RieS's Advice List

RieS image RieS Japan 20 years in Japan

I love Japan, especially Japanese FOOOOOOOD!

A breathtaking run to Minatomirai images

A breathtaking run to Minatomirai

As a person who lives in Yokohama, my favorite jogging route starts at Motomachi Station. Turn a right and run to the park that is right in front of the first crossroad. When you go up an incline, there is a Bridge below the highway that leads you to the Yokohama Doll Museum and Yamashita Park - a …(212 words)

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RieS

Tokyo Park Yokohama Museum Nature Lawson Summer
Akihabara = Electronics images

Akihabara = Electronics

Last week, I went to Akihabara to look for some electronic equipment. Akihabara is a great place to go if you're willing to spend the time to look for reasonable yet high-quality goods. Along the back-streets and narrow roads, there are small, specialized stores selling electronic goods ranging fro…(97 words)

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RieS

Akihabara
To warm your body... images

To warm your body...

During the winter, I like to warm my body up with a hot nabe, which is a big pot filled with vegetables, meat and fish. As a person who eats little meat, I love cooking a mountain of vegetables in the soup stock. The vegetables that I always put in are daikon, nagaimo (type of yam), shiitake mushro…(92 words)

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RieS

Mountain Tofu (Soy bean curd) Hot pot dish Winter
Urth Caffe in Daikanyama images

Urth Caffe in Daikanyama

Recently, I went to Urth Caffe in Daikanyama with my friends. This cafe is known for its organic ingredients, especially its organic coffee. I drank their Earl Grey Boba Tea, which was mouthwatering especially during the hot summer month of July. Although it is a big cafe with many seats, it is ext…(112 words)

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RieS

Tokyo Restaurant Drink Tea Coffee Summer
Don't worry! images

Don't worry!

I've sometimes been in a dilemma in that my friends want to eat sushi, but I can't eat raw fish. In that case, I order inari-zushi and tamago-maki - my two favorite dishes. Inari zushi is vinegar rice stuffed in fried-tofu, brown bags. The sourness of the vinegar complements the sweetness of the fr…(133 words)

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RieS

Restaurant Sushi Sea Sashimi (Raw fish) Tofu (Soy bean curd) Natto (Fermented soy beans) Vinegar
Yatai while doing hanami images

Yatai while doing hanami

Yatai or open-air food stalls are seen at festivals and big events. I love stopping at several yatais when I go do hanami at Gumyoji. During the sakura-blooming season, there is a row of yatai along the river in Gumyoji. Along the river, there are also cherry-blossom trees! Therefore, it is a great…(131 words)

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RieS

Hanami (Cherry Blossom Viewing) Tokyo River Beauty Nature
TOFU is the way to go! images

TOFU is the way to go!

As a person who hardly eats any meat, I always look for restaurants with meals for vegetarians. Some of my favorite restaurants are tofu-specific restaurants. Tofu is an excellent source of protein for vegetarians. My favorite restaurant is "Ume-no-hana" in Sky Building in Yokohama Station. I love …(155 words)

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RieS

Tofu (Soy bean curd) Restaurant Yokohama Building
Make funny faces and have fun decorating! images

Make funny faces and have fun decorating!

Usually, at purikura machines, you take six photos. For about two of them, my friends and I just smile and do a pose. For the other four, we do funny poses or make faces that make us laugh. The best part of the experience is decorating the photos with comments, drawings and glitters. We can even ch…(121 words)

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RieS

Hair Photo booth
Beautiful, but not too touristy: Negishi and Gumyoji images

Beautiful, but not too touristy: Negishi and Gumyoji

My two favorite spots near Tokyo are Negishi Park and Gumyoji. During the day, I go to Negishi Park, which is a huge park with innumerable cherry blossom trees. It is so fun to have a picnic with your friends and play badminton or catch during this beautiful season. The parks is a great place to re…(192 words)

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RieS

Tokyo Park River Cherry blossom Cherry Hanami (Cherry Blossom Viewing)
A fan of roller coasters? You MUST go to Fuji-Q! images

A fan of roller coasters? You MUST go to Fuji-Q!

