In this video you get to see some behind the scenes action of Mr. Kato from LB Performance. Get up close with the amazing Ferrari 458 Italia and Nissan GTR as the team puts the final touches on the modifications! The segment is in Japanese but has perfect English subtitles. See the video here or watch it below and subscribe to Steve’s channel here.
The island of Japan has been endowed with some of the most breathtaking scenery and impressive natural wonders in the entire world. This island nation offers a total of 30 national parks that visitors can explore to get to know the landscape of this intriguing island nation. National parks have been in existence on the island of Japan since the year 1931, and the major goal of distinguishing national parks is to preserve areas of great scenic beauty so that people from all over the world can come to enjoy them. Keep in mind that it’s often a more affordable solution to visit national parks than to spend time in the city. The national parks offered in the nation feature many different natural wonders, including marshes, beaches, coasts, marine habitats, volcanoes, and much more. Recreational opportunities abound in these natural areas, and visitors to Japan will find opportunities to fish, dive, snorkel, boat, hike, and much more by visiting the national parks of Japan.
The following are four major Japanese national parks that visitors to the country might consider visiting if they want to explore the wild, undeveloped attractions that Japan has to offer:
Nikko National Park
The Nikko National Park stretches out over 200,000 acres and offers a variety of interesting attractions, such as the Toshogu Shrine and the majestic cedars. The Toshogu Shrine offers a majestic mausoleum that leaves a strong impression on visitors.
Fuji-Hakone-Izu National Park
Of course, any visit to Japan should include a glimpse of Mount Fuji. The Fuji-Hakone-Izu National Park includes the world-famous Japanese mountain that has captured the imagination of many artists and writers throughout history.
Akan National Park
This park is notorious for the variety of recreational activities that visitors can enjoy. These include skiing, hiking, fishing, and more. The park is especially attractive for watersports that can be enjoyed in the mountain lakes that dot the landscape. Be prepared for the recreational opportunities by purchasing outdoors equipment before your trip.
Seto-Naikai National Park
This park is often also referred to as “Inland Sea” National Park due to the fact that it includes an enormous body of water with many islands and miles of coastline to explore.
Okinawa, said to be “the Hawaii of Japan,” is petite in size but plentiful in life. It is the largest island of the Ryukyu island chain, which makes it a central location for commerce and other activities.
For the traveler bent on seeing the top attraction sites on Okinawa, these sites would suffice: Shuri Castle, Kokusai Dori (also known as “Kokusai Street”), the Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium, the World War II Japanese Underground Headquarters, and the Peace Prayer Park.
Video from Kokusai Dori
Kuroshio Sea at the Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium (second largest aquarium tank in the world)
For a more daring traveler, there are many hidden hiking trails and eco-adventurous places to visit. Common hiking spots include the Yara Castle Ruins, Hiji Waterfall, and Aha Falls. Forest Adventure Park is one of the most popular eco-tourist sites on the island. It is a fairly new park in Okinawa’s Onna village and tests the courage and strength of interested customers who use their skills to climb trees and glide through the forest on a special harness.
Hiji Falls in Okinawa Video
When visiting the many sightseeing spots or hiking until the point of exhaustion, relaxation can offer a great alternative. During the summer months, the beaches of Okinawa can be either a great place to relax or mingle with other people. Some well-known beaches on Okinawa are Araha beach, Sunset beach, Toguchi beach, and Emerald beach.
When visiting and salivating for a specific taste, there is always a place on this island to go that will fill or come close to filling this flavor need. On any given day on Okinawa, one can savor an American-style breakfast, taste sushi or ramen for lunch, and in the evening, delight in a home-cooked Peruvian meal for dinner.
This island may seem tiny in comparison to other places, but after spending quite a bit of time on its land, one will see how abundant in activities and food it is. If you have time, check it out!
There are plenty of great things to do in Tokyo but here are a list of the top 5:
1) Visit Tokyo
There are plenty of awesome cities to visit in Japan, you need to visit the infamous Tokyo. Not only is it the biggest and most famous place in Japan, it was also where many popular films such as the recent film Wolverine was filmed.
2) Eat Japanese food
You don’t go to a famous steak house and order a salad so why on earth would you go to Japan and try some good old authentic Japanese food.
I promise you, when you compare the Japanese food of Japan and America, nothing will ever be the same.
3) Visit some temples
Japan itself isn’t a huge country but it still manages to pack in over 80000 different temples. Be sure to visit at least one and get a taste of Japanese culture.
4) Sing karaoke
Karaoke is super popular in Japan so be sure to hit up a karaoke bar or two during your time in Japan.
