Inspired by Osaka’s vibrant culture and community of musicians and visual artists, Nest Hotel Japan Corporation’s latest opening under its Bespoke hotel brand transports the beauty and artistry of Japan from street…

For visitors who have already seen everything Tokyo has to offer, a journey to Kansai’s top tourist destinations – Kyoto, Nara and Osaka – is the logical next step. Whether you are new…

As one of the ports open to international visitors – along with Hakodate, Nagasaki, Yokohama, and Niigata – Kobe has had a long history of international influence. Even today, despite being only…

Looking for some great new fragrances? Head to Le Sillage, a new boutique in Higashiyama, Kyoto. The boutique is owned by Shinpei Yonekura, who studied at Ateliers Aromas and Parfums Paris. Before…

The marks of history cut deep in the Tango Peninsula of northern Kyoto Prefecture. Dubbed Kyoto by the Sea, the area’s leading tourist destination is the picturesque geographical oddity Amanohashidate. However, abound…

Travelers flock to Kyoto for the temples, shrines, and geisha – all certainly must-see cultural points – but few tourists realize that there ’s a whole prefecture beyond the city itself.  Getting out of the city and exploring the broader landscape of Kyoto opens up a wealth of…

Hosenin is a temple in Ohara district in Kyoto that holds many mysteries and delights of natural beauty. From the garden view framed by temple pillars and ceilings to the soothing sound of water dripping against a buried jar, to the traces of blood on the ceiling left behind by fallen samurai, Hosenin is a fascinating place to explore no matter where your interests lie. Address: 187 Ohara Shorin-in-cho, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto Website: www.hosenin.net    Tel: 075-744-2409

Just off the picturesque Philosopher's Path, you'll find Yojiya Cafe Ginkakuji inside an old machiya — an expansive wooden townhouse typical of the Kyoto area. Here you can lounge in style as you take in the view of the traditional garden and imagine what it would have been like to live here when it was still a private home. Walk across the garden after your relaxing escape from hectic sightseeing to drop by the Yojiya shop, located in the same area. Here you'll find typical Yojiya products such as face oil blotting sheets, but also limited edition skincare items and seasonal sweets to take home and share with friends. Address: 15 Shishitagani, Honenin-cho, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto Website: www.yojiya.co.jp/english/    Tel: 075-754-0017

Miffy, the popular rabbit from the mind of Dutch artist Dick Bruna, is making her way to Japan. Two shops, Miffy Sakura Kitchen and Miffy Sakura Bakery, will open in Kyoto on…

You’ll find The Dorm Hostel Osaka smack dab in the middle of Osaka’s entertainment district of Shinsaibashi — a convenient place to stay for travelers with a passion for books. Budget Lodging in…

How Much: from ¥3,000 per night Address: 2F Shinsaibashi Daiwa Bldg., 1-12-20 Higashi-Shinsaibashi, Chuo-ku, Osaka Website: thedorm.jp    Tel: 06-4708-7441

Maiko, or apprentice geisha, are professional entertainers who attend to guests during meals. Many people from around the world visit Kyoto just for the chance to see maiko, but some have found…