Japan is a truly exotic country where the highest modern technology meets a traditional past.
From beautiful cherry blossoms in the spring to world-leading ski parks in the winter, Japan has a unique experience at every turn.
The locals are helpful, the facilities spotless and the public transport is one of the world’s best, which means getting around is a breeze. Japan is an island nation. The nearest neighbouring countries are China, North Korea, South Korea and Russia. Japan is 9 hours ahead of Universal Coordinated Time (UTC+9), so the country is 13 hours ahead of Toronto or 16 hours ahead of Vancouver.
The Japanese are well known for their traditions. Being polite and showing respect is very important to their culture. Bowing in greeting is one sign of respect, as are these common gestures:
- Shoes are taken off to enter many buildings and homes, so wear shoes that you can slip on and off easily without using your hands.
- When you are handing something to someone do so with both hands as this is considered the polite way.
- Never leave your chopsticks standing upright in a bowl of rice as that is how rice is offered to the dead.
Best time to visit
Spring is the best time to visit Japan for the cherry blossoms and the warm, dry temperatures.
Japan experiences four seasons a year, however, the temperature can vary in each city. These temperatures are based on the Tokyo average:
Renting a car is one of the best ways to see Canada, but in the big cities you can find plenty of taxis, buses and trains. However, some buses and trains are commuter-focused and may not run late at night or on weekends. Another option for travelling between cities is the extensive network of domestic flights.
- World’s largest strawberry at 250g.
- World’s largest comic strip at 3785.35m2 by Adidas Japan and depicted each player from the football world cup team in 2010.
- The greatest distance ever covered by an electric vehicle, single charge (non-solar) was 1,300km in 2013.
The national icons are Mount Fuji, Cherry Blossoms and Red-Crowned Crane.
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