Yuzawa is located in Japan's Niigata Prefecture and is one of the largest and the most accessible ski areas near Tokyo and Kyoto. From Tokyo's main train station, it only takes 45 minutes by bullet train to the quaint village of Yuzawa.
Tokyo is a leader in fashion, tech, and popular culture as well, so for forward thinkers will find a dizzying array of entertainment options here as well. From anime to the latest in engineering and robotics, Tokyo is present on the front edge of almost every aspect of humanity’s progress.
Located in Japan's mountainous prefecture Gifu (similar to a state), Takayama is a quaint, thatched-roof village that was named a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1992. Close to both Tokyo and Kyoto, and therefore easily accessible, it is the gateway to the Japanese Alps, and many people use it as a final stop before going on a ski holiday in the mountains.
The Shirakawa-go region lines the Shogawa River Valley in the remote mountains that span from Gifu to Toyama Prefectures. Declared a UNESCO world heritage site in 1995, the area is famous for its traditional gassho-zukuri farmhouses, some of which are more than 250 years old.
Foodie Alert! Osaka is known as “The Nation’s Kitchen,” not only for the quality of its local cuisine, ingredients, and culture of eating and drinking, but also for the incredible variety of international food that can be found in this major port.
When you picture Japan, soft sandy beaches and sparkling azure waters is not usually what comes to mind. However, Okinawa is just that -- a true island paradise.
Winding through timeless roads, past ancient shrines and ruins, in Nara you will find fragments of a time that is distant, but not forgotten. More than twelve hundred years ago, Nara was the capital of ancient Imperial Japan. Now it is a celebrated piece of Japan’s feudal history.
Naoshima (直島) is an island in the Seto Inland Sea that is known for its modern art museums, architecture and sculptures. Part of Kagawa Prefecture, the island with its Mediterranean atmosphere, sandy beaches and sunny weather, combined with a laid back, rural feel is a relaxing getaway from Japan's large urban areas such as Tokyo and Osaka.
Matsumoto is the second largest city in Nagano Prefecture. It is most famous for Matsumotojo, one of Japan's most beautiful original castles. The city is also a gateway to the Japanese Alps for skiing and hot springs in the winter and hiking and walking in the mountains of Shinshu in the summer.
While the Thousand-Year Capital, Kyoto, may no longer be the capital of Japan, it is still a vibrant, beating lifeline to the country’s storied past. Situated in the Yamashiro Basin, a beautiful valley surrounded by tall mountains on three sides, the charming city itself was originally arranged according to Chinese feng shui.
The array of cultural attractions in Kanazawa (金沢) make the city the drawcard of the Hokuriku region and a rival to Kyoto as the historical jewel of mainland Japan. Best known for Kenroku-en, a castle garden dating from the 17th century, it also boasts beautifully preserved samurai and geisha districts, attractive temples, a wealth of museums and a wonderful market.
Leave the hustle and bustle of the city behind for a quiet stroll through lands seemingly untouched by time. Listen to the wind as it dances through ancient forests - nestled into the foothills of its namesake mountain, Hakone is whispering your name.
Cozied up in the hills behind Mount Rokko, Arima "onsen", or hot springs, are one of Kobe's most treasured destinations. Boasting pristine natural surroundings, a tranquil atmosphere, and historical value, a relaxing trip to Arima Onsen is the perfect getaway.