Top 5 Japan (2017)

Despite taking two trips to Japan, there are still so many things I want to see and experience. So far, I have visited some beautiful and unforgettable places, and inevitably, I fell in love with a few of them. Here are my top 5 favorite places in Japan so far…

OdaibaDecks

Odaiba

While Odaiba doesn’t have many activities other than shopping, dining, and a nice walk along the water in view of Rainbow Bridge, I fell in love with the area.

Gundam

Anime (and non-anime) fans definitely want to visit the giant Gundam figurine outside Diver City Mall! There’s also a Gundam Cafe where you can grab a coffee, hot chocolate, or small souvenir to bring home.

Fuji

You can also snap some cool photos of Fuji TV station’s unique architecture. If you stick around after dark, you may be able to catch the light show on the building. Inside, you will also find a gift shop which stocks souvenirs from animes like Youkai Watch and One Piece.

RainbowBridge

In my opinion, the best time to go is right before sunset. You can walk around and explore the mall and the Decks just before dark. Once the sun goes down, you will have a stunning view of the Tokyo skyline and Rainbow Bridge.

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Fushimi Inari Taisha

Located in Kyoto, this is one of the most popular shrines, and the one I always recommend to anyone going to Kyoto. Inari is the god of rice, but business owners and merchants have traditionally worshiped Inari as the patron of business. The thousands of torii gates along the mountain trail all come from donations made by businesses to the shrine.

Fushimi2

The beginning of the trail is quite crowded. But, the further you walk up, the thinner the crowd becomes, particularly after the halfway point.

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Smaller trails branch off from the main, and you can find even more torii gates, sub-shrines, and fox statues, which are often found in Inari shrines due to their regard as messengers.

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Yokohama

Yokohama’s Chinatown is huge and offers a lot of great places to eat. I definitely recommend stopping at one of the street vendors and getting meat buns!

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You can walk to the pier, and take some photos of the bay and bridge. There’s also a large mall that is a bit of a long walk, but if you’re looking to shop, or visit the Pokemon or Ghibli store, both are there!

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Nara

This city is famous for its deer, which are considered national treasures and protected. The deer are extremely used to people and know they are also often a source of treats (shika senbei), which can be bought from a number of vendors scattered through the city. The senbei don’t cost much and you get about 10 in a pack, but there are so many eager deer, you end up running out pretty quick! And they aren’t shy about letting you know they’re really only interested in your food. The moment you run out, they tend to walk away.

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The deer have even learned a mannerism that could have only been picked up by watching people – they bow. Not all the deer will do this, but if you bow, a few might bow back. Just remember to give them treats in return!

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Shibuya

Walking around parts of Shibuya is like being in Times Square but 10 times noisier and 10 times brighter – it’s full of life and never seems to stop moving. One of my favorite things was people watching from Starbucks in the Tsutaya at Shibuya Crossing.

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There are so many places in Japan to visit. It’s impossible to see everything in a single trip, but there are just a few places that will always be special no matter how many times you do visit.

Leave a comment about your favorite places!

 

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