Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Visiting Japan; a brief overview

The island of Japan has intrigued me ever since high school. A friend of mine was in the U.S. on an exchange program and spoke eloquently of his home. He kept inviting us to travel so we could visit him in his country. He insisted that if we came to Japan that his family would want us to stay with them instead of a hotel. I am not sure that anyone ever took him up on the offer but it sounded tempting.

Mt. Fuji Courtesy of Morguefile
A few years later, I was on a church ski trip with a family who had returned from visiting Japan. They traveled there as tourists fell in love with the country. The mom was a living, breathing travel brochure. I couldn't resist when another friend asked me to gather information for her vacation and I decided to incorporate it as part of the blog for you to enjoy.

Places to stay
Japan has hotels like the Sunroute Hotel Kyoto that can rival those found anywhere else. The country also has budget options that include youth hostels and inns. After airfare from the U.S., it looks like just about every budget can be accommodated.

Weather
The tourism websites all say that the type of weather that you experience depends on which part of the island that you visit. Seasonal variations should also be considered. I always suggest that travelers to any country pack clothing that can be layered. This provides flexibility so you can be prepared no matter what the weather is on your vacation.

Volcanoes
Japan Meterological Agency says that there are 108 volcanoes. The most renown is Mt.Fuji. Tourists can go visit any time of year. At over 12.000 feet, Mt.Fuji is the highest mountain in Japan. Travelers to Mt. Fuji need to be aware that clouds can hinder the view of the mountain. It may be best seen in cold weather or by taking a tour.