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New Japanese Law Asks More of Private Lodgings IndustryOkasaka Yasuhiro

A new law on minpaku (private lodgings) that came into effect in 2018 has had an immediate impact by leading home-sharing service Airbnb to delete 80% of its listings in Japan for not meeting standards. While minpaku is important for plugging the country’s accommodation gap amid rising tourism, proper compliance is necessary to ensure the safety and comfort of guests.
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Japan’s First Halal Hotel Opens Near Mount FujiŌtsuka Tomohiko

A newly opened hotel on the banks of Lake Kawaguchi near Mount Fuji is Japan’s first hotel designed specifically with Muslim travelers in mind. The Syariah Hotel Fujisan hopes its dedicated services and accommodations will draw more tourists from Islamic countries to the area.
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Baidu Survey Finds Why Chinese Tourists Visit Japan

Chinese tourists are flocking to Japan with sightseeing their main objective.
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Japan’s Ancient Giants: The Onset of Early SummerTakahashi Hiroshi

The Jōmon Sugi on Yakushima is Japan’s best-known giant of the forest. Around the country, however, there are numerous famous old-growth trees of varying species that present their own unique characteristics. In this installment of the series we look at three trees garbed in the lush, verdant foliage of early summer.
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2017 Visitor Spending Breaks the ¥4 Trillion Barrier

Foreign visitors to Japan in 2017 spent a total of ¥4.4 trillion while here, the highest-ever level. While this marks the fifth straight annual rise, the per capita figure has fallen for two years running. Can Japan hit its ¥8 trillion target for 2020?
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Japan Sees Fifth Straight Year of Record Visitor Numbers in 2017

Foreign visitors to Japan totaled 28.7 million in 2017, climbing 19.3% from 2016 and marking a record high for the fifth straight year. East Asian tourists dominate the rankings, pointing to the need to boost visitors from other parts of the globe.
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Custodian of the Cherries: Sixteenth-Generation Japanese Gardener Sano Tōemon

Master gardener Sano Tōemon has laid out and cared for countless Japanese gardens in Japan and overseas. The 90-year-old veteran landscaper is particularly revered for his knowledge of flowering cherries, earning him the honored title of sakuramori, guardian of the beloved trees. In this interview Sano shares his views of sakura, traditional landscape gardening, and cultural change in Japan.
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Snapshots with Creepy Creatures: Japanese Town Introduces “Yōkai” Benches (Japan in Photos)

Visitors to Fukusaki in Hyōgo Prefecture can snap selfies with creepy yōkai on seven new benches to be placed around the town. It is the birthplace of folklorist Yanagita Kunio (1875–1962), who gathered tales about supernatural creatures passed down through oral tradition. A first bench with the figure of a water-dwelling kappa was built outside Fukusaki Station last year. The new benches incl…
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Huis Ten Bosch Unveils Sphere-Shaped Aquatic Hotels (News)

Sasebo, Nagasaki Pref., March 7 (Jiji Press)—The operator of the Huis Ten Bosch theme park in Sasebo, Nagasaki Prefecture, southwestern Japan, unveiled what it claims to be the world's first movable sphere-shaped aquatic hotels on Tuesday. The operator, Huis Ten Bosch Inc., plans to offer overnight trips using the hotels, towing them with ships from the theme park to a nearby uninhabited island…
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A Golden Field of Flowers in the Heart of Tokyo (Japan in Photos)

Tourists stroll through a field of yellow canola flowers skirted by blossoming plum trees at Tokyo’s Hama-rikyū Gardens on March 4, 2018. Some 300,000 canola plants will be in bloom through the end of March. (© Jiji)
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