Although I've only been there once, it was an excellent enough amusement park to say that Fuji-Q Highland is my favorite amusement park in the world. This is a great amusement park for people who like heights and fast roller coasters. Although it can take a long time to trvel to Fuji-Q and can clos…(160 words)

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RieS

Tokyo Park Amusement park
Sakuragicho for live music performances! images

Sakuragicho for live music performances!

I enjoy watching the musical performances in front of Sakuragicho station (in Yokohama which is nearby Tokyo). These performances range from jazz to pop. I find it really entertaining to walk around the Minatomirai area, because there is always a different group performing different styles of music…(83 words)

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RieS

Tokyo Yokohama Music
Sakuramochi hits the spot images

Sakuramochi hits the spot

My favorite dessert during the spring time is sakura-mochi, which is a pink and sweet rice cake with red bean paste and a sakura leaf wrapped around the mochi. It is delectable and is perfect after any meal. I love how the saltiness of the leaf complements the sweetness of the mochi. This is th…(68 words)

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RieS

Mochi (Rice cake) Cherry blossom Cherry Dessert Spring
Claps and bows in silence images

Claps and bows in silence

Every New Year's holiday, I go to Tsurugaoka Hachimangu in Kamakura. There, you first throw money, bow twice, clap your hands twice, pray and then bow once (you can follow this process at any shrine). It may sound like a complicated process, but all you have to do is follow the person before you (t…(160 words)

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RieS

Tera (Temple) Kamakura Jinjya (Shrine) Beauty New year
Royal Host - a cozy environment images

Royal Host - a cozy environment

My all-time favorite family restaurant is Royal Host, a family restaurant that is more upper-class than others. My family usually go there just to relax, because the have comfortable booth seats. They also have a drink bar and therefore it's a great place to hang out and talk with your friends!…(137 words)

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RieS

Tokyo Restaurant Drink
Don't litter! images

Don't litter!

When walking around in Tokyo, you should prevent littering. Many Japanese people hold on to their trash and try to keep the city clean. Japanese also tend to recycle their garbage, which makes it harder to sometimes find the right garbage can. If you have garbage that you really want to throw out, …(68 words)

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RieS

Tokyo City Etiquette Convenience store
Shopping in Sogo! images

Shopping in Sogo!

My favorite department store is Sogo, which can be found near major stations and city areas. I go to Sogo for different errands. The second floor of the basement (B2) is a great place to buy food on the go, go grocery shopping and purchase Japanese sweets and cakes as souvenirs for your family. I l…(262 words)

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RieS

Shopping Sogo Tokyo City Ginza Department store Museum Fashion Stationery
Lost anything? Go to the Koban! images

Lost anything? Go to the Koban!

Japanese police boxes are so useful, because the policemen are kind and willing to help people who are having difficulties finding the way. Also, Japanese people tend to be honest and caring for other people – they deliver lost items to the police box, especially if the item looks expensive or is a…(104 words)

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RieS

Police
Step one: fight for the front seats images

Step one: fight for the front seats

The best seat you can get is at the very front, right behind the train driver. There, you can see the view of the lush trees and plants alongside the tracks of the Enoden train line as well as the tranquil seashore of the Shonan beaches! I rode on this train recently to go from Kamakura to Enoshima…(71 words)

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RieS

Train Kamakura Beaches Enoshima Island
Keep the beach clean! images

Keep the beach clean!

Although beaches do not have many strict rules, one that is implied is to keep the beach clean. Similar to other manners, Japanese tend to think about other people who may use the space later. Therefore it is important to not leave trash around when you leave. This may be difficult, because there a…(97 words)

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RieS

Etiquette Beaches
Easy as pie! images

Easy as pie!

