For those of you who have been reading this blog for a while will already know that I love Japan. For those of you who are new.. I love Japan.
I went to Japan the first time when I was freshly 18 after high school on honestly the beginning of my wanderlust journey. After being in love with the country since grade 4 from the text books I’ve read (and honestly from all the anime I used to watch) I started planning how I would one day runaway there, live on a rice mat and become a geisha. Sadly I lacked the grace and youth to become one of Japans iconic figures but I did settle for a gorgeous Yukata in Kyoto.
There was just something about Japan that just stuck. Something that entranced me and on my 6 months adventure in Australia I booked a mini trip to Japan for the Cherry Blossom Season which starts at the beginning of April. 4 years later I found myself heading back to Japan just in time for their Fall Foliage Season.
I fell in love with Japan all over again and remember why I was just so obsessed with it.
Here’s 5 reasons why you should visit Japan and hopefully, you’ll fall in love too:
While I struggled with food in Japan, everything I was able to eat was so amazing and fresh that it didn’t matter at the end of the day that I was half starved and living of grocery store tempura and kabocha squash.
Tempura, okonomiyaki, cute shaped things, ice cream, burgers, crepes – everything. I didn’t have one bad meal in Japan. If you’re a vegetarian heading to Japan check out my Vegetarian Survival Guide!
I know they say Thailand is the land of smiles and have the friendliest people in the world but I think it’s safe to say the Japanese are their equals. I have been lost, confused, starving, wandering around Japan and someone has always offered to help me without me asking.
When I did ask people they were more than happy to help. I had one lady offer to hop off the bullet train to take me to my hostel, another man actually walk me four blocks to my hostel (I have poor map navigation skills), I’ve had people read food labels for me to see if there is fish in them and I’ve have people in train stations wait for my train with me so I wouldn’t get lost of confused. Even if Japan didn’t have all its beauty and history I would still go back for its people.
The Temples and Architecture
One of the things I love most, if not the most, is the temples and shrines scattered across Japan. They are built in such beauty that you can feel the magic when you walk by them. Some are high and big and some are so small you could barley see the shrine while walking by. It’s just so beautiful and humbling to be around such aged structures where you can practically feel the history leaking from it.
This kind of touches on temples but there is so much about Japan that’s so unique and beautiful compared to anywhere else I’ve been. They’re Geishas that still walk the streets of Kyoto, people wearing Kimonos and Yukatas to tea ceremonies and weddings, not to mention their recent urban culture like anime, cosplay and their crazy street style. Japan truly is the future and the past alive in one time frame.
The Landscapes and Scenery
Japan is a small island and is overwhelmed with people but even though it might sound like there is no place to walk you’ll see that there is plenty of space and greenery to match.
There is still so much of japan that is flourishing and alive with nature. Cherry blossoms bloom on the first of April and the crimson leaves begin to fall on November 1st. There are beaches and mountains and rolling hills and lakes and even an island of bunnies and a town taken over by deer. The diversity in Japan is so serene and again – magical.