Our posts about Japanese culture

Can You Go To Japan Without Knowing Japanese?

Your trip doesn’t have to be nerve-wracking; there are a few simple tricks and some advice below to get through Japan without being fluent.

Spicy Food in Japan: Do Japanese People Enjoy Spicy Food?

No, Japanese people tend not to enjoy very spicy food as you would find in other Asian countries. In general Japanese food is quite mild and focuses on expressing the umami in quality ingredients using the perfect cooking technique. I suppose wasabi is probably the spiciest thing you would experience in Tokyo, outside of specific […]

21 Interesting Japanese Cultural Experiences to Enjoy in Tokyo

Culture you don’t always see in guides for some reason. While sightseeing and dining in Tokyo are absolutely incredible, there’s a ton more to Japanese culture and the Japanese people. In this guide, I want to give you a list of interesting Japanese culture to learn about and maybe check out while in Tokyo. Bunraku […]

Chochin: Traditional Japanese Paper Lanterns

Chochin (提灯) – paper lanterns. A red paper lantern is called akachochin. Aka means red. I mention it because you’ll often see akachochin hanging in the front of izakaya.

Tokyo is so Clean Because of Japanese Culture

A beautiful city with a pure soul. The reason Tokyo is so clean is because the Japanese people tend to have a strong sense of moral obligation to treat other people, and things, with respect. They seek the attainment of perfection with the understanding they will never reach it but strive to nonetheless. Obviously this […]

7-Eleven Japan: Great Food & Actual Convenience

Convenience stores in Japan are conveniently convenient. We know… 7-Eleven? Really? Yes. Fly all the way to Tokyo for a 7-Eleven convenience store, you should (okay, maybe not only for 7-Eleven). Greasy pizza, ginormous gulps of soda (or slushies)… what’s the point?  How about 7-Eleven in Japan doesn’t have Slurpees? No pizza either. No fountain […]

How to order just about anything in a restaurant in Japan

Staring at the menu with all the wonderful looking food, but can’t read the words? I know the feeling all too well.

Japanese Table Manners: What are Itadakimasu & Gochisousama?

Before the Japanese begin their meals, they’ll hold their hands together, close their eyes, bow slightly, and say something. What are they saying?

What is Karaoke in Japan?

Karaoke was born in Japan! It’s short of karappo (empty) and orchestra; aka “empty vocals.” Karaoke in Japan is insanely fun. They’re like hotels for karaoke!

What are Ryokan?

Ryokan are traditional Japanese style inns. Featuring tatami rooms, communal baths, futon beds, and traditional cuisine.

What is a Super Sento?

A sento is a public bath. Not to be confused with onsen, which is a natural hot spring. A super sento is a very large health spa. They offer many facilities…

What is Tatami?

Tatami is the rice straw flooring used in traditional Japanese rooms. The rice straw core is tightly woven with a soft rush (another type of straw). The tatami mat is a standard rectangle size. So you’ll find Japanese room sizes are measured in how many tatami mats would fit. Tatami is often used instead of […]

What are Jinja?

Jinja 神社 are Shinto shrines. They sanctify Shinto deities. Fun fact: You’ll find a jinja in almost every community across Japan.

What is Kanpai?

Kanpai is the Japanese way of toasting. It literally means “to drink up sake from one’s cup.” It’s used much like in western society, at the beginning of a celebration. Most often it signals the start of the party between friends/family. But… It can also be a bit more formal, where a designated person delivers […]

Geisha: What are They and Do They Still Exist in Japan?

Geisha are traditional Japanese female entertainers. They are not what you may think they are. They wear kimono & white makeup you’ve seen in movies.

What is Ukiyo-e?

Ukiyo-e is a historical wood-block style of artwork from Japan — where wood is etched and used a stamp on a canvas of the artists’ choice (sometimes washi).

What is Nomikai?

Nomi means drink. A nomikai is a drinking party. Nomikai usually takes place in izakaya, but increasingly at home too.

Sensu: The Beautiful & Traditional Japanese Folding Fan

The sensu (扇子) is the Japanese folding fan. Started in Kyoto in the Heian Period. Where the handmade fans were originally just thin strips of paper.

What is an Izakaya (besides absolute perfection)?

Izakaya (居酒屋) are Japanese taverns, or pubs. Often easily spotted by the paper lanterns called “chochin.” Serving some of the most incredible food.

Costco Japan: My #1 Tip to Avoid Pain & Suffering

If you want to avoid pain and suffering at Costco in Japan, go on a weekday — avoid the weekend mega-crowds