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Tanuki - Racoon Dogs images

Tanuki - Racoon Dogs

If you live in the suburbs of Tokyo like I do, then you might be lucky enough to have some neighborhood Tanuki! In the suburbs, there are still a number of farms and open spaces. And there is some surprising wildlife as well, such as this family of Tanuki. This Tanuki family would come by almost…(174 words)

Kevin image

Kevin

Railway rules - “Mutual Cooperation Culture” in Japanese commuter trains images

Railway rules - “Mutual Cooperation Culture” in Japanese commuter trains

Rush hours are extreme in Tokyo as well as Japan's other major cities. In order to make this brutal moment of every day less stressful, both commuters and train companies are making invisible efforts.During the morning rush hours, people will get in line and stand in a queue. They will get on train…(449 words)

yumin image

yumin

What Japan is proud of - Craftsmanship! : Japanese Watches III images

What Japan is proud of - Craftsmanship! : Japanese Watches III

Founded in 1881 (2011 was its 130th Anniversary) by Kintaro Hattori - first, as clock repair shop, then start making its own clocks. Set up its manufacturing factory (Seikosha). Went on to the watches by establishing Daini (second) Seikosha.... "Seiko" means, again, "precision" or "precision man…(656 words)

KIH image

KIH

Learn Japanese Traditional Culture : Tea Ceremony images

Learn Japanese Traditional Culture : Tea Ceremony

By learning Japanese tea ceremony, you will derive much pleasure in various things by doing the followings. - Put yourself in a special environment of tea ceremony room away from busy daily life- Enjoy seasonal Japanese confectioneries over green tea- Encounter with various lovely tea utens…(150 words)

OKAKI-sun image

OKAKI-sun

PechaKucha Night images

PechaKucha Night

If you're looking for a chance to meet interesting Tokyoites, I recommend you to head on down to PechaKucha Night.PechaKucha Nights are fun gatherings where creative people get together and share their ideas, works, thoughts or just about anything in the “PechaKucha 20x20 format.” Speakers show…(208 words)

Zucca image

Zucca

Cultural experience walking tour in Nihonbashi, Tokyo images

Cultural experience walking tour in Nihonbashi, Tokyo

As depicted in some of Ukiyoe, former fish market of Tokyo had been situated in Nihonbashi. So in the area where the fish market had been, which is next to Nihonbashi Mitsukoshi department (the flagship store), we can see some clues of the history. Some shops, called “Shinise” (long-established sho…(500 words)

TomokoI image

TomokoI

How to become an APRICOT NPO Ambassador for the Children of Tohoku images

How to become an APRICOT NPO Ambassador for the Children of Tohoku

"At Apricot we often get emails asking about how people can get involved beyond donating. There are many ways, as this reply (below) I recently sent to a potential volunteer show..."Hi Laura*,Thank you for your kind wishes ~ responses like yours are both a little rare just now as we are in …(1308 words)

Andrew Grimes image

Andrew Grimes

Much Ado About and Much Surprise From Japan's Jungle Crows (Karasu) images

Much Ado About and Much Surprise From Japan's Jungle Crows (Karasu)

To me, the end of “Black Swan” with the maniacal red eyes and aggressive spins, did not remotely conjure an image of “swan”. After 29 years in Japan, that spinning, velvety spray of feather was nothing other than the huge black crows I see pondering my neighborhood garbage collection area each Satu…(1247 words)

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Tenkara Fishing – From Ancient Japan to A Popular Sport With 80 Outlets in the United States images

Tenkara Fishing – From Ancient Japan to A Popular Sport With 80 Outlets in the United States

On a summer hike with a family friend in Winter Park, Colorado, we meandered into a conversation about Japan, my home for 29 years. Wow, Japan! That is so great! Tenkara is one of my favorite fishing styles! I love it!” My Cousin’s best friend’s husband from Boulder Colorado lit up with excitement …(953 words)

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How to easily find English speaking doctors & dentists in Japan images

How to easily find English speaking doctors & dentists in Japan

For those of us living or traveling in this country it is not uncommon to be in need of a qualified English-speaking doctor or dentist in Japan. It is also not uncommon to be lost about where to go.There is a really good service out there called HealthyTokyo.com. They have put together an impr…(314 words)

Aron image

Aron

The Tama Sushi Experience: Learning how to make sushi the right way! images

The Tama Sushi Experience: Learning how to make sushi the right way!

