How to get a spouse visa for Japan from outside the country

Congratulations on getting married! Now you have both decided to live in Japan and so you need to apply for a spouse visa, which is surprisingly straightforward! Please note that this guide is for the UK, other countries may be similar but we can’t comment if they are exactly the same. The Japanese embassy in […]

10 Fun Things to Do in Kyoto

By Mike Sullivan Kyoto is a must-see destination in Japan, but after you have visited the temples and shrines which the guidebooks told you to see – what do you do next? The truth is that so many tourists go to Kyoto and then miss out on all the other fun things that you can […]

All the Emperor’s Men By Hiroshi Tasogawa

By Hiroshi Tasogawa, published November 2012 by Applause Books. 336 pages, ISBN 155783850X. Review by Mike Sullivan In a career spanning over 50 years Akira kurosawa (黒澤 明) directed over 30 movies, in all likelihood everyone has seen at least one of his movies, whether it is the epic Ran (乱) or the classic Seven […]

Snow Falling on Cedars – Directed by Scott Hicks

Directed by Scott Hicks, released in 2000 and re-released on DVD 2010. Based on the 1994 novel by David Guterson. By Mike Sullivan This is a story about the trial of a Japanese American, Kabuo Miyamoto, accused of murdering a white American, Carl Heine, over a land dispute, intertwined within this we see the touching […]

Sushi Slim – Book Review

By Makiko Sano, published April 2013 by Quadrille Publishing. 128 pages, ISBN 1849491755. Review by Mike Sullivan One of the best Japanese restaurants in West London can be found in Hammersmith, Suzu is run by Makiko Sano and was opened in 2009. The talented chef behind this restaurant originally had her own catering business before […]

Jigokudani Yaen-Koen – The Land of Bathing Monkeys

Photos by Yoshifumi Saito. It is well known that Japanese people love onsen, hot springs, but actually you don’t have to be Japanese, or even human, to enjoy a hot bath! In Japan one can experience the sight of wild Japanese Macaques enjoying the bliss of an onsen. Our photographer, Yoshifumi Saito, recently went to […]

Golden Week in Japan – 2015

Every country has a time of year where people take time off and relax, national holidays are used for celebration and leisure activities, and in particular in many countries you will find many businesses either close or work much reduced hours during the Christmas to New Year Period which can span up to ten days. […]

Kawazu Cherry Blossom Festival – 2015

Traditionally when people think of seeing cherry blossoms in Japan they think of late March to April, however perhaps not so well known is that it is possible to enjoy the blossoming of these beautiful trees from February in the countryside. One of the most well-known places is in Kawazu, in Shizuoka prefecture where a […]

SIWA paper items : cushioned case size: mini

Review: SIWA cushioned case size: mini SIWA is collaborative project made by Japanese washi paper product maker called ONAO and worldwide designer Naoto Fukasawa. Today we picked SIWA cushioned case, size mini. The size is Wide:18cm Height: 12cm and weight only 21g. More detail please visit SIWA page. SIWA cushioned case size:mini This product is […]

Prince William dressed as a Samurai Warrior in Japan

Taken from BBC news website ( The Duke of Cambridge was dressed as a famous samurai warrior during a visit to the set of a long-running historical drama in Japan. Prince William visited a Tokyo studio where a popular costume drama is filmed – dressing as a samurai who unified the country in the 16th […]

Valentine’s Day in Japan – Gifts just for Men?

By Atsuka Fukaya In postwar Japan a number of different holidays and customs were introduced into Japan, and adapted. One of those was Valentine’s Day, however this gained a twist in Japan as unusually it was given a twist as rather than conform with Western countries it became a day for women to confess their […]

Coming of Age Day Japan

On the second Monday of January a special ceremony/festival takes place in Japan. Coming of Age Day (成人の日) celebrates everyone who turned 20 over the past year and who have now officially become adults. Ceremonies take place all over the country and everyone enjoys this celebration together. The importance of this day is connected to […]