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Novelty in the modern day
Japanese swords (nihonto) have been used by Japanese warriors since very far back into the first millennium. The modern day "katana" was actually a more well developed blade that came into popular usage around the 12th century. It was from then that the blade began to have a few changes to length a…(181 words)
Starting Pottery in Tokyo
There are many Japanese ceramics studios in Tokyo and throughout Japan that offer introductory courses for beginners. In fact, most professional studios offer some kind of courses for people to make their own works, either formally or informally. But the easiest places to find out how to get star…(235 words)
Yakatabune are, literally "night ships," which are floating party boats. The vast majority are rented out to groups. Some, however, are open for individuals, couples, and small groups. Traditionally, yakatabune serve tempura as the main course. In Tokyo, one of the highlights has been anago…(173 words)
Turn the slippers around!
It is usually polite to use slippers instead of walk in bare feet or with socks on. When you take your slippers off, to enter a room, you should slip them off quietly and carefully and turn them around so that you (or someone else) can slip it on later with ease.(52 words)
What's inside that bag?
On the first three days of January, many people in Japan go to the near by mall, outlets and department stores to get the "Fukubukuro" or Lucky Bags. The customers do not know the contents of the bag, but purchase it because it's cheap price relative to their actual values. It is fun to open the ba…(90 words)
Left hand side in Tokyo and Nagoya & Right hand side in Kyoto and Osaka when you are taking escalators.
It's funny because people in Tokyo and Nagoya are stopping on the left hand side when they are walking up/going down in hurry while people in Kyoto and Osaka are stopping on the right hand side of the escalators. There is no regulation, but almost all people follow this kind of rule without notific…(55 words)
Check out Ryogoku
If you go to Ryogoku, you can find a wide variety of sumo stables and see sumo wrestlers going about their daily business. Ryugoku has its own sumo stadium as well, called the Ryugoku Kokugikan. You can watch sumo wrestling matches there on occaision. I also recommend trying Chanko Nabe, which is a…(66 words)
Watch Hanabi while cruising the Sumidagawa river in Tokyo, Japan. Perfect for Summer Fireworks and amazing memories.
A Yakatabune is a narrow and flat but long, Japanese-style boat used to hold arties. Yakatabune are popular, especially to hold business related parties. A company would hire one yakatabune and then employees would hold a party on the boat. These boats cruise leisurely on rivers, like the Sumidagaw…(186 words)
Go to Kamakura in Japan
If you are interested in learning about the Kamakura period, there is nothing more you can do than to actually go to Kamakura. From Tokyo, Kamakura is less than an hour away towards Yokohama on the Yokosuka line. Just one train ride to the former capital of Japan. When you arrive, you will definite…(268 words)
An integral part of Japanese sports games
Ouendan is an important part of the sports culture in Japan. When you go to Japanese baseball, soccer and other sports games, the Ouendan lead the cheers so that the supporters can follow them. Although most of them are at the front of the stadium (near the sport players), there are several others …(144 words)
One of the best sword museums and sword artisans communities can be found in Okayama Prefecture
Bizen Osafune Sword Museum and Craft Center is located in Setouchi city, Okayama Prefecture. Just a short train ride from Okayama station to Osafune station and a 10 minute taxi ride for 500yen to the museum. You can walk to the museum (it takes about 25 minutes) but if you are unfamiliar with gett…(218 words)
Check out Shunkaen Bonsai Museum
There is the Shunkaen Bonsai Museum in Edogawa, Tokyo if you're looking for something other than the Bonsai Art Museum in Omiya. They're open from 10am-5pm everyday except Monday. Address:1-29-16 NihoriEdogawa-Ku, TokyoPhone Number:+81 03-3670-8622(40 words)
Check out the Ohara School of Ikebana
The Ohara school of Ikebana in Tokyo is one of the more well known schools and is conveniently located in Miniami Aoyama. They offer classes in English at around 4000 yen but they are closed from July 18-September 5 for summer holidays. Address7-15-5 Minami AoyamaMinato-Ku, TokyoPhone N…(51 words)
Widely Available in Asakusa
If you go to Asakusa, the stores lined up behind Kaminarimon, or Thunder Gate, often carry imitation swords you can buy as souveniers for friends or yourself. If you are more interested in acquiring an actual Katana, you will need to look up Katana makers online and expect to pay a few thousand dol…(66 words)
A key point that differentiates Japanese baseball from baseball in the States is the style called small baseball. In small baseball, teams tend to score points through consecutive hits rather than hitting large home-runs. Although home-runs are a more elaborate, and perhaps more exciting, way to sc…(319 words)
Worth a quick visit if you would like to robe yourself in Beauty.
