Tourist-wise, Japan has a somewhat divided character. Despite Japan’s fascinating history and vast cultural treasures, tourists apparently come here primarily to go shopping. A recent Japan National Tourist Organization survey found that nearly 35 percent of the visitors were in Japan for the shops.

It was only a decade or so ago that Japanese were doing the same — shopping in Hawaii, Guam and duty-free shops around the world. Traveling consumer tides have changed, and now Japan has become a mecca for shopaholics. Asian tourists in particular have become fans of Japanese pop culture, technology and fashion, and apparently want to buy it firsthand. Japan is now one of their favored destinations.

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