Nature & Culture from Yudanaka

Please read

Article from Journalist Masaya Kobayashi, Hokushin Times below.

小林昌弥記者ー北信タイムスの記事、どうも有難うございました。 ー 小林さんの話も皆が聞きたいです。

Thank you for listening to my story Kobayashi-san, please tell us yours too

- we hear you're a bit of a character.


English translation follows below:



Hokushin Times

2009 April 17

Village Nature & Culture                                           by Journalist Kobayashi Masaya

Opening a Japanese & English website



New Zealander, Craig Shaw is working as the Inbound Manager at Ryokan View

or ‘Issa-no-komichi-Biyu-no-yado’ in Japanese.

Ryokan View is located in Yudanaka-Onsen, YamaNoUchi-Machi and owned by Saisu Masao-Shacho.  

Craig is determined to spread the word about Nature & Culture and so he’s opened his own website

‘’ to express his ideas and also give others a vent for their ideas.


Craig first became interested in Japan as a high school student when he had contact with a young Japanese man,

 an exchange student at Craig’s high school (ForestView High School).

“He was so polite, maybe this is the Samurai-Spirit, or Samurai way of thinking” sayes Craig.


He was a university student of 21years old when he came to Japan.

Obtaining a Working Holiday Visa he found work in Hokaida, Saitama and Tokyo. 

Washing plates in a hotel and teaching English he was able to touch the surface of Japanese culture.


After heading back to New Zealand, unable to forget Japan,

while attending graduate school he guided tour groups in Japanese whilst driving a mini-bus.


After being roped in by a young Japanese women who was helping out at the same tour company,

Craig decided it was time to get married. 

Five years ago they moved in with his wife’s family in Nakano City.

Starting work at the ryokan last August as Inbound Manager, using both English and Japanese to renew the ryokan’s blog.

This time opening the website as his own with a strong theme of ‘protecting nature & culture’. 

Emphasizing mutual bebefit of making both Nature & culture go hand in hand.


For starters the centering attention on our very own world famous Jigoku-dani, Yaenkoen – Snow Monkey,

writing in Japanese and English:

“Generally people think that humans are more advanced and possess far greater technical skills than monkeys,

however monkey behavior is no different to humans. 

On a language level, we are different, but baby monkeys always bow to superior monkeys.”

– gathering facts like this from actually visiting Yaenkoen and writing about what he feels.


Shaw sayes

“I hope many different people will read and give their opinions. 

It is better for a large group to think about things rather than just one person”. 

He say’s soon he’d like to also focus on other topics such as Hot-spring Culture, Natural Energy and the like.