Japanese Makeup Shopping • A Trip to Kamakura & Enoshima With Canmake’s Cool-Toned Summer Makeup

This article contains sponsored content.

  • X
  • line

This summer we’re headed to Kamakura and Enoshima to soak up the retro Japanese vibes, and we’re bringing our makeup bag full of Canmake’s refreshing summer cool-toned cosmetics with us!

A Summer Trip to Kamakura & Enoshima with Cool Canmake Cosmetics Recommendations

Planning a summer vacation in Japan? From the countryside to the big city, there are plenty of places to make the most of the summer in Japan, but the combined Kamakura and Enoshima area is one of the most popular summer destinations near Tokyo. The long coastline offers a refreshing sea breeze, and between nostalgic backdrops from classic Japanese anime series and all the little side streets, there are plenty of places to pose for cute pictures. Of course, as pretty as the summer weather might look in pictures, we all know that the shining sun and humid weather can really do a number on your makeup – before you know it you’re oily and sweaty, and your whole summer look is getting a little bedraggled.

So, what are the best ways to look cute and feel comfortable in Japan’s humid summer heat? Today we’re teaming up with Canmake for our trip to the seaside, with Japanese makeup recommendations that will keep you feeling fresh and looking your best despite the weather, along with a few of our favorite sightseeing spots in Kamakura and Enoshima. To go with the region’s refreshing summer vibes, we’ll be focusing especially on the best Japanese cosmetics for cool-toned summers (do you know your season?), so get your shopping list and your Japan trip itinerary ready for some new recommendations!

This Summer’s Secret to Smooth Skin & UV Protection

Mermaid Skin Gel UV [C03] Pure Purple

Illuminating Finish Powder ~Abloom~ [01] Hydrangea Garden

If you’ve been paying attention to the skincare scene in recent years, then you know that sunscreen is a daily essential, and an important tool for protecting delicate face skin from strong UV rays 365 days a year. But it’s never more important than on sunny summer days spent out and about in Japan! Canmake has been working on improving the texture and the white cast of their sunscreens, and the results can be seen in their Mermaid Skin Gel UV in [C03] Pure Purple, which glides on like water and brightens skin with subtle lavender undertones. The SPF50+・PA++++ formula offers a high UV protection factor, and the niacinamide moisturizes skin while providing extra brightening power, making the product a great base to use under makeup!

In past years Canmake’s Marshmallow Finish Powder has gone viral in Japan and beyond, and their new summer ’24 product Illuminating Finish Powder ~Abloom~ offers a similar formula with added pearlescence to give the skin a radiant sheen. The first colorway, [01] Hydrangea Garden, is a combination of cool tones that look especially good on cool-toned summers. If you’ve ever worried about powder leaving your makeup looking dull and dusty, then the pearly finish of this powder might make it the perfect last step, adding a glow while working to cut down on oily shine. (We’ll get to the Oil Block Mineral Powder, also in the photo above, in a minute!)

Now that we’re protected from the sun’s UV rays, and our skin is looking smoother than ever, where should this Kamakura trip begin? You’ll certainly be glad for that UV protection on the beautiful Shichirigahama Beach, where the bright blue sea screams summer, and surfers cut through the white-tipped waves while the Enoden train line sets the scene as it traces a path along the coastline. This picturesque beach is not only beautiful all on its own, but on clear days, you can even see Mt. Fuji in the distance across the water. In modern days, the picture-perfect landscape is frequently used as a setting for Japanese movies and TV shows, but even back in the Edo era (1603-1868) the Shichirigahama area was used as material for beautiful ukiyo-e prints. Get all dolled up, and you too can use this gorgeous backdrop to take some amazing pictures!

Shichirigahama Beach (七里ヶ浜)
2-1 Shichirigahamahigashi, Kamakura, Kanagawa

Oil Block Mineral Powder [01] Clear

If you like the feel of loose powder, Canmake’s Oil Block Mineral Powder in [01] Clear offers a silky transparent finish, making it a great tool for keeping oil at bay on hot summer days. The little plastic pot is compact and lightweight, so it’s easy to carry with you for touchups on the go, keeping your skin velvety smooth all day long.

