The Land of the Rising Sun is still the Jewel of the Pacific
There are many exotic places to experience gathered around the Pacific Ocean, but Japan’s rich culture, glittering cities, gorgeous landscapes, and friendly people should make spending your holidays in Japan the first entry on your list of places to visit.
You’re sure to find enough attractions in Tokyo or other areas in Japan to make your stay as memorable as any place on earth can offer.
One of the world’s oldest cultures. One of the world’s most modern cultures
Japan is a place of mind-blowing contradictions and exciting history. Japan’s long history of isolation from the rest of the world and its amazing cultural homogeneity makes it a uniquely exotic place to visit.
But don’t let the desire of the Japanese to celebrate their heritage deceive you. They’re as friendly to travelers as any travel destination in the world.
And a love for the past hasn’t slowed Japan’s march to become one of the most technologically advanced countries in the world.
Top Ten Attractions To See In Japan
Shop in Ginza
Ginza might be the most famous upscale shopping district in the world. You’ve seen its mind-bending neon signs on television and in movies countless times.
Cool tip: Every Saturday and Sunday from noon until five, the Ginza closes its streets to traffic, and becomes “pedestrian heaven.” Don’t miss it!
See a traditional wedding ceremony at Meiji Shrine
Located in Shibuya, a bustling neighborhood in Tokyo, this traditional shrine is the place to go to have a Lost In Translation moment of your own. After a moment of contemplation and calm, there’s fashionable and bustling nightlife just steps away.
Ride the Shinkansen (Bullet Train)
When visiting Japan, you’ll be impressed with the efficiency of their public transportation system. The “Bullet Train” is the network of super high-speed trains that link most of Japan’s big cities. Get where you’re going at 200 miles per hour!
See the Golden Hall
One of the oldest wood structures on earth, and one of the most beautiful, the Golden Hall is part of a sprawling Buddhist temple in Ikaruga, Nara Prefecture, Japan. The building themselves are museums and filled with beautiful artifacts and art. A must-see for any trip to Japan
Sing Karaoke like a salaryman
Spending your holidays in Japan shouldn’t be all sightseeing. Let your hair down and belt out a cheesy pop hit with the locals in one of Japan’s many Karaoke bars. Don’t hog the mike, though. Let everyone take a turn at being bad and having fun.
Experience Kabuki theater
Kabuki is Japan’s very old, traditional, highly stylized art form of dancing and drama. It’s like a wild, eastern hybrid of opera and court dancing. Worth a trip just for the costumes and scenery.
Visit the Hiroshima Memorial
Japan has lots of history, and a trip to Hiroshima to see the memorial at the site of the only structure left standing after the bombing in 1945 can be sobering.
The city is entirely beautiful and revived, and the memorial does its best to commemorate a terrible day in their history with regret but not anger.
Eat sushi like a native at the Tsukiji fish market
UPDATE: The fish market was actually closed on October 6, 2018, and subsequently renamed to Toyosu Market in Toyusu.
Tourist attractions in Tokyo don’t get much more lively than Tokyo’s famous fish market. Go early in the morning and see the fish that will become the finest sushi in the world being auctioned to the highest bidders, right off the boat.
Climb Mount Fuji
Mount Fuji isn’t just the highest mountain in Japan. It’s a symbolic part of Japanese culture. Over a quarter of a million hike to the top of Mount Fuji every year. Don’t miss your chance to say you’ve been there.
Go to Himeji Castle
Located in Himeji Prefecture, the castle is the finest surviving example of a Japanese castle building. Built in 1333, its sparkling white walls and upturned pagoda-style roofs give it a fairytale quality.
Its imposing size and forbidding walls remind you what a castle was for.
Accommodations in Japan: Something for every budget
Japan has a widely varying landscape, offering the visitor city and country, mountain and ocean all in one country. Whether you’re interested in luxury travel, or the most spartan hiking tours, Japan has something for everybody, and probably something you never dreamed of before, too.
Step back in time and stay in a ryokan
When visiting Japan, tourists can still enjoy a stay at a ryokan, a traditional Japanese inn that looks like it’s been transported straight out of the 17th Century. You can find reasonably priced ryokans and inexpensive hostels near Japan’s countless scenic areas.
Kick back in your traditional robe, the yukata, while lounging on tatami mats after enjoying a rejuvenating soak in Japan’s famous hot tubs.
Head to the City to see what world-class really means
If you have more of an urban idea of a vacation, Japan’s giant cities like Tokyo, Osaka, or Kyoto offer unrivaled accommodations.
Japan luxury travel is known the world over for attentive service, luxurious appointments, and access to cultural attractions.
Just passing through? Experience Japan’s unique Capsule Hotels
Wondering where to stay in Tokyo, but you want to avoid a big bill and a lot of fuss? Try Japan’s answer to bedding down for a night or two in a busy urban place: Capsule hotels.
There’s a touch of science fiction to staying in a capsule hotel. Capsule hotels were invented in Osaka in the seventies, and these micro accommodations have now spread to most urban areas in Japan.
Just enough room to rest or sleep, but with everything a tourist on the go craves: wifi, TV, and a little privacy. Capsule hotels are an inexpensive way for business travelers, tourists, or day-tripping Japanese from the country to stay affordably without much bother.
Don’t worry about speaking Japanese
The Japanese language can be daunting to learn, but don’t let that stop you from spending your holidays in Japan. The Japanese are accustomed to speaking English, and they’re happy to toast you on your vacation in your native tongue, or their own. Kanpai!