If experiencing Sakura (cherry blossom) in Japan is not already on your bucket list, you should add it. It is one of the most amazing and inspiring things you can do.  For our first Japan visit we chose Tokyo and stayed at the Courtyard Tokyo Ginza Hotel. The best thing about the hotel was the location, otherwise it was app. $350 per night, with super small rooms/bathroom and no free wifi. But being close to most things, in district full of restaurants and shopping is great. One thing to keep in mind is that they drive on the left side of the road in Japan, so be careful when crossing the street. Another thing worth mentioning is that we have never seen a subway system more complicated than Tokyo's subway.  Reading the map and planning your trip can be an adventure as many stations have the map and signs posted only in Japanese.  It seems though that things have become more tourist friendly since we have visited Japan in 2012. 


Since Tokyo was heavily destroyed during WWII, most of the neighborhoods are new and resemble the New York City- Ginza, Shibuya, Shinjuku - all fascinating and all modern. Fortunately for lovers of old buildings, temples, and parks,  there is Asakusa and Sensoji temple dating back to the 7th century, Yasukuni and Meiji Shrines, and Hamarikyu Gardens, all worth seeing. You can also visit the magnificent Tokyo Sky Tree and get a impressive view of the whole city. 


The best thing about Japan though is food and developing a new appreciation for beauty. It is impossible not to notice how  tasteful the food is arranged and served, and how beautiful restaurants and houses are decorated. Japanese often eat street food, which is delicious, and some department stores are famous for its food and its deserts, so be open to tasting different things where you are. The grilled meat is amazing, as are various desserts. But of course, the highlight is high quality sushi. The only downside of superb Japanese food is that once you try sushi in Japan, you will not be able to eat it back home for years, as even the best sushi restaurants abroad will fail miserably in comparison with the sushi in Japan. 



Traditional Hanami festival, during cherry blossom season in the spring.  Read more


Japan is every foodie's dream. Eat well and learn the importance of food presentation.  Read more


No, you are not in NYC, you are in Shinjuku. Or maybe Shibuya. Or maybe Ginza.  Read more


Famous Sensō-ji, a Buddhist temple dedicated to goddess Kannon. Read more