The process of checking-in is similar to that of hotels in other countries. You should go to the front desk and tell them your name and other information to do with your reservation. From that point onwards, the employees will guide you on the use of the room ticket, meals, how to get around, when …(94 words)

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RieS

Ticket
In front of Sakuragicho station images

In front of Sakuragicho station

If you're lucky, on some weekday nights, there is a man in front of Sakuragicho performing his shamisen. Although he is probably not a professional, this is a a cheap and great way to enjoy street performances in Japan as well as engrossing yourself into the Japanese shamisen culture like a local.(52 words)

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RieS

Tokyo
Street parking? Parking lot? images

Street parking? Parking lot?

It is not recommended to park illegally on the side of the streets where there is no street parking, because the police come around frequently. Therefore, you should either use the street parking (and definitely put the money in the meter) or go to a nearby parking lot. For street parking, you usua…(122 words)

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RieS

Park Police
New Year's like a true local images

New Year's like a true local

If you want to have a relaxing winter, I recommend staying at a ryokan with a “kotatsu.” Kotatsu are tables with a futon and a heater that keep your feet (and therefore your body) warm during the cold winter months. Families often stay under this and eat mikan (a type of tangerine sold during the w…(108 words)

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RieS

New year Music Japanese inn Rice cracker Futon Mandarin orange Winter
A great way to immerse yourself in Japan images

A great way to immerse yourself in Japan

Almost every university and high school in Japan hosts a festival or fair every year around the beginning of November. In these fairs, each class is responsible for an event, such as a play, a game, cafes, food, etc. Often, each university and high school is famous for an aspect of their festival, …(97 words)

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RieS

Event Game Fashion Comedy
Before you leave... images

Before you leave...

When staying at the park or street with cherry blossoms, you should not take up excessive amounts of space, especially if it is a popular location. Take a picnic sheet that will fit your friends and/or family members with whom you will be doing hanami. Also, you must remember to throw out your own …(106 words)

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RieS

Park Etiquette Cherry blossom Cherry Hanami (Cherry Blossom Viewing) Flower
Soup Stock Tokyo for a simple but heartwarming lunch! images

Soup Stock Tokyo for a simple but heartwarming lunch!

When I want a quick but delicious and heartwarming lunch, I often go to Soup Stock Tokyo, a restaurant that specializes in soups and curries from all over the world. This chain restaurant all around Japan is easily accessible, because they have restaurants in major stations and malls. I usually get…(183 words)

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RieS

Tokyo Restaurant Beef
DEFINITELY eat at Ginza Isomura! images

DEFINITELY eat at Ginza Isomura!

One of my favorite Japanese restaurants in Japan is called Ginza Isomura; there is one in Ginza and two in Kannai/Bashamichi. They are famous for their kushiage, which are fresh meat, fish or vegetables deep fried on a stick. However, it is not as heavy as you may think! I love going for lunches, b…(115 words)

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RieS

Tokyo Drink Ginza Miso Miso soup Tsukemono (Japanese pickles)
The two processes you should know images

The two processes you should know

In general, ramen stores have two distinct ways of ordering. Some stores have ticket machines at the entrance or outside the store. By looking at the menu, you should pick a ramen that you like, insert the money and press the botton with the ramen that corresponds to the one want to try. Then, brin…(138 words)

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RieS

Restaurant Ticket Ramen noodles Ticket machine
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)

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RieS

Tokyo Yokohama Music
Love J-pop? Watch Music Station! images

Love J-pop? Watch Music Station!

Every Friday at 8pm, I look forward to watching Music Station, an hour long show dedicated to J-pop. Here, about five to ten popular Japanese singers perform their new songs and new J-pop artists are introduced. Also, singers and groups from overseas, such as the US, Canada, Korea and Britain, have…(142 words)

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RieS

Music Entertainment Christmas
Enjoy the scenery in a Jinrikisha! images

Enjoy the scenery in a Jinrikisha!

