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Japan - Ancient and Modern

World  (tags: Japan, people, places, travel )

- 1508 days ago -
A spectacular country to visit with exciting adventures is traveling to Japan. Fine artisans are all throughout the country exhibiting their paintings, sculptures, origami, woodworking and so much more.

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Kit B (276)
Saturday April 5, 2014, 9:13 am
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A spectacular country to visit with exciting adventures is traveling to Japan. Fine artisans are all throughout the country exhibiting their paintings, sculptures, origami, woodworking and so much more. A traditional Japanese event such as tea ceremonies and music is available throughout the country. 5 things you might not know about Japan are listed below.

---5 Facts You Might Not Know

1) The Cherry Blossom Festival or Hanami is a phenomenal event in Japan held in the springtime. Hanami means the viewing of flowers or the stunning cherry blossoms. This festival takes place all over Japan from March to May. These gorgeous flowers are a main attraction along with Japanese tea ceremonies and performing arts.

2) Just outside of Tokyo lays Mount Fuji, the highest mountain in the country. This sacred mountain is a dormant volcano and has not erupted since 1708. In the summer peak months of July and August is the best time to climb Mount Fuji as the grounds usually are free of snow and the weather is mild. Hiking to climb the massive mountain takes stamina and is divided into ten stations to rest at. Once on top of the mountain, the clouds will be below you. This is a tremendous adventure and journey unlike any other in the world.

3) Bathing in the hot springs of Japan are the snow monkeys also called Macaque. Jigokudani Yaen Koen or hell Valley Wild Monkey Park is an invigorating way to spend time watching the monkeys in the springs. Native to northern Japan, the snow monkey live in temperatures below 15 degrees and flourish in the forest and feed on buds, fruit and berries. Their furs are brown and gray with red hands, face and bottom and have humanistic traits.

4) While in Japan endure a delightful treat of eating mouth watering sushi. Varieties of raw and cooked seafood rolled in seaweed on a bed of rice. There are many different ways and types of sushi and a delicacy to eat.

5) In the country of Japan, the sun rises first over the country of Japan over all other countries each and everyday. The rising sun emblem is on many different things from kimonos to boats.


The Japanese names, Nihon and Nippon, are alternative readings of written characters that mean "origin of the sun" ("Land of the Rising Sun").

Location and Geography.
The Japanese archipelago consists of four major islands and over six-thousand minor ones, covering approximately 234,890 square miles (378,000 square kilometers), and has enormous climatic variation. The four major islands are Hokkaidō, Honshū, Shikoku, and Kyūshū. The southern island group of Okinawa (the Ryūkyū Islands) is geographically, historically, and culturally distinct.

Emergence of the Nation.
The peoples of the Jōmon period (8000 B.C.E. –300 B.C.E. ) were Neolithic hunting-and-gathering bands. During the Yayoi period (ca. 300 B.C.E. – ca. 300 C.E. ) extensive cultural contact with and migration from the Asian mainland occurred, and a society arose that was based on irrigated rice cultivation. The basic genetic stock of the population and the fundamental patterns of the language were established during that period.

Japan came to the attention of China in the fourth century. During the Yamato period (300 C.E. –552 C.E. ), small chieftainships coalesced into a rudimentary state-level society. The mythologies of the indigenous Japanese religion, Shintō, date from that period; they intertwine accounts of the divine origins of the islands with chronicles of struggles among gods whose descendants eventually came to be regarded as the imperial family, which claims an unbroken line of descent since this period.

In 552, emissaries from the Korean kingdom of Paekche established contact with the Yamato rulers. They introduced Buddhism and thus brought Japan into systematic contact with Chinese civilization. Almost every aspect of Japanese life—agricultural technology, written language, philosophy, architecture, poetry, medicine, and law—was transformed. The Yamato state adopted the conventions of the Chinese imperial court and tried to model society along the lines of Chinese civilization.

In the late eighth century, a new capital was established at what is now Kyōto, and during the Heian period (794–1185) Japanese classical civilization blossomed. Kyōto became the aristocratic center of a refined culture that was influenced by contact with China but developed independent and sophisticated aesthetic, literary, and artistic styles. The Tale of Genji, the world's first novel, epitomizes the culture of the Heian period.

Food in Daily Life. An extremely varied diet makes use of culinary elements from around the world, including the cuisines of Korea, China, South and Southeast Asia, Europe, and North America. However, notions of "traditional" Japanese cuisine are an important element of cultural identity.

