Japan Travel Newsletter

Japan Week: Cherry Blossom Centennial Celebration

Featured HighlightFrom March 1st - March 11th, New York City celebrated Japan Week with a plethora of Japan related events to commemorate the 100th anniversary of Japan's gift of cherry trees to the United States as a symbol of friendship, as well as the one-year anniversary of the tragic earthquake and tsunami that struck northeastern Japan.

Message from JNTO   Destination TOHOKU Campaign   Is Japan Cool?

Now that exactly one year has been passed since the 3.11 earthquake and tsunami in Tohoku region, we would like to express our utmost gratitude for the people and the countries who have supported us on many levels over the past year from all over the world. As a result...
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After the heartbreak of the 2011 tragedy, the Tohoku area has rebounded with astonishing resiliency, to once again become a prime tourist destination. Through the Destination Tohoku Campaign, we would like to invite our friends from all over the world to come and spend some quality time with us, and enjoy all that we have to offer...More Info >>


Is Japan Cool? That's a good question. Why don't you take a look at ANA's "Is Japan Cool?" video, a menu of over 30 brief video-essays, complete with easy to understand explanation?...
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japan JAPAN

Sony Sakura Park, February 21 - April, 2012
Now there is a new way for visitors from overseas to view the beautiful sights of cherry trees in bloom -inside a building! Starting Feb. 21st and extending throughout late April (tentative), Sony Marketing is holding an event called "Sakura Park" at its Ginza Sony Showroom... For More >>

JAPAN MYTH EXPO in SHIMANE, July 21 - November 11, 2012
Izumo in Shimane Prefecture is home to the Izumo Taisha (Izumo Grand Shrine), which will be the main site of the Japan Myth Expo, held from July 21st to November 11th, 2012. This shrine is one of the most important and ancient Shinto shrines in Japan. Originally constructed around 950 AD, Izumo Taisha was widely considered to be Japan's largest wooden structure at that time. Additionally, the main hall has been designated one of the National Treasures of Japan... For More >>

Fuji Rock Festival, July 27 - 29, 2012
Everyone is looking forward to the Fuji Rock Festival, the longest running outdoor music festival in Japan which runs from July 27th through the 29th. This is the sixteenth year of the festival, and with The Stone Roses headlining on the 27th and Radiohead on the 29th, it is sure to be outstanding! Elvis Costello, James Blake and Justice, Buddy Guy, Hiromi Uehara and other top performers are also joining the line-up...
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U.S. U.S

Washington, D.C. Sakura Festival

An unprecedented 5-week long celebration to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the gift of 3,000 cherry trees from Tokyo to Washington, D.C. will soon be underway. This wonderful arboreal gift is celebrated each year during the National Cherry Blossom Festival, but this year is particularly significant, for not only is it the centennial of the gift representing international friendship from Japan to the United States, but it poignantly marks the one-year anniversary of the tragic events that befell Japan in March 2011... For More >>

Subaru Cherry Blossom of Greater Philadelphia 2012
Places: Various locations throughout the City of Philadelphia

Welcome to the world of the cherry blossoms (sakura). Few things in nature can equal their delicate beauty. Come celebrate it with us! This spring, from March 23 - April 21, Philadelphia's beautiful flowering trees will come into bloom for Sakura Matsuri - the Cherry Blossom Festival. For More >>

Japan Day @ Central Park, May 13
On Sunday, May 13th (Mother's Day), New York is hosting the sixth Japan Day @ Central Park, located at the Naumburg Bandshell. Every year seems to bring more and more enthusiastic visitors-last year saw over 30,000 people who came to offer a huge outpouring of support for the people in Japan who had just been devastated by a catastrophic earthquake and tsunami. This year is sure to gather just as many people, if not more, since 2012 is the 100th anniversary of the gift of cherry trees from Japan to the U.S., and, of course, the 1-year anniversary of the 2011 disaster.
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STORY OF THE MONTH - The Sapporo Snow Festival by Priya Mony

As if you needed another reason to love Japan. You already knew about the cherry blossoms in March, and the beautiful leaves changing colors in late Fall. You've checked out the different castles throughout the country, and perhaps spent a few hours submerged underwater in a slightly catatonic state at some of its onsens. But have you had the chance to head north to Hokkaido to see massive snow sculptures of your favorite anime characters yet? My sister, Neetha, went this year and loved it. Read More >>

Special Package Special Packages > Hotel Details Hotel Specials > Airline Specials Airline Specials >
Quiz Quiz > Useful Vocab Travel On> Editor's Note Editor's Note >

Special Tour Packages

Friendly Planet Travel: Tokyo Express
(7 days / 5 nights) (From $1,499 to $1,759)

Join us in Tokyo to discover the magic of this ancient yet modern city at a truly remarkable price. You'll fly to Tokyo non-stop via the world's #1 carrier, Singapore Airlines. You'll stay at the beautiful and well-located 5-star Keio Plaza Hotel in Tokyo and enjoy a lavish buffet breakfast daily. Transfers and a guided tour of Tokyo are also included as well as plenty of optional day tours. Want to see more of this fascinating country? Try our deluxe Japan Panorama tour instead. But don't wait to reserve your spot! The ideal touring season for Japan is short, and at these prices, space will go very quickly. For more, please visit here.

