A look beneath the waves 10 years after the Great East Japan Earthquake


We’re fast approaching the 10th year since the Great East Japan Earthquake devastated the Tohoku region of Tohoku. The destructive quake which measured a magnitude of 9 – making it the most powerful earthquake ever recorded in Japan (so powerful in fact, a brief quake which hit east Japan last… Read


Pandemic-consumed U.S. relapses in drug addiction

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Beverly Veres' two sons are addicted to heroin but can't get the help they need, with U.S. health services consumed by the coronavirus pandemic at a time when overdoses are surging. "Drugs have just come into this area, and are taking over," says Veres at her Pennsylvania home. "But they're… Read


Hyatt offers inviting travelers to lock in savings through September


Inspiring travel from mountain getaways and seaside escapes to city excursions and everywhere in between, Hyatt Hotels Corp has announced a global limited-time offer that invites guests to choose their own adventure at more than 900 Hyatt hotels worldwide, with participating hotels offering a free night with qualifying stays or… Read


Shinkansen ice cream sales suspended on board train; sell out online


When you take a trip on a Japanese bullet train, there are a lot of things to look forward to on the journey, including the onboard trolley service, where you can purchase Sujata ice cream, a treat so rare it can’t be purchased anywhere else. Now, with passenger numbers down during the pandemic, one… Read


How to make money from an unwanted inheritance

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As is regularly reported in the media, Japan has a large and growing problem with unoccupied houses, the total number of which are said to be in excess of 9 million. Many of these residences are bequeathed to heirs who have no use for them, as they have moved to… Read

New Products

Graham cracker KitKats? New wholewheat biscuit variety debuts in Japan

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We’re used to seeing new KitKat flavors pop up in Japan, but it’s not every day that Nestlé introduces a whole new series of KitKats to the market. In fact, the last time they released a new KitKat series was way back in 2010, when the “Otona no Amasa” (“Adult Sweetness“) multipack… Read


U.S.-China tensions threaten global efforts to curb climate change


The world’s hopes for curbing climate change hinge on action by two giant nations whose relations are deteriorating: China and the United States. The two countries both say they are intent on retooling their economies to burn less climate-wrecking coal, oil and gas. But tensions between them threaten their ultimate… Read


How the Great Fire of 1657 shaped modern Tokyo


Take a stroll around modern Tokyo and the city appears to be the epitome of orderly peace and calm. It’s hard to believe that it was destroyed not once but twice in the course of the 20th century, first by earthquake and fire in 1923, and then by American bombs… Read


The all-star avocado: A renowned super food that is as nutritious as it is delicious


Avocados are a daily staple in our household, especially because—despite the fact that the ones we get in Japan usually come from Mexico—they are readily available and at almost every supermarket, vegetable store and even many convenience stores, all ripe and ready to eat. Avocados are nutrient-dense powerhouses, full of minerals… Read


The most stylish Buddha in Japan gets a fashionable upgrade during sakura season


The 18-meter-tall Great Buddha (daibutsu) statue in Konan, Aichi Prefecture is somewhat affectionately known as the "Great Buddha with Sunglasses." That's because when viewed from just the right angle from behind the Nagoya’s Railway Co’s Inuyama Line train crossing, the Great Buddha of the Hotei region appears to be wearing the… Read

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