When I had the opportunity to travel back to my second hometown of Wakayama this spring, I made a point to ask around beforehand whether there were any homestays or farm-stays that might be available and settled on a brief stay at a guest house, or minshuku, called Hana-ichiban.
One of the most popular summer festivals, Tanabata is coming up fast. With a beautiful story behind it and widespread celebrations around Japan, it is time to get acquainted with the “Star Festival.”
Written by Austin Rettinhouse
Cherry blossoms, or sakura (桜), are arguably the most easily identifiable cultural symbol of Japan. However, to many in Japan, momiji (紅葉), or maple leaves, are just as culturally significant and an unmistakable marker signaling the start of autumn in Japan.