Japan 2013

On the 24th July this year a contingent of Explorers from Greater Manchester spent three unforgettable weeks in Japan.
The trip started with a night in Tokyo in a pod hostel. The next day we travelled to Mt Fuji where, after a night’s acclimatisation at the 5th Station we set off at 4am for the summit. Standing at 3776m (12,388ft) the active volcano was a tough climb but it was no match for the enthusiasm of our Explorers. Even so, the sense of achievement felt by everyone was incredible. The climb was extra special for Loulou Mattinson, Claudia Gristwood and Molly Henshaw who were invested at the summit.
After Fuji we spent three nights of home hospitality in Shiga prefecture which gave us a real understanding of local culture and of Japanese family life.
The 16th Nippon / 30th Asia Pacific Regional Scout Jamboree then welcomed us for 8 amazing days. We met Scouts from countries as diverse as Mongolia and Afghanistan and took part in great and varied activities, from a science day building solar powered cars to a day trip to the Hiroshima peace memorial. Two of our Explorers even met the Crown Prince of Japan.
From the jamboree in Yamaguchi we took the bullet train back to Tokyo and spent three memorable days exploring the fantastic city. We returned to Manchester with incredible memories and new friendships.
The trip showed us that although the Scouts around the world have different cultures we are all actually very similar. We are united by Scouting’s core values and we really belong to a worldwide family of Scouts.

Peter Boxall

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