5 Unique Destinations for Tourists

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  • There are many places to visit upon arriving in Japan, that many people would recommend when asked, such as the temples in Kyoto, the enormous Buddha statue in Nara, or Tokyo Tower, etc. However, there are a lot of less famous places, that you may not have heard many people talking about, with a lower amount of tourists that can guarantee you a unique and interesting visit in Japan

    1. Meguro Parasitological Museum

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    Meguro Parasitological Musem (Meguro, Tokyo) is the only place in the world that features all kinds of parasites. They even have sections for the hosts (of the parasites) and mindmaps/ pictures which explain how the parasites live inside the hosts’ bodies. You can find pictures taken inside the museum by googling “Meguro Parasitological Musem” (caution: images might be very disturbing). This is a great place with a lot of valuable information about parasites, and if you are into science/biology, this place is totally enjoyable!
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    2. Tashirojima aka Cat Island, Miyagi

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    The island, located 15km from Ishinomaki, is regarded as the Island of Cats, more than a 100 cats live alongside some 70 residents of this island.
    The name says it all. If you are a cat person, this is definitely a place worth visiting. This is a small island in Miyagi prefecture, Japan. The local people love cats so much you will see them everywhere, they have an actual cat shrine, and many cat-shaped buildings. There are no dogs on this island since they are actually banned from coming here.
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    3. Jigokudani aka Monkey Park, Nagano

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    Jigokudani Monkey Park is located in Nagano prefecture, Japan. The monkeys here are not afraid of humans, if you get a camera out and start taking pictures of them, they won’t even move an inch (however please be aware that they may steal your belongings when you are not paying attention). You may often see the monkeys bathing in Hotsprings as well. Don’t be afraid, you can always join in and bathe with them!
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    4. Okunoshima aka Rabbit Island

    TAKEHARA, JAPAN - FEBRUARY 24:  Two tourists sit and feed hundreds of rabbits  at Okunoshima Island on February 24, 2014 in Takehara, Japan. Okunoshima is a small island located in the Inland Sea of Japan in Hiroshima Prefecture. The Island often called Usagi Jima or "Rabbit Island" is famous for it's rabbit population that has taken over the island and become a tourist attraction with many people coming to the feed the animals and enjoy the islands tourist facilities which include a resort, six hole golf course and camping grounds. During World War II the island was used as a poison gas facility. From 1929 to 1945, the Japanese Army produced five types of poison gas on Okunoshima Island. The island was so secret that local residents were told to keep away and it was removed from area maps. Today ruins of the old forts and chemical factories can be found all across the island.  (Photo by Chris McGrath/Getty Images)

    During World War II, Okunoshima was known for its poisonous gas factories. In the modern time, the island is full of rabbits. There is a theory saying that after the end of the war, the government was planning to get rid of all the rabbits to erase the evidence, but the children in the area let all the rabbits out. There were no predators on the island, and as a result, after 50 years of many generations, rabbits can be seen anywhere on the island. The government built a museum and a hotel here to supply the tourist industry. The tourists are welcomed to walk around and feed the rabbits. Okunoshima is truly a place for rabbit lovers!
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    5. Cup Noodle Museum (Yokohama, Kanagawa Prefecture)

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    Instant noodles were invented by the Japanese, so it is a natural thing for them to build a huge museum dedicated to one of the most popular foods in the world. The museum features exhibits on the development of instant noodles, and tourists can make their own instant cup noodles here, with unique taste as well, since there are more than 5000 flavors available to choose from. They are even free to decorate their own cups!
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