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    Discovering Japan’s Adventurous Spirit

    Discovering Japan’s Adventurous Spirit

    By Richard CampbellDestinations

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    In 2023, I spent 5 weeks exploring Japan, a nation that's quietly emerging as an adventure tourism hotspot, on a path that I think will rival Italy, France, Spain, and Portugal. Japan beckons us adventurous souls with extraordinary cuisine, a rich history and culture, breathtaking architecture, incredible travel networks, vibrant cities, and unbeatable outdoor experiences.

    Below I share four insights from my recent journeys to the Land of the Rising Sun.

    Bridging the Language Gap

    Travelling in Japan presents a challenge due to the language barrier. English is not widely spoken, and navigating a country with a different character system can be daunting; nonetheless, it can be a fun but frustrating endeavour to decipher the menu or signposts. While digital tools like Google Maps and Google Translate are great resources, these tools mean you miss out on interacting with locals which fosters a deeper connection and appreciation of Japanese culture. I found that it was the guidance of local guides that bridged the communication gap and made for an unforgettable cultural experience. Without these guides, I feel I would have experienced Japan at a fundamentally different level.

    Beyond Japan’s Golden Triangle

    Most tourists focus on Japan's famed Golden Triangle – Tokyo, Kyoto, and Osaka, which boasts incredible cultural, historical and culinary experiences. And I did that as well. These cities are incredible, however, there is so much more to Japan. What surprised me is what lies outside these busy hubs, in nature – the countryside and smaller villages.

    Beyond the animated urban streets of Japan are stunning coastlines with glittering waters perfect for swimming, kayaking, snorkelling, and paddleboarding. Moreover, from the majestic peaks of Hokkaido to the northern Japanese Alps, including iconic volcanoes like Niseko and Mount Fuji, this country is a paradise for mountain and winter sports enthusiasts. There is an abundance of undiscovered places to explore, however finding what to do isn’t easy, as there is so much online literature that focuses on so few places. It seems like online resources are steering Western travellers to the same 5-10 locations, ignoring other equally sensational Japanese destinations.

    A Returning Customer

    Japan charmed me with its alternative lifestyle beyond the metropolitan hustle. Life here is slower, people are open to connections, and nature's remarkable presence once you leave the big cities.

    Japan's allure also comes from its incredible diversity. From the culinary delights to the variety of experiences and adventures, there's something to captivate every traveller. Whether you’re seeking a day's pilgrimage along ancient paths near Tokyo or wish to immerse yourself in a week-long trek, Japan offers abundant options. I’m already planning my trip back.

    Japan's Adventurous Future

    Reflecting on my journey, I now recognize what my first visit was missing – the exploration of Japan's natural wonders. Combining a 3-5 day adventure with a 7-10 day exploration of the Golden Triangle would have been a perfect blend.

    Looking at future trips (and yes, I will be back), I look forward to delving deeper into this amazing adventure destination, discovering new places, foods and adventures, and making memories that will last a lifetime.

    Explore Japan with 10Adventures

    Japan's adventure tourism is on an exciting trajectory, and I'm eager to witness its evolution.

    Japan has cast its spell on me, and I'm thrilled to share this incredible wonderland with my fellow adventurers. Over the coming months, 10Adventures will be adding some incredible trips, from the conventional to the unknown, allowing travellers to engage and understand a diverse, inviting land.




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