Wednesday, 10 July 2019 18:20

Travel to Central Coast, California

Travel to Central Coast, California

Paso Robles, San Louis Obispo County

The Central Coast of California and its four regions — Monterey Bay, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara and Ventura — make up what is known as “The Original Road Trip,” a classic drive along the Pacific Coast Highway. It’s a seemingly never-ending stretch of beautiful views, beach towns, extravagant resorts, wineries and historical attractions. There is something for everyone on what has become known as the ultimate Californian experience for tourists and locals. Tokyo Journal recommends Paso Robles, an approximately three-hour drive north of Los Angeles or south of San Francisco, for its proximity to fine wineries, Hearst Castle, the Paso Robles Events Center, the Ravine Water Park, downtown Paso Robles and more. Wine enthusiasts can explore Paso Robles Wine Country, where an abundance of wineries produces more than 40 diverse wine grape varieties.

Wednesday, 10 July 2019 18:00

Travel to Yosemite

Travel to Yosemite

Yosemite National Park is the most revisited park in the United States, and it’s no wonder with the grandeur of Half Dome, Glacier Point, El Capitan, Tuolumne Meadows, Yosemite Falls, the Mist Trail to Vernal Fall, and its vineyards. Action seekers will enjoy rock climbing, horseback riding, archery, swimming and biking. Winter activities include sledding, tubing, snowshoe hiking, skiing and snowboarding. Here is Tokyo Journal’s recommendation for a luxurious stay while visiting Yosemite. This luxury, boutique hotel is a short drive to astonishing waterfalls, soaring granite icons, giant sequoia trees and stunning natural monuments.

Wednesday, 10 July 2019 17:29

Travel to San Francisco & Scottsdale

Travel to San Francisco & Scottsdale

TJ’s hotel reviewers headed to San Francisco and Scottsdale to experience the best places to stay. Here are our favorites.

Wednesday, 20 March 2019 03:37

Volume 38. Issue #279


Please click here for PDF file of actual Table of Contents 

1. Tokyo Journal Editorial
Inside this issue
20. Travel to Yosemite
Luxury European hotel
2. The First Fashion Show in Cuba (二ヵ国語)
Junko Koshino's international fashion
21. Travel to Central Coast, California
Paso Robles hotels, wineries, restaurants & castle
3. Streetstyle Glamour
Fashionistas pave the way to fashion
22. Travel to Seattle
Chic, modern, historical & luxury hotels
4. Mifune: The Last Samurai
Documentary filmmaker & Mifune interviews
23. Travel to Anaheim & Chicago
Hotels for convention-goers
5. Actor Tatsuya Nakadai
60 years of film, television & theater
24. Travel to Las Vegas
Upscale hotels & spectacular shows
6. Multicultural Model Rola
From Bangladesh jungles to the global catwalk
25. Serviced Apartments in Tokyo
Furnished apartments for business travelers
7. Tito Time in Tokyo
Jackson brother on 50 years in entertainment
26. Tokyo Hotels
Luxury & modern hotels + ryokan experience
8. DJ Steve Aoki
International electronic dance music king
27. Yosakoi Dance Festival
So you think they can dance!
9. Soulrocker Michael Franti
Musical mission for health, happiness & equality
28. Supermodel Jessica Minh Anh in Japan
Modeling in Tokyo, Kyoto and Fukushima
10. CNN News Anchor Erin Burnett
From investment banking analyst to journalist
29. Illuminate Education
Altruism within the company and beyond
11. Ambassador of Japan Heritage
Musician Marty Friedman
30. Steve Killelea's Groundbreaking Peace Initiative
Measuring the economic benefits of peace
12. Sex Pistols
Bob Gruen's punk photo flashback
31. Photo album from Cuba (二ヵ国語)
Hiroyuki Suzuki's midsummer night's memory
13. Barges of the Dead
Donald Richie struck by seashore haunting apparition
32. Living "As" Nature, Not "With" It
Mind management for satisfaction
14. David Nunan's Global Classroom
Teaching to the heart and head
33. How the Japanese build success into their products
Quality in product manufacturing
15. Mari's Homemade Cooking Recipes
Miso-simmered mackerel
34. Garrity's Japan
From Tokyo to Soka
16. Koshu Wine
Uniquely indigenous to Japan
35. Haitian Culture
Various styles of Haitian art
17. New American Comfort
Chef Ben Ford's pork belly lettuce wraps
36. Product Reviews for the Busy Traveler
TJ's shopping recommendations
18. Fig and Ham Tart
Expat cucina's tasty tart recipe
37. Tournament of Roses
America's new year celebration
19. Travel to San Francisco & Scottsdale
Northern California & Arizona hotels
38. Yoga Lifestyle
A wabi-sabi contemplation



Thursday, 27 December 2018 06:32

Top 10 Product Reviews


What are your favorite products?
You vote. You decide!



