Japan

Things to do in Japan

It’s nearly impossible to run out of things to do in Japan. The country is bursting with activities, from the shopping, dining, cultural and nightlife activities in Tokyo, to the traditional shows and ceremonies in Kyoto, to the breathtakingly beautiful hikes along the coast and through the Alps.

Visitors wondering what to do in Japan should start with the country’s world-renowned dining scene. Japanese cuisine is fresh, local, and typically made from seasonal ingredients. Don’t leave the country without ordering ‘omakase’ at a sushi bar. The Japanese phrase means ‘I’ll leave it to you,’ and allows the chef to present diners with whatever dishes he or she sees fit, enabling the use of the freshest ingredients.

While Tokyo and Kyoto offer an astounding number of things to do in Japan, the activities don’t end with urban life. Nature-lovers wondering what to do in Japan need only travel a few minutes by car outside Kyoto’s borders to find themselves immersed in forested mountains, perfect for a day-long hike.

The museum was designed by Richard Gluckman and houses contemporary Japanese art. The shop is worth the 52-story elevator ride for the colorful textiles.

 From July through October, get up close to the just-hatched baby sea turtles in the breeding tank.

Both terminals have free observation decks, but the one attached to Terminal 1 offers the best views of the main runway. The spacious terrace is enclosed by netted fencing interrupted by several small windowesque openings for camera-wielding passengers.

Established in 1560, Aritsugu is famous the world over for its high-quality knives. This Tsukiji Market shop is a branch of the original 16th-century shop that is still located in the Nishiki Market in Kyoto.

France's top pasty provocatuer is a household name in Tokyo, with several boutiques and a swank marbled Bar Chocolat created by Wonderwall, the cutting-edge design firm behind Uniqlo stores.

The first Disney resort to be built outside the US, Tokyo Disney Resort receives more annual visitors than any of Disney's other international locations.

A whole store devoted to hoisery: that's Tabio, where shoppers can find anything to adorn the legs, from tights to socks to leg warmers to furry "boot covers" and "sockettes." Tabio fills a large, well-lit retail space with shelf after shelf of products for men and women, with a bent toward the c

The five-acre residential gardens of the late samurai film star Denjiro Okochi.

Jugetsudo Japanese tea house opened its doors in 2003 in the Tsukiji district of Tokyo, next to the parent company Maruyama Nori. There you can savor delicious green tea in an atmosphere of natural and harmonious Japanese decor.

Attending a Hanshin Tigers baseball game near Osaka, where the audience rivals Brazilian soccer fans and Bombay filmgoers in its sheer intensity and devotion: Tigers fans spend all nine innings going bonkers with organized chants, songs, and balloon-releases.

The Tokyo National Museum in Ueno Park is the largest repository of Japanese art and artifacts in the world, with collections spanning thousands of years and ranging from textiles and ceramics to armor, painting, sculpture, and calligraphy.

The Japanese fascination with patisseries is best expressed in the fruit tarts from Qu’il Fait Bon. These are works of art that must be admired before being cut into.