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Mind-Blowing Facts About Japan | The Planet D

The 2020 Tokyo Olympics were postponed last year but it looks like things are a go for 2021. To celebrate things opening up, and the Tokyo Olympics looking like they are back on track, we thought we’d share some fun facts about Japan to help you understand the country a bit better. Located in East Asia in the Sea of Japan, the archipelago of Japan is an interesting country to visit. Read on for a few Japan facts that will blow your mind!

Fast Japan Facts

Did you know that Japan is known to have the world’s highest life expectancy? In 2019, there were 2.31 million Japanese over the age of 90, with over 71,000 of them being over 100! So, have the Japanese discovered the secret to perpetual life?

Japan is a country with a complex and ancient cultural heritage yet today it is one of the most advanced countries in technology and innovation since 1950.

Japan gives a great deal of attention to education, and the country is one of the most literate in the world. A distinctive awareness of natural beauty and interest in shape and balance are obvious.

Some Interesting Facts About Japan

Some of the facts about Japan and its traditions and lifestyle idiosyncrasies may surprise us. There is actually a great deal we can learn from their ways of life.

Japan is Extremely Clean

Streets in Japan are immaculate; even in Tokyo, the capital, and a massive megacity, all streets are spotless and litter-free. That being said, how does Japan accomplish this? It’s all about their mindset. The Japanese very seldom leave trash on the streets.

Additionally, volunteers of all ages clean the streets for the simple reason that they want to live in a tidy city.

Tokyo is the World’s Most Populated City

tokyo japan shibuya crossing
Shibuya Crossing in Tokyo

The greater Tokyo metropolitan area encompasses three areas and is home to Japan’s capital, Tokyo. Tokyo is estimated to have 38.14 million, rendering it the world’s most populous megacity.

Japan’s population is 98.5 percent Japanese

This may seem absurd, but the modern world is becoming increasingly multicultural. However, this is not the case in Japan. That is largely due to stringent visa requirements and a cultural mindset keeping its distinctive and ancient culture steeped in old traditions.

Japan Has Canned Foods Restaurants

Japan is also a great destination for canned food fans, as numerous restaurants and bars specializing in this food culture. Mr. Kanso is the most popular chain of such restaurants. The shelves of these restaurants have a diverse array of canned foods from around the world. The variety on the shelves ensures that even the most discerning guest will find something new to try.

And speaking of canned food, Japan is filled with vending machines. You’ll find them everywhere on the streets selling everything from sake and beer to tea and food.

Japan Has a High Life Expectancy

Japan is virtually tied with Hong Kong in terms of average life expectancy, at 83.6 years and 84 years. Numerous people attribute Japan’s long life expectancy to the country’s historically healthier diet than Western countries. Their diet includes a greater amount of fish, less red meat and more vegetables, and smaller portions. 

Ryokan Japanese Spa
Japanese Ryokan – Nikko Hot Springs

The Japanese hot springs probably have a lot to do with the long lives in Japan. These hot springs, known as Onsens are frequented by the Japanese for their healing properties. See more at Japanese Ryokan – Our Stay in a Traditional Inn

Japan Has Many Active Volcanoes

There is a total sum of 110 active volcanoes in Japan! Scientists track 47 of these active volcanoes due to recent eruptions or an eruption possibility.

Each Year There Are Over 1,500 Earthquakes

That is correct! Japan is located on top of or adjacent to four distinct tectonic plates. The Pacific, Eurasian, North American, and Filipino plates are the tectonic plates. (Side not, I’ve actually been in an earthquake in Japan while working years ago in Yokohama. It was scary)

Japan is one of the world’s most earthquake-prone countries. Most of these earthquakes are minor and unnoticeable, but large and destructive earthquakes do occur from time to time.

Forests Cover 67 % of Japan

Akechiddaira Ropeway Nikko Japan view

When you think of Japan, you’re probably thinking of the country’s numerous cities. Surprisingly, 67 percent of Japan is covered in forest. 

It is not uncommon to see signs on forest trails warning to look out for black bears. Really? Black bears in Japan? 

The Japanese are Extremely Attached to Nature

You will find that most Japanese have a profound appreciation and love of nature. That is due to the ingrained spirituality of the Shinto religion. That is one of many Japan facts.

The reason is that Shinto followers believe that all of nature, from rivers and mountains to rocks, are possessed by spirits.

Japan Is Home to the Deepest Underwater Postbox

A cool Japan fact is that Susami is home to the world’s deepest underwater postbox. Susami is a well-known fishing town in Wakayama Province. The Guinness World Records recognized the town’s deepest underwater postbox in 2002. The postbox is 30 feet underwater and has collected over 32,000 pieces of mail since 1999.

