An island nation in East Asia known for many aspects of its unique culture and having one of the world's largest cities, Tokyo as its capital.

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Camping near a beach, not far from Tokyo

I am looking for a place to camp (tent, coming by bicycle or train), at walking distance from a beach, and not far from Tokyo. Any recommendation? I have found a few lists of camping addresses, but ...
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530 views

Does Japan have pubs or bars?

In jmac's answer to "Where can I socialize with young Japanese people?", one suggestion given was bars: For night life, bars tend to be the best choice (over Izakaya or Night Clubs) because they ...
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Layover at Narita, Japan. Do I need a transit visa?

I am travelling from Delhi to Chicago and have two stopovers in between, one at Narita, Japan, and the other at Dallas, US; so my trip looks like: DEL - NRT - DFW - ORD. I am an Indian citizen. I do ...
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Can I use a power adapter designed for USA in Japan?

I'm about to travel to Japan (from UK) and can't seem to buy a mains adapter that specifically says it can be used in Japan. However, the internet (e.g. Wikipedia) tells me that Japanese power sockets ...
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277 views

Options for sending a message while on a Shinkansen

I need to send a message, preferably while I'm on a Shinkansen, to tell someone which Shinkansen I'm on. I tried to find out how I could do this and ended up with ridiculously expensive options like ...
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4k views

How, specifically, can I travel between Taiwan and Okinawa by sea?

This is a followup to a previous question of mine where we established that it is possible to travel between the Philippines, Taiwan, and Japan. So now that we know that it's possible, and because ...
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277 views

Is free camping permitted in Japan?

I'm planning to go to Japan this summer, and after visiting a relative, I'm planning to go on a hike for 5 to 7 days. I was wondering if camping out in the wild is permitted anywhere in japan, like ...
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468 views

Does female sword fighting as entertainment still exist in Japan?

The "Lonely Planet Tokyo" iPhone app describes female sword fighting as a bygone form of male entertainment: Surprisingly, striptease almost failed to catch on due to the popularity of a rival ...
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Avoiding human trafficking when getting a massage in Japan

I'm currently unable to distinguish between Japanese, Korean and Chinese ethnicities. How do I avoid exploiting victims of human trafficking while having a massage in Japan? Is human trafficking more ...
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5k views

Can you still buy used panties in vending machines as a souvenir from Japan?

In 1999 I came across a vending machine of used panties while hiking through Japan. Apparently it was made illegal in 1993, but still in 1999 they seem to be wide spread. Is this still the case, or ...
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138 views

Universities open to public in South Korea and Japan?

In California and most other states in the USA, at public universities (and sometimes private universities), it is possible for anyone who is not affiliated with the institution to walk into a ...
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1k views

What are the typical meals in Japan?

I'm going to Tokyo for tourism and I'm wondering what are the typical meals that one tourist may get during breakfast, lunch and dinner. Also, what are their costs? Notice that I'm a tourist staying ...
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205 views

How can I travel to Japan from mainland Asia by ship?

I'm planning my trans-mongolian/siberian trip and I'll end up in Beijing. I want to know if it's possible to reach Japan without flying (ideally Tokyo).
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Zen meditation in Kyoto, Japan

A while ago I've read that in the Engaku-ji or in the Kencho-ji in Kamakura everyone is welcome to try zazen (seated zen meditation) and that the zazen session is really noob-friendly. Since I'm a ...
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2answers
1k views

How much should I fear golden week in Japan?

I am planning a vacation to Japan, and currently have two possible plans. In plan A I leave well before Golden week (on 4/24). In plan B I leave during the first weekend of golden week (4/28, on ...
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113 views

Best time to see cherry blossoms in Japan?