5) Drink some quality sake
Sake is the alcohol of choice in Japan. So if you love drinking, this is the alcohol you need to have. Maybe even hang out with some locals and get a little crazy.
This year I need the speedy delivery of an international courier company to get some Christmas presents to Toronto. I’ve been working in Japan for over two years now, and although I regret not being able to take some time off from work in order to get back to my family in Toronto for Christmas, I’m glad I can rely on an international courier company to get the presents delivered on time. Although it’s not the same as being there, sending my love and presents makes me feel a bit closer to my family.
I get to see the guys from home for about a few weeks year and sometimes even less. Although I wish I could do something to get more free time, I have to comply with the way people work here in Japan. Everybody works hard here and is many times expected to make sacrifices for the well-being of the team. And even in our spare time, we are often motivated to spend time with our work mates and participate in group activities, to get the team closer together. Plus I have some plans to work on, so the faster I complete them, the better for everyone.
I love Christmas! Maybe it’s because the winter holidays coincide with my birthday, I don’t really know. The fact is, I still feel like a little kid in the days before Christmas. Finding the right Christmas tree is always a treat. It has to have rich branches, and have a proportionate symmetrical build. Although I wish I could send a Christmas tree over to my family, I doubt an international delivery company would accept it. Maybe I should try finding a bonsai Christmas tree, and ask the boys from the shipping company if they would accept delivering it to Toronto.
Back to reality, I’m glad I could find a company I can trust to send the presents, as finding them here in Japan is pretty easy, thanks to the countless specialized small shops, hypermarkets, malls and the like. Although living in Japan can take quite some time to get accustomed to, finding great stuff to send as presents is not only easy, but fun too, as there are so many things to choose from.
Getting to the actual delivery, I chose to work with a private international courier company to get the presents to my family. I could have gone for the EMS Japan Post Service, which costs about 900 JPY for a 300-gram package, but I decided it was more convenient to go with a private company. Why? Because, yeah, you pay a little bit more in this case, but you get more in terms of convenience as well. All the staff is English-speaking, and they offer home and office pick-up as well. Plus, they offer accurate time estimates, so that I can be sure the Christmas presents will actually get to Toronto by the 25th, and not on Valentine’s Day or something.
I’m hoping next Christmas I’ll be able to hand the Christmas presents myself, but until then, a speedy delivery on the Japan-Toronto Christmas route will suffice. It’s funny that it’ll probably take more time before I decide on the perfect presents than it would take the guys from the courier company to send them over to Toronto.
This post was contributed by Eric who is a Canadian currently residing in Ueno, Tokyo and living in Japan since 2010.
Some time ago I found the site SeatGuru.com. It helps you plan your trip by giving you the layout of each aircraft from numerous airlines. They help you know the difference between superior and substandard seats which is great when booking online. I’ve used this a few times while booking my flights, you should check it out!
(If you want to read about reviews with different airlines check out the topic Airline Review.)
Using SeatGuru and checking online exactly 24 hours in advance could score you the ultimate seat at the regular price! I always set my alarm 24 hours in advance (even if it’s 4am…) to make sure I can change my seat if needed and this has definitely made my flights more pleasurable. Continue reading
I took United Airlines for my flight to Japan. I highly recommend them because of customer service and comfort. This was my first time taking this airline and it was my first choice because at the time it was the least expensive option. I’ve flown a few other airlines so I thought I’d give you a breakdown of what I thought of each one. I’ll rate each one on a 5 point scale overall based on my experiences. 1 being poor, 5 being excellent.
United Airlines – My rating: 5/5
I’ve flown with this airline one time.
Exit row gave me tons of leg room. Personal TV screen to watch movies was nice. Adjustable head rest was awesome! I was comfortable. I was not bored. Flight attendants were curtius and helpful. The ticket counter was friendly as well. Food was okay.
US Airways – My rating: 4/5
I’ve flown with this airline a few times.
Overall decent. First class seats are great. Leather, lots of room. Friendly staff.
The flight to Japan was an experience all in itself! This was my first time flying to Japan (from America) where I didn’t just stop and go in Tokyo. U.S. flights are easy and flying to Thailand was a piece of cake because a lot of people speak English. We took a flight from San Francisco and arrived in Japan in about 12 hours or so, I can’t recall right now but I did get 5,303 Award miles though! NICE! We went from San Francisco (SFO) to Nagoya (NGO) to Fukuoka (FUK). We flew on United Airlines and I highly recommend it. The customer service was great, the food was okay, and the seats were comfortable. They had a head rest that’s adjustable so you can easily sleep and you get your own personal vide screen to watch movies, TV shows, BBC News, or you can see where the plane is on a GPS type screen. All movies and shows were offered in English with and without Japanese subtitles, or Japanese voice over so everybody can enjoy the in flight entertainment instead of sitting there going “OMG! 10 hours remaining!”
