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.

learn more… | top users | synonyms

12
votes
3answers
52k views

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 ...
11
votes
3answers
15k views

Layover at Tokyo Narita airport: can I travel outside, and what kind of visa would I need?

I am traveling from Singapore to San Francisco and an airline which I am choosing has a layover of 7.5 hours at Tokyo Airport (NRT). I am wondering if I would be allowed to go out to experience the ...
5
votes
2answers
1k views

Where can I socialize with young Japanese people?

One of the things I like about travelling to Japan is that it's possible, if you know some Japanese, to travel to destinations where your fellow travellers are predominantly domestic travellers, ...
24
votes
3answers
1k views

Cell phones in Japan

What are the options for getting a smart phone up and running when travelling for a couple of weeks in Japan?
4
votes
2answers
2k views

Do I need Japanese transit visa when arriving at Narita and departing from Haneda?

I'm arriving from New Delhi, India (Indian Passport) by JAL at Narita on 11th July 0730 hrs and departing for San Francisco by Jal Flt 2 at 0005 hrs 12th July very early morn from Haneda. Do i require ...
23
votes
2answers
4k views

Is it possible to get from the Philippines to Taiwan to Japan (or the reverse) without flying?

It's not that I have a fear of flying but it seems the best way to see Island countries is by island hopping and these three countries are all relatively close to one another if you take into account ...
3
votes
2answers
663 views

Within 300 km radius of Tokyo - Where for nature, flora, and fauna?

This instantiates my broader question. Here, "near Tokyo" = within 300 km radius around Tokyo. I'm planning to visit Japan for 10 days and plan to apportion 5 days to Tokyo. For the remainder, I want ...
37
votes
5answers
2k views

Is it safe to travel in Japan considering the nuclear situation?

Are there any areas that should be avoided and are there any steps I should take to protect myself from radiation?
48
votes
4answers
10k views

I have a tattoo. Can I visit a public swimming pool in Japan?

A friend of mine is currently traveling in Japan. She has a small tattoo on her neck. Now she wanted to visit a public swimming pool but was denied entry. It was difficult to understand the reason ...
31
votes
3answers
3k views

OK we're all nerds here, so really, how on earth should I use a Japanese toilet?

OK so for anyone who's traveled to Japan you know what I'm talking about. They're devices that are a textbook example of excessive featuritis. But I want to use something other than the flush knob ...
7
votes
1answer
482 views

Internet access in Japan

What options are there in terms of prepaid Internet services? Are the charges reasonable? I will be there for no more than two weeks so prepaid seems to be the sensible option.
11
votes
1answer
673 views

Are there any ferry companies operating between Russian East ports and Japan?

I'm interested in visiting the Japan after some Russian Far East trip. I'm searching for the sea ways to the Japan. Can you help me with that? Update: I'm searching some extremal variants not from ...
9
votes
1answer
139 views

On which trains in Japan is reservation mandatory?

The vast majority of Japanese trains have so-called non-reserved (or unreserved) seats (自由席, literally "free seats"), which do not allow reservation and are available on a first-come, first-served ...
52
votes
6answers
17k views

Japanese etiquette: Most common (and offensive) mistakes?

I am aware that Japan has many unwritten rules of etiquette. What are some of the most common (and offensive) breaches of etiquette made by visitors? On the flip side, what behaviors show respect ...
51
votes
8answers
11k views

What is wrong with eating while walking in Japan? It doesn't seem to be an issue in other Asian countries

I have seen on many etiquette questions about Japan that this is a no no, but I can't seem to find what the reason for this is. I know that in countries like Taiwan or China it doesn't seem to be an ...
26
votes
4answers
5k views

How should I wash clothes in Japan?

I'm going backpacking for a month in Japan and I plan to pack lightly. So I have couple of questions about how I can wash my clothes in Japan. I expect laundromats to be quite common in big cities ...
14
votes
3answers
1k 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 ...
14
votes
2answers
4k 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 ...
13
votes
4answers
572 views

Are inexpensive ryokans inauthentic?

A lot of people I talk to, including Japanese and non-Japanese, claim that ryokans are expensive. Once, when I discussed this further and said that some places that I've been to describe themselves ...
11
votes
3answers
11k 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 ...
19
votes
10answers
4k views

Can I side-step discrimination against foreigners in Japan?

I've heard that there can be discrimination against foreigners, and even naturalized citizens born in other countries, in Japan, and that it happens in onsen, bars, and adult entertainment ...
14
votes
3answers
8k views

Travelling between Japan and South Korea

We are going to Japan for 3 weeks in the beginning of April and would like to spend a couple of days in Seoul. How do we get there? And how expensive is the ferry from southern japan to Busan in South ...
10
votes
2answers
171 views

Will I fit or need an extension?(first time flyer) [duplicate]

I am 5'5" tall and weigh 250 lbs. I have never flown before but am flying to visit my son who is in the Navy serving in Japan this month. I will fly American AirlinesExpress to Chicago and then ANA ...
8
votes
2answers
2k 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 ...
5
votes
2answers
270 views

Authentic Ainu in Hokkaido

During my next trip to Japan I may end up in Hokkaido. I've read something about this mysterious indigenous group called Ainu/Aynu/Aino/Ezo, but I must admit my understanding of the whole thing is ...
4
votes
1answer
168 views

ROC to TYO - how can I reduce the cost of my flight?

I'm trying to find the cheapest flight I can from ROC, Rochester, New York, to one of the airports in Tokyo for a six week study abroad in Kobe. I'm wondering what the cheapest, OR easiest routes from ...
4
votes
4answers
1k views

Carrying large amounts of cash in Japan [closed]

Is it, generally speaking, safe to carry large amounts of cash (US$4000) in Japan?
13
votes
1answer
3k views

Are there high crime areas in Japan that I should avoid?

