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Jan 22
Passenger and flight numbers at Narita International Airport scaled new heights in 2015, the airport's operator announced on Jan. 21, providing further evidence of Japan's continuing foreign tourism boom. (Asahi)
Jan 22
A smart train pass only available for foreign tourists will allow short-stay visitors in the Kansai region to use services by various operators, and entitle them to special deals at tourist attractions and shopping facilities. (Asahi)
Jan 21
Chinese tour groups can often be seen following guides clutching red flags in Japanese shopping districts, but organized tours may be losing their allure as travelers set out to go it alone. (Japan Times)
Jan 20
Japan's ancient capital of Kyoto and its UNESCO World Heritage site temple, Kinkaku-ji, are covered in a blanket of snow. (NHK)
Jan 19
The number of foreign visitors to Japan in 2015 reached 19.74 million and these travelers spent an estimated 3.48 trillion yen ($29.6 billion), both hitting new record highs, the Japan Tourism Agency said Tuesday. (Kyodo)
Jan 19
The number of foreign passengers on international flights using Kansai International Airport in Osaka Prefecture topped 10 million in 2015 for the first time since it opened in 1994. (Japan Times)
Jan 18
As much as we love the hustle and bustle of big cities like Tokyo and Osaka, it's the secret, secluded sites in Japan that truly blow us away. One of the most stunning locations you'll find off the beaten track is Motonosumi Inari Shrine in Nagato City, Yamaguchi Prefecture, where 123 red torii shrine gates wind down along a mountain towards a cliff overlooking the Sea of Japan. (rocketnews24.com)
Jan 18
Young kimono-clad women fired arrows in a New Year's archery event at a Buddhist temple in Japan's old capital of Kyoto on Sunday. (NHK)
Jan 16
It's a world of physical and virtual twirls, sudden drops, aggressive giants, roaring monsters and persistent zombies. It's a world of "kawaii" and pop, bubbling colors. It's a story of fighting spirits and game, anime and manga-inspired stories, wrapped up in a cutting-edge technology and J-pop fashion. Welcome to Universal Studios Japan (USJ)'s "Universal Cool Japan 2016." (Japan Today)
Jan 15
Travel agency JTB will offer farm stays in Japan's Tochigi Prefecture starting Friday in a bid to attract foreigners looking for an experience off the beaten trail. (Nikkei)
Jan 14
The Geospatial Information Authority of Japan (GSI) has decided to design new map symbols that are easier for foreigners to understand in preparation for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games. (the-japan-news.com)
Jan 13
The Great Buddha of Kamakura is undergoing its first major "health checkup" in more than half a century. (Asahi)
Jan 13
More and more foreigners are coming to Japan to enjoy skiing and snowboarding. (NHK)
Jan 13
A panel of experts set up by the health ministry and the tourism agency agreed Tuesday to ease regulations regarding paid accommodation in private homes in Japan, amid a growing number of foreign visitors to Japan. (Japan Today)
Jan 13
The transport ministry has decided to set up body scanners, which can detect dangerous objects by seeing through the clothing of passengers, at all airports with international flights by 2020, according to sources. (the-japan-news.com)
Jan 10
Thousands of people took part in a New Year race at a Shinto shrine in western Japan on Sunday. The winner is crowned the year's "luckiest man." (NHK)
Jan 10
The number of visitors to Japan in 2016 will surge 19.0 pct from the previous year to hit another record high of 23.5 million, topping the government's target of 20 million, according to a recent estimate by major travel agency JTB Corp. (Jiji Press)
Jan 10
My alarm sounded at 6:45 a.m., but I quickly silenced it and rolled over in my futon. I enjoyed a fleeting moment of quietude before the thrumming of rubber soles on pavement and accompanying excited voices crescendoed, a brief multilingual hubbub that then faded away for a minute or two before rising up again. It was starting. (Japan Times)
Jan 07
An unlimited-ride ticket offered by Japan Railway (JR) companies that can only be used on local and rapid JR trains at present will be utilized on a stretch of the Hokkaido Shinkansen Line when it starts in March, JR firms announced Jan. 5. (Asahi)
Jan 07
Efforts are under way in Japan to put more fruits and other agricultural produce on the shopping lists of tourists visiting the nation in record numbers, by simplifying quarantine inspection procedures. (Jiji Press)
Jan 07
The government will open the State Guest House known as Akasaka Palace to the public from Feb. 5 to 18 on a trial basis in preparation for the extension of its annual opening period from April. (the-japan-news.com)
Jan 06
Japan's public baths, known as sento, represent an institution with hundreds of years of history. They provided an important public service in the days before homes had their own hot-water bathtubs. (Japan Times)
