All About Japan

Thomas the Tank Engine Takes Japan

It may come as a bit of a surprise, but Thomas the Tank Engine is one of Japan's best-loved children's characters. In fact, the country boasts multiple theme parks and working trains dedicated to Thomas and his friends.

Ekiben: Symbols of Colorful Local Culture

There was a time in Japanese history when each domain acted practically as its own country. So it's hardly surprising that each area developed its own culture and customs, giving a distinctive flavor and flair to each region.

Beautiful Japanese Pottery

The seven most beautiful pottery cups from The Wonder 500™.

5 Tasty 'Omiyage' Worth Lining Up For

Orderly lines outside everything from chic coffee shops to blue-collar ramen shops are a common sight in Japan, and food-based specialty 'omiyage' (souvenir) stores are no different. But are these snacks really worth lining up for?

Cardcaptor Sakura Café Coming to Animate

A new Cardcaptor Sakura café gives fans a taste of dishes that overflow with Clow and Sakura power!

List: Japan's 12 Original-Construction Castles

While Japan is home to over 300 castles, there are only 12 that still retain their original castle keep. These 12 so-called 'original construction' castles are the cream of the crop.

Japan's 12 Best Keepless Castles

These castles may not have keeps, but many of them are much older than any of Japan's so-called "original construction" castles.

The Beauty of Bikan

Take a casual stroll around Bikan, the well-preserved historical quarter of Kurashiki.

Castles, Gardens & Peach Boys—Oh My!

From Okayama Castle's rare black walls to the charms of Okayama Korakuen Garden, one of the Three Great Gardens of Japan, there's plenty to see and do in Okayama.

Japan's Top 11 Reconstructed Castles

Like a phoenix rising from the flames, so too have these restored beauties come back to life to prosper again on our list of the best reconstructed castles across Japan.

47 Souvenirs from All 47 Prefectures!

Traveling around Japan but don't know what souvenir to buy from each region? We've got you covered with this crazy list of our Top 47 'omiyage' from each of the nation's 47 prefectures!

Japan's 3 Great Mountain Castles

Prior to the Warring States Period (1467-1590), most castles in Japan were 'yamajiro,' or mountain castles, and they were the pinnacle of defense for Japan's clashing warlords. Trek into the countryside to find out more about them!

The Ise-Shima G7 Summit Regions

10 cities around the country were selected to host ministerial meetings surrounding the 2016 G7 Summit in Ise-Shima. From education to IT and agriculture, each was selected for a very specific reason!

Kibitsu Shrine in Okayama

Kibitsu Shrine is a short drive from Okayama and Kurashiki Cities. The shrine is associated with the story of Momotaro, otherwise known as Peach Boy, who was said to have been born here.

See How Momotaro Jeans are Made

Momotaro Jeans' craftspeople have dedicated their lives to denim. See how they produce a pair of jeans, from start to finish.

Regional Station Souvenirs You Can't Miss!

Don't let these yummy station souvenirs pass you by on your next Shinkansen ride!

Deck Out Your Living Room with these 7 Items

Enjoy these wonderful items that will give your living room a Japanese feel.

3 Okayama Burgers Full of Local Flavor

Okayama is known for its blue jeans—and with such classic Americana on-hand, it's no wonder the prefecture is also home to some pretty classy burgers!

Kurashiki Bikan Historical Quarter

The immaculately preserved Kurashiki Bikan Historical Quarter is recognized as one of the most charming merchant’s quarters in all Japan. Located in Okayama Prefecture, local museums also feature masterpieces by El Greco, Monet and Picasso.

10 Ways to Deck Yourself Out in Okayama Denim

Okayama Prefecture is the heart of denim in Japan. Check out these 10 pieces from Okayama Denim that will have you set in some fine Japan-made threads, great for both denim newbies and real denim heads!

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