With your makeup touched up and looking fresh, it’s time to see another of Kamakura’s most famous spots: Kamakurakoko-mae Station. This run-of-the-mill Enoden Line train station in front of Kamakura High School has become an iconic sightseeing destination thanks to the smash-hit sports anime Slam Dunk, a dramatic basketball-themed saga that captured hearts all around the world in the 1990s. Slam Dunk’s main characters were written students of the very real Kamakura High School, and so the anime’s opening sequence included a poignant shot of the characters standing near the very real Kamakurakoko-mae Station. If you too can appreciate the nostalgia of classic Japanese anime and manga from decades past, then you might want to join the other fans who stop by this spot to take a picture as the train passes by.

Kamakurakoko-mae Station (鎌倉高校前駅)
1-1 Koshigoe, Kamakura, Kanagawa

Give Your Brows the Glow-Up They Deserve

Concealer Brow Mascara [01] Pink Beige

Mix Eyebrow Color [C01] Charm Pink, [C02] Jealousy Purple

Brow makeup usually comes in a subtle palette of browns and beiges, but Canmake offers a more colorful spectrum of products to help you put together bright, fun looks all summer long. First, brush their Concealer Brow Mascara onto the brows to give them a cute beige-y pink color. Then, try using the brow concealer as a base under the Mix Eyebrow Color for a more even, vibrant application of this dimensional multi-color powder! This blendable eyebrow product can be used to create looks that are more natural, or more interesting and unique. For cool-toned summers the [C02] Jealousy Purple palette a great choice, whereas those with more warm-toned skin might find that the coral shades of the [C01] Charm Pink palette really suit their skin tone.

Essentials for a Fresh Eye Look

Silky Souffle Eyes (Matte Type) [M07] Tutu Ballerina, [M06] Lima Greige

The Japanese makeup scene is known for sweet, shimmery eye looks, but Canmake’s Silky Soufflé Eyes (Matte Type) shadows are popular instead for their subtle translucent matte effect, which builds and blends so well it feels like it’s melting into your skin. The newest palette, [M07] Tutu Ballerina, contains four versatile colors in shades that go great with cool-toned skin: a range of dusky pinks and browns plus a sleek pink pearl for a little boost of shimmer. If you like subtle pink shadows, you’ll definitely find plenty of uses for this little palette! But if you tend to reach for more toned-down shades, then you’ll want to check out the [M06] Lima Greige palette instead, which has a selection of pinkish-greige colors that go well with a wide range of skin tones.

Creamy Touch Liner [01] Deep Black, [03] Dark Brown

Quick Lash Curler [BK] Black

A full eye look isn’t complete without a good lick of eyeliner to bring out the eyes, but with the heat of summer comes humidity, oily lids, and the curse of smudgy eyeliner going everywhere it’s not supposed to. If you want a product that won’t budge (until you want it to), Canmake’s Creamy Touch Liner goes on like butter but stays where you want it, making it especially useful on steamy summer days. Despite being a pencil liner, this product is made with a thin core that only measures 1.5 mm across, so sleek lines and sharp wings aren’t a problem. The Creamy Touch Liner comes in a variety of shades to fit different skin tones (including cool summers) and match different moods, but our favorites are [01] Deep Black for a bolder look and [03] Dark Brown for a softer effect.

When it comes to lashes, Canmake’s Quick Lash Color is an all-in-one triple threat, and each stroke acts as a mascara with a base and top coat! This waterproof mascara holds on tight even when it’s up against water (maybe a swim in the ocean off Kamakura) or dealing with the natural oils in your eyelid, and its special curling effect helps lashes stand up proud even on sweltering summer days. We especially appreciate the rubbery brush that makes the mascara easy to apply even on the lower lashes, without getting it all over your lower eyelid. The basic [BK] Black shade is an everyday essential that gives every eyelash a boost, no matter your complexion.

Let Your Cheeks Shine With Three of Canmake’s Hottest Blushes

Glow Fleur Cheeks (Blend Type) [B03] Lavender Dream

Powder Cheeks [P02] Little Shy Pink

Cream Cheek (Pearl Type) [P02] Rose Petal

When it comes to Japanese makeup trends for the cheeks these days, no look can do without a shimmery blush that includes a touch of highlight to bring out the skin’s inner glow! So if you want to try out Japan’s hottest blush trends, we’ve got three Canmake products to help you achieve the look.

