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Japan is an island country of East Asia. Located in the Pacific Ocean, east of the Sea of ​​Japan, the People's Republic of China, North Korea, South Korea and Russia, stretching from the Sea of ​​Okhotsk in the north to the East China Sea and Taiwan to south. The characters that make up its name mean "Origin of the Sun", which is why Japan is sometimes identified as the "Land of the Rising Sun".

The country is an archipelago of 6,852 islands, the four largest of which are Honshu, Hokkaido, Kyushu and Shikoku, together representing 97% of the national land area. Most of the islands are mountainous, with many volcanoes such as the Japanese Alps and Mount Fuji. Japan has the tenth largest population in the world, with about 128 million inhabitants. The Tokyo Metropolitan Area, which includes the de facto capital of Tokyo and several adjacent prefectures, is the largest metropolitan area in the world with more than 30 million inhabitants.
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For tourism, citizens of the European Union are exempt from visas for a period of 90 days. Entry for the purpose of tourism does not allow the application for extension or residence permit in this country.
There are several types of visas granted by Japan, and applicants must apply for the appropriate visa at the Japanese Embassy in their residence. The period of validity and the type of visa issued must be strictly adhered to. Failure to leave the country after its expiration may result in a fine and deportation, resulting in a ban on entry into Japan for a period of two years. Possible deportations shall be at the expense of the traveler.
The visa does not guarantee entry by itself, as this decision remains the competence of the immigration authorities of the country concerned, in particular the border security officers.
Immigration legislation in most countries does not provide for the possibility of appeal in the event of denial of the visa application.
Many countries require that the passports of those entering the country be valid for at least six months. In this sense, the immigration authorities may pose problems to those who intend to enter the country with the validity of a passport less than the time that will remain in the country. It is therefore recommended to renew a passport before traveling, or check with the relevant diplomatic mission of the country concerned whether this rule applies.
The world's third largest economy has much more to offer than robots, sushi and samurai. Tokyo is the cleanest and most organized super-megalopolis on the planet, with the highest concentration of excellent high-end restaurants on the planet - and we're not just talking about sashimi, but houses offering Italian and French dishes you would not find in Bologna or Paris . Around you are must-see tours such as the calm Kamakura, the historic Nikko and the little-historic Tokyo Disneyland. If you use the high-speed train, opt for the spectacular views of Mount Fuji or the incredible Japanese Alps, perfect for idyllic walks or great ski runs. The Kansai region, home to the cities of Kyoto, Osaka and Nara, is Japan's cultural home, with the country's most notable temples, palaces and castles. There you will come face to face with the tea ceremony, the Buddhist meditation, the geishas and the kaiseki - the Japanese-style banquet. Head south, understand the reason why Hiroshima is a symbol of peace and discover tropical Japan on the paradisiacal beaches bathed in the blue waters of Okinawa.

Taking the northern path, wild and mountainous landscapes are the highlights. In all seasons of the year Hokkaido seduces visitors, sometimes with endless rugs of lavender in bloom, or receiving skiers from all over the world at super resorts like Furano and Niseko.

 Not to mention the gastronomy, which from traditional to fusion has combined native recipes with imports from Asia and Europe to create a beautiful, tasty and, more important than ever, nutritious cuisine.


Spending less than ten days in Japan is sacrilege. Book five days to visit Tokyo and the surrounding area, visiting Nikko and Kamakura. In a calm rhythm and without exaggerating the number of temples, Kyoto asks for three days of immersion in Japanese culture. Great walks near the city are in Nara and Osaka. Traveling west, be sure to visit Himeji Castle and Hiroshima City. For those who have a few days to spare, visit the charming little Takayama. If you come in the winter, the island of Hokkaido to the north, and the Japanese Alps in the center, have some of the best and most well-structured ski slopes. Both have hosted the Winter Olympics in 1972 and 1998.


