Discover more about Japan

News | 09/02/2017

The number of foreign tourists in Japan has been rapidly increasing for the last couple of years, having reached 24 million visitors in 2016. It is expected that this phenomenon will continue for the next three or four years until the 2020 Olympic Games.

However, we can observe two major trends in Japan’s tourism sector on a qualitative level. First, a shift from the typical itinerary comprising Tokyo, Kyoto and Osaka to a more unique plan which includes less touristic regions such as Hokkaido, Okinawa, Tohoku, etc. Second, less focus on bulk-shopping (preferred by Asian tourists) and higher demand on Japanese cultural experiences.

The most noticeable change is the increasing popularity of Hokkaido, which has now become Asian visitors’ favourite destination. People from Southeast Asia prefer to visit it in the winter, since many of them have never seen snow before. In fact, snow in Hokkaido is popularly called “Powder Snow” and it is suitable and easy for beginners to enjoy skiing.  

Moreover, anime is a pop-culture that Japan boasts of. Many anime-otaku (anime lovers) visit Japan from all over the world not only to stroll around the Mecca of anime known as Akihabara, but also to enjoy other local areas and cities where romantic anime movies were shot, such as the recent blockbuster Kimi no na wa (“Your name”). This trend is currently contributing towards the revitalization of the local economy of such areas.

Tourism is vital for the economic growth of Japan. To make it sustainable, the country has to make some improvements on accommodation, accessibility, affordability and the promotion of new activities that appeal to foreign visitors. In this regard, Japan has unlimited touristic resources! Come and try!


Snow festival in Hokkaido's capital, Sapporo.