Japan is one of the most unique and fascinating countries in the world. This island nation has a rich cultural history that still permeates everything they do. They are known to have respect for each other, elders in the community, and even for how well they maintain their streets and cities.
The food is something most people think about when Japan comes to mind. For the sushi lovers out there, visiting Japan is a delightful dream. In addition to food, Japan has an incredible range of activities for travelers, from cherry blossom festivals to sumo wrestling matches. Here are the essential things to do in Japan:
Eat the Street Food
It’s common for Japanese people to eat street food, and there are plenty of options for both locals and visitors. Street food is typically more affordable than eating at a restaurant, and it can be cheaper than fast-food chains like McDonald’s or Burger King, which you’ll also find in Japan. If you’re looking for something more authentic, you might want to try some yakitori, which is chicken on a stick from one of the many restaurants that specialize in them. You may also find yourself tempted by Takoyaki and even the best sushi.
Bring Home Japanese Snacks Like Mochi
People love snacks in Japan, especially mochi. If you have enough room in your suitcase, bring home one of the many different snack options you can find in supermarkets, convenience stores, and even street vendors. If you run out of space, there are always great companies that will ship you curated boxes of your favorite Japanese snacks.
Stay for the Cherry Blossom Festivals
Japan is known for its cherry blossom festivals, which take place all around the country. The most famous one is Tokyo’s Hanami Festival. It lasts for one or two weeks. Spring is when the cherry blossoms end up in full bloom and it’s throughout this time that there are demonstrations, vendors, and other religious activities for people to experience. During this time, you can see people picnicking under the trees and enjoying nature in a relaxed atmosphere. The festival dates vary depending on where you’re located and when the trees bloom in that region.
Climb Mt. Fuji
Climbing Japan’s highest mountain is a tradition for many people, and it’s no wonder why. The climb can be challenging, but it is also a privilege to experience this special place with its stunning views of the surrounding countryside. If you don’t want to tackle the whole mountain yourself, there are several routes from which you can choose.
Because climbing Mt. Fuji is so popular and attracts large crowds of people during peak season in July and August, it’s best to plan ahead and start early in the morning if possible—this will ensure that you have plenty of time to get up and down the mountain before the last bus leaves for the parking area.
Buy Things From Japanese Vending Machines
You wouldn’t think that vending machines are all that exciting, but in Japan, they’re everywhere. You can find them at train stations, in parks, and even on the street corners of Tokyo. The best thing about these machines is that they sell everything you could possibly want, including drinks, snacks, and even toys. There are even some stores that only sell items out of vending machines. It’s a fun experience, and something that’s unique to Japanese culture. They are a great way to get things that you need on the go without having to leave your hotel or nearby block.
Go Scuba Diving
Experience the coast in areas like Okinawa. Scuba diving is an adventure that’s a little off the beaten path but well worth the effort. This activity can be enjoyed by people of all ages, and it provides a unique way to explore ocean life up close. Diving is also an excellent way to see coral reefs, shipwrecks, and other underwater creatures that might otherwise remain unseen from above water. It gives you a new perspective and a beautiful look at the ecosystems that surround this beautiful island nation.
Before you go scuba diving in Japan, make sure your equipment is in good condition and that you’ve completed all necessary certifications. If possible, take along a certified instructor or dive buddy who has experience with this kind of activity; doing so will ensure that your experience is safe and rewarding. You can even splurge for an all-inclusive experience which includes scuba training and dives.
Watch a Sumo Wrestling Match
Sumo wrestling is a traditional Japanese sport. It’s also considered a national sport in Japan. Sumo wrestlers are known for their strength and endurance. You can watch sumo wrestling matches at tournaments or in the ring in Tokyo.