An interesting type of transportation is "Jinrikisha," which is a wooden carriage with two wheels pulled by a person. I have see nthese in areas such as Asakusa and Kamakura. This is one of the oldest forms of transportation in Japan and is a great way for tourists to get to know the area. From the…(110 words)

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RieS

Tokyo Etiquette Asakusa Kamakura Transportation Beauty
Watch the late show after a busy day! images

Watch the late show after a busy day!

After spending time in the vicinity during the day and eating dinner, my friends and I love to watch the late shows at movie theaters. The late shows usually have cheaper tickets and are usually less crowded. As it is less crowded, you do not have to worry about getting the tickets ahead of time! Y…(111 words)

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RieS

Tokyo Yokohama Shibuya Roppongi Movie
Think about your song choice images

Think about your song choice

If going to karaoke with friends, you should definitely consider your song choice. Try not to pick songs that only you can enjoy. Sometimes, it is fun to sing old songs that all of you know and can sing along to or new songs that you would want to introduce to your friends. I love singing duet song…(108 words)

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RieS

Etiquette Karaoke
Stop by a TRAVELEX! images

Stop by a TRAVELEX!

There are many Travelex stalls in Japan, usually at famous sightseeing areas or major stations. For example, near Kaminari-mon in Asakusa, one of the famous sightseeing spots in Tokyo, there is a small Travelex stall. There is also another one in Yokohama station. Look out for a blue and red sign!(51 words)

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RieS

Tokyo Yokohama Asakusa
The importance of "bihaku" images

The importance of "bihaku"

Unlike many of the Western countries, Japanese tend to not show much skin when going out. They favor "bihaku" meaning white, clear skin and therefore cover up as much as possible using clothing, hats and sun umbrellas. Even in the scorching summer, you will see many people wearing long pants, long …(100 words)

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RieS

Fashion Summer
No one set server/waiter! images

No one set server/waiter!

In contrast to Western tradition, in Japan, you do not have one set server for your table. If it is a small restaurant, you will only have a waiter or two serving food. However, in a big restaurant, you will have a waiter taking you to the table and another one asking you what you would like to dri…(104 words)

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RieS

Restaurant Etiquette Drink
Kabukiza - don't worry about the language barrier! images

Kabukiza - don't worry about the language barrier!

Watching a Kabuki performance is an excellent experience. At Kabukiza (a Kabuki theater in Ginza), you will be able to enjoy old-Japanese theater in a newly renovated and modern building! As Kabuki performances can be very popular, I recommend you to purchase a ticket online, so that you can secure…(223 words)

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RieS

Ticket Building Ginza Music Souvenir Kabuki
Teppanyaki at Seryna! images

Teppanyaki at Seryna!

My family and I enjoy going to Seryna, a teppanyaki (cooking with an iron griddle) Kobe beef restaurant in Kannai, Yokohama. You will get high quality beef with excellent flavoring and service. The chefs have to train for a decade before being able to cook in front of the customers. In this restaur…(118 words)

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RieS

Tokyo Train Restaurant Yokohama Shinjuku Ginza Roppongi Art Beef Kobe
Catering can be extremely easy! images

Catering can be extremely easy!

Take-out can be very easy as long as you know how to say several information in Japanese or simple English. Let's say that you want to take-out pizza. First, you should pick the soba you want by looking at the menu online or on the flyer. Before you call, you should know how to write the addres…(232 words)

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RieS

Tokyo Restaurant Hotel Roppongi Soba noodles Ebisu
HANAMI (a MUST-DO) images

HANAMI (a MUST-DO)

THE thing to do in Japan during the spring is hanami. Even as a Japanese who has lived and grown up in Japan, I am still astounded by the beauty of the cherry blossoms. It can be difficult to estimate when the cherry blossoms will fully bloom, because the condition changes depending on the temperat…(212 words)

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RieS

Hanami (Cherry Blossom Viewing) Park Drink Sake (Rice wine) Cherry blossom Beauty Cherry Grilled meat barbeque Apple Spring