To know about Japan

Prepare for your trip and learn everything there is to know about Japan before the big departure!

Prepare for your trip thanks to the "Before You Go", "Travelling to Japan" and "A Bit of Vocabulary" sections. Set off on a culinary adventure with "Get Your Chopsticks Out" or deepen your knowledge of Japan with the film "Understanding Japan". You can also look through sections about history and classical literature.

 

Before you travel

Japan Area Code: Everything You Need to Know About Calling Japan

Japan is a crucial destination for both business and tourism, attracting visitors from all over the world.

US phone charger on a dark background

Understanding Electricity and Voltage in Japan for Travelers

Traveling to Japan is an exciting adventure, but it requires some practical preparation to ensure a smooth trip.

Cherry Blossom in Tokyo

When to visit Japan to see the cherry blossoms?

The ever-popular blossoming of cherry flowers, Sakura, is a national event in Japan. However, the transience of flowers and unpredictability of the nature make forecasting difficult.

Homme avec son sac à dos devant un temple japonais

Things to take to Japan

For a short journey or for a long vacation, prepare your bag properly to have a successful trip! 

Here is a list of the essentials to have in your bag in Japan.

 

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Traveling to japan

The sika deer : A fascinating species native to East Asia

The sika deer (Cervus nippon) is a captivating species native to much of East Asia, including Japan, Taiwan, eastern China, Korea, and parts of Russia.

Where to admire the cherry blossoms in spring

Japan is renowned for its distinct and beautiful seasons. One of the most eagerly awaited is undoubtedly spring, with the blossoming of the sakura cherry trees.

ryokan onsen

Onsen: a short guide to proper etiquette

Onsen (hot springs) and sento (public baths) are great places to relax. They are distinct communal areas with very precise rules of good conduct and etiquette.

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The Japanese Serow: Japan's Emblematic Forest-Dwelling Goat-Antelope

The Japanese serow (Capricornis crispus) is an even-toed ungulate mammal endemic to Japan.

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Understanding Japan

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Senbazuru: The Japanese art of folding 1,000 origami cranes

Senbazuru, which translates to "1,000 cranes" in Japanese, is a longstanding tradition of folding one thousand origami paper cranes.

Genkan: the traditional Japanese entryway

The genkan is a distinctive and important feature of Japanese homes and buildings, serving as a transitional space between the exterior and interior.

Japanese symbols - Exploring the fascinating world of Hiragana, Katakana, and Kanji

The Japanese language uses a complex writing system comprised of three main types of symbols: hiragana, katakana, and kanji.

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Komainu: The Fierce Guardians of Japan's Sacred Shrines and Temples

Visitors to Japan's numerous Shinto shrines and Buddhist temples are often greeted by a pair of imposing lion-like statues flanking the entrance.

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Japanese History

Toyotomi Hideyoshi: The Unifier of Japan

Toyotomi Hideyoshi, born to a humble peasant family in 1537 CE, rose through the ranks to become one of Japan's most powerful and influential figures.

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The Nara Period: A Brief but Influential Era in Early Japanese History

The Nara period (710-794 CE) was a short but significant era in early Japanese history, following the Asuka period.

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William Adams: The First Englishman to Reach Japan and Become a Samurai

Read a biography of William Adams, the English seafarer and samurai of the Edo Period. Adams became an adviser to shogun Ieyasu Tokugawa.

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Tokugawa Ieyasu - The unifier of Japan

Read a biography of Tokugawa Ieyasu, who became shogun in 1600 and established the Tokugawa shogunate that was to rule Japan for over 250 years.

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Japanese Food and Drink

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Food in Japanese: Exploring the Rich and Diverse Culinary Landscape of Japan

Japan boasts a rich and diverse culinary scene deeply rooted in history and culture. Understanding Japanese food terms is key to appreciating the nuances of the cuisine.

Original melon pan at Kagetsudo

Street food in Asakusa: Indulge in culture and cuisine

One of the most iconic locations in Eastern Tokyo is Asakusa, largely cited as the main hub of Tokyo’s “Shitamachi.” Shitamachi refers to one of the two major historic districts of Tokyo, and the n

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Kirin beer: a premium Japanese lager crafted with precision and tradition

Kirin Brewery Company, one of Japan's oldest and most renowned breweries, has a rich history dating back to 1885.

Kanazawa, Japan

The Food Specialties to try in the Japanese Alps

Within the literal heart of Japan exist a series of mountain ranges that bisect the main island of Honshu.

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Books on Japan

Jean Freund, the author behind the Travel Book : Le Bon Voyage Japan

From the Japanese megalopolis to the vineyards of Alsace, the Chinese countryside and the Mongolian steppes, Jean Freund fills his Moleskine notebooks with his stories. He likes to tak

Shelves full of manga, the Mandarake is a paradise for lovers of manga in Tokyo.

Easy-to-read manga for Japanese beginners

Have you been studying Japanese at evening classes? Have you installed apps to test your hiragana and kanji on your commute? Do you have a notebook with lines of words written fiercely?

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The different kinds of manga

True phenomenon of pop culture, manga have been able to make a place for themselves on the Japanese national scene, but also internationally.

Les Japonais de Raphaël Languillon-Aussel

The Japanese, by Raphael Languillon-Aussel

In this book, you will discover personalities far removed from the image that we often have of Japan and its people, for fascinating testimonies and a certain authenticity...

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Japanese Movies

My Neighbor Totoro

Travel in the footsteps of My Neighbor Totoro

Many places in Japan have been an inspiration to Hayao Miyazaki's movie "My Neighbor Totoro". From Mei and Satsuki's house, the two heroes of the film, to the forest of Sayama Hills.

Studio Ghibli

Studio Ghibli

Studio Ghibli is a Japanese animation film studio.

Takeshi Kitano

Takeshi Kitano

The modern Japanese actor best known abroad, Takeshi Kitano, with his face half paralyzed by a motorcycle accident, starred in several successful yakuza films, such as Hana-bi or the famous movie Z

La célèbre photo de la bataille

The Battle of Iwo Jima in featured films

Three featured films were based on the battle of Iwo Hima, including two by Clint Eastwood, in which the narrations are made in English and Japanese.

 

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Japanese Language

Meanings and uses of the Japanese phrase "so desu ne"

Desu ne meaning: Understanding the versatile Japanese phrase

The Japanese phrase "desu ne" is commonly encountered by learners of the language, but its various meanings and uses can be confusing at first.

Famille japonaise

Japanese surnames

In Japan, there are more than 100 000 different family names! This is much more than in China and Korea, even though they are Japan's neighbors.

Interior of a Japanese train with the driver

The words to know to take the train in Japan

As an essential means of transport, the train will take you to the four corners of Japan safely, quickly, and punctually... as long as you choose your route carefully.

Le hiragana "a" dérive du kanji 安 (an) qui signifie "paix"

Hiragana and Katakana : How to learn Japanese ?

Taught to Japanese students in their first year of school from the age of six, hiragana and katakana are the essentials prerequisites for learning the Japanese language.

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