Japan loves all things kawaii, it’s deeply ingrained in all aspects of modern day living. But what is kawaii? And where did it come from? Read on to discover why kawaii is so much more than just a word.
A Shop of Different World Views – Irregular Rhythm Asylum and the Heartbeat of Japanese Counterculture
The moment you venture into the infoshop, be prepared to gaze upon reams of posters, books, “zines,” t-shirts, and other goods that favor countercultural ideas. From anarchist thinkers such as Mikhail Bakunin to early Japanese nonconformists like Noe Ito and Kotoku Shusui, you’ll find something to sink your political teeth into without much trouble.
Massively popular toy dispensing capsule machines known as “Gachapon” can be found all around Japan. Named onomatopoeically “gacha” represents the sound that the machine makes when you put a coin in and twist the handle, and “pon” represents the noise of a little plastic ball falling out.
Manga Souko is a chain of second hand stores found throughout Japan. Touted as a “recycle store”, they buy and sell games, DVDs, manga, books, clothing, furniture, toys, decor, textiles, musical instruments, leisure equipment, electronics, and collectibles. With stores located in the Chubu, Kinki, Chugoku, Shikoku, Kyushu and Okinawa regions, you aren’t too far away from experiencing one of these magical places.
A central town in Hokkaido known for its picturesque landscape, Furano holds one novel treasure: Ningle Terrace, a group of 15 cottages hidden in the woods next to one of Furano’s most popular resorts, New Furano Prince Hotel.
If you have been living in Japan or traveling the country, you are very familiar with the 100 yen stores called Daiso. You can get anything here. It is a paradise of abundance. But maybe you have found yourself frustrated with the number of times you had to run back here because the purchased item repeatedly broke.
There is no shortage of exciting stores here. I was surprised by how aesthetically pleasing the mall is, and by how spacious it is! It is well worth visiting!
Odaiba, located on the edge of Tokyo Bay, has plenty of great places for fun photos, spots that will make you think you're no longer in Japan.
If you travel to countries hoping to experience another culture, Japan is still rich with it and Nara is the perfect place surrounded by culture and history. It is many things at once: traditional, natural, delightful, heartfelt, and all around wonderful. Come to Nara and be amazed. I honestly could name 100 things in Nara that would make for an amazing trip, but I have narrowed it down to the top 15 spots that you will not find even in most guidebooks.