Tokyo, Mount Fuji, Kyoto, Hiroshima, Great Buddha of Kamakura, Miyajima, Snow Monkeys

About Destination

Travel to Japan

Japan is a captivating country that has something to offer every tourist. The Land of the Rising Sun is a unique blend of modernity and tradition, with a rich history and culture that has been preserved over the centuries. Visitors to Japan can explore bustling cities like Tokyo and Kyoto, known for their vibrant nightlife, shopping, and delicious cuisine. But Japan is also home to breathtaking natural scenery, such as Mount Fuji, hot springs, and snow-capped peaks. If you're interested in Japanese history and culture, there are plenty of temples, shrines, and museums to visit, including the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park, the Great Buddha of Kamakura, and the Fushimi Inari Taisha Shrine. Japan is also famous for its anime, manga, and gaming culture, and there are numerous themed cafes and shops that cater to fans. Finally, no trip to Japan would be complete without experiencing its famous hospitality and unique customs, such as tea ceremonies, sumo wrestling, and karaoke. With so much to see and do, Japan is an unforgettable destination that will leave you wanting more.

Woman wearing japanese traditional kimono and cherry blossom in spring, Japan.
Woman wearing japanese traditional kimono and cherry blossom in spring, Japan.

Getting to Japan

Getting to Japan is relatively easy due to its well-developed transportation network. The country has several international airports that serve major cities, including Tokyo, Osaka, and Nagoya. Many airlines offer direct flights from major cities around the world to these airports, and flight times can range from 8-16 hours depending on your departure point.

If you're already in Asia, you can also reach Japan by train or ferry. Japan is connected to South Korea and China by ferry, and there are several regular ferry services that operate between the countries. For those coming from South Korea, there is also a high-speed ferry service that connects Busan to Fukuoka.

For visitors already in Japan, there are several options for traveling between cities, including the world-famous Shinkansen bullet train, which can reach speeds of up to 320 km/h. Japan also has an extensive network of buses, subways, and trains that make it easy to get around.

In summary, getting to Japan is relatively easy, and visitors can choose from several options, including international flights, ferries, and trains. With a little planning, it's easy to find a convenient and affordable way to travel to this fascinating country.

Tokyo, Shibuya Ward, Shibuya Crossing
Tokyo, Shibuya Ward, Shibuya Crossing

Alternative and off the beaten track stays and experiences in Japan

For those looking for an alternative experience in Japan, there are several unique and off-the-beaten-track stays and experiences to consider. One option is to stay in a ryokan, a traditional Japanese inn, which offers a glimpse into Japanese culture and hospitality. Ryokans typically have tatami-matted rooms, futon beds, and communal baths, and serve traditional Japanese cuisine.

Another alternative experience is a homestay with a local family, which offers the opportunity to experience Japanese culture firsthand. Homestays can be arranged through several organizations and typically include meals and cultural activities such as tea ceremonies, calligraphy lessons, or traditional crafts.

For those seeking adventure, hiking in the Japanese Alps is a great option. The Kamikochi area in the Northern Japan Alps offers stunning views of snow-capped peaks, crystal-clear rivers, and vibrant autumn foliage. The hike to the summit of Mount Fuji is also a popular challenge for adventurous travelers.

Kichijoji harmonica alley. Musashino-shi, Tokyo
Kichijoji harmonica alley. Musashino-shi, Tokyo

Japan is also home to several unique festivals and cultural events throughout the year. The Awa Odori festival in Tokushima is one such event, which features traditional Japanese dance performances, parades, and music. Other popular events include the Sapporo Snow Festival, the Kyoto Gion Festival, and the Takayama Autumn Festival.

Finally, for those seeking relaxation, Japan has several hot springs or onsen, scattered throughout the country. These natural hot springs offer the perfect way to unwind after a long day of exploring and offer a unique cultural experience. The onsen can be found in traditional inns or as standalone facilities, and many are surrounded by breathtaking natural scenery.

In conclusion, Japan offers a wide range of alternative and off-the-beaten-track stays and experiences, including traditional ryokans, homestays, hiking in the Japanese Alps, unique festivals, and hot springs. With a little planning and an adventurous spirit, visitors can discover the lesser-known but equally fascinating aspects of Japanese culture and hospitality.

Tokyo city illuminated at sunset
Tokyo city illuminated at sunset

Top 10 things to do in Japan

  1. Visit Tokyo: Japan's bustling capital is a vibrant metropolis that offers a glimpse into modern Japanese culture, including shopping, dining, and nightlife.
  2. See Mount Fuji: Japan's highest mountain is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a symbol of Japan's natural beauty.
  3. Explore Kyoto: Japan's ancient capital is home to dozens of historic temples and shrines, including the iconic Fushimi Inari Taisha Shrine.
  4. Visit Hiroshima: A visit to the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park and Museum offers a sobering reminder of the devastation caused by the atomic bomb.
  5. See the Snow Monkeys of Nagano: The Jigokudani Monkey Park in Nagano is home to a troop of wild Japanese macaques that enjoy bathing in the hot springs.
  6. Visit Miyajima Island: The island is famous for its floating torii gate, which is one of Japan's most iconic sights.
  7. See the Great Buddha of Kamakura: This towering bronze statue of Buddha is located in the city of Kamakura and is one of Japan's most famous landmarks.
  8. Visit Nara: The city of Nara is home to several historic temples and shrines, as well as a park filled with friendly deer that roam freely.
  9. Explore the Gion district in Kyoto: This historic district is famous for its traditional architecture, geisha culture, and tea houses.
  10. Try traditional Japanese cuisine: From sushi to ramen, Japan's cuisine is known for its delicate flavors and unique presentation.
June in the Kamikochi Japanese park
June in the Kamikochi Japanese park

The climate of Japan

Japan has a diverse climate, with four distinct seasons that vary in duration and temperature across different regions. The climate in Japan is influenced by its location in the Pacific Ocean, as well as by the surrounding mountain ranges and ocean currents.

In general, Japan experiences hot and humid summers from June to August, with temperatures ranging from 25 to 35 degrees Celsius (77 to 95 degrees Fahrenheit). During this time, the rainy season also occurs, with heavy rain and occasional typhoons.

Autumn in Japan, from September to November, is mild and dry, with colorful foliage that makes it a popular season for tourism. Temperatures range from 10 to 25 degrees Celsius (50 to 77 degrees Fahrenheit).

Winter in Japan, from December to February, is cold and dry, with temperatures ranging from 0 to 10 degrees Celsius (32 to 50 degrees Fahrenheit). Snowfall is common in many parts of Japan, especially in the northern and mountainous regions, making it a popular season for winter sports.

Finally, spring in Japan, from March to May, is mild and dry, with temperatures ranging from 10 to 20 degrees Celsius (50 to 68 degrees Fahrenheit). This season is famous for cherry blossom viewing, which usually occurs in late March to early April, depending on the location.

In conclusion, the climate in Japan varies across regions and seasons, but in general, it experiences hot and humid summers, mild autumns, cold and snowy winters, and mild springs. Tourists should consider these seasonal variations when planning their trip to Japan.