Up to the 19th Century, Japan's islands were difficult for outsiders to reach, a fact which helped, in part, to shape the Japanese' attitude towards foreigners. Japan has now evolved into a nation with the world's third-largest economy, after achieving remarkable growth following the devastating effects of WWII. It’s home to the world's largest urban metropolis, multi-sensory entertainment and technology, ancient tradition and a deep rooted culture. In spite of all this, Japan's relationships with its neighbours are still fraught due to the legacy of its actions before and during WWII.
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Domesticating the Jigokudani snow monkeys

Jigokudani is famous for its large population of Japanese macaques, more commonly referred to as snow monkeys, that arrive in the valley during the winter. During the warmer months of the...

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Everything will be Oki

The Oki Islands are volcanic in origin, and are the exposed eroded summits of two massive stratovolcanoes dating approximately 500 million years ago to the Tertiary and Quaternary periods....

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Nara

The decline and eventual extinction of the wolf species continues to impact Japan’s landscape, as the authorities attempt to maintain the equilibrium of the forest animals, which is...

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In search of hidden Kyoto

From the north, east and west sides, Kyoto is surrounded by hills, leaving the city’s buildings to spill out in a southerly direction. One evening, a few hours before the arrival of the...

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Boxy cars of Japan

“Have a nice trip” – called out the bowing leaflet lady as I left the station. The cityscape, with its intimidatingly tall buildings, crazy people and car traffic, opened up before me....

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Why most Asians wear face masks?

The ironic thing in China, where people smoke in metro, push in crowds, spit and pee on the street, burp and fart in restaurants, is that from time to time you come across people with cloth...

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Map & Top 6

All places in Japan