Glow Fleur Cheeks (Blend Type) in the color [B03] Lavender Dream is a collection of different blushes all in one, with normal matte blush powder in cool lavender and pink tones, along with a shimmery touch of blush-highlight to make it super on-trend in Japan. The Powder Cheeks blush in [P02] Little Shy Pink, on the other hand, is a beloved Canmake product with a new look (it now comes pressed into a cute heart shape), and the touch of pearlescent shimmer in this cool tone makes it a solid basic for your cheeks. If you want to achieve a more sophisticated look, you might prefer the subtle sparkle of Cream Cheek (Pearl Type) in the more muted pink color of [P02] Rose Petal.

Now that our cheeks have that fresh summer glow (while still being well-protected from the UV rays), we’re heading over the bridge to the off-shore island of Enoshima for all of its unique sightseeing destinations. Enoshima’s main attraction is Enoshima Shrine, which is divided into three halls: the Hetsumiya, Nakatsumiya, and Okutsumiya. As long as you’re respectful of your surroundings, there’s nothing wrong with taking pictures at Shinto shrines in Japan, so this whole area is a great place to take some cute selfies! In the market streets below the shrine you can also get some fun local snacks to nibble on… or to use as photo props for the perfect snapshot, to set off the shimmer on your cheeks. “Takosenbei” is a local Enoshima specialty – a kind of rice cracker with octopus inside, pressed and toasted to a crisp – and whether you take a picture or not, it’s a savory umami bomb you won’t forget anytime soon.

Enoshima Shrine (江島神社)
2-3-8 Enoshima, Fujisawa, Kanagawa
Hours: 8:30 – 17:00

The #1 Spot on Your Japanese Makeup Shopping List: Lip Plumping Tints

Muchi Puru Tint [05] Fig Puree, [06] Raspberry Cake

If you’ve shopped for Japanese drugstore cosmetics before, you’ve probably run into Canmake’s famous Muchi Puru Tint at one point or another, because this glossy lipstick hydrates while creating the effect of lusciously plump lips. If you wanted to try it out but were disappointed by the warm slant of most of the colors so far, then you’ll be excited to hear about the latest shade, a cool-toned pink perfect for summers called [06] Raspberry Cake. For a more relaxed look, the muted tones of [05] Fig Puree make it another good choice!

The tinted formula of the Muchi Puru Tint means that you’ll still have a pretty hint of color on the lips even while eating and drinking, so now we’re all ready to check out our last destination in Kamakura! Cafe Yoridocoro is a cute little cafe in an amazing location, located literally right up against the Enoden train tracks. The menu includes cafe drinks and a selection of sweets, but their most famous offering is their TKG (AKA tamago-kake gohan/卵かけご飯), which is a bowl of rice topped with fluffy raw egg whipped into a cloud. This heavenly example of Japanese home cooking can be enjoyed by the window as you watch the train run past, shockingly close by. And if the salty sea breeze has your lips feeling a little dry at the end of the day, then all you need is another swipe of moisturizing Muchi Puru Tint to keep your lips happy and hydrated!

Cafe Yoridokoro (カフェ ヨリドコロ)
1-12-16 Inamuragasaki, Kamakura, Kanagawa
Hours: 7:00 – 18:00 (closed Tuesdays)
Official Website (en)

Pack All Your New Summer Essentials in One Makeup Pouch!

On this summer trip to Kamakura and Enoshima, the Japankuru team was in charge of finding the best sightseeing spots, and Canmake helped us find the perfect products for a full face of cool-toned summer makeup that would actually stay fun and fresh for all our photos, even in the face of Japan’s humid summer weather. For us, one of the best things about all these new Canmake cosmetics was seeing how cute and compact they all are, since that made it especially easy to tote them around as we saw the sights and relaxed by the beach (well-protected from the sun’s powerful UV rays, of course)! If you’re looking to put your everyday makeup bag on a diet, Canmake can certainly help. There’s no better time to take lots of pictures than during your summer trip to Japan. And with products that are easily available across Japan, and conveniently versatile for all your freshest looks, it wouldn’t hurt to a little burst of color to your summer with Canmake!

For more info and updates from Japan, check Japankuru for new articles, and don’t forget to follow us on X (Twitter), Instagram, and Facebook!


Follow us @Japankuru on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter!