Jan 06
The first big event of the year in Kyoto is the Toka Ebisu Festival which starts this week. (deepkyoto.com)
Jan 04
Temperatures in many parts of Japan have hit record highs for the month of January. (NHK)
Jan 04
Early risers gathered on Sunday in Yamanashi Prefecture to see the sun appear from behind Mount Fuji. (NHK)
Jan 04
The Economy, Trade and Industry Ministry is set to develop a smartphone-based payment application to encourage foreign visitors to further boost consumption during their stays in the country. (the-japan-news.com)
Jan 02
Transportation in Japan is congested on Saturday, as people head home from New Year holidays in resorts and hometowns. (NHK)
Jan 01
Deep in a forest near Japan's western shore, a 13th century Buddhist temple where Steve Jobs once dreamed of becoming a Zen monk has teamed up with a Tokyo skyscraper builder to seek the commercial enlightenment of foreign tourist dollars. (skift.com)
Dec 30
With only a few days left before New Year's Day, busy shoppers trying to seeking items for osechi dishes pack a street in the Tsukiji Outer Market in Chuo Ward, Tokyo, on Tuesday afternoon. (the-japan-news.com)
Dec 29
Japanese macaque monkeys that bathe and relax in hot springs at the Jigokudani Yaen-Koen park in central Japan are drawing the attention of foreign travelers. (Jiji Press)
Dec 28
Osaka's iconic Tsutenkaku tower has opened a new open-air observation deck that offers visitors breezy, sweeping views of the city, which might even be the perfect place to pop the question. (Asahi)
Dec 28
A sacred rope at a waterfall in western Japan was replaced on Sunday ahead of the New Year. (NHK)
Dec 27
A major international airport near Tokyo is crowded with travelers heading overseas for the New Year holidays. (NHK)
Dec 24
Niseko’s premiere Snowsports rental, retail and Snowsports school is proud to announce a brand new boutique shop in the Shiki Niseko Apartment building for season 2015/16. (SkiJapan.com)
Dec 24
Japanese beverage makers are developing vending machines that foreign tourists can use easily. (NHK)
Dec 23
Aiming to assist with the increasing number of foreign visitors and the Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics scheduled for 2020, Panasonic Corp. has been developing a new megaphone system capable of translating a speaker's voice from Japanese into English, Chinese and Korean. (the-japan-news.com)
Dec 22
The government kicked off a campaign Monday to give tourists access to SIM cards and Wi-Fi routers, aiming to offer a better quality communications environment. (Japan Times)
Dec 22
The lack of snowfall and abnormally mild temperatures in Japan have led to many ski resorts having to remain closed. (insidejapantours.com)
Dec 21
Offering spectacular views and the setting for TV commercials and other productions, Tsunoshima Bridge was selected the top bridge in Japan by one of the world's largest travel review websites. (Asahi)
Dec 21
Miyama in Nantan, Kyoto Prefecture, is set to adapt to a steep increase in Asian tourists tired of conventional sightseeing spots in Japan. (Japan Today)
Dec 21
Japanese nonlife insurers are developing and selling travel insurance in a bid to capitalize on demand from the record number of tourists flocking to the country. (Nikkei)
Dec 18
Construction workers will launch a project on Friday to bore a tunnel through a mountain range in central Japan. (NHK)
Dec 18
Experience the samurai spirit first-hand with original swords and armour at the recently opened Samurai Museum. (rocketnews24.com)
Dec 17
The estimated number of visitors to Japan totaled 17,964,400 between January and November, up 47.5 percent from the same period last year, the Japan National Tourism Organization said Wednesday. (the-japan-news.com)
Dec 16
Japan Airlines says it will suspend flights between Narita and Paris for about 2 months because the number of passengers has plunged since the November terrorist attacks. (NHK)
Dec 16
The Justice Ministry said Tuesday it will station an additional 57 immigration officers at two airports in an emergency response to a rising number of foreign visitors. (the-japan-news.com)
Dec 15
Tattooed guests used to be denied a dip in a public bath due to the longtime practice among operators of bathhouses and traditional "ryokan" inns of banning those with body art. (Asahi)
Dec 15
Red-crowned cranes, designated a special national treasure, were given a brief period of freedom on Dec. 13, offering visitors a rare glimpse of the endangered species. (Asahi)
Dec 14
The El Nino effect is playing havoc with ski resorts across eastern Japan and threatening to disrupt operations during the critical New Year holiday period. (Asahi)
Dec 14
Japan's tourism industry is booming at the moment, but there are rural communities that have not seen the fruits of this growth. Tourism makes up less than 2 per cent of Japan's GDP. (channelnewsasia.com)
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