Click here to continue voting

Thursday, 16 March 2017 22:44

Tokyo Journal's Top 10 Rankings 2016 Final

Tokyo Journal's 2016 Polling Results










What are your favorite things about Japan and Japanese culture?

Readers voted. Readers decided!

In April of 2016 Tokyo Journal announced the first ever Top 10 Ranking for the reader's favorite Japanese entertainment icons, food, pop-culture, and travel locations. Over the course of 2016 we asked Tokyo Journal readers to vote for their favorite things in Japanese entertainment, food, pop-culture, and travel locations. This first year proved to be successful with over 500,000 votes submitted by readers from all over the world. Here are the top 3 winners for each category and stay tuned for the 2017 rankings.


> Japanese Entertainmant
> Food in Japan
> Japanese Pop Culture
> Japan Travel

Japanese Entertainment

Japanese TV & Dramas

Best J-Drama Actress


1. Satomi Ishihara

2. Akari Hayami

3. Haruka Ayase


Best J-Drama from 2015-2016


1. Flowers for Algermon

2. Mysterious Thief Yamaneko

3. From Five to Nine


Best J-Drama Actor


1. Tomohisa Yamashita

2. Takuya Kimura

3. Kazuya Kamenashi


Best J-Drama of All Time


1. Nobuta wo Produce (2005)

2. Long Vacation (1996)

3. Hana Yori Dango (2005)


Best Variety Show


1. Smap x Smap

2. Momoclo Chan

3. Shabekuri 007




Japanese Movies

Best Horror Movie


1. Ring

2. Ju-On

3. Sadako 3D


Best Japanese Movie


1. Battle Royale (2000)

2. Seven Samurai (1954)

3. Godzilla (1954)


Best Japanese Movie Actor/Actress Worldwide


1. Ken Watanabe

2. Takuya Kimura

3. Takeshi Kitano


Best Japanese Film Director of All Time


1. Hayao Miyazaki

2. Akira Kurosawa

3. Takeshi Miike


Best Akira Kurosawa Film of All Time


1. Seven Samurai

2. High and Low

3. Hidden Fortress




Japanese Music

Best J-Rock Band


1. X Japan

2. The GazettE

3. Babymetal


Best Japanese Female idol Group


1. Momoiro Clover Z

2. Morning Musume

3. *C-ute


Best Japanese Female Singer


1. Miwa

2. Yui

3. Ayumi Hamasaki


Best Male idol Group






Best Japanese Male Singer


1. Tomohisa Yamashita

2. Gackt

3. Jin Akanishi




Japanese Sports

Best Favorite Japanese Male Athlete


1. Yuzuru Hanyu (Figure Skater)

2. Kei Nishikori

3. Kohei Uchimura


Best Favorite Japanese Female Athlete


1. Mao Asada (Figure Skater)

2. Ai Fukuhara

3. Saori Yoshida


Go back to the Category



Food in Japan

Japanese Food

Best Street Food


1. Ramen

2. Takoyaki

3. Yakitori


Best Favorite Sushi


1. Salmon

2. Toro (Fatty Tuna)

3. Tuna


Best Japanese Sake


1. Dassai

2. Kubota

3. Hakkaisan




Restaurant in Japan

Best Theme Restaurant


1. Kawaii Monster Cafe

2. Robot restaurant

3. Maidreamin Cafe


Best Japanese Fast Food


1. Mos Burger

2. Yoshinoya

3. Pepper Lunch


Best Kobe Beef Restaurant


1. Ishida

2. Houki

3. Wakkoqu


Best French Restaurant in Tokyo


1. Les Cristallines

2. Troisgros Japon

3. Joel Robuchon


Best Italian Restairant in Tokyo


1. Pizzeria Da Napolistaca

2. Elio Locanada Italiana

3. Bulgari ll Ristorante


Best U.S. Restaurant


1. Outback Steakhouse

2. Hard Rock cafe

3. Denny's


Best Izakaya (Japanese Pub)


1. Hibiki

2. Gonpachi

3. Nihonbashi-tei


Best Mexican Restaurant


1. Fonda de la Madrugada

2. La Jolla

3. El Caliente


Best Curry Rice Restaurant


1. CoCo Ichibanya

2. Manten Curry Rice

3. Curry House TIRI TIRI


Best Tonkatsu Restaurant


1. Wako

2. Maisen

3. Katsuzen


Best Craft Brewery


1. Miyashita Sake Brewery

2. Baird Brewery Company

3. Abashiri Brewery


Best Asian Restaurant in Tokyo


1. Asian Palm

2. Monsoon Cafe

3. Mango Tree


Best Kaiseki Restaurant (Japanese Traditional Multi-Course Dinner)


