Japan is one of the most visited countries in the world and many tourists wax lyrical when they share their travel experiences.

The landscape offers an interesting blend of beautiful nature, well kept religious shrines and temples, historical landmarks, modern cities and world heritage sites.

The influence of Japan’s fascinating cultures and unusual subcultures have such an international impact that foreigners flock here to experience sumo wrestling, traditional tea drinking ceremonies, anime comic art, samurai legends and more.

Japan is also known as the birthplace of sushi, aikido and calligraphy. A trip here would not be complete without experiencing the otherworldly music scene and diverse nightlife.

Banking and Currency


Local currency: Japanese Yen 
Symbol: ¥ 
ISO code: JPY 
Subunit: None 
Banknotes: ¥1,000, ¥2,000, ¥5,000, ¥10,000 
Coins: ¥1, ¥5, ¥10, ¥50, ¥100, ¥500 


Card Transactions: Yes 
ATMs: Yes 
Mastercard: Yes 
Visa: Yes 
American Express: Limited acceptance 
Diner’s club: Limited acceptance 

Banking Hours: 
Weekdays: 09:00 - 15:00 
Weekends: Limited hours 
Public Holidays: Yes (If yes, add hours) 
Foreign exchange services: Yes 

Travel, Transport and Getting Around

Main airlines: Japan Airlines (JAL), All Nippon Airways (ANA) 
International Airports: Narita International Airport (NRT) in Tokyo, Kansai International Airport (KIX) in Osaka 
Domestic Airports: Haneda Airport (HND) in Tokyo, Itami Airport (ITM) in Osaka 


Driving on the: Left 
Tar roads: Yes 
Gravel roads: Limited 
Valid International Driver's License needed: Yes 
Car hire available: Yes 
Taxis: Yes 
E-hailing services: Yes 

Inter-city bus services: Yes 
Local city bus networks: Yes 

Railway system: Yes 
Subway System: Yes 

Ferries: Yes 
Water taxis: Yes 
Leisure cruises: Yes 

Food, Drink and Cuisine Advice

Japanese cuisine involves fresh, delicate flavours based on seasonal ingredients. Rice, miso (fermented soy bean) soup, tofu (soy bean curd), pickled vegetables and fish are the traditional staples of daily Japanese cuisine.

Traditionally, meat was not eaten because of Buddhist beliefs. However, beef, chicken are now also staple ingredients. Fresh seafood is highly valued and Japanese will travel far to eat crab in winter, for example, and unagi (eel) in summer.

The variety of ingredients, the intensive preparation methods, and the meticulous presentation found in Japanese cuisine is highly impressive.

Sushi, pieces of raw fish on vinegared rice, has become synonymous with Japanese cuisine. The easiest place to try sushi is at a kaiten-zushi restaurant, where many varieties pass on a conveyor belt and diners can pick up what they fancy without any language difficulties, and at reasonable prices. More traditional sushi restaurants serve higher quality fish but also charge much higher prices.

The most luxurious dining in Japan is kaiseki cuisine – a multi-course banquet that was originally intended to accompany the tea ceremony.

Kaiseki cuisine is exquisitely presented, reflecting the aesthetics of the seasons and traditional ceramics. A typical banquet will begin with light appetisers and soups before progressing to various steamed, grilled and fried dishes, and ending with a simple rice dish.

A variety of international restaurants are also available, catering for every taste and budget, from French and Italian to Chinese, Indian and Thai. Western dishes in expensive places are usually excellent, but cheaper diner-style restaurants may disappoint. While sake (rice wine) is still regularly served, beer is by far the most popular alcoholic beverage.

Tips are never expected. In some upmarket places, a 10 to 15% service charge will be added to the bill. In some bars, there may be a table or "charm" charge too, which can be quite steep; it's best to enquire in advance if you're in any doubt.

Climate and Weather

Annual rainfall: Varies by region 

Average temperature: 10-25°C 

Average highs: 25-35°C 
Average lows: 20-25°C 

Average highs: 5-15°C 
Average lows: 0-10°C 

Best time to visit: The best time to visit Japan depends on your preferences. Spring (March to May) and Autumn (September to November) offer mild temperatures and beautiful cherry blossoms or fall foliage. 

Clothing and Dress Recommendations

Spring and Summer 
Cool, light, breathable and comfortable: Yes 
Lightweight warm clothes: No 

Winter and Autumn 
Jerseys, cardigans, sweaters, jackets: Recommended 
Heavyweight clothing and boots: No 

Umbrella and raincoat: Yes 
Warm gloves, hat and scarf: Yes (In Winter) 
Swimming costume (bathing suit): Yes (For hot springs) 
Hat, sunglasses and sunblock: Yes 
Walking shoes: Yes 
Casual: Yes 
Smart-casual attire: Yes 

Internet Availability

Internet cafes: Yes 
Accommodation options: Yes 
Restaurants: Yes 
Cafes: Yes 
Shopping malls: Yes 
Public parks: Yes 
Libraries: Yes 

Electricity and Plug Standards

Plug Type: Type A, Type B 
Voltage (V): 100 
Frequency Hertz (Hz): 50/60 

*Travel plug adapter and voltage converter might be necessary depending on your appliances. 

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