- Stay in a ryokan and sleep on a futon on tatami mats. For the brave, try also a hotel-capsule;

- Bathing in a thermal pool of a spa or onsen;

- Try the following dishes: Sushi in Tokyo, Lamen in Sapporo and Fukuoka, Eel in Shizuoka, Okonomiyaki in Hiroshima and Osaka, Soba in Okinawa and Nagano and Kaiseki Banquet in Kyoto;

- Watch a kabuki play or a day of juice fights (it's all kind of slow but interesting)

- See Mount Fuji (in the summer there is no snow);

- Skiing on high-level slopes in Niseko, Furano or Hakuba;

- Meet small historical cities like Takayama, Nikko, Kamakura and Kanazawa.
Traditional Japanese cuisine consists of prepared rice dishes, miso soup (soybean paste), fish or meat accompanied by tsukemono (pickles). The most common seasonings in Japanese cuisine are soy sauce, wasabi, soy sauce, karashi, mirin and sake, and dashi. (fish stock or meat).

Because Japan is a country made up of islands, the Japanese have created the habit of using the sea as a source of food from which they harvest various types of fish, mollusks and seaweed. Fish is much appreciated in Japanese cuisine and is an important source of nutrition. It is the key ingredient in the preparation of typical dishes such as sashimi (raw fish) and sushi (small pieces of rice seasoned with vinegar topped with slices of raw fish).

The meat was introduced in Japan in the 19th century, until then not part of the traditional Japanese diet. New dishes were created using beef, pork and chicken. Currently yakitori (grilled chicken skewers) are very popular, as is sukiyaki consisting of thin slices of meat prepared along with greens and tofu (soya cheese).

Although noodles originate in China, it has become very popular in Japan. There are several types of noodles, and among the most widely consumed varieties are soba (buckwheat noodles), udon and somen (wheat noodles). The lamen, one of the most popular dishes in Japan, is prepared with broth and served with vegetables and slices of meat, it is also possible to prepare the famous yakissoba (fried noodles) with the same type of pasta.

Japan's favorite drink is green tea.

Other popular drinks in Japan are black tea, sake (rice wine), shochu (rice brandy) and umeshu (plum liqueur).
Japan generally has a mild climate. The seasons are very different. June is the rainy month in Japan, with heat and humidity. It is recommended that you carry a raincoat in your luggage. Between July and September, Central and Southern Japan are sometimes struck by typhoons, which occasionally cause serious damage.
Japan is a safe country with low crime rates.
Violation of the criminal law can lead to detention for 27 days, while police make inquiries, followed by court proceedings.
The penalties for the introduction of narcotics often reach 10 or 15 years in prison, plus fines, which can amount to tens of thousands of euros.
Japan has a very old and different culture from the West, which, although marked by great tolerance, must be respected by those who visit the country.
Vigilance over smokers is becoming more rigorous. In many places, only smoking can be allowed in designated areas, and in some areas of Tokyo smoking is prohibited on the street, in movement, with well-marked smoking areas. Failure to comply with this law may give rise to the application of a fine.
The sanitary network is of very good quality. There are no specific pathologies to the country nor record of contamination of humans by viruses with pandemic potential.
Depending on the type of Japanese visa, certain emergency medical care may be obtained at a cost covered by the Japanese State. It should be noted that health care and services in Japan can be extremely costly.
On the other hand, not all foreigners with a residence permit can subscribe to the National Health Insurance of Japan. Interested parties should contact their City Council for more information.
Interested parties should also inquire about the Japanese private entities that provide various health insurance and their respective conditions.
There are restrictions on entry of medicines into Japan, even for personal use. If you are considering bringing your medication to Japan, it should always be accompanied by a medical statement about your state of health and the need for it to be used. For more information contact the Embassy of Japan in the visitor's country of residence.
Telecommunications and Electricity
Mobile Phones
The use of mobile devices can be used if roaming is enabled, however, paying attention to very high roaming charges.

The country is well served by internet services, there are several cybers-cafes with high-speed connections.
In case you have a laptop or notebook, there are some cafes that offer the free wi-fi connection.

The electricity is 110 Volts 50 Hz.
It is advisable to have a kit of adapters for the outlets and a current converter for 220V.
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