My friend describes Nikko as the place she found her pace in life. And when you take 4 hour ride away from Tokyo, down past sleeping villages, the quiet falls into place.
Nikko is a banquet of flowers. The town is colored in green then speckled again in coats of pink, purple, burnt orange, and bright yellow.
Littered with monkeys, Nikko wears cautionary signs that warn visitors against carrying white plastic bags or flashing their food around. Passing a closed down bridge, we saw a group of monkeys eating and staring at us curiously. In another encounter, while we were at a merchandise shop, a parade of monkeys snuck in, in attempt to steal boxes of desserts. The shop keeper ran them away with a broom. From the remainder of our visit at shop, the monkey watched from a tree nearby, looking for another opening to break in.
Another main highlight was the waterfalls. A large one that barely overshadowed its siblings to the left.
In three words, Nikko is quiet, gorgeous, and absolutely memorable. While it was quite the travel (8 hours on the road), it was worth the time and expensive.
(when we got back at 11pm, I was half dead from the stuttering local train commute.)
Nasty can-flavored orange juice that didn’t help with the headache and ice cream along the way!