Mount Fuji is a Holy Site

mount fuji

Mount Fuji is not only Japan’s highest mountain; it is a sacred site for the Shinto religion since the seventh century. The cool thing is that Princess Konohanasakuya is the Kami (divine person) of Mount Fuji in the Shinto religion. The cherry blossom is her symbol.

Even if you are not a follower of the Shinto religion, it is said that you can sense the area’s tranquillity and eerie atmosphere.

Japan Has Ice Cream That Does Not Melt

This one of the Japan facts for kids!

The title is a little misleading because the ice cream will eventually melt. The non-melting ice cream will apparently take several hours to melt. Imagine that kids, this is definitely the best one of the kids Japan facts! Yummy!

The discovery occurred by accident while scientists were experimenting with the chemistry of strawberries. That was to aid farmers impacted by the 2011 earthquake.

Portugal Was the First Country to Visit Japan

The Portuguese were the first to visit Japan in 1543 when they arrived at Nagasaki’s port. This initial Portuguese visit signaled the start of the Nanban trade period, which spanned from 1543 to 1614.

During this time period, the Japanese and Portuguese traded freely. Japan was introduced to new technologies and cultural practices such as European guns, European armor, and European ships.

Another shocking revelation from this era is that the Portuguese introduced tempura to Japan. Tempura has since grown to be one of its most popular dishes.

Japan Was Completely Isolated From the World for a Period

Hie Shrine in Tokyo Japan

Due to the massive influence that European culture had on Japan since their first meeting in 1543, Tokugawa Lemitsu, the Shogun of Japan, closed Japan to all foreign people in 1635.

During this time period, anyone caught using European goods faced punishment. This law, known as the Sakoku Edict of 1635, lasted more than 200 years.

Japan Has a Highway that Passes Through a Building

That is correct! In Osaka, the Hanshin Expressway runs directly through the 5th, 6th, and 7th floors of the Gate Tower Building.

In reality, the building’s employees are unaware of the highway as the walls and floors are soundproof. Also, the highway doesn’t physically touch the building.

Japanese Follow a Healthy Diet

Deb in her Yukata at dinner
Deb in her Yukata at dinner

The Japanese diet is widely regarded as one of the healthiest diets in the world. The diet consists of traditional food items such as rice, fish, and vegetables. 

People in Japan eat less fatty foods that are higher in minerals and vitamins. One of the factors contributing to Japan’s long life expectancy is its diet.

The Last Emperor in the World

Japan is the world’s only country with an Emperor. Even though the Emperor of Japan wields little power and primarily serves as a symbolic figure, they remain an integral part of Japanese tradition.

Naruhito is the current Emperor of Japan. He ascended to the throne on May 1, 2019, following his father, Emperor Akihito’s abdication on April 30, 2019.

Japan is a Hiker’s Paradise

While hiking is certainly not the first thing that comes to mind for most people when they visit Japan, the country has a decent supply of mountains and hiking trails. Additionally, due to the country’s geographical diversity, there is an abundance of different types of hikes to choose from. 

You can put your physical and mental stamina to the test by hiking up the majestic Mount Fuji. There is a UNESCO-recognized route or trekking through the Japanese Alps.

Japan Has the World’s Sixth-Longest Coastline

Japan has the world’s sixth-longest coastline. It narrowly beats Australia, the United States, and Antarctica into the top ten.

Japan’s coastline totals 18,486 miles. It is home to hiking trails, cliffs, hiking trails, quiet coastal towns, and some of the world’s biggest fishing ports. Read about this lovely seaside town 2 hours north of Tokyo Kamakura Japan – The Ultimate Seaside Escape

The Famous Kitayamazaki Cliffs

Kitayamazaki Cliffs is a 5-mile stretch of the Rikuchu Coastline in the Northern Iwate region that features 650-foot cliffs. The area is famous because it won first place in the category “natural resource: coast” in 1999.

The Kitayamazaki Observatory provides the best view of the coastline. The Observatory features three distinct observation decks at varying elevations. These decks allow for various views of the coast from a single location.

Japan An Interesting Country

There you have it, some interesting Japan facts! Of course, there is no end to these interesting facts, and there are many more to reveal! Japan is a 2,000-year-old country with an enthralling history and traditions. If anything, we hope this article makes you realize just how interesting Japan really is, encompassing so many different layers to this culture.

Make sure to check out our page, where you can find destinations, experiences, and tips on travel!

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