Best products from r/japan

We found 57 comments on r/japan discussing the most recommended products. We ran sentiment analysis on each of these comments to determine how redditors feel about different products. We found 473 products and ranked them based on the amount of positive reactions they received. Here are the top 20.

Top comments mentioning products on r/japan:

u/[deleted] · 7 pointsr/japan

I am Filipino-American born and raised in the US. The only difference is when I first visited Japan, I had some (pathetic) Japanese language capability and I spent 3.5 weeks there with a 7 day JR pass.

> I'm 24 years old, from the US, and I only speak English as I am a Korean American.

Here's the funny thing. When you step outside of the US, you'll just say you're American. If you say otherwise they may try to start using different languages on you or asking you questions you can't answer which is pointless so you end up clarifying you're American anyway.

> Anyone know how racist and xenophobic they will typically be towards Asian Americans like me?

There isn't much xenophobia if you don't understand Japanese and you claim you're there for travel as an American. The reaction is more along the lines of, "oh, nevermind" if they were seeking information or "oh that's nice" because it is understood that you're not going to be there after a few days.

For Asia I've been to Taiwan, South Korea, and Japan. Of the 3 I would say South Korea has the most immediate xenophobia and racism. In Japan the odds are generally in your favor for getting help even if you can't speak the language. The trick in Japan is to ask anyone that is working like a train station attendant, someone working at a store/restaurant etc. If those people aren't available, then ask someone that is standing around waiting for a friend or someone to show up.

What will be different compared to say a white American's experience is people may assume you are Japanese if you look anything like a Japanese person. If you obviously look Korean, then there might be some other differences. If people assume you're Japanese, they tend to treat you like they would a Japanese person but it probably won't matter because you won't understand what they say to you anyway.

Basically I wouldn't worry about xenophobia and racism if you don't speak the language and you're there for a short period of time. Japanese people's true thoughts won't come out until later in your relationship anyway.

> I'm also a little worried that I don't know any Japanese

You will want to pick up a Japanese phrase book. Here's a few:

The most useful phrase you will use: "sumimasen".

If you want to try a restaurant that doesn't have a menu with pictures, your best bet is to go with "osusume" which is asking for the recommended dish. However, some restaurants don't really have this concept. For example there is not really an "osusume" if you show up to a purely kushikatsu/kushiage restaurant. Also some kushikatsu/kushiage places they'll just keep serving you until you tell them to stop.

If you're having trouble communicating but the person is obviously trying to help you, try writing it down or showing them how it is written on paper. Japanese English writing/reading capability tends to be better than their speaking abilities. Also you may be pronouncing Japanese words incorrectly.

> Any good guides?

I have yet to come across one. This is generally true of any travel. The locals will always know something the guidebooks know nothing about. Things also change really quickly especially in Tokyo.

For example the guidebooks may not mention anything about "you-shoku" which is western style Japanese food. Despite the name, it is actually different from what I've had in Europe and America. They probably also won't mention that super trendy Udon place in Roppongi. Or Donquixote stores. Or Uniqlo stores and the fact that hemming is a free service.

On my first trips before I gathered a lot of Japanese friends, my strategy was simply to ask the hostel/hotel receptionist for recommendations. They usually have something to suggest. Hostel (not hotel) receptionists usually have more creative ideas as they tend to be younger and have done some sort of travel themselves. Hotel receptionists on the other hand are often a little more rigid. This isn't because that's how they normally are but rather just the formalities of Japanese style formal language (keigo).

Tokyo is also 3 dimensional. By that I mean the best places are often hidden on the upper floors of a building or the basement levels and they won't have a huge sign (there's too many signs anyway). The train stations can also be pretty confusing; not all train exits/entrances are equal.

> I'd also like to possibly see the hot springs

They're called onsen and scattered everywhere in Japan. For a better experience you may have to travel outside of Tokyo like to Hakone. I'm no expert on this but I will say they usually have a "cold" pool where the water is...cold. I couldn't manage to submerse myself in it.

> gardens

I don't know of any good gardens in Tokyo, but there is the Imperial Palace East Garden.

