Tokyo Skytree has a brilliant light display in store for four days only, and it’s designed to represent three of Japan’s signature dishes: tamago kake gohan (egg with rice), o-nabe (Japanese hot pot), and takikomi gohan (seasoned steamed rice).
If you ever thought you’d have to go to a galaxy far, far away to sit in the cockpit of a Star Wars X-wing fighter, you were wrong. All you have to do is go to Singapore.
Drones have sort of exploded in our cultural conscious over the last few years, garnering both media and political attention. Like many other countries, the skies of Japan seem to be full of the whirring, buzzing devices, and while the government and society are still trying to figure out exactly how they feel about these all-seeing sky robots, YouTube is quickly filling up with gorgeous videos shot with drones!
After the sun sets in Japan, new landscapes emerge, with twinkling lights on land and at sea creating night scenes so stunning a “night view summit” is held every year to rank the best sights around the country.
While cityscapes continually take the top spots year after year, there’s one talented photographer who’s drawing our attention away from the twinkling lights of the city and towards two surprising new locations: factories and airports. While the places might seem ordinary, the images are the most stunning we’ve ever seen.
There are many beautiful videos of Japan floating around on YouTube, but there’s one special channel that’s aiming to stand head and shoulders above the rest. Called TokyoStreetView – Japan The Beautiful, this is an ongoing project that’s working towards compiling a library of high definition 4K videos, showcasing unique aspects of Japanese culture and featuring beautiful locations all around the country.
We take a look at four of their stunning videos, filmed within the nation’s capital, at Akihabara and the famous Senso-ji temple in Asakusa, and in its more picturesque regional areas, at Nikko and Ise Grand Shrine in Mie Prefecture. The superb, high quality of the images is so remarkable, you’ll feel as if you’re seeing the country not through a lens but through your very own eyes!
We all have different ways of getting through long flights, like settling down for some inflight entertainment, reading a good book, or possibly trolling fellow passengers. But one thing everyone tries not to think about is what might happen if the plane were to suddenly experience an emergency while thousands of feet up in the air.
For one unlucky group of passengers last month, they experienced just that, and for what might be the strangest reason we’ve heard yet: some very gassy sheep.
Any expat, exchange student, or anybody who has otherwise spent a long period of time abroad will tell you that, while the local food is exciting and fun and delicious for a while, eventually you’ll start to experience intense urges for the comfort foods and products of your native land. For some, these urges may be occasional, mild pangs, but for many, the urges are so strong they can’t resist stocking up on boxes and boxes full of their favorite items from home every time they head back.
Recently, a Japanese female expat who has been living in America for years introduced our sister site to the top 10 items that she likes to stock up on when she visits Japan:
Tell someone you climbed Mt. Fuji, and they’ll ask “Where did you start from?”, because there are paved roads that can drop as much as half-way up the mountain. Of course some say you haven’t climbed Fuji unless you started from its base, but even that wasn’t enough of a challenge for these three foreign outdoorsmen, who decided to start their hike from miles away from Fuji at the seashore, then journey from Japan’s lowest point to its highest, making this awesome video along the way.
Ever since we heard about the opening of a bookstore-themed hotel with sleeping quarters built into its wooden bookshelves, we’ve been keeping a close eye out for updates, and were actually lucky enough to snap up a reservation to stay at the hotel on opening night!
After emerging from the beautiful space this morning, we can happily say it’s one of the most atmospheric places to stay in Tokyo. Actually, we wouldn’t mind shacking up here permanently! Come with us as we take you through all the gorgeous features and unusual details after the break.
One of the many things we love about Japan is its impressive variety of vending machines. We’ve seen everything from orange juice that looks like soy sauce to cans of hot, clam-packed miso soup make its way to the hands of customers through the wonders of mechanised distribution.
Recently, we stumbled on a machine we’d never seen before, and one that’s unique even by Japanese standards. Meet the persimmon vending box that delights customers on Sado Island with a rare variety of fruit that’s only grown locally, away from mainland Japan.
There are many well-known areas of beauty all around Japan, but sometimes you stumble upon something off the beaten path that simply takes your breath away.
That’s what happened to one person in Japan, who came across a waterfall in a tunnel of sunlight, filled with the same muted hues as a scene from a fantastical animated movie. Upon sharing the atmospheric photograph above on Instagram it received thousands of likes, with people all over the country eager to learn where the secret waterfall was hidden.
