Writer: Patrick Jack

Aged 22 from Northern Ireland, I spent some time in Nagoya before moving to Tokyo. Currently working as an English teacher for a private company and traveling/ writing in my spare time. I'm most looking forward to (hopefully) climbing Mt Fuji in the summer.

Oshima: The Active Island

Home to an active volcano, stunning black sand beaches and a mystical volcanic ash field, Oshima is an unforgettable destination. Compared to the urban maze of people that is Tokyo, this island is almost alien in its indifference. Briefly known as 'Suicide Island' in the 1940s because of the high number of couples who took their lives by jumping into the volcanic crater below, Oshima has a strange reputation in popular culture.

PIXAR Exhibition Museum of Contemporary Art

The world-famous PIXAR Exhibition is in town and there's a little over one week left to go see it. Originating at the New York Museum of Modern Art in 2005 (to celebrate the 20th anniversary), this exhibit has toured the world since to rapturous reviews. Here in Tokyo it will mark PIXAR's 30th year and therefore features some never-before-seen pieces. Currently being held at the Museum of Contemporary Art (MOT) in Kita-ku, the legendary exhibit is in its final days here in Tokyo so go now before it's too late.

Tamagawa Daishi

Japan has its fair share of temples. In 2013, the Agency for Cultural Affairs had approximately 80,000 temples registered across the country and the same is true for shrines, with a similar number believed to be in operation. Amongst these 80,000 temples, there lurks a great number with hidden secrets and attractions. The best example of this is Tamagawa Daishi or the Gyokushin Mitsuin temple.

Honozumo Ceremonial Sumo Tournament – Yasukuni Shrine

Sumo is a very different affair. With an elite number of wrestlers, Sumo has long been a closed sport, accepting only limited foreign entrants and has minimal outside interference. Traditionally, the only opportunity to see this ancient sport in action is at a 'Grand Tournament'. However, these grand tournaments are held only once every two months, alternating between the Ryogoku Kokugikan in Tokyo and another venue elsewhere in Japan.

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