> anime merchandise


> I also really want to see the universities in Tokyo (Univ of Tokyo, Nihon Univ, Tokyo Tech) and possibly meet the college students there.

That's nice but also very optimistic. If you know someone, it's probably great. If you don't, I think it's going to be hard to get around unless you're a naturally charismatic or an outgoing person. If you want to do something like this you're better off contacting someone in Tokyo beforehand and meeting them when you get there. I say this not because I don't think you can do it on the spot, rather you're probably underestimating the difficulties of not being able to read anything and not being able to communicate in English. If your trip is only 6 days in Tokyo, there isn't a lot of time to experiment.

Given that, here's my recommendation for what you should do with your 6 days:

Day 1: Morning: Tsukiji fish market. Afternoon: Ginza.

Since you're jetlagged anyway, Tsukiji early morning. I don't know if they still open the fish auctions to the public, but if they do you will have to take a taxi at 4:30am to make it in before the crowds. Otherwise you can take the first train in the morning. It is best in the morning as you see the weird looking carts driving around.

If you're not too tired, you can head over to Ginza which is two stops away by subway.

Day 2: Morning: Asakusa Sensō-ji. Afternoon: Ueno Ameyoko market, Ueno park if you want. Afternoon/Evening: Akihabara.

Asakusa Sensoji is a famous temple with a walkway that has many shops. The area around it is also Edo-period-ish and has a bunch of shops you wouldn't normally find in other parts of Tokyo. Food is cheap.

Ameyoko market in Ueno has a lot of cheap food products. Stuff like dried fish, fruits, etc.

Akihabara is the anime/electronics/maid cafe area.

Day 3: Morning: Shinjuku. Afternoon: Harajuku + Meiji shrine. Evening: Shibuya

These are are primarily shopping areas. Shinjuku has the Tokyo metropolitan building which has a free observatory. You can go up there can get a free high level view of Tokyo.

Harajuku bridge on Sundays sometimes has people cosplay. If not there is Takeshita street which has lots of shops primarily targeting high schoolers.

Near Harajuku is also Meiji shrine. This is a big shinto shrine but it's a bit of a walk.

Shibuya has Hachiko crossing. Lots of videos on youtube and pictures of this crossing. Shibuya also has a lot of restaurants and cafes.

Day 4: Kamakura

I would actually want to spend 2 days here as you'll need to do a lot of walking to get anywhere. A lot of historical sites/shrines/buddas/etc. Don't bother with the beach, however, it isn't worth seeing.

Day 5: Morning: Odaiba. Evening: Roppongi.

Odaiba is reclaimed land with a bunch of funny looking buildings on it. Sometimes they have real-size Gundam's there. I don't know much about it. There's a Toyota showroom there and a Fuji-TV building I think. There's also a statue of liberty over there.

Roppongi is not really my favorite place but it's worthy a visit I guess. It has a high number of foreigners, bars, clubs, and restaurants. There's also Tokyo Tower there. (But it is probably overrated now that the Sky Tree is open.)

Day 6: Whatever else you want + shopping/packing.

Night stuff:

If you're into the American club/bar scene and you must have your fix in Japan, you've got the foreigner bars/clubs in Roppongi or more Japanese clubs in Shibuya or the most famous Ageha (take the bus from Shibuya). Note: since the trains stop after midnight, the clubs/bars will be dead until ~11pm. Everyone goes from 11pm till 5am and whoever is left takes the first train in the morning.

I highly recommend you make a friend or organize meeting someone before hand because the better stuff should be done in groups:

Izakaya. Japanese Pub would be the translation. But it is organized more like a restaurant. I guess it would be similar to a Korean style bar except the food in Izakaya is usually pretty good and authentic.

Shabu Shabu. It's a hot pot with boiling water. But it is not Hong Kong style where they put flavoring in the broth. Instead you each the meat and vegetables individually first. Then with the left over broth you usually have noodles or rice mixed in with it.



I'll let you look up each item.

  • Okonomiyaki
  • Yakitori
  • Yakiniku
  • Kaiten-Zushi
  • Kushikatsu/Kushiage
  • Katsu curry
  • Udon
  • Ramen
  • soba
  • you-shoku
  • takoyaki
  • oden
  • tenpura
  • Mos burger
  • gyuudon

    If you want to drink "sake" the correct word is "nihonshu". If you want the better kind ask for junmai daiginjo.

