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Search Results for: kyushu

Kyushu Starts Here

I’ve had a Kyushu travel guide on this site for a long time—but I haven’t really been satisfied with it, if I’m perfectly honest. Some parts of it were downright superficial, and reflected the fact that I’ve been discovering the island piecemeal over the past several years, rather than having done a deep dive. This […]

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Japan by Train: Everything You Need to Know

You’ve decided to buy a Japan Rail Pass, now what? You should start planning out your Japan itinerary, of course, but you should also take time to learn exactly how Japan’s train system is organized. From the Shinkansen bullet train, to local and limited express trains, to subways and other urban rail systems throughout the country, […]

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Kansai Starts Here

One of the most common questions I get is how many days in Osaka and Kyoto to spend—so I decided to write a Kansai travel guide about it! This question isn’t a black-and-white one however, and my response to it is cut-and-dry. As you decide how to long to spend in Japan’s Kansai region (the […]

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The Perfect Length of Stay in Japan

It dawned on me not long ago that I hadn’t yet created a post about the best way to spend 10 days in Japan. And it perplexed me: This is perhaps the best short trip you can take to Japan—I planned dozens of 10-day trips to Japan in 2019 alone! Assuming you can quickly your […]

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Your Next Japan Hike Starts Here

Want to learn more about hiking in Japan, but don’t know where to start? You’re in the right place, though I warn you: This is not so much a comprehensive Japan hiking guide as it is a rabbit hole. After reading through what I’ve got to say about the best hikes in Japan, your bucket […]

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How to Make Sense of the Regions of Japan

The main impediment people have to understanding the regions of Japan is the ambiguous nature of the word “region.” Many conflate a Japanese region with a state (or, in Japan’s case, prefecture), or even with Japan’s four main islands. For the purposes of this article, I will focus on Japan’s main regions, well-known example of […]

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The Truth About Renting a Car in Japan

On its face, the idea of renting a car in Japan is a good one, especially if you plan to explore a rural or exurban part of the country, or with enough people that the cost is similar to going by train or bus. That’s certainly how I felt before the first time I got […]

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Two Months in Japan

I won’t mince words: 2 months in Japan is a long trip. This is true whether you’re exploring the country on a tourist visa, or are in Japan for the purpose of study or work. Indeed, staying in Japan for a couple of months gives you options. Presuming you remain within the legal limits of […]

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Japan in Just a Week

I used to think that one week in Japan would be a futile endeavor, at least if it was one’s first trip. While it’s true that some of my trips to individual regions of Japan (like Tohoku and the island of Shikoku) have lasted seven days or less, it wasn’t until recently that I conceded […]

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Japan’s Magical Winter Season

My first trip to Japan in winter was unspectacular—you might even said it was bad. It was late January 2015 and I headed to Hokkaido, but not to ski. Although local tourism authorities had helped me put together an itinerary, I was woefully underprepared, and left Japan the second week February feeling like I’d missed […]

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Fabulous Fukuoka

I was at a sushi restaurant in Kanazawa a few years ago, chatting with a young British traveler, when she engaged me as if I was a Fukuoka travel guide. “I wasn’t even sure if it was worth visiting,” the young woman explained, noting that she’d only decided to stop a night in the city […]

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Japan in Just Two Weeks

As you search through travel guides for Japan, you find a lot of information about destinations and experiences, but probably not a concrete idea of where to go, for how long and in what order. Most every traveler who spends 2 weeks in Japan starts in Tokyo, and goes to Kyoto from there, but then […]

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The Best of Japan in One Month

Among the many tips for travel to Japan I offer on this site, my most important is to spend as much time here as possible—one month in Japan or even longer. While Japanese trains are efficient and Japan’s cities are organized well enough to see in a relatively short number of days, there are just […]

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Discover the Japanese Alps

Putting together a Japanese Alps itinerary is difficult first and foremost because the region is so huge and varied. It’s also highly seasonal—you can walk through a “snow tunnel” on the Tateyama Kurobe Alpine Route in June, then hike amid wildflowers there literally weeks later in July. Over the next few paragraphs, I’ll do my […]

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Okinawa Starts Here

Unsurprisingly, many of the things to do in Okinawa center around the water, whether you’re swimming where it meets the islands’ sugary shores, or scuba diving under it. However, there’s plenty to enjoy in Okinawa that has nothing to do with the beach, or even the outdoors. Trust me—I know. My first trip to Okinawa […]

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Japan Trip Ideas

Planning a trip to Japan requires equal parts information and inspiration, which is the approach I’ve taken with the Japan trip ideas I’m about to share with you. Whether you have a specific amount of time you want to spend in Japan or prefer to organize your trip based upon Japan destinations or experiences, you’re […]

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The Truth About Doing Business in Japan

Japanese business culture can be confounding, even if business travel to Japan isn’t a new thing for you. From overarching concepts like being on time every time (literally every time), to seemingly small details like the way you hand a business card to someone, doing business in Japan can be stressful before you even enter […]

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