ABOUT JAPANJapan is a study in contrasts and contradictions. Many Japanese corporations dominate their industries, yet if you read the financial news it seems like Japan is practically bankrupt. Cities are as modern and high tech as anywhere else, but tumbledown wooden shacks can still be spotted next to glass fronted designer condominiums.
Tōkyō (東京) is the capital of Japan. At over 12 million people in the official metropolitan area alone, Tokyo is the core of the most populated urban area in the world, Greater Tokyo (which has a population of 35 million people). This huge, wealthy and fascinating metropolis brings high-tech visions of the future side by side with glimpses of old Japan, and has something for everyone.
Festivals and Events
Vanish Roller Coaster in Yokohama
First opened to the public in 1999, Vanish -- located in Yokohama, Japan -- isn't your average roller coaster, as it dives into an underwater tunnel at one point during the ride. The track measures 2,440-feet in length and each ride lasts for approximately 1-minute 58-seconds."
Kochia Hill, Hitachinaka City
Among the fields of cosmos, zinnia, spider lilies and pampas grass, the hill filled with kochia – or summer cypress, broom cypress, if not burning bush – is perhaps the most rare and eye-catching to see in Japan. The hill of this fluffy-looking (but actually quite prickly) shrub, more often seen on brooms than on the ground in eastern Asia, creates a peculiar yet attractive view in autumn when the branches and stems turn bright red."
The Ushiku Daibutsu
The Ushiku Daibutsu, located in Ushiku, Japan, is one of the world's tallest statues. Completed in 1993, it stands a total of 120 meters (394 feet) tall, including the 10m high base and 10m high lotus platform. An elevator takes visitors up to 85m off the ground, where an observation floor is located. It depicts Amitabha Buddha and is made of bronze. It was built to commemorate the birth of Shinran, founder of the Jodo Shinshu or "True Pure Land School" of Buddhism."
Jigokudani Monkey Park
Jigokudani Monkey Park is famous for its large population of wild Japanese Macaques (Macaca fuscata), more commonly referred to as Snow Monkeys, that go to the valley during the winter, foraging elsewhere in the national park during the warmer months.
World Cosplay Summit, also known as WCS, is an annual international cosplay event that promotes friendly international exchange through Japanese pop culture. The WCS is organized by the events division of TV Aichi and has the active support of local volunteers, city organizations and businesses. The parade and championship are held in Nagoya, Japan with several related events being held in the Kanto, Kansai and Tokai areas.
Great Buddha of Kamakura
Daibutsu is a 13.3 metre bronze statue of the seated Amida Buddha. Broad shouldered and serene, Buddha sits in the lotus position, his hands clasped in his lap mid-meditation and is Japan’s second largest Buddhist monument.