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24/05/2019 Visit: Parks & Nature

Through the Ages: The Greenhouse of Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden

If you are planning an extended trip to Tokyo, chances are that at least one of your days will be rained out. Don’t let that stop you from emerging from your hotel and enjoying the city.

In addition to Tokyo’s countless museums, there’s one more perfect place to escape gloomy weather: The Shinjuku Gyoen Greenhouse. Best of all, it won’t cost you a dime (or a yen) to visit (beyond the 500-yen fee to enter Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden).

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17/05/2019 Visit: Museums

Does teamLab Borderless Deserve a Spot on Your Tokyo Travel Itinerary?

With countless articles and videos covering the world-famous teamLab Borderless digital art museum, I was hesitant to add yet another write-up to the collection. However, after experiencing this fascinating, interactive presentation of light and sound, I set out to answer a single question: Is teamLab Borderless, an immensely popular yet equally time-consuming affair, worth a spot on your travel itinerary? The quick answer is yes. However, there’s one major caveat. Read on to learn how you should approach this unforgettable experience.

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13/05/2019 Food & Drinks  Life and Manners in Japan

Clearing Up Common Misconceptions about Japanese Food: A Tadaima Japan Roundtable Discussion

Our readers often ask us to provide more personal and diverse perspectives and stories about traveling and living in Japan. One of the ways that we’ve decided to address this is to launch a new series of articles: roundtable discussions addressing common misconceptions about Japan.

Each roundtable will cover a different topic and capture a spontaneous, free-flowing conversation among Tadaima Japan authors and staff. For our inaugural article on Japanese food, I’m joined by fellow writers Amelie and David. Representing the U.S., France, and Belgium, we have a combined experience of nearly 30 years living and working in Japan, and look forward to sharing our perspectives with you through this new series of articles.

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26/03/2015 Life and Manners in Japan  Traditions & History

The greetings used before and after meals, “Itadakimasu” and “Gochisosama”

Greeting during meals Before eating meals, Japanese people join their hands in front of their chest and greet by saying, “Itadakimasu”. After finishing a meal, the body form is the same, but the greeting is “Gochisosama”. Similarly, when praying to a god or an ancestor, Japanese people also hold their hands this way to show respect and to join their own mind and body. Some people don’t join their hands and only speak the greetings. Japanese people naturally say these greetings as part of day-to-day manners. What does “itadakimasu” mean? “Itadakimasu” is the polite form of “itadaku”,  which is a word to indicate modesty for taking and eating. Its origin comes […]

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19/02/2015 Visit: Parks & Nature

【BEST VIEW】Mt. Fuji and the Ocean as viewed from Azumayama Park, near Hakone

A great stop on your way to Hakone If you are visiting Japan in February and planning to go to Hakone, make sure to stop by Azumayama Park. Canola flowers will be in full bloom, offering a relaxing spot on your way, as well as a great photo opportunity! You can enjoy Japanese nature through the year, and the place is also great for cherry blossoms. The park is located in the upland, so you can get a 360-degree view of the mountains of Hakone, Mt. Fuji, and the Pacific Ocean. If you can, visit the park on weekdays as weekends tend to be crowded with families. The park is […]

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07/05/2019 Visit: Parks & Nature

5 Adventurous Activities to Enjoy on Hachijojima, the “Hawaii of Japan”

A visit to Hachijojima, an island nearly 300 kilometers south of Tokyo, is the perfect weekend getaway. It’s far enough from the big city to truly escape into nature yet close enough to be thoroughly enjoyed over a three-day weekend. In this article, I’ll explain how to reach the island, introduce the top five activities to do there, and share a sample itinerary.

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26/04/2019 Travel Tips

5 Tokyo Limited Express Trains for Going Off the Beaten Track

If you have been to all the sights outlined in the previous article on Limited Express trains running from Tokyo, then this article is for you. Here are 5 more Limited Express trains leaving from the capital and taking you to the four corners of the Tokyo area. Nature, shrines, hot springs, historical sights, Japanese gardens, flower fields, hiking and beaches – there is something for everybody!

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Life and Manners in Japan  Travel Tips

Tokyo’s Top Co-Working Spaces for Freelancers, Digital Nomads, and Entrepreneurs

Anyone doing business on the go in Tokyo can relate to the following experience. You’ve got some downtime between appointments and need a calm, quiet place to catch up on some e-mails or polish your latest literary masterpiece.
As you scramble through the city’s endless maze of concrete, glass, and steel, you spot a Starbucks—an international beacon of warm drinks and Wi-Fi. Relief transforms into anxiety as you realize that there’s probably no room for you in that Starbucks on the horizon.
Sure, you might be able to squeeze into an overlooked space somewhere inside, but that will only guarantee that you’ll be elbow to elbow with other patrons, your concentration constantly fragmented by the din of chatty school girls and busy baristas.
Such is the plight of many freelancers, digital nomads, and fresh-faced entrepreneurs in Tokyo. Thankfully, a better solution is on the rise: the co-working space.
When considering co-working spaces, perhaps world famous brands like WeWork come to mind. Major industry players like this are excellent options for more established companies with deep pockets. However, writers, coders, and designers just starting out on their own need more affordable and flexible options。
Having been a solopreneur for over two years, the following co-working spaces (in no particular order) have best served my needs when it comes to flexibility, location, and pricing. Additionally, several of them offer value-added features such as official address registration—critical for those who wish to boost their credibility on the Tokyo business scene. Pricing and features change often, so be sure to get the latest details by visiting the homepages for the co-working spaces featured below.

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19/04/2019 Travel Tips

Five Limited Express Trains for Exploring Areas Outside Tokyo

Did you know that the Shinkansen isn’t the only way to reach areas outside Tokyo quickly and comfortably? Limited Express trains can sometimes be the better solution, and cheaper if you’re not entitled to a JR Pass. However, unlike the Shinkansen, Limited Express trains are operated not only by JR East but also by a handful of private companies, which use different systems for running their trains. So, here is a quick guide to five convenient Limited Express trains for travelling outside Tokyo.

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08/03/2019 Bars & Restaurants

Sushi in Shinjuku: A Guide to the Kagurazaka Sushi Academy

Deep within the historic Kagurazaka district of Shinjuku lies one of the best sushi deals that a Tokyo traveler can find. Don’t let the name fool you—Kagurazaka Sushi Academy may be run by culinary students and alumni, but that doesn’t mean that you’ll be compromising on quality, flavor, and service.

Read on to learn how to make the most of a truly unique all-you-can eat sushi dining experience.

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