Shimokitazawa, Tokyo

When someone talks about youth culture in Tokyo or even Japan in general, Shibuya is probably the most common example raised. Shibuya is known for being glitzy with giant shopping malls as Shibuya 109 and it’s giant … [Read more...]


Yanaka, Tokyo

Tokyo has a reputation as a city that’s all about speed and newness. Everyone’s in a hurry, buildings are constantly being torn down and rebuilt, and in most of the city, nothing’s older than the last World War. But … [Read more...]



Some of you may have heard of the three great sceneries of Japan. Miyajima, with its floating torii, is certainly the most famous of these. Matsushima is so-so famous though it was hit badly by the 2011 earthquake and … [Read more...]


Omotesando Koffee

Most people think of the Omotesando district of Tokyo as kind of upscale and focused on fashion. That's why I was surprised to run into Omotesando Koffee (coffee) in a back street inside an old house. From the outside, it … [Read more...]


Hanayashiki Amusement Park

It’s claimed that 30 million tourists a year visit Senso-ji Temple in Asakusa. When you’re trying to squeeze through the Nakamise shopping street leading to the temple on a busy weekend, it’s easy to believe they’re all … [Read more...]


Goat Cafe Sakuraoka

Everyone has different priorities on a trip to Japan. Me – I'm all about the weird animal stuff. One time, I made a special excursion to Mie prefecture just to see a dugong in an aquarium, and the top attraction on my list … [Read more...]


Japan’s Epic History Of Discrimination Against The Mustache

If you ever go to Japan, you’ll come to realize that almost all men, especially salarymen, don’t have mustaches (or facial hair for that matter). Although shaving your mustache can sometimes cause trouble (watch Koichi’s … [Read more...]


Rendaku aka “Sequential Voicing”

If you've studied Japanese for at least a little while, you've probably run across a phenomenon known as rendaku. Rendaku means "sequential voicing" and it's when the reading of a word changes when coupling multiple parts … [Read more...]


Namba Aruki

In this guide I'm going to show you how to learn and practice Namba Aruki, a walking style from the Edo period (1603-1868) that is said to be more efficient than how you walk right now. Sure, you'll look like an idiot … [Read more...]