Explorient Travel Services: Priceless Japan Spectacular
(Now thru December 20th, 2012) (From $3,765 per person)

Explore. Intrigue. Indulge. Experience Japan's Amazing Sights, Fabulous Cuisine and Timeless Traditions on this unforgettable private journey of Japan. Designed specifically for the discerning traveler, Explorient's Priceless Japan Spectacular package features 6 action-packed days visiting Tokyo, Kawagoe, Hakone & Kyoto, deluxe accommodations, private sightseeing, and uniquely exciting activities including a fascinating sushi-making culinary lesson, an invigorating bicycle tour through the back streets of beautiful Kyoto, and much much more. Come and experience Japan that goes beyond the imagination - Your Way.
For more, please visit here.

(From 98,000 yen for 4-day standard plan and from 132,000 yen for 6-day extended plan)

A tour combining both sightseeing in this fascinating region with the opportunity to witness the ongoing recovery efforts and meeting the people who are fighting to rebuild their region and hear their stories. Don't miss this unique opportunity for international exchange and support of the Tohoku region through your tourism! For more, please visit here.

Destination Japan / H.I.S.: Volunteer & Recovery Support Tohoku
(26 May - 02 Jun, 2012) (From $2,795)

This group tour takes you to Kesennuma, Rikuzen-Takata, and Ofunato, where the earthquake and tsunami were most prevalent. Your visit will help reenergize not only the people but also the economy by meeting the local people, doing volunteer work, staying in the hotels and ryokans, and buying locally produced items. For more, please visit here.

(May08 - 14, 2012) ($1,949/person based on double occupancy)

Visiting Japan during the cherry blossom season is a memorable experience. It is not too late to take the opportunity to enjoy the beautiful spring season in Japan. In Hokkaido, cherry blossoms are usually in full bloom in May.

Please join our special tour of Hokkaido for a pleasant stroll along its historic paths through a landscape alive with the colors of spring. For more, please visit here.

Hotel Specials

HOSHINOYA Kyoto: The Night at the Kyogen
(April 28 - 29, 2012)

Kyogen is a form of comedy that depicts commoners' everyday life in the 15th century. The Shigeyama Family who has maintained the historical play for 400 years will perform only for the guests at HOSHINOYA Kyoto. The participation of the audience will add more laughter to the memorable nights. English support available. For more, please visit here.

Airline Specials

TOKYO HANEDA: More options when traveling to Japan

Beginning June 1, 2012, American will offer nonstop service from New York (JFK) to Tokyo Haneda via our three-class Boeing 777 aircraft. This is in addition to Japan Airlines nonstop service to Tokyo Narita. To learn more about our service to Asia, visit www.aa.com/moreasia.

Travel on a Shoestring - Peach Flies!

Peach Aviation is the brand name of Japan's first LLC aviation company started in association with All Nippon Airways. LLC, which stands for Low Cost Carrier, was created to accommodate the needs of the ever-growing number of both tourists and business people flying between Japan and various Asian cities, by offering them a convenient and economical travel option.

Even though they offer the most reasonable rates available, Peach is by no means just a no-frills method of transport from point A to point B. Peach pledges to provide competitive pricing combined with Japan's excellent service and renowned safety record. Prices will be kept as low as possible by establishing new approaches to the current airline industry structure. Read More >>


Quiz: Where in Japan?

This is the place in Tohoku that is regarded as one of the three most beautiful places in Japan.

Hint: Please review the Tohoku Campaign site. The other two are Miyajima, Hiroshima and Amanohashidate in Kyoto.

Prize: Five lucky winners will be chosen from among all correct answers submitted to receive TOHOKU prize package (a Sake cup, Instant Miso Soup Set and a Postcard).

How to enter: You can enter by April 25, 2012, at

Let's review the quiz answers from previous newsletters.

The answer for the Newsletter Vol. 18 (December issue) is Hanatouro (Kyoto Hanatouro, Arashiyama Hanatouro and Higashiyama Hanatouro are also counted as correct answers.) Out of 105 replies, 97 (92.4%) had the correct answer.

For Vol. 19 (January issue), the answer is Koyasan (or Mt. Koya) and Kumano (or Kumano Kodo). Out of 91 replies, 52 (57.1%) had the correct answer. This one seemed to be quite difficult. Thank you for your hard work!

Editor's Note

Thank you for reading the March 2012 issue of the Japan Travel Newsletter.

We are happy to welcome 3,000 more readers who signed up throughout Japan Week. Please stay in touch with us to enjoy a variety of information about "cool" Japan!

On March 11 this year, I watched an Oscar nominated documentary film entitled "The Tsunami and The Sakura," which describes to the audience how much we adore cherry blossoms and how much we are encouraged by the simple fact that they bloom every year no matter what happens.

Japan Week was a great opportunity to share our love for this tiny but elegant flower with our friends in New York. Thank you for joining us! And thank you for your care and interest in our country.

I hope you enjoyed the newsletter and will visit Japan in the near future.

Japan National Tourism Organization,
New York Office
Japan National Tourism Organization,
Los Angeles Office
11 West 42nd Street
19th Floor
New York, NY 10036

email: visitjapan@jntonyc.org
URL: www.japantravelinfo.com
  Little Tokyo Plaza, 340 E. 2nd Street Suite 302
Los Angeles, CA 90012

email: info@jnto-lax.org
URL: www.japantravelinfo.com

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