  • facebook
  • line


Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments



⚔️The Robot Restaurant is gone, but the Samurai Restaurant is here to take its place. Check it out, and don't forget your coupon!
🍣신주쿠의 명소 로봇 레스토랑이 사무라이 레스토랑으로 부활! 절찬 쿠폰 발급중
#tokyo #shinjuku #samurairestaurant #robotrestaurant #tokyotrip #도쿄여행 #신주쿠 #사무라이레스토랑 #이색체험 #할인이벤트 #歌舞伎町 #東京景點 #武士餐廳 #日本表演 #日本文化體驗 #japankuru #japantrip #japantravel #japanlovers #japan_of_insta

⚔️The Robot Restaurant is gone, but the Samurai Restaurant is here to take its place. Check it out, and don't forget your coupon! 🍣신주쿠의 명소 로봇 레스토랑이 사무라이 레스토랑으로 부활! 절찬 쿠폰 발급중 💃18歲以上才能入場的歌舞秀,和你想的不一樣!拿好優惠券去看看~ #tokyo #shinjuku #samurairestaurant #robotrestaurant #tokyotrip #도쿄여행 #신주쿠 #사무라이레스토랑 #이색체험 #할인이벤트 #歌舞伎町 #東京景點 #武士餐廳 #日本表演 #日本文化體驗 #japankuru #japantrip #japantravel #japanlovers #japan_of_insta

Japanese appliance & electronics shopping with our KOJIMA x BicCamera coupon!
用JAPANKURU的KOJIMA x BicCamera優惠券買這些正好❤️
코지마 x 빅 카메라 쿠폰으로 일본 가전 제품 쇼핑하기

#pr #japankuru #japanshopping #kojima #biccamera #japaneseskincare #yaman #dji #osmopocket3 #skincaredevice #日本購物 #美容儀 #相機 #雅萌 #日本家電 #일본여행 #면세 #여행꿀팁 #일본쇼핑리스트 #쿠폰 #일본쇼핑 #일본브랜드 #할인 #코지마 #빅카메라 #japankurucoupon

Japanese appliance & electronics shopping with our KOJIMA x BicCamera coupon! 用JAPANKURU的KOJIMA x BicCamera優惠券買這些正好❤️ 코지마 x 빅 카메라 쿠폰으로 일본 가전 제품 쇼핑하기 #pr #japankuru #japanshopping #kojima #biccamera #japaneseskincare #yaman #dji #osmopocket3 #skincaredevice #日本購物 #美容儀 #相機 #雅萌 #日本家電 #일본여행 #면세 #여행꿀팁 #일본쇼핑리스트 #쿠폰 #일본쇼핑 #일본브랜드 #할인 #코지마 #빅카메라 #japankurucoupon

Which snacks make the best Japanese souvenirs?~ Jaga Pirika ~
일본과자 선물 뭐하지?~자가피리카 편~
#pr #calbee #jagapokkuru #japanesesnacks #japanesefood #japanesesouvenir #japantravel #japantrip #naritaairport #hokkaido #나리타국제공항 #일본여행선물 #흔하지않은기념품 #일본쇼핑리스트 #일본과자추천 #고구마과자 #일본간식추천 #일본면세점쇼핑 #개별포장 #일본감자칩 #도쿄나리타공항면세점 #현지인추천 #일본여행 #일본기념품리스트 #자가포쿠루 #자가피리카

Which snacks make the best Japanese souvenirs?~ Jaga Pirika ~ 일본과자 선물 뭐하지?~자가피리카 편~ #pr #calbee #jagapokkuru #japanesesnacks #japanesefood #japanesesouvenir #japantravel #japantrip #naritaairport #hokkaido #나리타국제공항 #일본여행선물 #흔하지않은기념품 #일본쇼핑리스트 #일본과자추천 #고구마과자 #일본간식추천 #일본면세점쇼핑 #개별포장 #일본감자칩 #도쿄나리타공항면세점 #현지인추천 #일본여행 #일본기념품리스트 #자가포쿠루 #자가피리카

