Part of a special exhibition for the Olympic and Paralympic Games that opened on Oct. 6 at Panasonic Corp.’s showroom in Tokyo’s Koto Ward (Wataru Sekita)
Panasonic exhibition offers visitors an immersive Olympic experience
Olympic sponsor Panasonic Corp. opened a special exhibition Oct. 6 at its Tokyo showroom to give visitors a sense of what athletes see while they compete in stadiums during the world's premier sporting event.
NOA building, right, towers over the Iikura intersection. The 15-story building consists of blackened bronze plates on top of a red-brick pedestal. (Photo by Lisa Vogt)
Lisa’s Eye on Tokyo/ IIKURA: A special place of mystery and intrigue
There’s an intersection near Tokyo Tower called Iikura. It’s unusual because the crossroad is both at the top and bottom of a hill.
A Sky Bus Kyoto tour passes under the torii gate at Heian Jingu shrine in Kyoto. (Noboru Tomura)
Open-air double-decker offers riders splendid views of historic Kyoto
KYOTO--An open-top double-decker bus is providing visitors with a scenic tour of this ancient capital.
A group of South Korean tourists receive an explanation about the history of the local coal industry at the Nogata Municipal Coal Memorial Museum in Nogata, Fukuoka Prefecture. (Kei Fujiyama)
Koreans at forefront visiting old Japanese coal mine museum in Fukuoka
NOGATA, Fukuoka Prefecture--A coal mine museum here is attracting more visitors for two main reasons--its guided tours and proximity to ironworks facilities UNESCO has granted World Cultural Heritage status as part of "Sites of Japan's Meiji Industrial Revolution."
An artist’s rendition of the Flying Dinosaur to open at Osaka’s Universal Studios Japan next spring (Provided by Universal Studios Japan) (R)&(C) Universal Studios & Amblin Entertainment Universal Studios. All rights reserved.
Theme park finds new way to thrill with Flying Dinosaur ride
OSAKA--Universal Studios Japan will add a Flying Dinosaur attraction to its theme park here next spring to simulate being in the grip of a Pteranodon pterosaur and soaring up and down in the air at high speed.
Two west-facing doors in the Byodoin temple’s Phoenix Hall were restored to their original appearance and shown to reporters on Oct. 2 at the temple’s Museum Hoshokan in Uji, Kyoto Prefecture. (Noboru Tomura)
Doors regain their luster at Kyoto’s renowned Phoenix Hall
UJI, Kyoto Prefecture--Two “hinoki” cypress doors installed in the Phoenix Hall at the Byodoin temple here have been restored to the original vermillion color used when the hall was founded in the Heian Period (794-1185).
Mount Fuji as seen from Fujiyoshida, Yamanashi Prefecture (Asahi Shimbun file photo)
Number of climbers allowed on Mount Fuji may be scaled back starting in 2018
A limit on the number of climbers of Mount Fuji is planned to be set within three years to protect the World Cultural Heritage site from wear and tear.
The special ad running on Ezaki Glico Co.'s signboard in Osaka's Dotonbori district ends with the iconic runner finishing a race with the words, "This is no goal. This is the beginning," showing on the screen. (Jun Ueda)
Osaka's iconic Glico signboard shows progression from infant to running man
OSAKA--Pedestrians can see how the Glico running man featured in the iconic massive signboard above the city's Dotonbori canal grew up from infancy to a healthy champion in a special ad showing nightly here through Oct. 8.
Participants in a tour to visit eight remote stations in Horonobe, Hokkaido, in one day stop at JR Nukanan Station on Aug. 22. (Kenichiro Shimada)
Off-the-beaten-track stations punch the ticket for revitalizing Hokkaido town
HORONOBE, Hokkaido--Although trains may stop only a few times a day and there are few houses around, rural train stations here may be just the ticket to attract rail buffs and other tourists.
Mineko Shimabayashi, a desk clerk at Hostel 64 Osaka, displays the “Hangout 64 Osaka” brochure Sept. 17. It features shops and restaurants loved by local people. (Sachi Otsuta)
Hostel spills the beans on hottest joints in Osaka
OSAKA--The best-kept secrets in town are no longer that, courtesy of a hostel here that is trying to broaden the horizons of its foreign guests.
