Travel

Tweet Your Way to a Stay at The Ritz-Carlton Tokyo

Sep 4th, 2009 | By Shane Sakata | Category: Featured Articles, Tokyo and Vicinity, Travel

Located in the tallest building in the city, The Ritz-Carlton, Tokyo offers guests an understated and luxurious environment high above the hustle and bustle of Roppongi’s trendy Tokyo Midtown complex. I recently had the pleasure of a relaxing one night retreat from my daily life and thanks to the generosity of The Ritz-Carlton, Tokyo you [...]



Ukiyo-e – Woodblock Prints

Sep 2nd, 2009 | By Shane Sakata | Category: History & Culture, Museums

When one thinks of items representative of Japan the list inevitably includes kimono, sushi and bullet trains but one shouldn’t overlook the beauty of Japanese woodblock prints or ukiyo-e.  The word ukiyo refers to the world of common people and e means picture. This art form originated in the late sixteenth century in the ancient [...]



Heaven & Hell in Ishikawa

Aug 24th, 2009 | By Shane Sakata | Category: Travel

It’s cold year round, not hot, in the Hanibe Cave where the “Fushi Jigoku” (Satirical expression of Hell) sit alongside eerily lit statues on a winding path through this natural cave. Located in the Chubu region of Japan, Ryumyoji Town in Ishikawa Prefecture is home to a paradox of peaceful prayer and images of hell.   [...]



Explore Japanese Handicrafts in Kyoto

Aug 21st, 2009 | By Shane Sakata | Category: Kyoto, Travel

Get your hands dirty!  Well, maybe not dirty but get some paint on them and learn about Japanese traditional crafts by making some yourself in the historic city of Kyoto. You will walk away with a better understanding and appreciation for the art forms than you will get from any museum – and you’ll have [...]



Double Your Money in Kamakura

Aug 19th, 2009 | By Shane Sakata | Category: Featured Articles, Temples & Shrines, Travel

Take a gamble on the strength of your faith the next time you visit Kamakura and you may leave richer in both spiritual and monetary terms. The Zeniarai Bentzaiten Ugafuku Jinja (shrine) is dedicated to Benzai, one of the Seven Gods of Good Fortune, who is revered as the Goddess of knowledge, art and beauty, [...]



Natsubate

Aug 13th, 2009 | By Shane Sakata | Category: Travel

Summer heat and fatigue, natsubate, has struck The Nihon Sun!  That, a few earthquakes, and visitors with crazy schedules has made me a sweat drenched and sunburned resident with lots of inspiration but an inability to peck out a cohesive string of words down on my keyboard… My trusty folding fan is never far from [...]



Earthquakes & Japan Travel Safety Tips

Aug 10th, 2009 | By Shane Sakata | Category: Travel

Japan has more earthquake activity than almost any place in the world.  While we don’t have noticeable earthquakes everyday, they are a common occurrence – one that gets your attention but doesn’t hold it for long unless unless it is longer or stronger than “usual”.  The 6.9 magnitude earthquake that was felt in Tokyo last [...]



Day Trips From Tokyo

Aug 6th, 2009 | By Shane Sakata | Category: Travel

I’m off to Kamakura in Kanagawa prefecture today – it’s just one of a few great day trips that can be made using Tokyo as a base.  Many of these places can be explored in a day but if you have time you may want to consider staying the night at a hotel or ryokan [...]



Capture Your Own Unique View of Japan

Aug 3rd, 2009 | By Shane Sakata | Category: Travel

Taking pictures of Japan is a must for visitors and residents alike and there are so many great things to photograph that it can be overwhelming.  As an amateur photography buff I have recently taken on the personal challenge of capturing images that are not what you might expect to see in a photo album [...]



Tokyo Garden Parties with Beer!

Jul 31st, 2009 | By Shane Sakata | Category: Events, Tokyo and Vicinity

Tokyo beers gardens can be found in parks and on building rooftops throughout the city  and there’s nothing better than enjoying a cold beer, or two, with friends on a warm summer evening in the city. Social and business networking on Tokyo has now been taken to a new level with the creation of the [...]