Niki Golf offers a huge selection of new and used golf gear in Ueno, Tokyo. Between the weak yen and the shop's willingness to haggle, there's never been a better time for beginners or seasoned experts to pick up some clubs, golf wear, or limited-edition Japanese golf equipment!
#ueno #nikigolf #golfshopping #golfgear #🏌️ #golflife #golf #golftips #golfjapan #jpangolf #golfclub #honma #ameyoko #二木ゴルフ #二木ゴルフアメ横本店 #nikigolfameyoko #tokyo #tokyotrip #tokyoshopping #japantrip #japantravel #japanlovers #japan_of_insta #japankuru #pr

Niki Golf offers a huge selection of new and used golf gear in Ueno, Tokyo. Between the weak yen and the shop's willingness to haggle, there's never been a better time for beginners or seasoned experts to pick up some clubs, golf wear, or limited-edition Japanese golf equipment! #ueno #nikigolf #golfshopping #golfgear #🏌️ #golflife #golf #golftips #golfjapan #jpangolf #golfclub #honma #ameyoko #二木ゴルフ #二木ゴルフアメ横本店 #nikigolfameyoko #tokyo #tokyotrip #tokyoshopping #japantrip #japantravel #japanlovers #japan_of_insta #japankuru #pr

Odaiba's DiverCity Tokyo Plaza is home to the famous real-size 20m-tall Unicorn Gundam, and the popular shopping center has even more Gundam on the inside! Check out the Gundam Base Tokyo on the 7th floor for shelves upon shelves of Gunpla, and the Gundam Base Tokyo Annex on the 2nd floor for cool anime merchandise. Both shops have tons of limited-edition items!
#pr #odaiba #tokyo #tokyotrip #japantrip #japantravel #PR #divercity #divercitytokyoplaza #tokyoshopping #gundam #unicorngundam #gundambasetokyo #anime #otaku #gunpla #japankuru #오다이바 #다이바시티도쿄 #오다이바건담 #건담 #일본건담 #건프라 #건담베이스도쿄

Odaiba's DiverCity Tokyo Plaza is home to the famous real-size 20m-tall Unicorn Gundam, and the popular shopping center has even more Gundam on the inside! Check out the Gundam Base Tokyo on the 7th floor for shelves upon shelves of Gunpla, and the Gundam Base Tokyo Annex on the 2nd floor for cool anime merchandise. Both shops have tons of limited-edition items! #pr #odaiba #tokyo #tokyotrip #japantrip #japantravel #PR #divercity #divercitytokyoplaza #tokyoshopping #gundam #unicorngundam #gundambasetokyo #anime #otaku #gunpla #japankuru #오다이바 #다이바시티도쿄 #오다이바건담 #건담 #일본건담 #건프라 #건담베이스도쿄





      VIEW MORE →

      Hokkaido (北海道) is the northernmost of the four main islands that make up Japan. The area is famous for Sapporo Beer, plus brewing and distilling in general, along with fantastic snow festivals and breathtaking national parks. Foodies should look for Hokkaido's famous potatoes, cantaloupe, dairy products, soup curry, and miso ramen!

    • Niki, in south-west Hokkaido, is about 30 minutes from Otaru. The small town is rich with natural resources, fresh water, and clean air, making it a thriving center for fruit farms. Cherries, tomatoes, and grapes are all cultivated in the area, and thanks to a growing local wine industry, it's quickly becoming a food and wine hotspot. Together with the neighboring town of Yoichi, it's a noted area for wine tourism.

    • Niseko is about two hours from New Chitose Airport, in the western part of Hokkaido. It's one of Japan's most noted winter resort areas, and a frequent destination for international visitors. That's all because of the super high-quality powder snow, which wins the hearts of beginners and experts alike, bringing them back for repeat visits. That's not all, though, it's also a great place to enjoy Hokkaido's culinary scene and some beautiful onsen (hot springs).

    • Otaru is in western Hokkaido, about 30 minutes from Sapporo Station. The city thrived around its busy harbor in the 19th and 20th centuries thanks to active trade and fishing, and the buildings remaining from that period are still popular attractions, centered around Otaru Canal. With its history as a center of fishing, it's no surprise that the area's fresh sushi is a must-try. Otaru has over 100 sushi shops, quite a few of which are lined up on Sushiya Dori (Sushi Street).


