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    Why Is Japan Becoming A Desired Tourist Destination?

    Why Is Japan Becoming A Desired Tourist Destination?

    Japan has seen a significant surge in tourist arrivals in recent years.

    It went from having 6 million overseas visitors in 2011 to almost 32m in 2019, and it looks set to return to those levels soon with over 15m tourists arriving between January and August in 2023.

    It’s clearly a very popular destination, but what makes it so?

    A wealth of history

    Japan is one of the oldest surviving civilizations and is reputed to have come into existence in the seventh century BC, when Jimmu founded the country’s imperial dynasty and became its first emperor. It prides itself on this heritage, with customs and traditions being passed down through the generations.

    Whether you want to learn more about samurai, Shintoism or Buddhism, Japan is a country with a rich history that is vastly different to what you’ll find in most of the Western world.

    Essential destinations

    Kyoto

    If you’re lucky enough to be heading on a tour of Japan, Kyoto is a must-visit destination.

    The former capital is known for its unique wooden houses, pristine gardens, imperial palaces, and magnificent Buddhist temples.

    If you time your trip right, you can see Kyoto at its beautiful best by visiting in Sakura season – when the cherry blossom emerges and fills the city with a glorious pink hue. This typically occurs across the end of March and the start of April.

    Tokyo

    You can’t visit Japan without heading to the sprawling capital of Tokyo – the biggest city in the world.

    Exploring the Senso-ji temple and Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden is perfect on a clear, warm day, while those comfortable at heights will appreciate the views from the top of the Skytree.

    Tokyo also hosts three top-level sumo tournaments each year, in January, May and September. It’s a great way to immerse yourself in the history of the country and enjoy some of its famous cuisine too. Even if you visit when there’s not a tournament on, you can watch the rikishi train for free and may even be able to snag a photo with one!

    Mount Fuji

    Located around 100 kilometres south-west of Japan and standing at over 3,700 metres tall, Mount Fuji is one of the most iconic sites in Japan.

    You don’t have to be a climber to reach the summit – it can be hiked in around seven hours, so you’ll likely be walking most of the day. However, by setting off early you’ll get to enjoy some truly spectacular views.

    Reward yourself following your descent by sharing some sake with friends or finding somewhere to experience the tea ceremony, which takes years of training to be able to lead.

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    Why Is Japan Becomin…

    by Tanya Shaw Time to read this article: 6 min
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