RECOMMENDATIONS

Mount Fuji

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Mount Fuji is one of the most iconic symbols of Japan. You can ask anybody to tell you about the image of Japan and Fuji San will be among the first five things that they’ll mention, among other clichés such as samurai, ninjas and geishas. It is so important in the Japanese culture that it features in many pieces of art, from the traditional ukiyo-e of Katsushika Hokusai, to the distinctive technique of Yokoyama Taikan, and more modern appearances in many manga and anime, as well as TV shows, Mount Fuji is one place you have to visit during your trip to Japan.

With a height of 3776 meters, Mount Fuji is the highest mountain in Japan. An active volcano that had its last eruption around the year 1708, it is located in the border between the Yamanashi and Shizuoka prefectures, in the southwest of Tokyo. It was recently named a “World Cultural Heritage” site by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO); mainly because of its religious significance and

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Geisha

Geisha Maiko

In Kyoto, Geisha are actually referred to as geiko and maiko (apprentice geiko). With four hanamachi (‘flower town’) geiko/maiko districts and a larger population of them than anywhere else, geiko and maiko are the living face of Kyoto and in many ways represent the traditional culture and arts of the city itself. The Gion district, made famous internationally by such books as Memoirs of a Geisha and the film version, is the largest and most well known district in Japan. However, there are also lesser-known areas, such as Pontocho (parallel to the Kamogawa river between Sanjo and Shijo streets), Miyagawa Cho (south of Gion) and Kamishichiken (next to Kitano Tenmangu Shrine in the city’s west).

Though these districts remain primarily exclusive and closed-off to drop-in visitors, they have increasingly opened to outsiders. This process actually began more than 100 years ago, in order to avoid the decline of such districts when the nation’s capital was officially moved to Tokyo. From t

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Gundam Cafe

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Opened in 2010, the Gundam Café of Akihabara is the place to be for any fan of the meccha anime genre. If you want to know how it feels to be at the centre of the Gundam World, or just experience the Japanese fascination with the sci-fi subgenre of giant robots, the Gundam Café is the place to go. Every aspect of the venue has been adapted to resemble the Gundam world, from the design of the interior, to the uniforms of the staff. But it’s very important to emphasize that, although it resembles the atmosphere of the anime series, it has a very relaxing environment so, even if you are not a fan of the series, you can have a pleasant experience visiting the Gundam Café. Another good feature of this restaurant is that you are allowed to take pictures, something that is usually banned at similar venues in Japan.

The menu has been customized to relate to the world of Gundam, with dishes such as the “White Mobile Suit” or drinks like the “Jaburo Coffee.” After 5 pm you can drink one of th

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@Home Maid Café

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One thing that you must experience during your time in Japan is a visit to at least one of the many maid cafés that exist all around the country, especially, because the concept of kawaii (cute) that Japanese people have can be very different from the one you have at home, and more importantly, because you won’t be able to see this type restaurants anywhere outside Japan.

The @Home Maid Café is considered one of the best venues in Akihabara, and the favorite for tourists, as it is the only one that proudly advertises that it has English speaking staff. This is very important because when you enter a Maid Café, you are paying for the experience and for the interaction you’ll have with the “maids” (waitresses), so, unless you speak fluent Japanese, it is better to go to a place where you know you’ll be understood. The @Home Maide Café has two locations, the Main branch, located at the Mitsuwa building and the Donki store, located at the 5th floor of the Don Quijote building.

For ou

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