      VIEW MORE →

      Sapporo, in the south-western part of Hokkaido, is the prefecture's political and economic capital. The local New Chitose Airport see arrivals from major cities like Tokyo and Osaka, alongside international flights. Every February, the Sapporo Snow Festival is held in Odori Park―one of the biggest events in Hokkaido. It's also a hotspot for great food, known as a culinary treasure chest, and Sapporo is a destination for ramen, grilled mutton, soup curry, and of course Hokkaido's beloved seafood.

    • Consisting of six prefectures, the Tohoku Region (東北地方) is up in the northeastern part of Japan's main island. It's the source of plenty of the nation's agriculture (which means great food), and packed with beautiful scenery. Explore the region's stunning mountains, lakes, and hot springs!

    • Akita Prefecture is on the Sea of Japan, in the northern reaches of Japan's northern Tohoku region. Akita has more officially registered important intangible culture assets than anywhere else in Japan, and to this day visitors can experience traditional culture throughout the prefecture, from the Oga Peninsula's Namahage (registered with UNESCO as a part of Japan's intangible cultural heritage), to the Tohoku top 3 Kanto Festival. Mysterious little spots like the Oyu Stone Circle Site and Ryu no Atama (Dragon's Head) are also worth a visit!


      VIEW MORE →

      Fukushima Prefecture sits at the southern tip of Japan's northern Tohoku region, and is divided into three parts with their own different charms: the Coastal Area (Hama-dori), the Central Area (Naka-dori), and the Aizu Area. There's Aizu-Wakamatsu with its Edo-era history and medieval castles, Oze National Park, Kitakata ramen, and Bandai Ski Resort (with its famous powder snow). Fukushima is a beautiful place to enjoy the vivid colors and sightseeing of Japan's beloved four seasons.


      VIEW MORE →

      Yamagata Prefecture is up against the Sea of Japan, in the southern part of the Tohoku region, and it's especially popular in winter, when travelers soak in the onsen (hot springs) and ski down snowy slopes. International skiiers are especially fond of Zao Onsen Ski Resort and Gassan Ski Resort, and in recent years visitors have been drawn to the area to see the mystical sight of local frost-covered trees. Some destinations are popular regardless of the season, like Risshakuji Temple, AKA Yamadera, Ginzan Onsen's nostalgic old-fashioned streets, and Zao's Okama Lake, all great for taking pictures. Yamagata is also the place to try Yonezawa beef, one of the top 3 varieties of wagyu beef.

    • Japan's most densely populated area, the Kanto Region (関東地方) includes 7 prefectures: Gunma, Tochigi, Ibaraki, Saitama, Tokyo, Chiba, and Kanagawa, which means it also contains the Tokyo Metropolitan Area. In modern-day Japan, Kanto is the cultural, political, and economic heartland of the country, and each prefecture offers something a little different from its neighbors.

    • Gunma Prefecture is easily accessible from Tokyo, and in addition to the area's popular natural attractions like Oze Marshland and Fukiware Falls, Gunma also has a number of popular hot springs (Kusatsu, Ikaho, Minakami, Shima)―it's even called an Onsen Kingdom. The prefecture is popular with history buffs and train lovers, thanks to spots like world heritage site Tomioka Silk Mill, the historic Megane-bashi Bridge, and the Watarase Keikoku Sightseeing Railway.


      VIEW MORE →

      Tochigi Prefecture's capital is Utsunomiya, known for famous gyoza, and just an hour from Tokyo. The prefecture is full of nature-related sightseeing opportunities year-round, from the blooming of spring flowers to color fall foliage. Tochigi also has plenty of extremely well-known sightseeing destinations, like World Heritage Site Nikko Toshogu Shrine, Lake Chuzenji, and Ashikaga Flower Park―famous for expansive wisteria trellises. In recent years the mountain resort town of Nasu has also become a popular excursion, thanks in part to the local imperial villa. Tochigi is a beautiful place to enjoy the world around you.

    • Tokyo (東京) is Japan's busy capital, and the most populous metropolitan area in the world. While the city as a whole is quite modern, crowded with skyscrapers and bustling crowds, Tokyo also holds onto its traditional side in places like the Imperial Palace and Asakusa neighborhood. It's one of the world's top cities when it comes to culture, the arts, fashion, games, high-tech industries, transportation, and more.

