guide

Forest bathing, now moss therapy--the lush woods of Inohae
Forest bathing, or shinrin-yoku may envision having a hot-tub in the woods, but it's a relatively new concept birthed in Japan in the '80s. Inohae ...
JAPAN LOCAL's guide to Shibuya, Tokyo
On the surface Shibuya is a neon-bathed urban hub, with swarms of high-schoolers and business people flocking to mega department stores, multi-stor...
Yuzu-flavored beer offers a taste of Nichinan microbrew
In recent years microbreweries have spread throughout Japan, thanks in part to the Japanese government easing brewing laws in 1994, with people no ...
120-year-old abandoned school in Japan turns into eclectic marketplace
Drive down south on Route 220 from Miyazaki city, and while traversing next to the glittering Nichinan beaches you’ll encounter (the former) Ushio ...
Budget souvenirs that don't suck at Shibuya's Maruara
Plastic katanas—the Japanese canary in the coal mine for kitsch souvenir shops.For years I’d walk down Inokashira street, one of the arteries of Sh...
The Shinjuku bookstore where employees are all club hosts
There are over 12,000 bookstores in Japan according to the Bunka News and Shinbunka, a drop of nearly 50 percent since the start of the 21th centur...
Traditional cooking, Edo-era lodging in a preserved castletown
"Good morning!" said a lively group of grade-school students, even bowing their heads towards me as we walked by. It's an unexpectedly polite gestu...
9 shopping spots to hit while in Shibuya
Shibuya is an overwhelming spectacle from the moment you step out of the station--throngs of tourists, business people and high-schoolers amassing ...
Embrace the fat: Guide to eating wagyu and yakiniku BBQ in Japan
BBQ grilling is nothing new, especially if you’ve experienced Korean BBQ restaurants abroad. But yakiniku (translated literally as cooked meat) wit...
Finding a pocket of rare natural solace in Shibuya
Serene, historic: probably the two words least likely to be associated with Shibuya.New York City has Central Park, Shinjuku has the Gyoen national...
Kurosaki: the best Michelin-rated sushi in Shibuya you’ve never heard of
Ask what’s the ultimate sushi in Japan and you’ll largely get two different responses—Sukibayashi Jiro for those abroad, and Sushi Saito for Japane...
Thousands go underground at this nightclub when clock hits midnight
From dingy dives in Roppongi to the random joints scattered in Shinjuku, it’s daunting to find the best clubs in Tokyo, let alone Shibuya, where th...
Forget Ichiran—try ramen at these two popular local spots in Shibuya
Ichiran has become to ramen in Tokyo what Shake Shack is to burgers in New York City. The popularity of the ubiquitous chain has taken a life of it...
Head to yakiniku BBQ Baka Ichidai to get stupid stuffed in Okinawa
Hey yakiniku lovers out there—I have a perfect solution for those nights when you feel like letting it all go. Because sometimes, there's nothing w...
Standing bar with 135-year history hidden in plain sight in Shibuya
Even by Tokyo standards Shibuya is a city quick to move on, whether in continually rotating fast-fashion, or even with larger businesses that get l...
Hooked on a fisherman’s meal at a bonito angler’s district
Eating bonito isn’t commonplace stateside, except for maybe the flakes used as a garnish. In Japan it’s not uncommon to have the fish seared or raw...
Eating the best chicken I've ever had at Sumibiyaki Sankuu
The person who showed me around Nichinan (a small city on the coast of Miyazaki Prefecture, Kyushu) told me two intimidating details about the rest...
Shibuya’s T4 Tokyo serves hardcore ping pong, mixed reality and fine dining
In the midst of the fury of Shibuya’s scramble with bright, stadium-sized LED screens vying for your attention, finding cutting-edge hangout spots ...
11 things you can only do in Shibuya
Shibuya’s appeal for many ends a couple hundred feet out of the JR station--see the dog statue, the Moai and gawk at the billboards and giant LED a...