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Tourist Tip #7: DON'T! images

Tourist Tip #7: DON'T!

Nobody wants to do the wrong thing when visiting a foreign country, and with Japan regarded as one of the politest countries in the world, there are plenty of wrong things that one can unintentionally D'oh!I posted a "Tourist Tip #5: Five Don'ts to Do" list a while back, and thought I would exp…(495 words)

Former Deep Japan Writer image

Former Deep Japan Writer

Tourist Tip #4: The Underground World of Food and DEPACHIKA! images

Tourist Tip #4: The Underground World of Food and DEPACHIKA!

Japanese department stores are famous for many things: elevator girls, first-class customer service, and unparalleled gift wrapping. But venture underneath one (on the basement floor) and you'll discover something else they have to offer: the world of "depachika"."Depachika" is a portmanteau on…(296 words)

Former Deep Japan Writer image

Former Deep Japan Writer

Tourist Tip #3: Stay Away from Souvenir Shops images

Tourist Tip #3: Stay Away from Souvenir Shops

Here's a quick tip to make your memories of Japan more memorable for you and your friends back home: stay away from souvenir shops!Like anywhere else in the world, souvenir shops, by nature, tend to offer only the most generic - and usually hokiest - of gifts. I've seen wares that - at best - w…(219 words)

Former Deep Japan Writer image

Former Deep Japan Writer

Tourist Tip #2: Coin Lockers will Free Your Hands (and Mind) images

Tourist Tip #2: Coin Lockers will Free Your Hands (and Mind)

Imagine: your hands are full with bags and boxes of on-sale purchases and more. The only thing is, now you’re on your way to spend hours going temple hopping, and then finish with dinner at a recommended cozy restaurant. What are you going to do with all of those bags and boxes?Never fear, do w…(353 words)

Former Deep Japan Writer image

Former Deep Japan Writer

Tourist Tip #5: Five Don'ts to Do images

Tourist Tip #5: Five Don'ts to Do

"When in Rome, do as the Romans do." - or in Japanese, 「郷に入っては郷に従え」 (Gou ni itte wa, gou ni shitagae; "Entering the village, obey the village.")Nobody wants to do the wrong thing, especially when it means very possibly embarrassing yourself, and potentially others, in front of other…(299 words)

Former Deep Japan Writer image

Former Deep Japan Writer

Tourist Tip #1: Invest in a Suica or Pasmo IC Card images

Tourist Tip #1: Invest in a Suica or Pasmo IC Card

The Suica and Pasmo IC cards are e-money cards that can be used in a variety of ways. The two most practical: riding public transportation and shopping. The cards are accepted at an impressive number of locations, including convenience stores, coffee shops, coin lockers, vending machines, and many …(226 words)

Former Deep Japan Writer image

Former Deep Japan Writer

Tourist Tip #9: One-stop Super Shopping Stores images

Tourist Tip #9: One-stop Super Shopping Stores

In July and August of last year, I wrote about a few excellent places to shop for souvenirs:http://www.deepjapan.org/a/3317http://www.deepjapan.org/a/3432However, this morning I noticed that I'd completely left out one of my personal favourite places to shop at, one I visit at least onc…(291 words)

Former Deep Japan Writer image

Former Deep Japan Writer

Tourist Tip #6: Know Your Animal Sounds! images

Tourist Tip #6: Know Your Animal Sounds!

OK...so you don't REALLY need to know your animal sounds to help you enjoy your time in Japan, but knowing a few will certainly help you ice break or seriously spice up a conversation while you're here! You'd be surprised by the amount of fun and laughs that can be had (and friends that you'll make…(212 words)

Former Deep Japan Writer image

Former Deep Japan Writer

Tourist Tip #3 (Revisited): Stay Away from Souvenir Shops images

Tourist Tip #3 (Revisited): Stay Away from Souvenir Shops

In one of my previous "Tourist Tip" posts, I suggested staying away from conventional tourist-trap omiyageya (souvenir shops) and visiting instead some of the cooler places where there's more to shop for at better deals:http://www.deepjapan.org/a/3317There are many such places to visit. Som…(171 words)

Former Deep Japan Writer image

Former Deep Japan Writer

Tourist Tip #8: How to Pray at Temples and Shrines images

Tourist Tip #8: How to Pray at Temples and Shrines

Whether a tourist or native, visits to temples and shrines are par for the course while in Japan. While there are – usually – no strict rules aside from using common sense and exercising common courtesy (be considerate to others, mindful of property, no smoking, respect no photographing signs, …(352 words)

Former Deep Japan Writer image

Former Deep Japan Writer

Tourist Tip #10: Three Links to Life in Japan images

Tourist Tip #10: Three Links to Life in Japan

Planning a trip to Japan can seem a daunting task, but it really doesn't have to be. Deep Japan is full of useful articles that can help you decide where to go and see, what and what not to do, as well as how to do it.In addition, Japan is a country and culture that in many ways is built on tra…(153 words)

Former Deep Japan Writer image

Former Deep Japan Writer

Magical Cat Bus Ride to the Airport (1 of 3) images

Magical Cat Bus Ride to the Airport (1 of 3)

In the thirteen plus years that I’ve lived in Japan, I’ve never once taken the bus to the airport. That seemed to me an incredibly peculiar thing to admit, so I took it upon myself to do something about it. Living in Yokohama and very near Yokohama Station, it was a no brainer to finally give the Y…(433 words)

Former Deep Japan Writer image

Former Deep Japan Writer

Magical Cat Bus Ride to the Airport (3 of 3) images

Magical Cat Bus Ride to the Airport (3 of 3)

So now you know what YCAT is and why you should use them. http://www.deepjapan.org/a/4007You even know how to! http://www.deepjapan.org/a/4008Now we’ll look at a few things you can do while you’re waiting for your bus to leave the YCAT station.YCAT has three separate lobbies. Number…(434 words)

Former Deep Japan Writer image

Former Deep Japan Writer

Cool off on the Ice in Nagoya images

Cool off on the Ice in Nagoya

Nagoya is great! It’s not too crowded, people are well connected, and has a good foreign community network. A volunteer group called the Walkathon, a group of foreigners started here in Nagoya with now holding events in Osaka and Tokyo area. Nagoya is famous for the Nagoya Castle, and the Nagoy…(406 words)

Yuuki I image

Yuuki I