history

Where to Spend a Great Day in Kyoto: Arashiyama and Kinkakuji

Without a doubt, Kyoto has become one of tourist’s favorites in Japan because of its intact and well preserved cultural heritage sites. It is nestled with numerous shrines and temples as well as beautiful nature that turns into inflamed shades of red in autumn or colorful blooms in spring. There’s a lot of places to…

East Asian Mythology: SHISA of Okinawa-the Stone Guardians of Japan

Off the shores of Kyushu (the third largest island of Japan), there are a number of volcanic islands flowing south-west towards Taiwan. These are named the Ryukyu Islands, also known as the Nansei Islands. In the center of this volcanic island chain is where Okinawa, the biggest of the Ryukyu Islands, can be located. It…
Hiraizumi

Hiraizumi : Pure Land Buddhism and Tohoku Pride

“夏草や 兵どもが 夢の跡”(`Natsukusa ya tsuhamonodomo ga yume no ato`) – “Grasses in summer, the warriors’ dreams… all that is left”. This poem, written by Master haikuist Matsuo Bashō after he visited the ancient temple complex of Hiraizumi, is one of the most famous in Japan. Located in Iwate on the banks of the Kitakami-gawa, these simple words…

The Reenactment of the Battle of Sekigahara

Before the establishment of the Tokugawa Shogunate(江戸幕府), a six-hour battle took place on October 21, 1600. This was called the ‘Battle of Sekigahara'(関ヶ原の戦い), a savage conflict which changed the course of Japanese history forever. A simulation of this war can be seen in the quiet farming village of Sekigahara. The momentous event is recreated in…

The Best 50 Things to Do in Marunouchi to Make You Fall in Love with Tokyo in 2018

Marunouchi is a modern-looking district found at the very heart of Tokyo, just a stone’s throw from Tokyo Station and the Imperial Palace. The name Marunouchi translates as “inside the circle” and originates from its location inside the palace walls of the Edo Castle hundreds of years ago. Originally inhabited by some of the country’s…

Explore These 3 Beautiful Viewpoints in Japan’s Kochi Prefecture

Kochi Prefecture (高知県) is located on the small island of Shikoku (四国). It is formerly known as Tosa (土佐), and is popular for Kochi Castle (高知城), which is one of the 12 remaining castles in Japan. Kochi’s major food item is katsuo no tataki (鰹のたたき), a slightly broiled sliced bonito over a straw fire. Other…

Sample Real Japanese Rice Wine in This Sake Museum in Kobe!

Sake (酒) is one of Japan’s most well-known products, and it is famous throughout the world. Understandably, many visitors to Japan are eager to try Japanese rice wine for themselves. However, sometimes it can be hard to know where to begin; I came to Japan knowing nothing about how sake is made or which brands…

Rakugo: Japan’s Centuries-old Comedic Solo Storytelling

If there is one Asian country that pays very high regards to cultural heritage and traditional practices, Japan would have to be one of the obvious picks. It is very much apparent, even when you take a random stroll on any city street. From old castles to gorgeous, old-style ryokan (inns; 旅館), you’ll see how…

Travel Back in Time and Savor the Japanese Taisho Period in These 3 Historical Spots!

When modernity ruled Japan, it was called the Taisho Period. It was a combination between the militarist and the modern side. The era greatly transfigured the Japanese character from art, fashion, culture and music. It was a time for evolving and shaping the society into something new. Reliving this period’s atmosphere can be felt and…
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