Khairul Bariah Binti Azman（マラ工科大学からの短期留学生）
First of all, I would like to thank NIT Ube for giving me and my friends this precious opportunity to join the Miyajima Trip. We really feel that the hospitality of the Japanese students and sensei exceeded our expectations. Even though we just know each other, the Japanese students ensure that the international students experience the stunning Japanese culture and historical places and all sensei taking so much care of us.
We started the tour by traveling on a bus from Ube Kosen passing a lot of beautiful scenery. All the trees along the way seem like welcoming us with their mesmerizing red and yellow leaves. After a few hours we arrived at the Ferry Terminal. We have to get to the island from the mainland by a ferry with only around 10 minutes to get to the island. We were really excited with the greeting from a lot of Sika Deers once we arrived at the island.
One of the most popular attractions there is the Itsukushima Shrine that is well known as one of the three most scenic places in Japan and registered as a UNESCO World Cultural Heritage site in 1996. We feel so grateful as we were able to see their famous floating Torii Gate and take beautiful pictures of the gate as they already opened the scaffolding that closed the Torii Gate which had actually been under construction for a few years. I do understand why Miyajima has become one of the tourist spots and a must visit place in the world.
I also see some children wearing Japanese traditional outfits while visiting the Itsukushima Shrine. Hatamura Sensei explained that there is a tradition called Shichi-Go-San. It is a traditional Japanese rite of passage and festival day where 5 year old boys and 3 and 7 year old girls are brought to visit the shrine to pray for their health, prosperity and long life. We are so lucky to be able to learn the Japanese tradition while visiting this shrine.
During lunch, we walk to Omotesando and try to find for halal foods. We found a restaurant named Sakuramaru which offers a halal menu in their restaurant and are really particular about the preparation of our halal okonomiyaki. We were finally able to taste the extremely delicious okonomiyaki and fresh oysters in Miyajima. Siti sensei also told us to try Miyajima’s delicious Age Momiji in any shop there, as it is all halal. I would say that it is not difficult for the muslim tourists to find halal food here and surely be able to taste their famous food here as well.
After a few hours in Miyajima, we came back to the mainland and moved to Hofu Tenmangu Shrine, located in Hofu, Yamaguchi Prefecture. I heard that people come here to pray for their academics and exams, where they pray for their academic success. We are given a chance to experience a special ceremony during the visit to this shrine. The climax of this visit was that we luckily could enjoy the wonderful sunset views of the Hofu City from the top of the Hofu Tenmangu Shrine. Once the day began to dark we moved back to Ube Kosen.
There is a Malay proverb, “Jauh Perjalanan, Luas Pemandangan”, which means the further you travel, the greater knowledge you will earn. Being away to a foreign land makes me see things at a different angle, different perspective which broadens my horizon of thinking. This trip left us with unforgettable memories. I would have no hesitation in recommending these amazing trips for other international students or tourists in the future. My advice to all friends, go travel! It will leave you speechless, then turn you into a storyteller.