To view this page ensure that Adobe Flash Player version 11.1.0 or greater is installed.
Success B o n V oyag e
It’s only within the last 75 years that the Land Of The Rising Sun has admitted travellers from the West. For
modern global man, well-versed to traversing whole continents in single jaunts, Japan still represents a
destination steeped in mystery, ancient tradition and seizure-inducing animation.
T E X T BY RYA N JA R R E LL
1. Forewarned Is
Forearmed Although globalization
has done much to equalize
the developed world’s cultural
landscape, Japan still has a
complicated system of mores
and taboos that can seem
overwhelming to the average
occidental. For a last-minute
primer, try eDiplomat.com’s
section on business etiquette. It
can really get you out of a jam.
Sumimasen is the magic
word that makes all
your gaijin woes wash away.
An amalgamation that means
Thank you, I’m sorry and Excuse
me, if you only learn one word
in Japanese, make it this one.
In a culture that prizes respect,
sumimasen can take you a long
3. Home Sweet
Homestyle Sometimes culture shock
can be an almost palpable force,
threatening to wash you away in a
tide of isolation. A simple solution
for such periods of disorientation
is to go to your nearest major
American fast food chain. Yes, your
snobbish foodie friends will upturn
their noses at your boorish ways,
but your subconscious will weep at
the familiarity of cornfed McRelief.
4. Lather, Rinse,
Repeat One of your most sought-
after locations to visit shouldn’t
be too difficult or costly to find; in
fact, it’ll be in every self-respecting
Japanese person’s home. The
Japanese approach to home bathing
explains facets of their culture that
can’t be put into words, so track
one down and enjoy the finest soak
of your life. Trust me, once you go
Japanese bath, you’ll never go back!
truly revolutionized the way we
hurriedly ask for the restroom.
Waygo is a fantastic little
app that uses your phone’s
camera to translate signs and
other collections of characters
into English. For quick vocal
translation, try iTranslate Voice
Lite, currently available only on
East Meats West
Did you really travel to a
nation synonymous with
eating the oddest of hors d’oeuvres
to stay tucked within comfy
culinary confines? One of the great
joys of travelling to a country with
such strict food safety measures
is to try anything and everything
in sight! Our pick for strangest and
most delicious: torisashi, skewered
sashimi chicken breast sure to get
your tastebuds buzzing.
Some of the most
beautiful buildings in
Japan are religious in nature,
which is why it’s so unfortunate
that Westerners are often so
intimidated by them. A great many
religious institutions in Japan rely
on pilgrimage for their income, so
regardless of your personal beliefs,
you’re more than welcome to take
photographs. A favorite is Meiji
Jingu, a forested Shinto shrine
with a seasonal iris garden.
The Ties Have It
Not every Japanese
souvenir need be
encrusted with Hello Kitty-esque
kitsch. Some of the finest crafted
goods in Japan are at least partially
inspired by Western fashions.
Gentlemen, Osaka’s Ring Jacket suit
brand blends meticulous Japanese
artistry with the best of Neapolitan
fashion. Ladies, Himiko’s Autumn
Line blends practicality with a
uniquely Japanese twist.