Japan: a Word of wonder awaits.
An island nation located on Asia’s eastern edge with a deep cultural heritage, recent years have seen Japan becoming the focus of a new type of tourism driven by an interest in spirituality, tradition and nature appreciation.
When you translate the meaning of the Kanji characters used to write Japan’s name, you get “sun origin”, and the island has been referred to as the “Land of the Rising Sun” throughout history which, if you take the chance to watch the sun rise from behind the breathtaking Mount Fuji, or from the dock of a fishing village deep in the rural countryside, feels like the perfect title to use.
The four largest islands that make up around 97% of this country are known as Honshu, Hokkaido, Kyushu and Shikoku, but the stratovolcanic archipelago known as Japan is actually made up of around 6,852 separate islands. Japan has then been further divided into a total of 47 prefectures spanning eight regions, with Hokkaido as the northernmost prefecture and Okinawa prefecture in the furthest south.
Japan is home to a population of 127 million people, which is the tenth largest population in the world. Until recently, Japan’s immigration and migration levels were incredibly low, leading to a population made up of around 98% native Japanese citizens. The lack of foreign integration has meant that the traditional Japanese way of life and the culture that shapes it has remained largely unchanged throughout the years. This preservation of tradition and history means that Japan, despite all of the bright lights and mod-cons of its cities, is overflowing with opportunities to fully experience and enjoy a time that other countries have long since forgotten.
Here at Heartland JAPAN, we’re passionate about sharing the history, culture and traditions of our beautiful country with visitors from around the world through authentic, experience-focused travel. Whether you long to walk in the footsteps of samurai on a pilgrimage route unaffected by modern civilisation or you’d love nothing more than to experience a Buddhist morning fire ritual after spending the night in a temple built over 500 years ago, we can help you to discover a side of Japan that you never could have imagined.