Cool Japan Facts You Might Not Have Known

cool japan facts

Japan is home to some amazing and unusual items – non-melting ice cream, square watermelons and sea mail are just a few examples. This country excels at mixing ancient history and traditions with modern technology and innovations.

Cool Japan seeks to promote aspects of Japanese culture abroad to enhance its image and increase tourism. Read on and discover some quirky yet interesting facts about Japan!

1. MSG

Japan is widely revered for its rich culture and arts traditions, from sushi to origami and anime. But Japan also hosts some fascinating quirks! From non-melting ice cream to underwater post boxes, here are some surprising Japan facts you might not have known about!

Susami, an iconic fishing town located 10 meters (33 feet) below the ocean surface, hosts the world’s deepest underwater post box – receiving more than 1000 pieces of mail annually!

Slurping noodles in Japan is not rude – it shows your enjoyment and appreciation of the meal, showing both respect for its flavor, as well as helping enhance it! Slurping is actually considered to be an act of politeness which enhances its experience!

MSG is an umami flavor enhancer found naturally in food such as meat, fish, shellfish and vegetables. Additionally, MSG can also be produced through hydrolysis of proteins, fermentation processes or ageing processes such as cheese or wine production; you will frequently see ingredients such as yeast extract and hydrolyzed protein on food labels.

One of the fascinating Japan facts is that Japanese people don’t reproduce as frequently anymore – blame it on internet, anime or whatever, but there are now more seniors than children living in Japan!

Japan custom has long held that when entering guest houses, homes, holy sites and some shops it is polite to remove your shoes as a mark of respect and good luck. While this custom may not apply everywhere throughout Japan it should always be checked if appropriate before entering. Also remember that photographing any sacred or religious objects without prior consent would be considered impolite and disrespectful.

2. Samurai swords

Samurai swords have long fascinated people around the world. During feudal Japan’s samurai era, these noble warriors used their blades to uphold a code of loyalty and honor that their swords symbolized. With incredible fighting prowess and distinctive armour and weaponry made them fearsome competitors on battlefields around the globe; but these objects also served as powerful symbols of purity that could protect against evil spirits.

The Katana was favored among samurai due to its combination of beauty and power, drawing influence from both Chinese and Japanese sword styles. It first made its debut around 700 AD during Heian period; for its manufacturing a skilled swordsmith would heat hard, high-carbon steel before forging it into channels which house tough, low-carbon steel; this combination allows it to perform beautifully at cutting while hard steel protects it against being broken as easily.

Each samurai carried both a katana and wakizashi (or short sword) at all times; keeping their short sword handy in case of close-quarter combat, emergency, or seppuku (ritual suicide). They would also wear a tanto as an additional portable option when their longer weapons became too cumbersome to use effectively.

Samurai warriors held their katana as sacred objects, often bequeathing or burying with the remains of their dead. Due to this practice, these swords have been kept well preserved over time – some even considered National Treasures by experts! Experts can even tell how old a Japanese sword is simply by looking at its shape and features – an expert explained to Business Insider that an older sword from its modern-day equivalent can be distinguished simply by how its curves have changed shape over time.

3. Tattoos

Tattoos have long been frowned upon in Japan despite having a rich history there. Used both as punishment marks for repeat criminals and fashion statements by workers such as laborers, rickshaw-pullers, sushi chefs, artisans and Kabuki actors; tattoos were then banned during the 19th century as ruling class members worried that tattoos made Japan look backward and barbaric while simultaneously becoming exposed to Western influences through those with tattoos.

At one point in Japan’s history, onsen (bath houses) were outright banned for those with tattoos, partly due to yakuza gang affiliation and thus disapproving. Today however, this ban still exists but less strictly than before, with more Japanese becoming accepting of body art than before.

Though Japanese culture tends to be polite, their rules will not be tolerated when broken. Tattooed travellers who violate them may find themselves banned from onsens, gyms and traditional environments like ryokans despite not belonging to any gang or being part of any yakuza organization; the rules have been put in place solely as a precautionary measure against possible danger in these places.

One of the more curious facts about Japan is that making slurping noises while eating noodles at restaurants is considered inappropriate due to the association with being unclean or disrespectful. Though this may come as a surprise to some people, this cultural norm exists simply as part of Japanese society.

4. Capsule hotels

Japan is well known for its eccentric innovations, and capsule hotels are certainly among them. While these futuristic accommodations may look like beehive-shaped sleeping pods at first glance, their practical uses are plentiful: capsule hotels offer affordable and convenient accommodations to make any trip affordable while providing a place for short-term stays or when stuck somewhere unexpectedly.

These hotels are often found near train stations and cater to commuters and workers needing somewhere comfortable to rest their head after a long day at work or returning from an adventure. Travellers also benefit as these rooms tend to be cheaper than regular hotel rooms and can be shared. While some might scoff at sleeping in such cramped quarters with no door that cannot be locked securely, capsule hotels typically provide safe, clean accommodations with amenities like lounges, non-private showers (but no privacy!) as well as massage or sauna services for an enhanced experience.

Though capsule hotels originated in Japan, they have since become an affordable form of accommodation all around the world. Some resemble futuristic pods from Star Wars or Jetsons – providing tourists with a fun opportunity to experience a distinct aspect of Japanese culture while still remaining far cheaper than luxury hotels. Typically more costly than traditional hotels but less than half as much than luxury accommodations!

5. Japanese calendar

Japan is an ancient region in Asia with millennia-old customs to match. One such custom is their calendar system; Japan employs both Western and traditional Chinese systems of calendaring while also taking note of some zodiac signs from both cultures. Though adopting the Gregorian calendar since 1873, lunisolar calendars still play a part in holidays and celebrations throughout Japan.

In 604, Japan established their first official calendar using techniques imported from China via Korea. Along with numbering each day and month (though these names have mostly fallen out of use today), each sekki (24-sectioned calendar) was further divided into three ko, creating 72 microseasons useful for agriculture purposes.

Each year started and ended with the new moon and full moon, taking approximately 29 1/2 days for completion. Because this period did not always allow seasons to align perfectly, an extra month was added every three years using kosen hzuki (), creating Japan’s current 365-day solar calendar.

Today’s Japanese calendar still incorporates many other aspects, including its use of era names in addition to international Gregorian date format. For instance, 2018 is known as Heisei 30, marking it as being in its 30th year of the Heisei era.

Era name systems are also employed when setting national holidays like Children’s Day, Tango no sekku (Boy’s and Girl’s Day), Chrysanthemum Festival etc. which may occur up to one month earlier or later than in Gregorian calendar, so visitors should bear this in mind when planning their trips.

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