If you’ve read manga, eaten sushi and snipped sake, you might think you know something about Japan. But, as soon as you arrive in this archipelago of thousands of volcanic islands, you’ll feel like you have touched down on another planet. Japanese are welcoming and warm and they will make your disorientation pleasant and help you meet this fascinating land that thrives in mesmerizing contrast of modern and traditional.
The same as other developed countries, Japan is not a cheap country to visit, although it doesn’t have to be wildly expensive neither. The well-known bargain rail passes and low cost airline tickets will make it easier and quite affordable to get to the distant corners of this country (if you want to). The most traditional and atmospheric hotels, inns and restaurants are usually good value for money.
Talking about the food, Japanese cuisine is undoubtedly one of the reasons to come to this lovely country. Order a meal at a station counter or have a dinner in a high-end sushi restaurant, you’ll understand why it might be a good idea to build an itinerary around regional dishes and specialties. There are many things to buy in Japan that will show you the famed Japanese attention to detail, insistence on the finest ingredients and breathtaking presentation.
In Japan, you won’t need to travel far to get out into nature and enjoy outdoors pleasures. Forested mountains, the hiking in Hokkaido, the coral reefs of Okinawa are all just a short trip away from the futuristic cities. In the hyperactive metropolises such as Tokyo, Osaka, Kyoto and Kanazawa, you’ll be struck by the mass of people. Not only do they offer a sneak peek at the latest fashion and technology trends, but they also provide the opportunity to enjoy kabuki and other traditional performance arts.
Japan has made and experienced such an impact like not so many countries. Even after the WWII, it succeeded to transform itself from atom-bomb victim to financial and economic giant! Nowadays, with the visual mediums of manga and anime, it’s the world’s eminent leader in the pop culture.