Japanese life and culture

Cherry Blossom Viewing

I can’t believe I am lucky enough to experience my second Sakura season in Japan! Even though the situation is far from perfect - we are faced with an ongoing pandemic, restrictions to our everyday life and not being able to share this experience with anyone - we used the short blooming time to enjoy it as best as we could. This year, the Sakura bloomed earlier than usual. In fact, it is said to be the earliest blooming ever since they started to record it.

Winter activities in Hokuriku

Winter in Hokuriku is always grey and dull? Doesn’t necessarily have to be that way! If the weather is sunny or at least stable enough, you actually have several possibilities to enjoy sporty outdoor adventures! in this post, I am going to show you two typical winter activities you can easily do in Hokuriku (as long as there is enough snow). What can you do? Usually, Hokuriku experiences a lot of snowfall during the winter, making it a perfect place to enjoy various winter activities surrounded by a stunning mountain panorama.

Japanese Autumn Leaves

Hi everyone, these times are challenging: being constantly faced with bad news everyday is really tough and it makes you feel so tired. Especially during cold and dark winter days, it’s hard to keep the spirits up. In this post, I wanted to share some of the most beautiful pictures I took during the past month and bring something nice and positive to you. Maybe it will sooth your mind for some minutes.

Visiting a historical Japanese road: Futamagoe

Hey everyone, we hope you are all healthy and safe during these times. While the world remains shaken by the ongoing pandemic, we try to go on with our daily life while living in the “new normality”. Still we have not fully adapted to the new lifestyle… I guess, we are not the only ones struggling to cope with all the changes that are happening so fast. I hope this text can take your mind off all the bad news for a short while.

Cherry blossom season

Hi everyone, after the last posts that have been quite serious, I wanted to share something with you that is an integral part of Japanese culture: the cherry blossom viewing. Despite Covid-19 and all the chaos surrounding it, the blooming of the cherry blossoms took place in early April and we took long walks through the nature and took many beautiful pictures! Even though we couldn’t get the full experience of hanami, we still had time to admire the view for ourselves and discover the beauty of the cherry trees.

Forest bathing: Shinrin Yoku

Hey everyone, in this post I want to tell you more about the Japanese tradition of forest bathing. I recently joined a tour and experienced the positive effects myself, so I am happy to give you some insights about this cultural element! What is forest bathing? Shinrin Yoku or forest bathing is a practice that combines a range of mindfulness exercises and tasks in a Forest environment. “Shinrin” means forest and “yoku” means bath - therefore, the two words combined mean taking a bath in the forest atmosphere.

Celebrating the new year

Hey everyone, we wish you a happy new year 2020 and hope you all had a great party! No matter if you celebrated with a crowd of friends or together with your family or significant other, we hope you enjoyed this special time of the year. Did you make a nice new year’s wish before the countdown? We hope it will come true. In this post we want to tell you how we celebrated the beginning of a new year but also give an overview of Japanese traditions and customs regarding the time around New Year’s Eve.

Christmas in Japan

Hi everyone, as promised we want to tell you how we spent Christmas in Japan. I guess most of you are wondering, if and how Japanese people are celebrating Christmas, right? Don’t worry, you will find all answers to your questions in this post! Japanese Christmas traditions As Japan is no country with a Christian background and culture like Western countries, I was surprised to learn that Christmas is also a big deal here and aggressively advertised in every possible way.

Kaga Yuzen

Hi everyone, in this post I would like to give you some insights regarding the famous dyeing technique called Kaga Yuzen which is used for the manufacturing of truly beautiful Kimono fabrics. Two weeks ago we had the chance to participate in an workshop where we learned all about this part of Japan’s cultural heritage as well as how to work with this technique step by step. What is Kaga Yuzen?

Wearing a Kimono

Hey everyone, in this post I want to tell you about the traditional Japanese way of dressing: the Kimono. Together with my Taiwanese friend Kao, I experienced myself how it feels to wear such a beautiful and important gown and how difficult it is to get dressed. I will share some tips with you, so that you are well prepared if you are going to Japan and are interested in having this experience yourself.