2016 January

All About Ozoni: Japan’s Traditional New Year Soup

When the current year draws to a close, the Japanese are busy with preparing for the upcoming oshogatsu (お正月) by cleaning up their houses, purchasing or preparing food to be cooked and eaten during the New Year holidays, travelling to their hometowns to reunite with their families or taking a much-deserved break overseas with their…

Meet the Tokyo Metropolitan Police Department’s Unusual Mascot!

Due to Japan’s obsession with cuteness, even serious things are not excluded from being handled in a cute manner. Tokyo Metropolitan Police Department’s Crime Prevention Task Force has been introducing their cute female dog mascot on their Twitter account since 2013. The mascot is called Tewatasanaiinu which is a combination of the words “tewatasanai” (not…

These Classy New Kit Kats are Perfect for Valentine’s Day

Kit Kat goes hand in hand with Japan like cherry blossoms in the springtime. With their most recent Kit Kat offering, they have taken a routine chocolate bar and have taken it up a notch. There are even multiple specialty shops dedicated to the unique flavors alone. There are multiple regional flavors, from Kyoto matcha…

Onda Matsuri: Nara’s ”Sexy Rice Planting Festival”

In various areas of Japan, festivals for fertility, good luck and harvest are common. You might have heard about the famous ‘Honen Matsuri’ or ‘Kanamara Matsuri’ where the bounty of harvest is celebrated with a phallus parade. There are different versions of this type of festival around Japan. One such festival is the ‘Onda Matsuri’…

Get Your Good Luck for 2016 at Jindaiji Temple’s Daruma Doll Festival

Daruma dolls are famous in Japan as good luck charms. At the beginning of every year, many Japanese return or burn their old Daruma dolls and get new ones. The famous Jindaiji temple in Chofu, Tokyo, conducts a large Daruma Doll Festival from March 3-4 where you can buy daruma dolls for 2016. The Festival…

A Bar Run by Buddhist Monks? Vowz Bar in Tokyo

Ever thought of mixing booze with religion? Well, everything is possible in the Land of the Rising Sun! If you want to get your enlightenment in a martini glass, then you better go to Vowz Bar in Tokyo. It is located in Yotsuya. The bar offers no TV, no karaoke nor any live bands. However,…

3 Mystic Places In Japan You Have To Visit In 2016!

At one point in our lives, we all dream of becoming a traveler. Lurking through the depths of what we can explore in our surroundings, we start to seek out things we never imagined during our younger days. Whether man-made or from nature’s blessings, there is sure to be a place that will fulfill our…

Celebrate The Harbinger Of Spring: Katsuyama Sagicho Festival!

Katsuyama Sagicho is a unique festival held in Katsuyama city of Fukui prefecture in the last weekend of February to welcome spring. Let’s learn more about this fun-filled Japanese festival. The Festival youtube.com/ Katsuyama Sagicho is a 300-year-old festival started during the Ogasawara reign in the area. During the festival, 12 two-story wooden structures called…

Shikaribetsuko Kotan: Hokkaido’s Very Own Ice Village!

Hokkaido is famous for its winter ice festivals, amazing fresh seafood, and pristine ski and snowboarding resorts, but did you know that it has its own village completely made of ice? Welcome to Shikaribetsuko Kotan – Japan’s only ice village! hokkaidolikers.com/ The Festival taptrip.jp/ This festival is the brainchild of locals who wanted to take…

A Must-Visit in Kyoto: Goddess Kannon, the Central Deity of Sanjusangen-do

Sanjusangen-do is a popular temple building in Kyoto which was completed in 1164. It is officially known as ‘Rengeo-in’ or ‘Hall of the Lotus King’ which houses 1,001 human-sized statues of the goddess Kannon. Its temple hall is the longest wooden structure in Japanese history and measures around 120 meters. The temple has actually been…
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