    If you're really into sushi, you should try to find a place that serves real wasabi made from the root. It doesn't really have the horseradish properties of powered wasabi. If you want to be ruined for life try a piece of good ootoro.
u/gaijohn · 4 pointsr/japan

Politeness rules in all countries, but possibly nowhere is it more important than Japan, so all the usual "first phrases" are your go-to firsts here as well: please, thank you, excuse me, hello, good morning, good evening, etc. Then there's survival phrases like "where is the toilet/train station/police box/etc."

You should definitely get a phrasebook. I used the Berlitz Japanese phrase book & dictionary during my two 2-week trips and it was invaluable. Here are the essentials it lists in the inside front cover:

  • Hello - konnichiwa
  • Good bye - sayounara
  • Yes - hai
  • No - iie (sounds like "yeh")
  • Excuse me, pardon me - sumimasen
  • I 'd like ... - ... ga hoshiin desu ga
  • How much (money)? - ikura
  • How many? - dono kurai
  • Where is the ...? - ... wa doko desu ka
  • Go ahead - douzo
  • Could you help me? - onegai shimasu
  • Thank you (for food) - gochisou sama deshita
  • You're welcome. - dou itashimashite
  • Please speak more slowly. - yukkuri itte kudasai
  • Please repeat that. - mou ichido itte kudasai
  • I don't understand. - wakarimasen
  • Do you speak English? - eigo go dekimasu ka
  • I don't speak Japanese. - nihongo ga dekimasen
  • Where is the bathroom? - toire wa doko desu ka
  • Help! - tasukete

    Edit: standardized my romaji. "ou" is a "o" sound lasting two syllables: "sayohohnara." Repeated characters are also such two-syllable sounds. "ii" is "eeee." consonants doubled make a halting stop: yukkuri - "youk - kurē"
u/papillion12 · 1 pointr/japan

I agree with the previous posters; talk with her (in simple sentences until you can figure out her level) and find out about her interests. Using her interests for discussion/activities will help break the ice and make the time more interesting. It may be helpful to have several kinds of activities since your lessons will be so long; a "warmup" game or free talk in the beginning, short reading activity with questions, phonics practice for letters she has problems with, showing her some common idioms and asking her what she thinks they mean (and then explaining), doing a mock-interview to help her practice answering questions, etc. Collocations are something that my Japanese students have problems with because their textbooks don't usually teach them which words sound natural together. You could even buy a book about idioms or collocations if you are so inclined-- this book looks good (
I am using a different book
with my adult class and I choose which lessons to cover based on their interests. It's rather high-level, though.

Good luck, and don't worry too much. Even if you just chat for the entire two hours, you're giving the girl the chance to actually use and further develop her English skills. If she walks away with more confidence speaking English, it's a win.

u/LetsGetTea · 1 pointr/japan

I, too, was looking for some really good Japanese history books and in my searches I found that these are among the best: A History of Japan, by George Sansom.

They start with pre-history and go up to 1867. Sansom's stated reason for not continuing his history beyond this year is that he had lived too close to events of the Meiji Restoration (1868) for him to develop a perspective that only distance could supply. For later events, The Making of Modern Japan (Amazon), by Marius B. Jansen, another outstanding scholar of Japanese history, would be a good choice. Since this history begins at 1600, there are overlapping accounts of the Edo period, but from two quite different perspectives.

An alternative presented by t-o-k-u-m-e-i:
>The best overview text in terms of presentation and interpretation for 1600 to the present is Gordon's A Modern History of Japan: From Tokugawa Times to the Present.

>The Jansen book is also good, but I (and most of the profs I know) feel that Gordon's interpretation is better

In short, this set is a good buy and is likely to remain a standard text for decades to come.

I've only just recently started reading the first book of the series and I find it very insightful. It starts by describing the geography of Japan and how that shaped and molded the early Japanese and their sensibilities.

