Land of the rising fun
Much of Japan is connected by one of the world’s most effective railway systems - in Tokyo, you’ll find the starting station for the first ever bullet train and, as you might expect, the primary hub for an excellent rail network that can whisk you across the country’s four main islands in a matter of hours. Japan has a reputation for fixating on the future, but this energetic curiosity is securely rooted by unbroken traditions that stretch back thousands of years. Much of the country's cultural heritage stems from nature, with colourful festivals that celebrate the seasons, and leisure that centres on bathing in volcanic hot springs and feeding the body and soul with excellent local food. And yet, despite reminding us of our favourite samurai epics, this lifestyle is a modern reality. Hot spring resort Hakone might be a world away from Tokyo in terms of landscape and ambience, but it’s just an hour by train. The ancient city of Kyoto - UNESCO protected, 280 miles distant - is two hours and twenty. Hiroshima, increasingly famous for all the right reasons, is less than two beyond that.
Explore our Japan travel guides to discover more about this intriguing destination.
Our Destination Specialists have travelled extensively throughout Asia and are on hand to assist at any stage of your planning.
Citizens of the UK, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, the US and most European countries do not require a visa to visit Japan for up to 90 days read more
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These have been cherry-picked by the team to be the ‘icing and sparklers’ on your holiday in Asia.
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Many visitors to Japan begin their love of Japanese culture long before they reach the country itself,...
The luxury of hotel hospitality is one of the most blissful aspects of travel, but sometimes we all crave...
Playing a hefty counterpoint to the ephemeral geisha, another famous iconic Japanese figure is the sumo...
There are more Michelin star restaurants in Tokyo than any other city in the world – and includes some street food restaurants!
The bullet train and a network of smooth bridges connect the main Japanese islands and some of the smaller ones, making it very easy to explore.
These lively local festivals are celebrated throughout Japan at almost every shrine. In the city of Kanamara, for example, celebrates the ‘Festival of the Steel Phallus’…
The Japanese put away 10% of the global fish catch - 69.1kg of fish per person each year. The world average is 16kg.
The practice of napping while at work, recognized as beneficial by many employers. Staff must, however, remain upright while catching 40 winks.
Seen as a compliment to the chef, slurping your noodles is commonplace in Japan, and it’s much more fun than eating them quietly!
A common practice in Japan. If you receive a gift while travelling, it’s customary to delay opening the gift until you’re invited to do so.
Despite being a global leader in great food, it’s now a Japanese tradition to eat KFC on Christmas eve, thanks to a very successful marketing campaign in the 1970s.
One of the most quintessential Japanese leisure experiences, but make sure you read up on onsen etiquette before plunging in. You can watch monkeys enjoying a dip in an onsen in Nagano.
Cheers! The world’s largest toast took place in 2010 at Jingu Stadium in Tokyo. 27,126 people raised their glasses.
The largest station in the world, with over 3.5 million people using it per day. The station has over 200 exits – so take a map, and remember where you came in.
One of Japan’s most recognizable landmarks, Mount Fuji is ironically only visible from Tokyo for 79 days of the year on average.
Don’t stick your chopsticks upright in a bowl of rice - this is a tradition saved for funerals, and may be looked at strangely in other circumstances.
Selective Asia's Japan expert Tom tells Annie what it's like to live in Kanazawa, and how you can make the most of this historic Japanese city when you visit.
Whether you fancy the novelty of skiing in Asia or a cosy hot spring spa in a superb snowy landscape, a winter holiday in Japan will warm you up in style...
From a newly discovered ancient wonder to brand new culture, the Selective Asia team predicts the most interesting Asia travel trends for 2017...
15 Asian streetfoods & snacks to reproduce at home
10 trends for travel to Asia in 2017
The Selective Asia team are well seasoned travel experts who think of every detail. They have all the knowledge & experience you need to create your most memorable holidays.