Deep Japan Senpai Jason, Katharina and myself were invited by Tama Sushi to receive the Tama Sushi Experience, so we could give them our opinions and convey our experiences to you via Deep Japan. Lucky us -- not only did we have a great time, we learned a lot and enjoyed a sushi lunch too!The l…(432 words)

Aron image

Aron

Banking in Japan: Where to Go, What to Do images

Banking in Japan: Where to Go, What to Do

So you’ve just made the big move to Japan and now you’re working on acquiring the basic necessities needed to survive, which are—in no particular order—finding work, obtaining a phone plan, seeking a roof over your head and setting up a bank account.As you’ll soon find out, one crucial differen…(738 words)

Japanista image

Japanista

In front of the sushi board images

In front of the sushi board

Sushi Chefs and Chefs in general in Japan and referred to as a “Itamae” or “Itamae-san,” which makes a great deal of sense, as “ita” means board and “mae” describes a position in front of something.Recently, I had the opportunity to take a 1.5 hour sushi making lesson at Tama Sushi, which cover…(462 words)

Aron image

Aron

The Vague Expression “Bimyou” is “Yabai” images

The Vague Expression “Bimyou” is “Yabai”

The Agency for Cultural Affairs announced the results of an opinion poll on the Japanese language carried out between January and February, 2015.It became apparent that the meaning of some words had changed over these last ten years.The word “yabai,” originally used to denote impending danger…(246 words)

HiraganaTimes image

HiraganaTimes

Knowing, Being, Doing images

Knowing, Being, Doing

I've been posting something like the following in various places on the internet, but Deep Japan is probably the most appropriate context for this topic -- because "deep Japan" is probably the most appropriate place to think about these things.The starting point is "now".Now is the only ti…(600 words)

Adam F image

Adam F

Easy and Affordable Ways to Beat Tsuyu (the Rainy Season) images

Easy and Affordable Ways to Beat Tsuyu (the Rainy Season)

Tsuyu, the rainy season, is arguably one of Japan's lesser liked features. From late May to the end of July, people across Japan are treated to all manner of wet, from occasional sprinkles to intensive downpours. Add in the heat and humidity, and you can imagine how uncomfortable tsuyu can be.T…(253 words)

Former Deep Japan Writer image

Former Deep Japan Writer

Seeing Kusatsu’s Yumomi Ceremony Live images

Seeing Kusatsu’s Yumomi Ceremony Live

The hot spring water that flows throughout Kusatsu comes from deep within the earth and, as a result, is very, very hot. Between 51 and 94 degrees Celsius to be exact. You may be wondering how this water is cooled. Adding cold water?One of the ways the water is brought to a comfortable temperat…(345 words)

Petra image

Petra

Baseball Ouendan images

Baseball Ouendan

At baseball games in Japan, the outfield bleachers are used for the ouendan, which is the cheering section for each team (typically right field for the home team and left field for the visiting team). The ouendan will have trumpets, drums, giant flags, and thousands of fans chanting, singing, jumpi…(113 words)

HillaryB image

HillaryB

Go to Sakuragicho or Kannai for music-related performances! images

Go to Sakuragicho or Kannai for music-related performances!

The most popular places in the area for music-related street performances are Sakuragicho and Kannai in Yokohama. Right outside Sakuragicho station, there are many types of music performed, from ballads to acoustic to pop! It may be fun to stop by, listen and perhaps purchase their CD! Kannai i…(82 words)

RieS image

RieS

Aisatsu images

Aisatsu

The use of aisatsu is probably one of the best ways to strike up a relationship in Japan. "Aistatsu" are greetings such as "Konnichi wa" (Hello, used during the day). Try using aisatsu at a variety of places; eg. in the elevator, in the park, at ths supermarket or in the izakaya (as per the above e…(97 words)

StevieB image

StevieB

As far as I know, there isn’t really a place! images

As far as I know, there isn’t really a place!

As far as I know, there isn’t really a place where beginners can go just to experience Kendo for an afternoon of fun. The All Japan Kendo Federation puts on a group event where you can go and experience holding the Kendo swords and trying on the armor. The event is once a month between 6 and 7pm, a…(141 words)

SEIJAN image

SEIJAN

A peaceful resting ground images

A peaceful resting ground

Japanese graveyards are in my experience much different in appearance than those of the U.S, where I'm from. There are some smaller neighborhood graveyards, and there are larger ones in reserved areas in town. One thing that is very different is the physical layout of the graveyards. Cremation is l…(136 words)

KurtisW image

KurtisW

Tatami in the summer time images

Tatami in the summer time

Although not all houses have tatami flooring these days (many apartments and homes will just have one or two "tatami rooms", usually bedrooms), you generally do not have a bed with legs on the tatami floor. Having heavy furniture with edges will leave pressure dents in the tatami after time, so sim…(133 words)

KurtisW image

KurtisW

Do you need to Give Tips in Japan? images

Do you need to Give Tips in Japan?

