Off the Beaten Tracks in Japan
A Journey by Train from Hokkaido to Kyushu
Observations on the people, culture, and history of Japan from a long-time resident riding the rails along the less-traveled western coastline.
This journey the length of Japan takes the reader off the beaten tracks to explore some of the country's remoter regions along the Japan Sea—from Wakkanai in northern Hokkaido to Ibusuki in southern Kyushu—in a fascinating mix of travelogue, anecdote, and personal memoir. At each of the thirty stops along the journey the author, who has lived in Japan for thirty years, goes in quest of the spirit of place, determined to highlight what makes it special.
Mixing comments on landscape and culture, the author was inspired by Alan Booth and Donald Richie and brings a contemporary perspective to his writing. The text provides some practical information on travel by rail and railway lines, but goes into far more depth and personal observation than a conventional guidebook for tourists.
9 x 6"
# OF PAGES
"John Dougill's honest observations and deeply personal style leave a lasting impression."
"Dougill takes delight in every aspect of Japan, from the fish and pickles he has for dinner, to a weird conversation with a stranger that takes a surprise turn. I know of no Japan journey that is so full of joy as this one."
—Alex Kerr, author of Lost Japan and Another Kyoto
"Skillfully combining history, culture, food, society, literature, and old-fashioned observation, Dougill educates as well as entertains, soothing the restless spirit of the traveler who is determined to visit every place they read or hear about."
—Rebecca Otowa, author of At Home in Japan
"Erudite and deftly constructed, Dougill offers an original point of view and a sense of literary composition yoked with a deep knowledge of the country and culture."
—Stephen Mansfield, author of Tokyo: A Biography