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6 Reasons Japanese People Often Wear Surgical Masks

Why do Japanese people always wear surgical masks? Many visitors coming to Japan for the first time have asked this question. Used to seeing masks only in hospitals, they have wondered why in Japan they seem to be a common item for everyone. Simple white surgical masks have always been sold in every convenience store…

How Many of These 5 Strange Fruits Found in Japan Are You Familiar With?

Japan is well known as a source of weird and quirky stuff, and its fruits are no exception. Despite its 4 seasons standard of the North Hemisphere of the world, there are still unique plants native to Japan. In addition, there are the fruits that everyone knows, but Japan has put their own twist on…

Behind the Scenes: Top 10 Japanese Animation Studios

Disney, Pixar and Dreamworks are company names that almost everyone knows. They are, in fact, animation studios that have brought us some well-known and well-loved animated productions that most of us grew up with and still continue to enjoy today. Since the early 1900s, cartoons have graced the world and been part of our lives;…

5 Real-Life Shrines in Japan That Appeared in Anime

When planning a trip to Japan, there are of course numerous places that you can visit. To narrow down your choices, you should probable plan the trip according to your interests. For anime enthusiasts, an anime pilgrimage is in order! Of course, this means shopping for anime stuff, but also visiting real life locations in…

How to Take a Bath in a Japanese Household: 5 Rules That May Surprise You

Visiting a Japanese home comes with a lot of rules. If you have ever had a homestay family or visited a friend, you may have already noticed that you need to take a small gift with you and make sure you wear slippers and different slippers for different parts of the house! Etiquette and social…

5 Essential Utensils for Cooking Japanese Food

So you moved to a new land, got yourself a swanky pad, and are going to get to cooking some delicious grub of the land of the rising sun. You may need to stock your kitchen up on the essential ingredients, but you also need some utensils and kitchen goods! jp.fotolia.com/ Get your Japanese kitchen…

5 Things You Can Make in a Rice-Cooker Apart from Plain Rice!

A bread-maker makes bread, and ice-cream machine makes ice-cream, but a rice cooker… now tat is no one-trick-pony. When I bought my first rice cooker, I was concerned that I was using up a considerable chunk of my kitchen space on a contraption that basically only boils a bit of rice. But after several years…

Popular “Western” Dishes with a Japanese Twist

We all know at least of some delicious Japanese foods. Sushi is super popular worldwide, and you may know about some other Japanese delicacies, such as miso soup, tempura, ramen, and soba noodles, or matcha and sake when it comes to drinks. But perhaps you may be less familiar with some of the popular Japanese dishes…

All About Gachapon, the Japanese Vending Machines that Run on Luck!

Being exasperated when playing a game or doing something that needs luck is a usual thing. But when buying something from a vending machine, we know what’s coming and that we’re getting it for sure. Unless the machine gets stuck at which point there’s the fight or flight reaction – some people kick the machine,…

Hikikomori: the Phenomena of People in Japan Isolating Themselves

As many as over a million young people in Japan are thought to remain holed up in their homes, sometimes for decades at a time, a phenomena known as ‘hikikomori’. Why is that? In Japan, hikikomori, a term that’s also used to describe the young people who withdraw, is a word that everyone knows. The…