Amazon Links:
A History of Japan to 1334
A History of Japan, 1334-1615
A History of Japan, 1615-1867

Google Books Previews:
A History of Japan to 1334
A History of Japan, 1334-1615
A History of Japan, 1615-1867

Sir George Bailey Sansom

The author also has a shorter book published earlier which focuses primarily on culture.
Amazon - Japan: A Short Cultural History
Google Books - Japan: A Short Cultural History

Added an alternative suggestion for the history from 1800 onward given by t-o-k-u-m-e-i.

u/spartan2600 · 2 pointsr/japan

Eamonn Fingleton (Irish) was a fantastic commentator on Japan (and the US, and Europe, and China... he predicted Trump's victory in 2016) but for the last 2 years he seems to have stopped writing much.

On Pearl Harbor Day, A Question: Is Today’s Japan Really A Sincere American Friend?

70 Years Later, Struggle for Nanking Massacre Justice Continues

Another great source, The Oriental Economist Report, a one-person show, is currently on sabbatical. His writing has been on Foreign Affairs.

Trump and Japan: Reality Check for Abe and the President

Democracy Now, a great source of news in general, has good coverage on Japan:

Democracy Now, Topic: Japan

If you want to go historical, the late Chalmers Johnson wrote several books on the political economy and foreign affairs of Japan.

Amazon author: Chalmers Johnson

MITI and the Japanese Miracle: The Growth of Industrial Policy, 1925-1975

Japan: Who Governs?: The Rise of the Developmental State

Okinawa: Cold War Island

u/SuperFreddy · 6 pointsr/japan

Listen to me right now. Listen to me good.

Remembering the Kanji is probably one of the best ways to achieve what you're talking about. However, according to the introduction of the book, it will hurt you to read it alongside a Japanese course or in conjunction with other Kanji-memorizing methods. So just dedicate a few weeks to learning the 2,200 Kanji this books teaches. It claims that you can do it in 4-6 weeks if you're dedicated enough. Highly recommended.

Edit: Oh, and then there is a second and third volume which help with pronunciation of Kanji and introduce you to advanced Kanji, respectively. But even mastering the first volume puts you at a great advantage to learning Japanese.

u/ShinshinRenma · 1 pointr/japan

There are many great reasons for loving Japan. I love Japan, despite all of its flaws (and there are many). However, in regard to environmental awareness specifically, I recommend reading Dogs and Demons by Alex Kerr. It may disabuse you of the notion that Japan is truly environmentally aware.

u/syrup16g · 2 pointsr/japan

[Japan Emerging: Premodern History to 1850, edited by Karl Friday]

This is an excellent compilation of short but informative scholarly articles on various topics in premodern Japanese history. All the articles are written by scholars who are expert researchers on their field, and because the articles are modified for the format of the book, they never get too in-depth or tedious as many academic works do.

I read the whole thing cover to cover and ended up using some of the articles, and more importantly works cited in my senior graduation thesis on historical revisionism in protohistorical Japan and Korea. If you are interested in any of the topics it has references of where to go from there. I recommend this book to anyone interested in Japanese history up to the Meiji era. Check the table of contents on Amazon's Look Inside to see if they are what you are looking for.

u/chopchopped · 1 pointr/japan

With all due respect, I'm pretty sure I DO get it. Just because something has been done one way in the past does not mean that is the way it must be done in the future.

Here in 2017, we are seeing 2 very important things happen around the same time- the rapidly falling prices of solar panels (some thanks to China) and the rapidly falling prices of fuel cells. Toyota's first fuel cell stacks used ~90 grams of platinum, and the Mirai only needs ~30 grams. The next generation FC stacks from Honda/GM claim to only need ~7 grams- equivalent to the amount in catalytic converters in every ICE car on the road.

Mass production of fuel cells has just begun, and the price will plummet as time goes on. China has just begun to mass produce them. Fuel cell stacks will be cheaper than ICE's very soon.

A US Company called Nikola Motor plans to build a US National Network of >350 Solar Hydrogen fueling stations. It's not only possible, it's going to happen, even if Nikola doesn't do it.

