Travel, Teach, Live in Japan
Japan is a land known for technological advances and good food. Many people choose to visit Japan for vacations, contributing to Japan’s tourism market. Tourism in Japan is often done for shopping, historical purposes or to get a feel of the country so observed from television and movies. A wide array of attractions within Japan bring in visitors from all over the world.
As of May 2010, inbound tourism to Japan has experienced a 32 percent increase, according to the Japan Tourism Marketing Company. This comes on the heels of a sharp dip in tourism to Japan in 2009. The majority of the tourists to Japan come from other Asian countries. Korea makes up the majority of the tourists to Japan, with China coming in second. Other areas with lots of citizens visiting Japan include Taiwan, the U.S., Hong Kong and Thailand.
As with many places, Japan has particular times of the year in which tourism spikes and lots of people come into the country. The end of the year through the New Year’s holiday is one such peak, from Dec. 29 to Jan. 3, according to the Japan National Tourism Organization. Golden Week and the corresponding weekends, from April 29 until May 5, bring in lots of tourists to Japan. The week surrounding Aug. 15 is popular as well, as it corresponds with Bon festival season.
When tourists come into Japan, the vast majority stay centered around Tokyo. The website Real Travel lists the top tourist destinations in Japan, with Tokyo resting in the top position. Aside from Tokyo, travelers to Japan frequent cities such as Kyoto, Osaka and Yokohama. The site of the devastating World War II bombing, Hiroshima, is also a popular spot for tourists.
Because so many tourists choose to go to Tokyo for their Japanese vacation, a large number of the top attractions within Japan are located in Tokyo. MSNBC ranks the top tourist attraction within Japan as the Shinjuku district, an area in Tokyo known for tall skyscrapers and a strong shopping district. Another popular area in Tokyo is the Ginza neighborhood, famed for its extensive shopping. Osaka Castle in Osaka draws lots of tourists as well. Other tourists opt to visit the meditation gardens of Kyoto.
In addition to the tourism market, Japan also keeps track of where its citizens are choosing to visit. The number of Japanese tourists traveling abroad has had a 24 percent surge as of May 2010. As with inbound tourism, outbound tourism is primarily centered around Asian countries; most Japanese tourists flock to Korea and China, according to the Japan Tourism Marketing Company. Other popular destinations for Japanese citizens to visit include France, the U.S., Hong Kong and Taiwan.