** I highly recommend checking in online exactly 24 hours in advance. I was able to change my seat to an exit row which gave me plenty of leg room.
When we arrived at the Nagoya Airport we had to rush to catch out plane to Fukuoka. Here’s what you can expect…
- Go through immigration, hand them the completed form (Customs Declaration Form) that the airline had you fill out, and they’ll give you landing permission.
- Pick up your luggage, go through customs, answer questions, possibly get searched.
- Go to your connecting airline, go through a luggage security check point, check the luggage.
- Go through a personal security check point, and then go to your gate and you’re all set.
What happened to us? Well it wasn’t an easy 1,2,3,4.
Here’s the long story made short. We went through immigration first. Then we headed to our gate and when we asked for directions from the airline counter we found out our luggage does not follow us, we had to grab it and go through customs and Continue reading
The Ichiban Kan is a cozy and tasteful restaurant that has the traditional Japanese restaurant architecture with authentic decoration and atmosphere just like the other Japanese restaurants I’ve been to in Japan. A few locals I met said that this is one of the famous restaurants in the city and I have to agree with them because when we arrived the place was full, no seats available! With our curiosity and eagerness to know the reason why they are so popular, we agreed to wait for a table figuring it would take more than 30 minutes because of how busy it was.
While waiting, we already perused their menu so we can mentally prepare for what we were going to order. Most of the menu covers a variety of soup and noodle dishes. After 15 minutes we got a table and ordered for our food. We ordered ramen, udon noodle soup, gyoza (Japanese dumpling), and maguro nigiri (tuna sushi). When our orders arrived, they look great with a fantastic presentation which included a variety of food decor. And now we know why Ichiban Kan restaurant is famous because not only is the setting right and the presentation wonderful, but the food was really good and that’s the important thing!
I highly recommend this restaurant especially to couples who would like to pamper their selves in a romantic Japanese dinner experience.
This article was contributed by a reader who goes by the name of ‘TS33’. He recently went on a trip to Myanmar and decided to visit a Japanese restaurant in Yangon. Click the link to see a full detailed report and first hand pictures from his trip!
Many people see going to Japan as a lifelong dream. The imagery of sakura flowers blooming across a street, a dazzling nightlife, and who can forget all the cute clothes and gifts only for sale in this country; are all little things that can cause Japan frantic to drool. But even though many of these travellers are not from Asia, and in fact can’t even speak Japanese, several precautions need to be taken in order for you to stay safe.
Learning to speak Japanese is not an easy task. I personally know several people that have attempted to master the language only ending up failing like a dying fish. However thanks to technology, you can always simply purchase an electronic dictionary that can translate English to Japanese and then use it as an aid to communicate. I always recommend this method to my friends.
There are actually several times when some of my friends weren’t able to communicate with the Japanese people and ended up missing their flight and causing errors to their hotel bookings that caused them to lose hundreds of dollars. If only they had some sort of device that could bring down the language barrier they would have been able to avoid all these disasters.
Before flying out, the first and most important thing to do is to have bought insurance. This is a must if you want to reduce the chance of you losing your belongings and even money. There are many different companies that can offer you great deals and coverage for as little as a few dollars a day. If you are from Australia, I suggest you read through these travel insurance reviews to get some more information.
One of the companies that I suggest is 1Cover. They have been known to offer cheap policies by selling their service online and minimising the overhead costs of having an office and branch. Feel free to go read through this 1Cover review to get some idea of what you can take out.
Another company is Travel Insurance Direct. They also sell their policies online making their prices extra cheaper, but what make them stand out from the others is the fact that coupon codes seem to be always available, letting you save another 10%! To see all the great things about TID, check out this Travel Insurance Direct review.
Lastly, one of the simplest ways to get along in Japan is to join a tour. Many people forget about this idea because a lot of the prices are expensive, however the advantages can be endless. You will be able to get an expert to guide you along the cosy streets of Tokyo and have them explain about the history of some of these places. It is a great way to learn more about the country without all the stress of not being able to speak their language.
As a conclusion, travelling to Japan can be a very fun experience but at the same time, it can be a nightmare if you can’t speak Japanese. So the next time you head over there, make sure you have something that can translate English to Japanese, take out insurance, and if you can afford it, join a tour. All these steps will ensure you have a great time in the great country of the east and enjoy a slice of heaven.