According to the this link (in the "Crime" section), I should avoid the areas of "Roppongi, Shinjuku (especially the area of Kabuki-cho), Shibuya, and Ikebukuro" in Tokyo, due to them being high crime ...
8
votes
2answers
300 views

Stopovers on Shinkansen services?

I'm planning a Hakodate-Tokyo journey this summer after the Hokkaido Shinkansen opens, but it's a four-hour journey even on the fastest service and I'd like to take a break, stretch my legs and eat ...
6
votes
1answer
875 views

Forgot to submit consumption tax (GST) declaration form upon exiting Tokyo

I travelled to Japan last year and bought some stuff from shops in Tokyo which were subject to return of consumption tax (GST). However, I forgot to submit those consumption tax receipts (which the ...
5
votes
2answers
647 views

Ski rental for Mount Gassan

I'm visiting Japan in late May, early June, and I hope to go skiing. Mount Gassan (月山, literally "moon mountain") in Yamagata prefecture seems to be my best bet - it has a ski season of April to July, ...
5
votes
1answer
499 views

Male nerd here, how on earth can I listen to an “otohime” / “sound princess”?

The other day, I read about "otohime", also known as "sound princess": Many Japanese women are embarrassed at the thought of being heard by others during urination (see paruresis). To cover the ...
4
votes
2answers
3k views

Bringing outdoor food to Japan

In august I will go to Japan to visit relatives and to make a trekking. In europe I usualy bring trekking meals with me, the kind of meals that you can easily prepare on a stove by just adding water. ...
4
votes
2answers
427 views

Booking a JR Shinkansen train ticket in Seoul

I want to book a Kyoto-Tokyo Shinkansen ticket for a trip in 10 days, because Shinkansen will be very crowded and probably impossible to board without a reservation. How can I book it from Seoul? ...
3
votes
1answer
603 views

From Haneda airport to Narita with same airlines

We will arrive in Haneda airport at 7:10am and connecting flight from Narita is 11:15am to US. Is there enough time to catch my next flight? I've confirmed with UA that we don't need to pick up our ...
1
vote
1answer
446 views

Sightseeing in Japan as an Indian Citizen holding a US F-1 visa

I currently have a US F-1 visa who needs to travel to India. I was hoping to take a layover in Japan. Will I require a transit visa to go sightseeing in Japan and how can I get one in the USA or can ...
0
votes
0answers
54 views

Where in Japan for nature, flora, and fauna? [duplicate]

I reference this Meta. I'm planning to visit Japan for 10 days and plan to apportion 5 days to Tokyo. For the remainder, I want to escape the megalopolis and implant myself into the (picturesque, ...
36
votes
4answers
6k views

How do you know if a Japanese person means no when they say yes?

I have come across a few situations when a Japanese person will extend themselves beyond what they probably should to help people. I am often worried when asking them to do something that they will ...
14
votes
4answers
987 views

Alternative to trains in Japan

So we all know about these pretty amazing trains they have in the "Land of the Rising Sun". They are always on time, clean, comfortable. But they are somewhat expensive for the average backpacker. ...
29
votes
5answers
10k views

Is it safe for a commercial flight to have Iran, Afghanistan and Pakistan on its flight route?

This September I will have a flight from Qatar (Doha) to Japan (Haneda) with Qatar Airways on the very new route code QR810. By checking its flight route I've noticed that it flies over south Iran, ...
16
votes
3answers
8k views

Alternative to public hot water bath in Japan for a tattooed person

I'm going to Japan in a of couple months. I've got 80% of my back tattooed and I would really like to try the experience of a public bath in Japan. Many people have been telling me that it is not ...
12
votes
1answer
24k views

Place to store luggage for the day in Tokyo?

I'm switching airports between Haneda and Narita over the course of 30 hours. As a result I have the day in Tokyo. I'm likely sleeping in the airport, so don't have a hotel in town to store my bags ...
10
votes
1answer
1k views

Travel to Okinawa from mainland Japan

We are visiting Japan in April and I am thinking about a couple of days of sun, bathing and snorkelling in Okinawa. What are the travel options for this? Flying from Tokyo is probably one. Are there ...
12
votes
2answers
346 views

Can I converse with Japanese travellers on the Shinkansen or is it rude?

I'm planning to travel from Osaka to Tokyo and back, and since the ride will be long, I think it's the perfect time to make friends. However, I'm unsure how the Japanese see this kind of behaviour - ...
12
votes
1answer
995 views

Exchanging business cards in Japan

In Hong Kong (and I believe other parts of China as well), one offers his business card by holding it with both hands with the text unobscured and oriented so that the other person can read it. After ...
10
votes
2answers
3k 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 ...
9
votes
2answers
3k views

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 ...
9
votes
1answer
1k views

Taking photos in Japan

I plan on taking photos of everywhere I go in Japan and am wondering if there are certain places, e.g. airports or possibly temples, where photos are not to be taken. A link to online resources would ...
6
votes
1answer
307 views

Where can I find a local guide for Japan?

My friends and I are going to Japan in October. A coworker mentioned that there's a site where university students will gladly guide tourists in exchange for transportation/food costs and learning ...
21
votes
2answers
2k views

Why do taxis in Japan have mirrors on the hood?

In every country I've been in - save for Japan - cars have their mirrors on their doors. Even most cars in Japan do but the taxis don't. Any ideas as to why? It just seems strange. Here's a pic: ...