2017 cherry blossom forecast for Japan

The Japanese cherry blossom, or sakura, has long been adored by people across the globe. It is regarded as a symbol of renewal, vitality, and beauty. During the spring season of each year, thousands travel to Japan to view the wondrous spectacle of these white or pink flowers blooming en masse.

Note: New forecast announced! (30/03) Cherry blossoms have flowered already started Tokyo and the outskirts. Make sure to check this article weekly for the newest information on cherry blossom forecasts.

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Staying in a Ryokan, a traditional Japanese guest house

Would you like to relax and unwind during your international travels? Are you interested in a traditional Japanese experience? If you answered yes to either of those questions, a stay at a ryokan may be for you.

What is a ryokan? A ryokan is a traditional style Japanese inn or guest house. Typically small in size, these inns have often been run by the same family for generations. Ryokans are usually located near onsen, or hot springs used for therapeutic bathing, and their design, décor, and setting often focus on the simplistic beauty of nature.

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All about Onsens: the Japanese hot springs

The Japanese word onsen refers to the hot springs that dot the islands of Japan, fed by warm, mineral-rich spring water. Japan hosts a volcanic geography, so the water is heated naturally by geothermal forces. It bubbles forth from the ground, filling pools with water that is somewhat hotter than a standard Jacuzzi or hot tub.

Onsens are a popular attraction for Japanese tourists, due to both their cultural significance and their relaxing, recreational nature. Onsens play a significant role in Japanese culture, and they are used extensively by Japanese residents. It is thought that onsen have healing and rejuvenating qualities, helping conditions such as skin ailments and cancer.

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Tokyo 2020 Olympics with the Japan Rail Pass

Some would consider it the trip of a lifetime: attending the 2020 Olympic Games in the bustling city of Tokyo, Japan. Tourists are already scrambling find tickets. The games, often simply called Tokyo 2020, are scheduled to take place from July 24 to August 9 of that year. Over twelve thousand athletes from two hundred and seven countries are expected to participate in thirty-three types of summer sports.

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Japanese Etiquette Tips: Do’s and Don’ts for International Travelers

When traveling to a new country for the first time, “culture shock” is expected. You may be expecially intimidated if you have heard that there are a lot of “do’s and don’ts” for Japan. Consider these tips for traveling to Japan, and you will be sure to fit right in this warm and inviting country.

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Himeji Castle and city travel guide with the JR Pass

Himeji Castle – also known as the White Heron Castle due to its unique coloration – may be the most widely esteemed castle in Japan. It has been named both a National Heritage Building and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Himeji Castle and the surrounding city is a popular day trip among tourists to this area of Japan.

The city can be easily accessed using your Japan Rail Pass, and a visit to Himeji Castle is like a trip back in time. Consider the following travel tips to make your visit to Himeji memorable.

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Studio Ghibli Museum: Access and tickets

The Studio Ghibli Museum was established by Hayao Miyazaki, a master of Japanese anime. You may recognize Miyazaki as the animation director behind award-winning, acclaimed childhood films such as My Neighbor Totoro (1988) and Spirited Away (2001). The museum is an interactive experience suitable for the entire family. It identifies itself as “a portal to a storybook world.” Continue reading “%s”

Golden Week 2017: holidays and travel tips

What is Golden Week? In Japan, the Golden Week is a series of four national holidays that takes place within one week at the end of April to the beginning of May each year. It is often considered a time of vacation for the Japanese people, and many people receive time off from their secular employment on these bank holidays.

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Cherry blossom travel: tips for the 2017 season

The cherry blossom is an iconic symbol of Japan. Encompassing the renewal of spring, the beautiful cherry blossom is celebrated wherever Japanese cherry trees grow, throughout the world. To truly experience the majesty of the annual cherry blossom festivals, however, one must travel to the heart of it all – to Japan itself.

Before you board your international flight, there are a few things you should know, such as the cultural significance of the cherry blossom, when and where to see them, and how to capture the best cherry blossom photographs.

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Best ekiben on Japanese train stations

Most travelers enjoy – even covet – the experience of trying new and exotic foods unique to the places they visit. Japanese cuisine offers tantalizing tastes and textures, and ekiben provide a convenient and affordable means of discovering the best culinary temptations that Japan has to offer.

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