Japan is a country that seamlessly blends a traditional culture with an edgy, contemporary attitude. Japan’s capital, Tokyo, demonstrates this perfectly with its hunger for innovation and preservation of age old traditions. It’s what makes Japan such a fascinating culture. Well that and the spectacular cuisine.
Things to see and do
Taking its design cues from the Eiffel Tower, Tokyo Tower is a magnificent structure offering unprecedented panoramas of Tokyo.
Jigokudani Monkey Park, located near Nagano, boasts hot springs that draw the wild Snow Monkeys down to bathe in winter.
Demonstrating the ingenuity of Japanese architecture during the feudal period, Himeji Castle is an incredible feat even by today’s standards. An enduring legacy to the region’s landscape, the castle has survived earthquakes, fires and wars, unlike many castles in Japan.
With its conical shape, Mount Fuji has inspired many a post card. A few hours travel from Tokyo, Mount Fuji is one of the most popular destinations for visitors to the region. Surely the 200,000 people who climb it annually can’t be wrong.
A visit to Tokyo wouldn’t be complete without trying a sushi train restaurant or a ride on a Shinkansen train speeding along at a rate of 320km/hr. Alternatively, for a quintessential Japanese experience, soak up the electric atmosphere of cheering on a sumo wrestler at a tournament.
Other attractions worth checking out
- The Great Buddha of Kamakura
- Tokyo National Museum
- Ghibli Museum
- Ōedo Onsen Monogatari
- Tsukiji Market
Annual Festivals & Shows
- Ippan Sanga, January
- Setsubun Festival, February
- Sakura Matsuri (Cherry Blossom Viewing Festival), March to April
- Buddha’s Birthday, April
- Yabusame Festival, April
- Kanda Matsuri, May
- Sanja Matsuri, May
- Minato Matsuri, May
- Great Japan Beer Festival, June
- Tokyo Summer Festival, July
- Tokyo Bay Fireworks Festival, August
- Fukagawa Hachiman Matsuri, August
- Asakusa Samba Carnival, August
- Oeshiki, October
- Tokyo International Film Festival, October
- Tori-no-Ichi (Good Luck Rake Fair), November
- Gishi-sai (Vendetta of the 47 Ronin), December