The Land of the Rising Sun, Japan. A magical country packed to the brim with history and culture, a mix of old and new, boasting numerous breathtaking natural attractions, and known to be the birth place of ramen and sumo wrestling, Japan is one of the most visited destinations on earth, and we totally see why! It offers so much to do and see, for every type of traveler, so we guarantee that you’ll be planning your next trip there, before you even leave it the first time. In addition to all that, the country has been making an effort to attract more Muslim tourists, which means that finding Muslim-friendly facilities like mosques and Halal food in Japan is becoming increasingly easier.
Here’s our list of reasons why Japan should be on your bucket list for 2018!
Photo credit - maxpixel.com
Would you believe us if we told you that the people in Japan are known to be some of the friendliest in the world? They will go out of their way to help you out when needed, even if not all of them can speak English. Because of this, traveling alone is not as scary as you may think, and it's actually quite safe.
If you’re in Japan, and exploring its natural landscapes is not on your itinerary, you’ve robbed yourself of truly experiencing the best of what the country has to offer. From lush forests and thundering waterfalls, to looming mountains, stunning coasts and picture-perfect rice terraces, Mother Nature is a large part of what makes Japan such an incredible destination.
Tourists come from all around the world to see Mount Fuji, an active volcano that is also the tallest mountain in Japan and its most iconic attraction. We strongly believe that unless you see it in person, you won’t be able to experience the magic that it radiates. In addition to Mount Fuji, a few other must-see natural attractions in Japan include Fuji Five Lakes, Shiraito Falls, Nachi Falls, Hoshitoge Rice Terraces, and Mount Yari.
While we could have easily included this above, we strongly feel that the cherry blossoms, or Sakura, deserve an entry of their own! Spring is one of the most popular seasons for tourists to visit Japan, because this is when the beautiful Sakura are in bloom in destinations across the country - from Kyoto to Tokyo to Nara, and even the base of Mount Fuji! These delicate pink flowers are only in full bloom for a few weeks, and are thus a source of national pride. Try to catch the Hanami or the ‘cherry blossom festival’ – Japan’s tradition of welcoming spring, while there!
Where do we even start? Japanese food is so uniquely delicious, just thinking about it makes us drool! Also, what better way to truly learn about Japan than to eat your way through it! You may be familiar with popular Japanese dishes like sushi and ramen, but in Japan, everything tastes better, with a unique twist, so await a culinary adventure of a lifetime!
With the country becoming more Muslim-friendly, finding Halal food in Japan is actually possible! You won’t find them all that easily, but Halal restaurants in Japan have been popping up here and there. So if you’re in Japan and craving something truly authentic, look up the nearest Halal restaurant to you on the HalalTrip Mobile App.
Picture Credit - www.tokyotimes.com
Japan is home to some of the most unusual hotels in the world. Becoming increasingly popular amongst tourists, capsule hotels are popping up all over the country. Have you ever slept in a pod? Well, in Japan, you can! The whole capsule concept may not be appealing to a lot of people, but believe it or not, posh pods have actually become a thing. These hotels are no longer known to attract the wrong crowd, but instead are being frequented by foreigners seeking unique yet affordable sleeping arrangements.
Picture Credit - Laika ac, flickr.com
The Japanese are all for all things cutesy, so fun-themed cafés are found throughout the country. From a Hello Kitty themed café - Cafe de Miki with Hello Kitty -, the Peter Rabbit Garden Café and a Shirokuma Café, to a Snoopy themed one - Peanuts Cafe at Naka-Meguro, and even those based on anime, Japan has it all!
Found all over Japan, in the great outdoors as well as at spas, onsens that have become an intrinsic part of Japanese culture. What better way to relax those aching muscles after a tiring day of sightseeing, than at a hot spring, am I right?! If you’re lucky, you may even have the chance to experience it with some monkeys!
Here’s your chance to immerse yourself in and to soak up Japan’s rich and complex history. Japan’s majestic castles are a true reflection of the country’s past. Himeji Castle, Matsumoto Castle and Osaka Castle are just a few of the numerous castles in Japan. Whether you’re a history buff looking to learn all about them, or just a tourist on a mission to take the perfect selfie with one, you will be more than satisfied with what the ancient beauties that Japan has to offer!
The high speed bullet train is one of the most unique experiences Japan has to offer. A visit to Japan is therefore most definitely incomplete without a ride on the fast Shinkansen!
Have we sold you on Japan being one of the best places to travel in the world yet? ;) In addition to the 9 reasons above, you will also be able to find Mosques and prayer places in Japan. So not only is it just a fun destination for everyone, it is also becoming a country that Muslims can explore without having to worry about compromising their religious beliefs!
Hishama is a Lankan born, ex-Dubai-an who enjoys all things travel. When she's not at her day job as an Online Marketing Specialist, you will find her hanging out with friends at one of the city's newest cafés, reading a Jodi Picoult novel, Netflix-ing pretty much anything, obsessing over broadway, or just dreaming of her next big adventure abroad that she wishes she could afford.