30 Things I Love About Japan

It’s my birthday today, so I’ve decided to write a very self-indulgent post featuring some of the things I love about Japan. I’ve picked 30 random topics off the top of my head, in no particular order – one for every candle on my virtual birthday cake. 😉

1. Takoyaki

Osaka’s favourite octopus balls!

Takoyaki, Osaka

2. Daibutsu

Big Buddha statues.

Large Buddha (Daibutsu)

3. Studio Ghibli

My Neighbour Totoro, Spirited Away, Kiki’s Delivery Service…

Ghibli Museum

4. Mochi

Squishy, soft, sweet…


5. Sakura

Beautiful cherry blossom and cherry blossom viewing parties.


6. Omamori

Lucky charms.

Omamori at Meiji Jingu

7. Hitsumabushi

Grilled eel on a bed of rice – a speciality of Nagoya.

Hitsumabushi at Shirakawa, Sakae, Nagoya

8. Rilakkuma

The most relaxed bear in Japan.

Birthday Rilakkuma

9. Hello Kitty

The one and only Kitty-chan!

Hello Kitty

10. Origami

The art of paper folding.

Leaving party, 2nd April 2011

11. Omiyage

Souvenirs – always designed so beautifully.

Hokkaido omiyage from Ishiya's Shiroi Koibito Park

12. Fuji-san

The symbol of Japan.


13. Matcha

Green tea – a good flavour for cakes, biscuits, ice cream…

Matcha latte

14. Harajuku girls

The unique fashions of Harajuku.

Harajuku & Yoyogi Park

15. Maiko/Geisha

Classic beauty.


16. Adzuki/Ogura

Squashed red beans never tasted better than when you spread them on toast.

Nagoya-style breakfast: ogura toast

17. Kimono

Simply beautiful.

Kimonos, Nara, 2nd January 2009

18. Kaitenzushi

Round and round the sushi goes…

Here comes the sushi

19. Crazy Kit Kats

Name a flavour and it’s probably been done…

ラムネ (Ramune) Kit Kat - it's blue, and it's fizzy!

20. Karaoke

Singing until the early hours with all your friends.


21. Jizo

Those slightly freaky little statues at temples and by the roadside.

Jizo at Zojyoji

22. Ema

Message boards at shrines and temples.


23. Izakaya

The place to hang out, chat, drink, eat, and drink some more…

Beer in Za-Watami (Izakaya)

24. Shrines

For Shinto.

Shimogamo Shrine

25. Temples

For Buddhism.


26. Rockabillies

Dancing rockers in Yoyogi Park.

Harajuku & Yoyogi Park

27. Taiko

The beating heart of Japan.


28. Haiku

Capturing moments in 5-7-5.


29. Matsuri

Japanese festivals – worth experiencing!

Fukagawa Hachiman Festival

30. J-Pop

Sickly sweet, utterly catchy, and a little bit mad.

There are so many more things I want to mention, and that’s without naming any places, people, specific festivals… There is just SO much to love about Japan! (*^_^)v

What do you love?

12 thoughts on “30 Things I Love About Japan

  1. Good list and nice pics, though I can’t say I share all your likes – not a big fan of Matcha or Taiko myself. Anyway I’m going to add your blog to my blog reel, it’d be great if you could add mine to yours. Happy 30th! I’ll be joining you in July.


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