloon. It was founded in 1888 as the Kowloon Ferry Company, adopting its present name in 1898.


Kowloon Large-scale development of Kowloon began in the early 20th century, with the construction of the Kowloon-Canton Railway and the Kowloon Wharf, but because of Kowloon’s close proximity to Kai Tak Airport, building construction was limited by flight paths. As a result, compared to Hong Kong Island, Kowloon has a much lower skyline.

One Peking building

Wan Chai winter Hong Kong

Located at the heart of the Tsimshatsui district, One Peking has stunning panoramic views of Victoria harbour.

Lotus Vietnamese restaurant

Wan Chai winter Hong Kong Good food and service at this nice Vietnamese restaurant at 118 Jaffe Road, Wan Chai Hong Kong.

Mango & sticky at the Lotus.

Wan Chai winter Hong Kong

One of my favourite deserts.

Brighton Hotel 128 Lockhart Rd, Wan Chai

Brighton Hotel Wan Chai This is a terrific small hotel in a great location.

Hong Kong 1980

Wan Chai winter Hong Kong Here is a shot from my first visit to Hong Kong in 1980, how things have changed.

                            Here are some more posts to check out
                  Soi Cowboy          Pattaya Beach          Gold Coast


Soi Cowboy      Bangkok Pattaya Groundhog Day      Chevron Renaissance

Thanks for visiting my Wan Chai winter Hong Kong post. This was my first stop in my “Seven Super Cities” adventure which took 5 weeks, I travelled 40,000 kms by air.

cold in Hong Kong To receive my latest posts please follow me on Twitter 

 What a great year for travel in 2015                  

                 Istanbul                  Budapest                        London

Galeta Tower     St. Stephen's Basilica       Walkie Talkie London    

          Mostar                           Dubrobnik                            Split

Thailand Europe Vietnam Japan        Dubrobnik cable car        David Herd Thailand                     

                 Saigon                            Zagreb                          Vun tau

Thailand Europe Vietnam Japan        Main Square Zagreb       Vung Tau

               Great hotel room rates anywhere in the world if you book
                  through these links below.  Book now & pay later. ?
                              Bangkok Hotels                    Pattaya Hotels
                         Amazing Bangkok busses               Amazing Bangkok busses
That’s all folks

Beach Club Pattaya Bay


Click here to see Surfers Paradise in Australia.


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