My German friend gives me a great information about Kimono experiences and I would like to share with you.The place where tourists can try to wear a Kimono.It's called "Marunouchi Cafe" ( http://www.marunouchicafe.com/english/ ).She found this place by chance with a japanese friend, without…(289 words)
I personally interested Kendo philosophy more that Kendo techniques.All Japanese martial arts such as karate, kendo, and judo have same based philosophy. It is a personal development mentally, physically, and spiritually.There is a famous word "kenshin ichinyo"in Japanese among Kendo p…(74 words)
Buddhism experience in Japan
The way of the warrior may not be easy to experience, but Buddhism and traditional Japanese religion is an insight into the power and culture of the warrior spirit.I experienced a few hours of Zazen meditation practice and a traditional Buddhist vegan lunch in the Setoda-cho area of Onomichi, H…(158 words)
Hiroshima, Peace, Reflection, Remembrance and Hope
Hiroshima is one of the most visited cities in Japan because of its tragic history, but also because of its vibrant rebirth - a testament to the strength of the Japanese spirit to never give up. If you are interested in how Japanese people respect their lost loved ones and ancestors, a visit here i…(233 words)
You can bake Osenbei yourself !
Japanese people love “mono-zukuri”. (making things by hand) There are a variety of Shoku-nins (craftsman) as well as craft centers or facilities where you can experience “mono-zukuri” yourself. If you join such an activity, you can sometime enjoy conversations with such craftsman directly and feel …(86 words)
OH! Japan-derful (spell, not sure)
Fuji TV, Mezamashi-Doyobi, 「OH!ジャパンダフル」 is a good program to know the very surprising and really Japan-like stuffs which are not well-known even for Japanese. Every Saturday, from about 7:10 a.m. on Fuji TV. Never shows up in any guide books, for sure.I really enjoy the show, a…(50 words)
Great Tip to Avoid the Rush Hour in Japan
On a longer (30 minute plus) train ride, I will often splurge on a Green car ticket. These temperate cars have a nice train attendant who comes by to sell snacks and drinks and when it is not rush hour you can get a window seat with a table to tap on your computer while enjoying the sites. During r…(279 words)
ABC Cooking Studio
ABC Cooking Studio is a place where people come to cook a variety of foods in a casual manner. There are 124 studios currently operating in Japan, and as a member, you will be allowed to take classes at any studio of your choice. The classes are done in a small group, ensuring you maximum suppo…(121 words)
Here's a tip
Actually, here's not a tip. Japan is not a tipping society so you don't need to tip in restaurants, taxis, etc. In fact, my daughter actually had the waitress chasing them down the street once when she left a tip on the table. The waitress thought she had forgotten to take her money. Some highe…(219 words)
Japanese People Love Hand-Made Gifts in Japan
I have always appreciated the simple gift-giving culture in Japan. Some of my friends describe it as cumbersome since upon receiving something there is always some pressure to reciprocate. Yes, I agree, but at the same time, the reciprocal gift can take various forms and hand-made items that serve …(358 words)
Suteki Jyoshi Kai, Tokyo's Women's Leaders Special Membership Club!
You are warmly invited to join our 2nd Regular Meeting of Suteki Jyoshi Kai, Tokyo's Women's Leaders Special Membership Club!Saturday, February 22th, 201, from 13:00 pm~17:00pm at Yotsuya Club 東京ガス 四谷クラブ(6-1, Aizumi-cho, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo)Fee 3,000yen(member)/ 4,000yen (non-m…(193 words)
The "hot spring resort" has its roots in ancient Japan.
