Our posts about Japanese culture

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.

Manners in Japan: 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 […]

What are Geisha?

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?

Learn about Ukiyo-e, the traditional artform of Japanse history.

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, Artistic 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