Japan National Tourism Organization

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The Japan National Tourism Organization (JNTO) is a government body whose aim is to promote Japan internationally as both a leisure and business travel destination. Consisting of offices around the world, JNTO is the ultimate resource for travel-related information on Japan. JNTO Sydney Office services Australia and New Zealand.

Services for travel trade:

  •  Marketing materials including: brochures, maps and posters
  • Video and slide image loans
  • Consultations
  • Assistance with tour development
  • Educational seminars and training
  • Agent familiarisation trips
  • Marketing support including joint advertising opportunities

Seasonal Attractions

SPRING
Cherry Blossoms

The blooming of the sakura symbolises the official start of spring. They are usually only in full bloom for around one week. The Japanese love to celebrate cherry blossoms during the limited flowering period and many people hold ‘flower watching’ parties known as hanami. You cannot travel to Japan in spring without appreciating the beauty of the sakura and experiencing a hanami party like the locals.

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SUMMER
Festivals & Fireworks

Summer is the season of fireworks. Almost every night, communities around Japan stage lively firework displays colourfully lighting up the night skies. Summer throughout Japan culminates with large scale festivals, many with folk dancing such as Bon odori.

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AUTUMN
Colours

Viewing the colourful autumn leaves, known as koyo, has been a popular activity in Japan for centuries. The Japanese travel all over the country to find the best spot to view the beauty of the stunning blend of yellow, orange and red leaves. The season lasts from September through to early November, depending on the weather and location.

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WINTER
Ski

The large amounts of snow that fall in Japan each year create conditions perfect for skiing, snowboarding and other winter activities. The most famous snow areas are Hokkaido, Nagano/Niigata and Tohoku. The Sapporo Snow Festival in Hokkaido is known world-wide as an event not to be missed. Various other snow and illumination events are held across the country during the winter season creating breath taking views in this winter wonderland. There is no better way to relax after a day on the slopes than relaxing in onsen.

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8 Reasons to Recommend Japan

1. Safe and clean – Tokyo ranked #1 and Osaka #3 in the Economist’s Safe Cities Index 2015, low crime rate, high standards of cleanliness and hygiene

2. Four seasons in a beautiful natural environment – from the iconic cherry blossoms, to lively summer festivals, red and gold leaves to powder snow, Japan is truly a destination that is beautiful year-round

3. Coexistence of traditional and modern – Japan is known for its industries and cutting-edge technology as well as 19 World Heritage sites, traditional performing arts, architecture and culture

4. Excellent choice of accommodations and food – from world-class 5-star hotels, traditional Japanese-style ryokan inns, to business hotels and youth hostels, Japan is a destination to suit any budget. Similarly, Japan may be home to the most Michelin-starred restaurants in the world but there’s no shortage of affordable restaurants to enjoy daily fare

5. Unique cultural experiences – dress up in kimono or as a ninja, make your own sushi, learn the art of tea ceremony or flower-arrangement

6. Short time-difference, easy access – Only 1 hour time-difference, so your customers will not experience any jet-lag when visiting Japan and good access from Australia (Direct flights from Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Cairns and the Gold Coast)

7. Advanced transportation network – most of Japan can be accessed by a high-speed rail network which connect major cities. The fastest trains, or shinkansen (bullet-trains) have set international standards for punctuality, speed and safety.

8. Excellent hospitality and high-level of customer service – travellers that visit Japan are most impressed by the level of customer service and warm hospitality they receive. In addition most Japanese citizens are polite and courteous to travellers.

Golden route & main cities

Tokyo:

Tokyo is the capital of Japan and one of the most populous cities in the world. There are a number of attractions in Tokyo that should not be missed. There are large-scale downtown areas, including Ginza where you can find famous shops from around the world; the sleepless Shinjuku that has become the “new city center of Tokyo”; Asakusa which is reminiscent of traditional Edo (the former name of Tokyo); and Shibuya which is home of fashion trends for young people. Other unique areas include the electrical city Akihabara, a dense retail area of electronic shops, and Tsukiji, an open-air wholesale fish market.