The "hot spring resort" has its roots in ancient Japan.In areas with bountiful hot springs, people would come and stay up to 3 weeks to relieve pent up stress and pain from agricultural work and such.The flow of information was limited back then, so people who gathered from afar, as well as the…(88 words)
Spring is Coming in Japan, Where to Find the Prettiest Cherry Blossoms
As I snuggle under my comforter, wallow in the warm rush of O-furo and deftly avoid cold rain drops as I walk to the station, it is hard to believe Japan will soon be alight with warmth and a blanket of pink. If you are a nature love like me, you will notice a difference in the hard brown of the Wi…(313 words)
E-tegami (picture postcard)
Japan is a nation obsessed with seasonal activities of all sorts. After all, there are few other nations that I know that have national holidays for the Vernal (Spring) and Autumnal Equinox. This year (2014), the Vernal Equinox will fall on March 21, one day after the traditional date.But whi…(459 words)
Don’t be fooled by appearances!
Fashion and appearances are of vital importance in Japan. So why do Japanese businessmen all look similar?To start with the conclusion, if I may, unfashion is a kind of fashion. Let me explain it with the Japanese angle. Like anywhere else, fashion in Japan is a statement of belonging to a com…(359 words)
The Musical Toilets of Japan
I have a friend who always used the euphemism, “going to the Toto,” whenever he was headed for the men’s room. He called it that because Toto is one of the most famous toilet and urinal makers in Japan. (Toto is the abbreviation of Tōyō Tōki which means oriental ceramics.)First time visitors to…(631 words)
How long does it take to be accepted in a Japanese community?
Have you had the experience where you felt like you where not completely connected with a Japanese friend.I live near a port and every July the locals take their fishing boats out to Kanzanji park to watch fireworks from the sea.It's an experience that normally you wouldn't have.Lots of l…(293 words)
I did it! I have found the proof of the existance of incivility in Japan!
Have you ever wondered how they do it to keep their cities and public space so spic and span clean? I do. Every day I walk the streets of the city, and I am amazed by its welcoming cleanliness. - There is no paper, not gums littering the streets. No nothing. They even do not have rubbish bins! …(387 words)
A Gentleman's Kimono Completes the Outfit in Japan
Simple and clean, small Kobachi dishes contain lightly grilled fish, healthy Hijiki seaweed and a few other bites to complement an ochoko cup of dry rice wine. In the photo, the gentleman is taking his first sip of Sake after what may have been a long, stressful day. He may have come home around 8 …(281 words)
~ Picasso and Henry Moore ~ Inside and Out ~ Outside In ~
Turn left when you get off the train and with a little walking you'll see the Ticket Office. Different priced tickets for the members of your family, depending on how many days and years you have been wandering around this planet where sometimes you can get a sense of normality. You're not going to…(561 words)
How to cook edamame at home
Edamame is a delightful vegetable commonly served at Japanese Izakaya and sushi restaurants as a meal starter. Also, we can also cook them easily at home when you want some finger food to dinner during summer. Although it's very easy and simple, how to cook edamame is very important since it makes …(191 words)
Sushi Lesson with a professional Sushi Chef in his Sushi Restaurant !
Sushi Lessons with our Sushi Chef at Satsumaya Sushi Restaurant in Fujisawa, Japan.Satsumaya Sushi Restaurant is a well-established sushi restaurantthat has been in business since 1955.Sushi lessons are taught by our 30-year experiencedI tachō (Sushi Chef).Our lessons range from introductor…(262 words)
Who'll Stop the Rain
If you come to Japan during the rainy season (June / July) you'll likely see these little dolls hanging in the windows of homes, especially those homes where children are living.No, these are little ghost dolls to chase away the summer monsters, and they aren't angels to bring good luck, nor ar…(227 words)
Three Links to Yokohama
Once an insignificant fishing village, Yokohama has since become the international gateway to Japan with a staggering list of firsts to boast. Want to learn more about Japan's second largest city? Here are three links to get you started:City of Yokohama (Official): Everything you need to know a…(101 words)
Former Deep Japan Writer
Hydrangea's in Japan - Ajisai
Japan is a country of multiple seasons and for every season there are a different set of flowers that are blooming. At this very time of year, the Hydrangea's are blooming. In Japanese, hydrangea's are called Ajisai. You can go to virtually any park, temple or residential neighborhood and find h…(130 words)