Here's a great book that details how the present and future are different than the past when it comes to Solar/Wind Hydrogen production: Solar Hydrogen: Fuel of the Future

u/lalapaloser · 1 pointr/japan

I'm about to graduate with a degree in Japanese History so I can recommend a lot of books on different topics, but I need to know something more specific. For a broad summarization of Japanese history, I recommend Andrew Gordon's A Modern History of Japan.
Since you're interested in Okinawa (which has been a big part of my focus), I'd recommend Okinawa: Cold War Island ed. by Chalmers Johnson, this book is more rooted in poli-sci. I found Christopher Nelson's Dancing with the Dead an extremely fascinating anthropological account of war memory and trauma in Okinawa. The first chapter of Norma Field's In the Realm of a Dying Emperor focuses on Chibana Shōichi, an Okinawan who burned Hi no Maru at a national sporting event (the rest of the book is really interesting and well written as well). I can plenty of other books depending on what you're interested in. Just let me know :)

u/hillsonn · 2 pointsr/japan

Wow, that is a huge topic.

A few books to look at:

u/derioderio · 2 pointsr/japan

Heh. Probably get downboated for this, but a friend of mine in Japan told me once, "Just by virtue of being a gaijin in Japan that speaks Japanese, you'll be able to qualify for a higher quality of girl than you could get back in the 'states." I still think it's pretty much true due to the tendency of Japanese women romanticize the West.

u/wolframite · 2 pointsr/japan

A couple more tips for your upcoming trip:

Learn hiragana & katakana in 3H A quick & dirty way to read the two Japanese phonetic alphabets (you could probably easily offset the cost of the book by betting skeptical friends or acquaintances a pitcher or two of beer):


    The book is Remembering the Kana: A Guide to Reading and Writing the Japanese Syllabaries in 3 Hours Each (I'm linking to amazon uk as you indicated you are from there) by James Heisig

    The upshoot is that mastering the phonetic alphabet won't make you fluent in Japanese but it could make the difference in you looking up and spotting a sign indicating "capsule hotel" or "sauna" during your trip. Plus, it'll give you an advantage when trying to communicate with locals who don't speak English.

  • Japanese Youth Hostels

    Also, sites like:

  • AirBnB

  • Couchsurfing and Reddit CouchSurfers

  • Wimdu

  • Y100 Stores are your friend.
    Look for the largest Y100 store franchise, DAISO to fill up on travel items especially if you are doing the 'ultra-light travel' method as I previously mentioned; also, you can often score good prices on snacks and colas at prices lower than regular convenience stores (eg. a 350 mL can of cola might cost Y105 in a convenience store but sometimes you can get 500 mL for the same price or 2 colas - often off-brand - for Y105)

    Also, when you plan your trip, if possible, try and concentrate the long-haul bullet train (Shinkansen) trips within the same period you activate your Japan Rail Pass. Otherwise you may find the Pass is not as economical as assumed if you end up using it to make short trips on local lines for 3-5 days. Hell, I don't know - not having done the calculations, but if you were not in a rush and looking to travel the country in a month using local buses (eg ), trains and ferries, it might not be worth it to get a Rail Pass. However, if you are pretty certain you'll be doing at least one or two Shinkansen runs - down to Fukuoka or Hiroshima for example - the Pass would probably make sense. Try calculating costs using Hyperdia
u/ignitionremix · 4 pointsr/japan

Congratulations! I visited Okinawa on a school trip in 2007, and it was absolutely beautiful. And the food mmmmmmmmmmmmmm.

If you're interested in political history regarding Okinawa, both as a Japanese prefecture and as basically a giant US military base, I cannot recommend highly enough the Okinawa chapter of Norma Field's In The Realm of a Dying Emperor It's a little academic but gives voice to native Okinawans, who are often overlooked in most US-Japan conversations about the islands.

Safe travels!

u/amaxen · 2 pointsr/japan

A serious critique of Japanese culture, government and institutions is Dogs and Demons: The dark side of Japan, written by a long time ex-pat. Highly recommended. It's not the entire story of Japan, but there does tend to be a bias towards the positive by English writers on Japan, and this book is a useful corrective if you're serious about learning about Japanese culture.

u/yuzaname · 1 pointr/japan

Needless to say, as scholarship progresses, Sansom is getting pretty dated. His coverage of pre-Asuka Japan can be downright incorrect (although, in his favor, the data didn't exist at the time).