    • The Chubu Region (中部地方) is located right in the center of Japan's main island, and consists of 9 prefectures: Aichi, Fukui, Gifu, Ishikawa, Nagano, Niigata, Shizuoka, Toyama, and Yamanashi. It's primarily famous for its mountains, as the region contains both Mt. Fuji and the Japanese Alps. The ski resorts in Niigata and Nagano also draw visitors from around the world, making it a popular winter destination.

    • Nagano Prefecture's popularity starts with a wealth of historic treasures, like Matsumoto Castle, Zenkoji Temple, and Togakushi Shrine, but the highlight might just be the prefecture's natural vistas surrounded by the "Japanese Alps." Nagano's fruit is famous, and there are plenty of places to pick it fresh, and the area is full of hot springs, including Jigokudani Monkey Park―where monkeys take baths as well! Thanks to the construction of the Hokuriku shinkansen line, Nagano is easily reachable from the Tokyo area, adding it to plenty of travel itineraries. And after the 1998 Nagano Winter Olympics, ski resorts like Hakuba and Shiga Kogen are known around the world.

    • Aichi Prefecture sits in the center of the Japanese islands, and its capital city, Nagoya, is a center of politics, commerce, and culture. While Aichi is home to major industry, and is even the birthplace of Toyota cars, it's proximity to the sea and the mountains means it's also a place with beautiful natural scenery, like Saku Island, Koijigahama Beach, Mt. Horaiji. Often used a stage for major battles in Japanese history, Sengoku era commanders like Oda Nobunaga, Toyotomi Hideyoshi, and Tokugawa Ieyasu left their own footprints on Aichi, and historic buildings like Nagoya Castle, Inuyama Castle, and those in Meiji Mura are still around to tell the tale.


      VIEW MORE →

      Niigata is a prefecture on Japan's main island of Honshu, situated right on the coast of the Sea of Japan, and abundant with the gifts of nature. It's known for popular ski resorts such as Echigo-Yuzawa, Japanese national parks, and natural hot spring baths, plus local products like fresh seafood, rice, and sake. Visitors often spend time in the prefectural capital, Niigata City, or venture across the water to Sado Island.


      VIEW MORE →

      Shizuoka Prefecture is sandwiched between eastern and western Japan, giving the prefecture easy access to both Tokyo and Osaka. Not only is it known for beautiful natural attractions, with everything from Mount Fuji to Suruga Bay, Lake Hamanako, and Sumata Pass―Shizuoka's Izu Peninsula is known as a go-to spot for hot springs lovers, with famous onsen like Atami, Ito, Shimoda, Shuzenji, and Dogashima. Shizuoka attracts all kinds of travelers thanks to historic connections with the Tokugawa clan, the Oigawa Railway, fresh eel cuisine, Hamamatsu gyoza, and famously high-quality green tea.

    • Kansai (関西) is a region that includes Mie, Nara, Wakayama, Kyoto, Osaka, Hyogo, and Shiga Prefectures. Kansai contained Japan's ancient capital for hundreds of years, and it's making a comeback as one of the most popular parts of Japan. Kyoto's temples and shrines, Osaka Castle, and the deer of Nara are all considered must-sees. Plus, the people of Kansai are especially friendly, making it a fun place to hang out.

    • Kyoto flourished as the capital of Japan between the years 794 and 1100, becoming a center for poilitics and culture, and to this day it's a great place for close encounters with Japanese history. The cobbled streets of Gion, the atmospheric road to Kiyomizudera Temple, Kinkakuji's golden walls and countless historic attractions, even Arashiyama's Togetsukyo Bridge―Kyoto is a place of many attractions. With new charms to experience throughout the seasons, travelers can't stop themselves from returning again and again.

    • Nara Prefecture's important history reaches back to 710, a time now called the Nara era, when it was once capital of Japan. Called "Heijo-kyo" during its time as a capital, it's said that nara was once the end of the silk road, leading it to flourish as a uniquely international region and produce important cultural properties of all kinds. To make the most of each season, travelers head to Nara Park, where the Nara deer who wander freely, or climb Mount Yoshino, a famous cherry blossom spot.

