Visit Japan's prehistoric past

Jul 9, 2014

Visit Japan's prehistoric past

by Akira Okubo

It’s hard to imagine, but millions of years ago elephants roamed Japan. Although they died out long before civilization, Tokyo’s National Museum of Nature and Science can help us imagine these majestic creatures and other prehistoric mammals through a display of Japan-specific fossils. The ...

Belgian beer, food and music

Jul 2, 2014

Belgian beer, food and music

by Sei Dickinson

Who doesn’t enjoy a frosty cold beer in the hot weather? This weekend you can drink to your heart’s content, while enjoying a little culture at the Belgian Beer Weekend in Yamashita Park. You may be surprised to hear that Belgium has more than ...

Dancing between cultures in Yokohama

Jul 2, 2014

Dancing between cultures in Yokohama

by Florian Turgeon

Contemporary dance has always pushed the boundaries of corporal expression by exploring themes that traditional dance genres and their movements have difficulty conveying. As one of the Month of France series of events organized by the Yokohama branch of the Institut Francais du Japon, ...

Battle it out in Shinshiro

Jul 2, 2014

Battle it out in Shinshiro

by Akira Okubo

During the Sengoku period (1482-1573), the Takeda family was one of the strongest clans in Japan, known in particular for its successful cavalry charges. Yet in 1575, it found itself up against something that rendered it powerless — the new western technology of firearms. ...

Jun 26, 2014

Everyone's having a laugh in Kinokuniya

by Akira Okubo

Rakugo, a traditional form of comic storytelling in Japan, deals with anecdotes about human nature. Described as a “performance of imagination,” it is usually done on an empty stage with the artist kneeling on a large cushion and acting out the roles of all ...

Osaka's Aizen Festival begins

Jun 26, 2014

Osaka's Aizen Festival begins

by Akira Okubo

Even though it is mid-rainy season, the Aizen Festival anticipates the hot summer ahead with a parade of women wearing cool and attractive yukata (light kimono). As Osaka’s first summer festival of the year, this is held from June 30 to July 2 at ...

Yokohama's French connection

Jun 19, 2014

Yokohama's French connection

by Magdalena Osumi

Around 150 years ago, silk traders from Lyon in France went all the way to Yokohama to buy silkworm eggs that they heard could resist an epidemic disease that was ravaging the French silk industry. Since then, the two cities have built a strong ...