The defining characteristics include ingredients, styles of preparation, and aesthetics. White rice is a staple component of virtually every meal; other typical ingredients include soy products and seafood that is served grilled or raw. Vegetables and seafood are often prepared as pickles. The cuisine does not rely on intense flavorings. Meals ideally contrast flavors and textures among different dishes and include many small dishes rather than a main course. The visual presentation of a meal is important.

During the premodern period, meat was proscribed under the tenets of Buddhism. Vegetarian cuisine prepared in Zen monasteries relied heavily on soy products, including miso soup and tofu.

Since the late nineteenth century, tastes have been influenced by foreign cuisines, many of which have been adapted and absorbed into the national diet. Since World War II, consumption of dairy products, beef, bread, and other Western foods has increased dramatically.

Eating habits have been reshaped by changes in domestic life. Families eat fewer meals together, and sophisticated kitchen appliances have transformed domestic cooking. Food manufactures have created vast numbers of prepared dishes.

Basic Economy. The cornerstone of the economy is high-quality, high-technology manufacturing, with a focus on exports.

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. (0)
Saturday April 5, 2014, 10:09 am
Kyoto is still my favorite part of Japan. Y'all can keep Tokyo.

Past Member (0)
Saturday April 5, 2014, 10:32 am
Haven't visited yet but I am planing to, thank you Kit:))

Nicole W (646)
Saturday April 5, 2014, 10:48 am
love the inexpensive way to travel, thank you dear Kit

Cher C (1429)
Saturday April 5, 2014, 11:15 am

Thnx sweetie!

I am going to share this with my daughter, it is her dream to go to Japan one day!


Barbara K (60)
Saturday April 5, 2014, 12:29 pm
Wow, thanks, Kit, fantastic vacation, okay add it to my someday list. lol

. (0)
Saturday April 5, 2014, 12:55 pm
As much as I have a huge problem with their whaling industry, Japan has always been a country I want to visit. On the other hand, this video confirms my hesitation in what areas I would not care to see. Apparantly,Tokyo is nothing but a neon horror.
I want to see the ancient Japan; the countryside, the beauty of its parks....someday.

Pat B (356)
Saturday April 5, 2014, 2:00 pm
What a beautiful country. Two family members went to both Yokosuka, and Sasebo, and loved it. Thanks, Kit for this great trip.!!

Jonathan Harper (0)
Saturday April 5, 2014, 2:46 pm

Vallee R (280)
Saturday April 5, 2014, 3:07 pm
Another fabulous trip- thanks Kit!

JL A (281)
Saturday April 5, 2014, 3:25 pm
Amazing how clean and no trash anywhere. Loved the deer. If I go, I want to see how all the furniture is fastened to buildings, etc. with their worker safety approach to earthquakes.

Angelika R (143)
Saturday April 5, 2014, 3:25 pm
a funny video, from and for a tourists perspective. Loved that deer!! :) Thx.
I once learned some kanji and hiragana and could write a few sentences, but all forgotten now. And I loved sushi, well, at least the fishy ones are off the list now but there are also delicious veggie sushi.

I have tons of pics and slideshows showing Japanese life and sceneries from a former chat pal in Osaka who sadly died a few years ago. A camera maniac, he used to make day trips several times a week and return with films full of impressions that really offered a great look into the country including the historic places. Agree with Michael, Kyodo is the real pearl.

Marija M (29)
Sunday April 6, 2014, 12:16 am
tks Kit

Athena F (131)
Sunday April 6, 2014, 4:59 am
thank you

Cynthia Davis (340)
Sunday April 6, 2014, 7:57 am
TY Kit

kate K (481)
Sunday April 6, 2014, 11:31 am
Ty Kit :-)

Nancy C (806)
Wednesday April 9, 2014, 6:11 pm
The outskirts of Tokyo such as Akasaka are quiet. Lived there and taught dance for a year for Koma Theater. Had 2000 students registered and truly enjoyed teaching them and choreographing for them. In 1981-82 we had no computers or cell phones and phone calls were very expensive! Got homesick too quickly as they wished me to stay on!!!
Walking everywhere in the town, there was even a kitty park where folks would leave food and water and the cats roamed freely! Took a week long bus tour which was amazing. Saw Mt Fuj, Pearl (diving) Island, Kyoto in cherry blossom splendor, Imperial Palace, Lake Hakone, and The Golden Pavilion. Stayed at the Toba International Hotel and the Miyako Inn. I was so happy to have my sister visit for the vacation time and tour!
One of my favorite memories were quiet dinners near my apartment with the small restaurant owner telling of his many friendly encounters with General Patton.

Craig Pittman (52)
Monday April 14, 2014, 4:36 am
Thanks for the trip Kit. Sadly my time there was all spent in Tokyo. It is such a diverse country, so much to see and experience.
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