    • Osaka is known for friendly (and funny) people, but its history is nothing to laugh at, playing a major part in Toyotomi Hideyoshi's 16th century unification of Japan. Thanks to long years of economic activity, it's one of Japan's biggest cities, and Osaka's popular food culture earned it the nickname "The Kitchen of the Nation." To this day Osaka is the model of western Japan, and alongside historic structures like Osaka Castle, it also has major shopping malls like Umeda's Grand Front Osaka and Tennoji's Abeno Harukas. Osaka is a place to eat, eat, eat, with local specialties like takoyaki, okonomiyaki, and kushi-katsu, and for extra fun, it's home to Universal Studios Japan.


      VIEW MORE →

      The Chugoku Region (中国地方) consists of five prefectures: Hiroshima, Okayama, Shimane, Tottori, and Yamaguchi. In Chugoku you’ll find the sand dunes of Tottori, and Hiroshima’s atomic bomb site, plus centers of ancient history like Grand Shrine of Izumo.


      VIEW MORE →

      Hiroshima Prefecture has everything, from world heritage sites to beautiful nature and delicious local cuisine, and it's either an hour and a half from Tokyo by plane, or four hours by train. Itsukushima Shrine on Miyajima Island and the Atomic Bomb Dome, two Hiroshima UNESCO sites, are famous around the world, but in Japan it's also famous for food. Seafood from the Seto Inland Sea, especially oysters, Hiroshima-style okonomiyaki, and Setouchi lemons are all popular, and the natural scenery alone is worth seeing.


      VIEW MORE →

      On the other side of the Seto Inland Sea opposite Japan’s main island, Shikoku (四国) is a region made up of four prefectures: Ehime, Kagawa, Kochi, and Tokushima. The area is famous for its udon (in Kagawa), and the beautiful Dogo Onsen hot springs (in Ehime).

    • Kagawa Prefecture is on the northern part of the island of Shikoku, facing Japan's main island and the Seto Inland Sea. It's known for being the smallest prefecture in Japan, by area, but at the same time Kagawa is called the "Udon Prefecture" thanks to its famous sanuki udon. Aside from Kotohiragu Shrine and Ritsurin Garden, the prefecture's small islands are popular, and Kagawa is full of unique destinations, like Angel Road. They say that if you lay eyes on Zenigata Sunae, a huge Kagawa sand painting, you'll never have money troubles ever again.

    • Located in the most southwestern part of Japan, Kyushu (九州) is an island of 7 prefectures: Fukuoka, Saga, Nagasaki, Kumamoto, Oita, Miyazaki, and Kagoshima. The island's unique culture has been influenced by Chinese and Dutch trade, along with missionaries coming in through Nagasaki's port. Modern-day travelers love the lush natural scenery and fresh food, plus the natural hot springs found all throughout the area (thanks to volcanic activity)!


      VIEW MORE →

      Fukuoka Prefecture has the highest population on the southern island of Kyushu, with two major cities: Fukuoka and Kitakyushu. Thanks to growing transportation networks, Fukuoka is more accessible than ever, and so are the many local attractions. On top of historical spots like Dazaifu Tenmangu Shrine, travelers shouldn't miss Fukuoka's food scene, with motsu nabe (offal hotpot), mentaiko (spicy cod roe), and famous Hakata ramen―best eaten from a food stall in the Nakasu area of Hakata. Plus, it's full of all sorts of destinations for travelers, like trendy shopping centers, and the beautiful nature of Itoshima and Yanagawa.


      VIEW MORE →

      Kagoshima Prefecture played a major role in Japan's modernization as a backdrop for famous historical figures like samurais Saigo Takamori and Okubo Toshimichi, who pushed Japan out of the Edo era and into the Meiji. Because of that, Sengan-en Garden is just one of many historical destinations, and when it comes to attractions Kagoshima has plenty: the active volcano of Sakurajima, popular hot springs Ibusuki Onsen and Kirishima Onsen, World Heritage Site Yakushima Island, even what Japan calls the "island closest to heaven," Amami Oshima. Kagoshima might be found on the very southernmost tip of the southern island of Kyushu, but there's plenty to see.


      VIEW MORE →

      The island chain of Okinawa (沖縄) makes up the southernmost tip of Japan, which is why it's also the most tropical area in the country. Thanks to a history of independence and totally distinct political and cultural events, Okinawa has a unique culture, and remnants of the Ryukyu Kingdom are still visible all over the islands. Food, language, traditional dress, it's all a little different! It's also said to be the birthplace of karate.