Where are the cherry trees blooming in Japan? My problem is that I cannot find out when the cherry trees are blooming in Japan. I have searched the internet and cannot find when the cherry trees are ...
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313 views

Safety [petty crimes, mostly] in Japan

I'm fully aware of the fact that Japan is considered a quite safe country in regards of petty crimes. However, I recently stumbled upon alerts about the Roppongi area where [quoting from wikitravel] ...
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9k views

Tax refund at Narita airport in Japan

I'm an Italian tourist, and I bought things here in Japan. Is it possible to have a tax refund at the airport? In particular I am interested in Narita airport. In case it is possible to specify, what ...
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2answers
98 views

Is there any kind of car museum anywhere in Okinawa?

After watching too many editions of Jay Leno's Garage on YouTube in the last few days, culminating in one about a '70s Japanese car, I started to wonder ... Is there any car museum or collection of ...
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342 views

Do any of the ferries between Korea and Japan charge per car and not per person in a car?

I've travelled on ferries between Korea and Japan probably more than anyone else using our site so far, but there's one thing I never thought about until now: Do any of the ferries commonly take ...
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1answer
111 views

Can a foreign tourist attend Okinawan language class in Naha?

I arrived in Naha, Okinawa yesterday and took an interest in the local language as usual since languages are one of my hobbies. Okinawan is a dying language separate from Japanese that is not ...
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1answer
179 views

More creative snow festivals than Sapporo snow festival

The Sapporo snow festival was pretty good. There was lots of delicious food stalls, information booths, and I even signed a petition calling for the return of Japan's "northern territories" (the ...
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169 views

What is the proper etiquette at Japanese onsen?

Japan is a volcanically active country which means it has a plethora of onsen (hot springs) all around the country. Visiting these onsen is supposed to be a popular vacation destination for the ...
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4answers
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Is there luggage storage at train stations in Japan?

We will travel around Japan by train and will make a few shorter stops with only a nights stay so it would be handy to be able to drop the bags at the station while doing some sightseeing before ...
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3answers
237 views

Attend Sumo match in Nagoya

I'm planning to buy tickets for a sumo match in Nagoya in July. As A tall European guy who never visited a sumo match before I'm struggling to decide which tickets to buy. To really experience sumo ...
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1k views

Subway, train or both when travelling around Tokyo

We will spend a week in Tokyo in april and I am now looking into the best way to get around the city. The subway seems to go everywhere but there are also normal trains connecting most places. How ...
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192 views

Amusement parks in the Tokyo area

What big popular amusement parks are there in the Tokyo area? I am looking for anything with fun rides, a bit of history if possible and nice surroundings. If the locality is close to other ...
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147 views

Staying on the Nakahechi route without walking

The Nakahechi route is part of the Kumano Kodo walking trail network in Honshu, Japan. I am taken with the idea of staying on this route in particular but do not want to do more than moderate ...
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223 views

Are there other country-based theme parks in Japan besides “Huis ten Bosch”?

During my visit to Japan, I was surprised to find Huis ten Bosch, while on my way to Nagasaki. It is a park where major and historic buildings from the Netherlands are remodelled on a same-size base. ...
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172 views

Going to gyms in Japan

I'm planning a trip to Japan and was wanting to do a Gold's Gym there and am curious how it'd compare to a gym in the USA. So with gyms in the USA I'll often go there with a drawstring backpack with ...
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1answer
233 views

Are most flights to Japan staffed by hosts with good Japanese?

Are most flights from Australia to Japan staffed by hosts with good Japanese language skills? I assume that Australian based airlines would, but I'm not sure about airlines that are based in ...
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2answers
1k views

Getting around on Kyushu (Fukuoka, Nagasaki and Beppu)

We are thinking about taking shinkansen to Fukuoka and then visit Nagasaki and Beppu (possibly some place in the mountains as well) and probably stay a night or two in both places. Then back to ...
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How to buy tickets for a sumo wrestling game?

We are curious about sumo wrestling and would like to visit a game while in Tokyo. According to Wikipedia the big tournament happens 6 times a year but not in April when we are visiting. So what other ...
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108 views

Do hotels in Japan always have manual baths in their rooms?

In Japan, most homes have automatic baths which set up the bath at a pre-set temperature and pre-set level. However twice I stayed at high priced hotels and the room bath was a manual bath like you ...
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221 views

Cheapest way to travel from Osaka Kansai airport to Kyoto and back?

