Sword Umbrellas

Looking for a unique gifts – try an umbrella with a traditional Japanese katana handle. You won’t find these at home!

Blast from the Past

Elevator attendents have gone the way of the buggy whip and dial phone in the US, but in Japan, the major department stores still have a staff of lovely young ladies who bow to guests and push the floor buttons in their main bank of elevators. See one in action HERE.

Stating the Obvious – Riding Escalators

The Japanese seem to want to be absolutely sure you have instructions in all situations. So in case you are unclear on the concept of riding an escalator, this banner found in a Tokyo subway clarifies it for you. We’re just not certain if you are required to gender separate as shown on the illustration.

Boo Boo Park


At first, we loved the name of Boo Boo Park (reminded us of Yogi). But then we noted that this parking lot holds a total of 4 cars! With space at a premium in the cities, little parking lots crop up everywhere!

Always Think

We love all the cute messages on clothing and accessories for young girls in Japan. This one even translates beautifully.

No Bikes Here!

For the English speaker, this unusual flaunting of authority by the Japanese bicycle rider is pretty funny. But if you read the Japanese, it’s entirely possible that the bikes parked here are rental bikes and maybe they just don’t want OTHER bikes parked here. Who’s to know if you don’t speak Japanese.

Kiyomizu Selfie

Taking a group selfie at Kiyomizu temple in Kyoto – this was definitely a production for these lovely ladies clad in kimono.

Let’s Go for a Ride!

We know young children like new and engaging activities… these adorable little ones were spotted at the train station, where their caretakers were showing them the sights while wheeling them around in their custom pink cart.

Curated Japan Travel Blog - Drone Disabled - Japan Tour Plans

Drone Disabled

First sighting of this warning sign in Japan!  Along with all the usual no drinking, no smoking,  no bicycling, the caretakers at Zenko-ji Temple in Nagano felt it important enough to include No Drones on their English sign at the entry.  As for Keep Clean – they left the definition of that up to the visitor.

Oh, and notice the sign is primarily in English — probably because most of these warnings aren’t needed for the Japanese.

Kicking Sniper

We just love how the Japanese combine English words in unusual ways.  And then there are the TV game shows.  When you’re in Japan you must try to see some on your in-room TV. This one was Kicking Sniper – it wasn’t obvious what the point was, but the contestants were having fun.  They, of course, started the show in typical Japanese style – Everyone bowing!