Saturday, 24 January 2015

Baby it's Cold Outside (Beppu Part 1)

After my cousin's guest post and enthusiastic recommendation of Beppu, I recommended to my family that we go there as well. While they were rather hesitant (since there's nothing but onsen there, apparently), well, I was the one making arrangements. Except for hotel bookings. My mom did those because if I booked the hotel (which I almost did), we would stay at a cheap place that was an onsen and had no attached toilet or heater.

Now, my dad and sis and bro really, really, really wanted to see snow, so we went to Mount Tsurumi. Google images showed snow, and despite the fact that there was no snow in Beppu whatsoever, we held out hope. Plus, by the time we got to Beppu, there was no way we could make it to the onsens before it closed, and this was one of those "feasible-to-do" things.

Despite the name, Mount Tsurumi is a volcano (makes sense, since Beppu is famous for its hot springs). Going there was a pain though. There's only one or two buses that leave from Beppu Station to Beppu Ropeway every hour, and we had to run to make it to the bus. I think it's one bus every hour, because I remember thinking something like "if we miss this, we have to wait an hour please no."

The bus ride to Beppu Ropeway is about 20 minutes (22 minutes according to the bus schedule) and from there, we have to buy tickets to take the cable car up.

Going up! So far no snow yet. But my brother saw a deer! 

First impressions were... lacking in snow. It was cold though, and it made me wish I brought my scarf along (I left it in the hotel because I was feeling warm).

But then, snow!

It started with a staircase (that got rather dangerous to walk on because snow turns into slush).

By the time we reached the top, there was enough snow to play with!

We even got to build a snowman. Well, a tiny snowman that my brother took great joy in building then stomping down.

I managed to get a pic before it was destroyed though. 
The top of Mount Tsurumi also has quite a few shrines, as this PDF leaflet will show (it's in English but you can also find Chinese and Korean versions here).

Obviously, my family was more interested in taking in the view than visiting the shrines. And my sister was interested in taking a back-to-the-camera photo. Since I'm not "swag", I have no idea why. But hey, my job is to take photos, not question why.

And if you're wondering what she's looking at, here's the view:

And to end, because I have two exams next week and I'm playing piano for Church tomorrow, here are some random pictures that I took to end this post. 

Why did I take a photo of a tree trunk? I have no idea. 
The way down. 

No idea what this is, but it's pretty! 
And the reason why "Baby It's Cold Outside" is the title of this post *drumroll*

I'm reminded of the song every time I see this picture :p

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