Traditional Ainu Clothing

The Ainu are the indigenous people of the Japanese and Russian isles, mainly in northeastern Honshu (the main island) and Hokkaido, the northern island. While visiting Sapporo, I happend to stumble upon an Ainu exhibit in the lobby of a fancy hotel. Not one to pass up the opportunity to learn something new about history, […]

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Japan: A Paper Country

This isn’t to say that they are a country that is flimsy or easily destroyed by rain; I mean that Japan really loves its paper. A lot. It manifests itself in many ways that are a bit baffling and even exciting to foreigners. Let’s do a quick review of my own experience with paper pushing […]

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Allergies in Japan

Spring can be a particularly challenging time in Japan. You’ll see people shedding their winter coats and donning surgical masks, carrying extra tissues, and tilting their heads back to refresh themselves with eye drops. Native and foreigner alike is afflicted by allergy season, but why? And is there anything you can do to relieve the […]

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Children’s Day in Japan

Japan is no stranger to population woes of the modern era: Birth rates are down, people are working longer hours, and many young adults don’t see the benefits or point of marrying and raising a family. Amidst all this negative, the country still celebrates children and give thanks and gratitude towards their mothers on Children’s […]

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Hiking in Nikko National Park

Do you enjoy beautiful nature? How about waterfalls? Do you like those? What about a natural epicenter of a country? If you said yes to any of these, then Nikko is the place for you to visit in Japan! I did a bit of hiking up there in my continued training for Fuji with some […]

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Nikko Toshogu Shrine

Nikko has a lot going for it: Beautiful nature, enjoyed in every season, and the great honor of being called the true Japan. There is also quite a bit of history nestled away in Nikko, such as in the Nikko Toshogu Shrine, a great feat of architecture that attracts visitors from near and far to […]

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The Shinkansen

One of the most famous modes of transport from Japan is the Shinkansen, or bullet train, which has lines that stretch all over Japan. It seems almost like a rite of passage to ride one, being almost mythologized by those outside of Japan. Well, here’s a brief glimpse into my experience and some tips so […]

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