Collected by AFAR Traveler
294 Kiyomizu 1-chōme, Higashiyama-ku, Kyōto-shi, Kyōto-fu 605-0862, Japan
This is one of my favorite places in Japan, and in the world. It is one of the most beautiful temples. It's very nice to come here when it's not crowded. I often try to come here during the rain, as odd as that sounds (that's when it is least...
Lake Chūzenji, Chugushi, Nikko, Tochigi Prefecture 321-1661, Japan
The Chuzenji Temple in Oku-nikko, Tochigi Prefecture, was originally founded in 784 by a Buddhist monk known as Shodo-shonin and is located on the shore of Lake Chuzenji, which is approximately 1,300 meters above sea level. In the middle of the...
2-11 Kaminoborichō, Naka-ku, Hiroshima-shi, Hiroshima-ken 730-0014, Japan
The Kimono Paparazzi (yours truly) was working overtime today. So many couples were out taking advantage of the sunshine to pose for wedding photos in beautiful Shukkeien Garden in Hiroshima. The garden itself, with its charming bridges, blooming...
Japan, 〒110-0005 Tōkyō-to, Taitō-ku, Ueno, 4 Chome−7−８ アメ横センタービル３F
Here is tako (octopus) for sale at one of the many merchant stalls dotting the Ame-yoko shopping street in Ueno, Tokyo. Ameyoko (アメ横) is a busy market street along the Yamanote Line tracks between Okachimachi and Ueno Stations. The name "Ameyoko"...
１０７２ Amatsu, Kamogawa-shi, Chiba-ken 299-5503, Japan
The Torii Arch reaches skyward on a small islet off the Pacific coast of Amatsu-kominato in the Boso Peninsula of Chiba. I came across this after walking around the breakwater of the fishing port located in front of Tanjoji Temple, birthplace of...
Kawagoe, Saitama Prefecture, Japan
About 30 minutes from Tokyo by train, Kawagoe Town, in Saitama Prefecture, is worth a day trip just for the peaceful stroll into another era; peaceful, unless you experience a sugar rush from all the sweet potato–based treats available along...
5 Chome-2-1 Tsukiji, Chūō-ku, Tōkyō-to 104-0045, Japan
Fresh, frozen, and living, Tsukiji fish market pushes around 4,500 lbs of seafood a day. At 3:00am, while you’re out clubbing, 400 different types of seafood from tiny sardines to 600-lb tuna arrive by ship, truck, and plane from all over...
Mount Nokogiri, Kanaya, Futtsu, Chiba Prefecture 299-1861, Japan
Trademark notch at the top of Nokogiriyama ("Saw Mountain") near Futtsu in Chiba Prefecture, Japan. The mountain features a distinctive sawtoothed profile of a Japanese saw, due in part to the mountain's history as a stone quarry during the Edo...
1 Chome-3-２８ Yokoami, Sumida-ku, Tōkyō-to 130-0015, Japan
I have found that one of the best ways to immerse yourself in a foreign culture is to attend a local sporting event. My husband & I happened to be in Tokyo during the annual sumo wrestling tournament. So we bought the cheapest tickets that were...
2 Chome-2-1 Miyama, Funabashi-shi, Chiba-ken 274-0072, Japan
The night before we went to our Ninja Class in Tokyo, I asked my kids what they most wanted to do. They shouted, "Throw ninja stars!" I laughed and tried to prep them, saying, "I'm sure that they would never let tourists do something that could...
Akihabara, Taitō, Tokyo 110-0006, Japan
Through a maze of off-street spaces and narrow steps, this is where you can find special nerdy places that offer a variety of electronic gadgets, games and anime figures, among many other things. This is where Japanese pop culture lives and...
2 Chome-11 Nishishinjuku, Shinjuku, Tokyo 160-0023, Japan
I was in Tokyo ostensibly as a travel companion to my boyfriend, who had been sent there for work. He was working 10 hour days in Odaiba, and I would come along, then take the train back into the city. I carefully plotted out each day's itinerary...
Japan, 〒730-0811 Hiroshima-ken, Hiroshima-shi, Naka-ku, Nakajimachō, 1, 広島市中区中島町1丁目1
Though it is hard not to view the Hiroshima Peace Park and Museum without a heavy heart, the signs of peace everywhere, from the kind docents at the museum to the prominently displayed paper cranes, bring an incredible sense of hope and...
Kamakura, Kanagawa Prefecture, Japan
I love Japanese folklore, with its stories of Samurai, demons, and spirits. One of my favorite characters from Japanese lore is the Tengu, a mountain nymph of sorts, who likes to tempt Buddhist priests to break their vows, and to teach devoted...
68 Fukakusa Yabunouchichō, Fushimi-ku, Kyōto-shi, Kyōto-fu 612-0882, Japan
My first glimpse of Fushimi Inari was from the movie Memoirs of a Geisha. Yes, I admit it. I was smitten by the scene of Chiyo running along the Shinto shrine's paths surrounded by vermilion torii, or gates. I had a chance to visit on a brisk,...
Japan, 〒381-0401 長野県下高井郡山ノ内町平穏６８４５
I left tropical Southeast Asia for Japan in the dead of winter for one reason - to see snow monkeys. I'd always seen pictures like the one above, of zen macaques in steaming hot springs surrounded by snow, and had no idea how accessible they were...
Arashiyama Genrokuzancho, Ukyō-ku, Kyoto, Kyoto Prefecture 616-0007, Japan
In western Kyoto, there is a very large forest of bamboo. As you can see in the photo, the shoots grow very tall, making those who stroll by look quite small. I'm sure there are times when this road is crowded, but when we were there, people were...
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