I will be travelling to Kyoto for one week and would like to know the cheapest method of travelling from Osaka Kansai to Kyoto and back. I have looked into the JR east pass which costs ¥2060 for one ...
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1k views

Can you receive mail at hotels weeks before you arrive?

Do hotels accept mail for guests that haven't arrived yet? Even weeks in advance? I am buying tickets for an event (see this question), but the vendor can only mail tickets to a Japanese address. I ...
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3k views

How reliable are portable WiFi hotspots in Japan?

Instead of getting a prepaid SIM chip, I'm thinking of renting a mobile wifi hotspot. I've found these two so far. Two questions: Are these reliable? I will be mostly in the big cities. If I'm not ...
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188 views

Where to buy zafu (can be secondhand) in Tokyo or Kyoto

Tomorrow I will be travelling to Tokyo, and later to Kyoto. I am interested in buying a new or secondhand zafu, which is a special cushion for zazen meditation. I already asked a similar question ...
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1answer
75 views

Cheapest accommodation in Motobu, Okinawa?

I'm interested in finding the absolute cheapest place to sleep overnight in Motobu, Okinawa. There doesn't seem to be any hostels on the usual websites but I've noticed that there seems to be a kind ...
7
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1answer
273 views

Is it possible to travel the route Kamchatka-Kurils-Hokkaido alone at the end of Sept-Oct?

I would like to travel, alone, Kamchatka-Kurils-Hokkaido at the end of Sept-Oct. I speak Russian and have done quite some extreme travels before. Most of the sites refer to the non-Hokkaido route: ...
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2answers
199 views

Is there a 3G Sim Card that is usable in both Japan and China?

I will be going to Japan and China next month. As I don't want to activate the data roaming on my carrier due to the high charge, I am looking to buy local Sim Card with 3G data plan that is cheap and ...
7
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1answer
138 views

Resource for local cuisines and specialties across Japan

I'm wondering if there's some website that's like a "Foodie's Guide to Japan", or maybe a "Foodie Wiki" covering the whole world including Japan, etc. I know there are lots of special local dishes ...
7
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1answer
120 views

Mastercard in Japan - pay with signature

I'm in Japan and I have a Mastercard, but I forgot my PIN. Do you know if it is possible to swipe and pay?
7
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1answer
141 views

Can we find some statistics for crime in Japan with tourist / foreign victims?

I've now been to Japan I think seven times in the past fifteen years, for durations between 24 hours and three months. I had always found Japan matches or exceeds reports of being perhaps the safest ...
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4answers
755 views

Airlines refusing check-in without return ticket

I recently heard that some airlines refuse to let you fly to Japan (from Europe), if you don't have a return ticket. Since it is possible to buy one-way tickets, I guess this is utter nonsense, but ...
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4answers
483 views

Jogging in Tokyo and Osaka

I'm not a huge fan of jogging on crowded sidewalks even in the US, and I expect many sidewalks in Tokyo and Osaka will only be more crowded. What locations in these cities would you recommend for ...
6
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3answers
442 views

Can I find suitable (and affordable) accommodation in Japan with children?

Some years ago I backpacked through Japan. It is still one of the highlights of my traveling career. We are now considering going to Japan with (small) children. Based on my earlier trip I consider ...
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3answers
741 views

What are the cheapest ways to get from East Asia to Australia?

I have a return ticket that gets me from Turkey to Korea to Australia but it cannot be extended beyond the end of May. I'm thinking of forfeiting or refunding some leg(s) of my ticket but as my ...
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2answers
778 views

Can tourists meet onsen geisha nowadays?

Japan's most famous geisha are from Kyoto, Japan's former capital and still a major cultural capital of Japan. But I've also heard of onsen geisha, far away from the big cities, who are at the bottom ...
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4answers
6k views

Where can I find the official school holiday schedule for Japan?

I've been looking for some 20 minutes now and can't find any pertinent information. Where can I find the official school holiday calendar for Japan, 2013?