Monthly Archives: August 2015

Travels in Japan 2015 [Part 8: Massage Parlors]

For part of the latter half of our Japan trip, we stayed in the neighborhood of Kamata (蒲田) within Tokyo. We chose the Urbain Hotel (アーバイン東京), whose small rooms were compensated by a reasonable price of about 12000 yen a night, or roughly $100. I don’t think Kamata is a particularly famous region, and there wasn’t any major tourist sites nearby… Read More »

Travels in Japan 2015 [Part 7: The paradise of electronic products that is Yodobashi Camera]

On our recent trip to Japan, we planned to spend a morning in the district of Akihabara (秋葉原), within Tokyo. This area, sometimes called simply “Akiba” is known for it’s many shops of electronic items, games, and maid cafes (cosplay restaurants). Having an interest in robotics, I had planned to visit the Tsukumo Robot Kingdom store,… Read More »

Travels in Japan 2015 [Part 6: integration of the roman alphabet and English into everyday life]

One thing that caught me somewhat off guard in our most recent trip to Japan was the frequent use of the roman alphabet throughout the country. By this I mean the alphabet you are reading now, called romaji (ローマ字) in Japanese. Nearly all location names on road signs, as well as on signs in places… Read More »

Travels in Japan 2015 [Part 5: Game Centers]

For some time now Japan has been one of the top countries for manufacturing of electronics and automative products, evidenced by the presence of several Japanese companies in this list of top manufacturing companies by global revenue. For automotive, Toyota and Nissan are in the top 10, with Toyota topping the list at #1. Honda comes… Read More »

Travels in Japan 2015 [Part 4: Edo Wonderland and Toushouguu shrine in Nikkou]

Edo Wonderland Besides hanging out in our hotel’s onsen in Nikkou, we spent some time at two other places in the area. The first of these was Edo Wonderland (日光江戸村), a theme park based on the Edo period in Japanese history (1603-1867). This is where much of popular Japanese history comes from, including things like Samurai warriors… Read More »

Travels in Japan 2015 [Part 3: Nikkou and Marukyou hotel]

During the first half our of trip we stayed in the small city of Nikkou (日光) in Tochigi prefecture (栃木県) for a few days. Our hotel was the “Marukyoo” (丸京), a small Japanese-style inn (旅館、ryokan) that only had 12 rooms. The price was a bit expensive at around 20000 yen (~$160 dollars), which is even… Read More »

Travels in Japan 2015 [Part 2: Transportation]

In this installment of my “Travels in Japan 2015” series I’d like to talk about our experience with various means of transportation we used to move throughout the country, including trains and taxis. Air travel We began our trip at the Miami International Airport in Florida and landed in Japan’s Narita airport (成田空港) with a flight… Read More »

Travels in Japan 2015 [Part 1: It’s been a while]

As you may have noticed, I haven’t been very active on this blog for several weeks. Fortunately, this isn’t because I was slacking off on my Japanese practice – rather the opposite. I just came back from an extensive 2-week long vacation to Japan with my family, where we toured all over Japan while jumping between 6… Read More »