Looking for something different to what most visited of Japan we decided to visit Mount Zoa. It is a volcanic crater located near the city of Sendai. After looking at all the signs and helpful photo of the place, we understood the man who sold the tickets for the trip (no English). The next day we started on a tour to the volcano. We njoyed explanations in Japanese of our tour escort. It has to be a fascinating site because he talked and talked nonstop for all the long time it took for the trip. The price includes a picnic you can enjoy on the beautiful crater side. Stunning emerald water cover the crater. A highly recommended rest from the flurry of Tokyo.
Matsushima is about an hour by train from Sendai and appears to be a romantic spot for couples. There are plenty of attractions to fill a sunny afternoon. We dined on oysters (fresh and deep fried), took a scenic boat trip into the bay filled with 260 tiny islands, took a stroll around the Godaido temple at the port and visited Zuigan-ji. Zuigan-ji is a zen temple founded in 828.
Currently it is under-going renovation after damage by the tsunami of March 11, 2011. However the gilded peacock screens in the main hall have already been restored and are now open.