In Japan, tipping is never practiced. In fact, people will often be surprised to receive a tip, not know what to do with it, and just decline your offer. Workers in Japan do not expect you to give them a tip. Also, since tips are not expected, workers are paid decently. On your visit to Japan, don'…(86 words)

GenS image

GenS

Experience the Roaring Excitement of a Japanese Baseball Game images

Experience the Roaring Excitement of a Japanese Baseball Game

The aspect of Japanese baseball I enjoy the most is the cheering. Unlike at a game in the States where the crowd only gets loud when a team is close to scoring or something exciting happens, a game in Japan consists of constant cheering. When one team is on the offence, the fans of the team in the …(196 words)

GenS image

GenS

Learn the Rich History of Yokohama, Japan at Family-Friendly Museum images

Learn the Rich History of Yokohama, Japan at Family-Friendly Museum

The Yokohama Kaiko Shiryokan (Yokohama Archives of History) is a museum in Yokohama, dedicated entirely to the opening of the port city of Yokohama to Western trade in 1859. This was an important event which led to the collapse of the Tokugawa Shogunate in 1868, marking the end of the Edo Period an…(91 words)

GenS image

GenS

It is ok to drink in public in most of Japan images

It is ok to drink in public in most of Japan

In Tokyo and all of Japan, there are not many laws prohibiting the consumption of alcohol in public, whether it's on the sidewalk or in a park. Some parks, such as Shinjuku Gyoen park, prohibit, but if there's no signs posted, then it's fine. However, it's best to be considerate of others and not g…(83 words)

KurtisW image

KurtisW

Just say Iie or No images

Just say Iie or No

In Japanese, the direct expression for no is iie. However, most Japanese people know the English word no and are more likely to respect a direct refusal. In Japanese culture, refusal is often done out of courtesy and Japanese people will ask a few more times unless your refuse directly. If you …(76 words)

KurtisW image

KurtisW

Five Rings images

Five Rings

If you are generally interested in Japanese samurai warriors, it is imperative to know about the most famous one: Musashi Miyamoto. Miyamoto was actually a masterless samurai, but in both legend and reality, is credited with the most victories in duels against other samurai.He wrote a book, whi…(110 words)

KurtisW image

KurtisW

Have your umbrella on hand in June and July images

Have your umbrella on hand in June and July

The rainy season starts in June or July depending on the particular year. If you have plans, make sure you allow for extra time as trains and buses are often behind schedule during this time of year.There is also typhoon season which happens in the fall. So, rain gear of all types is worth havi…(62 words)

Kenji image

Kenji

Everything About the Edo Period At Edo Tokyo Museum in Japan images

Everything About the Edo Period At Edo Tokyo Museum in Japan

If you are interested in learning about the Edo period, the Edo Tokyo Museum is THE PLACE TO GO. It is a gigantic museum in Ryogoku (by the Sumo Arena) and is probably the most extensive museum on the Edo Period in the world. The best thing about this museum is that it has volunteer English speakin…(93 words)

GenS image

GenS

How to Survive the Rainy Season in Japan images

How to Survive the Rainy Season in Japan

The rainy season in Japan is not very long. It is basically the month of June, beginning in early June and ending usually by July. The coming of the rainy season marks the end of Spring and its end marks the beginning of summer. In comparison to Spring, not only does it rain much more frequently du…(100 words)

GenS image

GenS

Aways Stand to Left in Japan on the Escalatr images

Aways Stand to Left in Japan on the Escalatr

One basic manner you have to know on your trip to Japan is to always stand on the left side of escalators. Only stand on the right side if you are walking up. This is a rule that everyone follows and you will naturally follow it when you see people doing it. In escalators, there aren’t any rules in…(158 words)

GenS image

GenS

Novelty in the modern day images

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)

KurtisW image

KurtisW

Yakatabune images

Yakatabune

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)

mikekato image

mikekato

Turn the slippers around! images

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)

RieS image

RieS

What's inside that bag? images

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)

RieS image

RieS

Left hand side in Tokyo and Nagoya & Right hand side in Kyoto and Osaka when you are taking escalators. images

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)

Shinji image

Shinji

Check out Ryogoku images

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)

KurtisW image

KurtisW

Watch Hanabi while cruising the Sumidagawa river in Tokyo, Japan. Perfect for Summer Fireworks and amazing memories. images

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)

GenS image

GenS