Setsuko Klossowska de Rola embroiders in the department store Matsuya in Tokyo's Ginza district on Sept. 24. (Takeshi Iwashita)
In praise of Setsuko: Exhibition in Ginza pays homage to wife of Balthus
The French painter Balthus was so enamored of traditional Japanese attire that he asked his wife to wear kimono without fail every day.
Dressed in kimono, Namihei joins his twin brother, Umihei, to meet and greet shoppers on Aug. 29 on a Nishijin street in Fukuoka. (Mahito Kaai)
'Sazae-san' twins join forces to promote Fukuoka shopping area
FUKUOKA--Namihei, the father of the titular character from the long-cherished “Sazae-san” series, has been reunited with twin brother Umihei to serve as mascots for shopping streets here.
“Shimotani no O-katsura,” a tree that towers in a forest in the Miyamacho district of Nantan, Kyoto Prefecture, is said to be the protective god of the forest. (Keisuke Katori)
Ecotourism dream: Walking in a natural forest untouched for nearly 100 years
Pristine forest is hard to find in overcrowded Japan, but there is one area that has been untouched for nearly 100 years.
Young people play go around tables at the "Stand Up Igo!!" party at the 300 Bar Next in Tokyo's Yurakucho district. (Toshiyuki Hayashi)
Young people learn to play go over drinks in Tokyo pub
To brew up new life in a traditional game, a monthly party is being held in a bar in Tokyo's Yurakucho district to teach young people the rules of go.
Climbers walk through the “horizontal trail,” part of “Japan’s most dangerous hot-spring tour,” in Kurobe Gorge, Toyama Prefecture, on Sept. 15. (Mamoru Takatsu)
Sold out: 'Japan's most dangerous hot-spring tour'
KUROBE, Toyama Prefecture--After trudging through thick foliage, consistently clambering uphill and maneuvering slowly on a slick narrow trail beside a 300-meter drop-off, a group of climbing enthusiasts reached the purpose of their treacherous journey.
Assorted fruit sushi using grape, peach, watermelon and other ingredients are offered at Chikara Zushi in Kinokawa, Wakayama Prefecture. (Son Yummin)
The sweet success of fruit sushi in Wakayama
KINOKAWA, Wakayama Prefecture--Watermelons, grapes, and peaches are replacing raw fish at a sushi bar in this city known as the “fruit kingdom.”
Glass in the bathroom of a “haunted” room at Hotel Universal Port is spattered with "blood." (Provided by Hotel Universal Port)
‘Haunted’ room where woman disappeared available at Osaka hotel during Halloween
OSAKA--The hotel room is possessed by an evil spirit. A woman went missing here 10 years ago. The bathroom is still spattered with "blood." What better way to enjoy a terrifying Halloween than to spend the night here.
Akamon, the big red gate, is the best known landmark of Japan’s most prestigious school, the University of Tokyo. (Photo by Lisa Vogt)
Lisa’s Eye on Tokyo/ Hongo: After a red gate, sweets, goldfish and ‘kushiage’ await
Contrary to popular belief, the University of Tokyo’s famous Akamon (red gate) is not the university’s main gate. The esteemed gate originally belonged to the Maeda Clan of the Kaga Domain. Akamon gate was constructed in 1827 by Maeda Nariyasu, the 13th lord of Kaga, to welcome Lady Yasuhime, the daughter of the 11th Shogun Tokugawa Ienari.
A ceramic piece believed to have been created by the late Taro Okamoto is on display at the Shigaraki Ceramic Cultural Park. (Tsunetaka Sato)
Recently found ceramic work likely created by late sculptor Taro Okamoto
KOKA, Shiga Prefecture--A ceramic piece believed to have been created by contemporary artist Taro Okamato who is well-known for his "Tower of the Sun" masterpiece has been found in the Shigaraki district of Koka.
Visitors snap selfies alongside rows of cockscombs in Nasu Flower World park in Nasu, Tochigi Prefecture, on Sept. 20. (Kazuhiro Nagashima)
Mother Nature dazzles with thousands of blooms at Tochigi flower park
NASU, Tochigi Prefecture--A large flower park here was ablaze in color on Sept. 20 as Silver Week holiday tourists flocked to see the more than 150,000 cockscombs in bloom.

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