It might look like something from the foggy mists of a far-flung island many miles from Tokyo, but the beautiful scene is actually located just a short one-hour drive from the bustling metropolis. We decided to make our way there, and we’ve marked out the route so you can visit it too!
Though it may not seem like it, Japan is actually a fairly sizable country, with a lot of ground for sightseers to cover. It’s so big, in fact, we imagine it’d be difficult to a regular tourist to see all of it.
But what if you grew up in Japan and spent all your free time traveling around the country? Well, in that case, we bet you’d get to see a whole lot more of it, and for one Japanese Internet user, that exactly describes their life—but with one very cool addition. It turns out this anonymous traveler loves to take photos of cats at their various destinations.
Check out the awesome and adorable photo album below!
Aren’t the words “free entry,” “costs nothing,” and “0 yen” exciting to hear? I think we can all agree that there’s nothing better than a good deal, especially when that deal happens to be completely, 100% free.
While attractions marked as free may set warning bells ringing for some people, Japan has plenty of high-quality, worthwhile places to visit that are such a blast, you actually wouldn’t mind paying money for admission—except that they really do cost absolutely nothing to enter!
Japanese often say that a good view makes a meal taste better, so it goes without saying that a cute-looking lunchbox would also enhance the contents inside. From meals served in Shinkansen-shaped containers or rabbit-faced boxes that can be reused as coin banks, to lunch boxes that play music or have collector’s items hidden inside, Japan’s ekiben take Japanese food to a whole new level.
Today we’d like to tell you about “Ekiben”, a little book by Aki Tomura which introduces the best and most unique train station lunch boxes in Japan. We’ve chosen just a few to highlight from this gorgeously photographed, pocket-size book. The word Ekiben is a combination of two Japanese words: eki (station) and bento (lunchbox), so make your next train trip a gourmet ride with these bento available at various JR stations—just waiting for you to buy, smile, and devour.
Let the fun begin!
Two of the best ways to experience the pleasures of rural Japan are a long hike and a leisurely dip in a hot spring, or onsen, as they’re called in Japanese. With the country’s chains of volcanic mountains, there are plenty of spots where you where you can do both in the same day, with onsen resorts often not too far from where mountain trails start or end.
But instead of booking a room in an inn with a hot spring, you can do something even better in this part of Hokkaido by digging your own onsen!
Any proper itinerary for a trip across Japan should include stops in its three most famous Shinto shrines: Hiroshima’s Itsukushima Shrine, Kyoto’s Heian Shrine, and the Meiji Shrine in Tokyo. Those, however, are just the tip of Japan’s iceberg of breathtaking sacred Shinto spots.
Even if you’ve got no pressing interest in Japan’s indigenous religion, its shrines are often sites of breathtaking natural and architectural beauty, and here are four that, while off the beaten path, are not to be missed.
While Japan’s highest mountain itself is the primary attraction, it’s not the only thing to see in the Mt. Fuji area. There’s also the Fuji Five Lakes, which would be beautiful enough to warrant a visit even if they didn’t have the famed peak serving as a dramatic backdrop.
But while travelers are happy to see the mountain and lakes alike, one thing none of them look forward to is a puddle of piss on the men’s room floor of a local visitor’s center. That’s why one facility has signs asking visitors to mind their aim when using the urinals, but while the Japanese text is a politely worded reminder, the English version seems to be implying that the reader’s penis really isn’t so impressive.
Have you ever wondered what the most spectacular views in Japan are? Allow us to enlighten you!
Recently, we told you about Japan’s top three night views according to the Night View Summit 2015. You may have also heard about Japan’s Three Scenic Spots, one of the many lists of the top three this or that in Japan. So, what’s the deal with all these lists? And who designates them? Find out while checking out some of the best scenery Japan has to offer.
Did you know that each of Japan’s 47 prefectures has a designated monster that represents their region? The larger-than-life beings were born from the “Gotouchi Kaiju” (“Local Monsters”) multimedia project helmed by Professor Hiroshi Sagae, who’s worked on a number of kaiju-centric films such as Godzilla Millenium, Ultraman Saga and Gamera the Brave.
Now there’s a special crowdfunding campaign that’s calling on the masses to support the plight of the monsters as they strive to protect nature and promote greenery in their towns. Patrons who contribute to their favourite beast will be rewarded with cards, T-shirts or even a 3-D kaiju figurine but best of all, the funds raised for each prefecture will go towards supporting environmental projects in the region.