For a brief coverage of Japan's premodern history, the latest work out there is Japan Emerging, edited by Karl Friday.

It is not as detailed as Sansom (as it moves much faster), but it incorporates the latest methodologies and scholarly consensus. I would consider it a good introduction.

u/mil_ · 2 pointsr/japan

I really enjoyed Lost Japan by Alex Kerr. It's auto-biographical and has some interesting insights from a Westerner who has lived in Japan and seen it change over the past few decades.

u/parcivale · 2 pointsr/japan

It's called "Samurai William" by Giles Milton. It's actually quite readable. Ten pages of endnotes in the back but still reads like a novel.

u/daijobu · 2 pointsr/japan

Here are a few good ones that I have read and would definitely reccomend.

Speed Tribes: Days and Night's with Japan's Next Generation
by Karl Taro Greenfeld


Confucius Lives Next Door: What Living in the East Teaches Us About Living in the West
by T.R. Reid


Black Passenger Yellow Cabs: Of Exile And Excess In Japan
by Stefhen F. D. Bryan


those should keep you busy for a while.

Jake Aldenstein (first non Japanese reporter for a major Japanese newspaper) wrote a book called Tokyo Vice, which has elements of what you are looking for. Its mostly about his life as a gaijin reporter, versus just being a gaijin.

u/dokool · 3 pointsr/japan

There's a couple decent reference books you could get him (Remembering the Kanji comes to mind) but don't worry about things that might be 'handy' because half the time they're not worth it. Tickets too - you don't want to give him anything time/date-specific, after all.

I say just take him out for dinner somewhere nice that he almost certainly won't get to enjoy while he's in Japan. Decent BBQ, for example.

u/omni42 · 1 pointr/japan

Hello, it seems to be available on amazon. I'm going to lock the thread as we don't product hunting/sales threads, but enjoy your konapun.

u/StickyPants117 · 1 pointr/japan

I'm don't know why these aren't sold on the Japanese amazon for a reasonable price but it seems they can ship to Japan. I'm an average size and never had a break or anything out of 50+

Okamoto Crown

These are also nice though just a bit tighter:

Glamourous Butterfly Moist Type (lol)

u/Acanthas · 3 pointsr/japan

Renewable hydrogen can be produced using solar and or wind energy. Here's a great book that lays it out

Here's what Germany is doing:
>To date, according to press material provided by Mercedes-Benz, Linde produces half of the hydrogen for existing fuelling stations from sustainable energy sources. The gas is obtained from crude glycerol, which is a by-product of biodiesel production. Biodiesel, as the name indicates, is a carbon-neutral fuel produced from plant life and other biological sources.

>Linde also splits water molecules by passing a current through the water, with the electricity procured from wind power generation.

u/rhedwolf · 2 pointsr/japan

Speed Tribes is a fascinating book about the Japanese underworld.

u/jamesinjapan · 6 pointsr/japan

If you haven't read it, Samurai William by Giles Milton is a enthralling read. It was particularly good to have an insight into the early Edo period interactions between Westerners and East Asia.

u/11421172 · 1 pointr/japan

Women on the Verge: Japanese Women, Western Dreams by Karen Kelsky, Duke Univ. Press

I wish I had read this years ago

u/Reinaryu · 3 pointsr/japan

I just got this series for Christmas and it seems awesome, about 20 pages in so far :D it's an older book, but still relevant.

u/kejartho · 1 pointr/japan

Adding on to this if you wanted to read a book on the historical aspect of how integrated it all is, check out Tokyo Underworld. I had to read it for one of my seminar courses and boy was it a bit telling. The Yakuza are involved in so much.

u/taro-topor · 8 pointsr/japan

>pride in cleanliness?


  • Trashed beaches

  • Sacred Mount Sewage (Mt. Fuji)

  • Concreted rivers and coasts (government sponsored littering)

  • Gray vistas of an endless urban fractal of grimy concrete

    Read Alex Kerr's Dogs and Demons