Kyoto:

The former capital of Japan, Kyoto is famous worldwide for its temples and shrines. Seventeen historic sites including Kiyomizu-dera temple and Nijo Castle, are inscribed as World Cultural Heritage Sites.
You may meet some maiko, young dancing entertainers, walking in the Gion District; see the townscape characterised with popular 19th century style latticework; or visit Nishijin where they weave traditional ‘Nishijin-ori’ textiles with vividly coloured threads. The three major festivals of Kyoto are the Aoi-matsuri festival in early summer, the Gion-matsuri festival in mid-summer and the Jidai-matsuri festival in autumn.

Hokkaido:

Hokkaido is Japan’s northern-most island and is a region with an abundance of natural beauty. It is popular in winter for snow-lovers from around the world due to its high-quality powder snow and festivals such as the Sapporo Snow Festival and Monbetsu Ice Floes Festival.

Osaka:

Osaka City is home to Osaka Castle, on a lawn park that stretches for about 60,000 square meters. In the north, the Umeda area has a gigantic underground mall that houses many restaurants, fashion stores and sundry goods. In the south, the Namba area is a popular business and shopping district and Dontonbori has many restaurants on both sides of the Dotonbori-gawa river. Tenpo-zan Harbour Village is also popular with its 112.5 meter-high ferris wheel, shopping mall and Kaiyukan Aquarium.

Hiroshima:

Hiroshima City is known to the world as a symbol of world peace. Here you will find the Hiroshima Atomic Bomb Dome (Genbaku Dome), which has been inscribed as a World Cultural Heritage Site, and the Peace Memorial Park.
Itsukushima-jinja, also a World Cultural Heritage Site, is located on Miyajima island. It is said to be one of the three most beautiful sights in Japan and is most famous for its floating torii gates.

Nagano:

In winter, ski resorts open in various locations throughout the prefecture, attracting many snow-lovers. Famous hot springs include Nozawa-onsen and Shibu-onsen, known for the monkeys that are often seen bathing in the rock baths at Jigokudani Wild Monkey Park. Other highlights include Zenko-ji temple in Nagano City, the city which hosted the 1998 Nagano Winter Olympics, as well as the cities of Ueda and Matsumoto, which prospered as castle towns.

Tips for travelling in Japan

  • Independent travellers should make use of the Japan Rail (JR) Pass, which allows unlimited travel on all JR trains and is available exclusively to tourists and available in 7, 14 or 21 consecutive days
  • Peak travel seasons are the New Year period (Dec 29 – Jan 3), Golden Week (Apr 29 – May 5), O-bon (a week centring on Aug 15) cherry blossoms (typically Mar 20 – Apr 7)
  • Book well in advance when travelling during peak seasons.
  • Tipping is not customary or required. The GST or VAT in Japan is 8%. A tax refund scheme is available for tourists and is provided as a discount on the spot (conditions apply).
  • Send luggage safely and efficiently throughout Japan using takkyubin (luggage forwarding service), which services most areas in Japan and can deliver bags by the next business day.
  • Not all ATMs in Japan accept foreign cards, but you can always use the ones at Japan Post Offices or Seven-Eleven Convenience stores (note: they have limited hours of operation)

Contact Details

Headquarters in Tokyo
10th Floor, Tokyo Kotsu Kaikan Building, 2-10-1 Yurakucho,
Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 100-0006 Japan
www.jnto.go.jp/eng/

Australia/New Zealand
Suite 1, Level 4, 56 Clarence Street, Sydney NSW 2000 Australia
Tel: +61 (02) 9279 2177
Fax: +61 (02) 9279 3166
Email: jntoinfo@jnto.org.au
Website: www.jnto.org.au
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/VisitJapanDownUnder


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