Monthly Archives: October 2015

Seasonal Food – Autumn

Seasonality is an important aspect of Japanese culture, and in no area does it play a greater role than in the world of food and drink. The concept of “shun” (旬) refers to ingredients that are at their seasonal best,

Kusumi Morikage: From Adversity, a Gentle Gaze at Familiar Things

Kusumi Morikage (久隅守景) was a student of Kano Tan’yu, one of the foremost painters of the early Edo period. Much of Morikage’s work focused on the everyday lives of ordinary people, exemplified in his depictions of village life through the

“My number” – What you need to know

If you are resident in Japan, you may have heard talk about a new social security number system that is being introduced this autumn. Nicknamed “my number” in Japanese, this Individual Number system identifies each resident by a single 12-digit

Autumn Leaves in Tokyo

Though Tokyo is often viewed as a concrete jungle, there are plenty of places where the effects of the changing seasons on nature can be seen and appreciated. This guide contains some of the best locations, both in the city

Machiawase: Tokyo’s Famous Rendezvous Spots

Tokyo is the biggest city in the world, and if you haven’t gotten lost here at least once, you’re not trying hard enough. Even if you manage to keep a track of where you are, arranging to meet someone in

Photo Gallery: Shuzenji – Amagi – Kawazu

Located in the highlands of Izu Peninsula, the mountain paths and waterfalls in Mt. Amagi and Kawazu had always been a favorite among 20th century Japanese poets and writers such as Kawabata Yasunari, author of Izu no Odoriko (伊豆の踊子, “The

Photo Gallery: Eastern Akita

Misato Town – Nyuto Hot Springs – Lake Tazawako – Kakunodate Akita in summer abounds with surprises that are sure to delight any visitor, and the bounty of nature as well as hot springs grant much needed solace and refreshment

Photo Gallery: Oze

Located in the highlands and spanning across four prefectures, Oze is a national park consisted of a marshland, lake, and 2,000-meter-class mountains. The vast marshland, home to a variety of flora and fauna, is particulary popular among trekkers from mid-May

Photo Gallery: Kiso-Fukushima

Kiso-Fukushima is a post town of Nakasendo which is also widely known by the name of “Kisoji”. Nakasendo is one of the Five Edo Routes along with the famous Tokaido and Koshu Kaido Routes, and connects Kyoto and Edo winding

Photo Gallery: Tsukiji Fish Market

A favorite of foreign visitors and sushi lovers alike, the Tsukiji Market is the world’s largest wholesale seafood market, famous for its wide selection of mysterious foodstuffs from the deep. With around 1,600 varieties of sea creatures, expect to see

Photo Gallery: Todoroki Gorge

Todoroki is the only place in central Tokyo where a natural gorge remains. As you reach the bottom of the gorge where a stream flows and tall trees arch over your head, you’ll almost forget you’re in Tokyo. These trees

Photo Gallery: Naruto Whirlpools

Occurring in the Naruto Straight, a small channel of water between Naruto and Awaji Island, the Naruto Whirlpools are the fast and largest in Japan, and among the largest in the world. Immortalized in Ukiyo-e prints, these whirlpools remain a

Photo Gallery: Mt. Hiuchi

Mt. Hiuchi (Hiuchiyama) is a 2,462-meter-high mountain located in Joshinetsu Kogen National Park in southern Niigata Prefecture. Its gentle, gradual landform allows a number of bogs and ponds to develop, and the mountain is especially renowned for its diversity of

Photo Gallery: Okutama

Only an hour and a half away from central Tokyo, Okutama offers rich nature and spectacular landscape throughout the year. While the mountains, ranging from lower than 1,000m to over 2,000m invite climbers for a good hike, the valleys created

Shika no Tsunokiri (deer horn cutting)

For almost 330 years, the Shika no Tsunokiri has been a marker of the fall season in Nara since the Edo Period. The event was started to protect townspeople, as well as valuable cultural properties from being damaged by bucks’

Daiso Harajuku

Koishikawa Korakuen Garden

Meiji-jingu Outer Garden

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