1. Gion Karyo, Kyoto

2. Nakamura, Kyoto

3. Ogata, Kyoto


Best Tempura Restaurant in Tokyo


1. Tempura Kondo

2. Ten-ichi Ginza Honten

3. Tempura Motoyoshi


Best Sushi Restaurant


1. Sukiyabashi Jiro

2. Sushi no Midori

3. Sushi Dai


Best Tonkotsu Ramen Restaurant in Tokyo


1. Ichiran

2. Shibaraku

3. Botan




Japanese Sweets

Best Sweets


1. Melon Pan

2. Crepes

3. Taiyaki


Best Wagashi Shop


1. Higashiya Ginza

2. Tokyo Mise

3. Toraya Tokyo


Best Bakery & Dessert Shop


1. Sweets Paradise

2. Rose Bakery

3. Ice Monster Omotesando


Best Chocolate Snack


1. Pocky

2. Choco Pie




Go back to the Category


Japanese Pop Culture

Japanese Anime & Manga

Best Shonen Manga


1. One Piece

2. Fairy Tail

3. Full Metal Alchemist


Best Shojo Manga


1. Akatsuki no Yona

2. Kimi ni Todoke

3. Orange


Best Kawaii Cartoon Character


1. Pika-chu

2. Totoro

3. Rilakkuma


Best Studio Ghibli Movie


1. Howl's Moving Castle

2. Spirited Away

3. My Neighbor Totoro


Best Anime 2012-2016


1. Attack on Titan

2. One-Punch Man

3. Tokyo Ghoul


Best Animated Movie


1. Wolf Children

2. Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children

3. The Girl Who Leapt Though Time


Best Anime of All Time


1. Dragon Ball Z

2. One Piece

3. Death Note


Best Gotochi Character (Regional Mascot Character)


1. Kumamon

2. Funassyi

3. Gunma-chan





Best Famous Cosplayer 2016


1. Touga

2. Reika

3. Linda Le(Vampy Bit Me)




Japanese Fashion

Best Harajuku Fashion


1. Galaxxxy

2. Angelic Pretty

3. 6% Doki Doki


Best Women's Fashion Brand


1. Cecil McBee

2. Olive des Olive

3. Freak's Store


Best Japanese Fashion Brand


1. Comme Des Garcons

2. Junko Koshino

3. Kenzo


Best Female Model


1. Kiko Mizuhara

2. Mirei Kiritani

3. Rola




Japanese Video Games

Best J-RPG of All Time


1. Final Fantasy VII

2. Kingdom Hearts 2

3. Persona 4



Go back to the Category


Japan Travel

Japanese Destinations

Best Theme Park


1. Tokyo Disneyland

2. Universal Studios Japan

3. Tokyo Disneysea


Best "Day Trip" from Tokyo


1. Yokohama

2. Kamakura

3. Mt. Fuji


Best Vacation Spot


1. Kyoto

2. Ishigaki Island

3. Nara


Best Famous Landmark in Tokyo


1. Tokyo Tower

2. Shibuya Crossing / Hachiko Statue

3. Tokyo Skytree


Best Distinctive Building


1. Tokyo Station

2. Nakagin Capsule Tower

3. Omotesando Hills


Best Area for Hot Spring


1. Hakone Onsen

2. Kurokawa Onsen

3. Beppu Onsen


Best Ryokan (Traditional Japanese Hotel)


1. Takinoya

2. Shuhokaku Kogetsu

3. Hotel Hanayura


Best Ski Resort


1. Niseko Grand Hirafu

2. Fujiten Snow Resort

3. Hakuba Happo One Ski Resort


Best Japanese Architect


1. Tadao Ando

2. Kenzo Tange

3. Kisho Kurosawa


Best Place to Visit in Tokyo


1. Harajuku

2. Asakusa Temple

3. Odaiba


Best International School


1. Tokyo International School

2. The American School in Japan

3. Yokohama International School


Best Language School


1. Sendagaya Japanese Institute

2. Akamonkai

3. Coto Language Academy




Japanese Hotels

Best Five Ster Hotel in Tokyo


1. Park Hyatt Tokyo

2. Palace Hotel Tokyo

3. Imperial Hotel Tokyo


Best Hotel for Young Travelers


1. Kyoto Guesthouse Roujiya

2. Nui. Hotel & Bar Lounge

3. Hostel Haruya Aqua, Kyoto




Japanese Leisure & Recreation

Best Place to Karaoke


1. Shidax

2. Big Echo

3. Karaoke-kan


Best Game Center


1. Club SEGA


3. Shinjuku Playland Carnival


Best Japanese Festival


1. Sapporo Snow Festival

2. Awa Odori Tokushima

3. Gion Matsuri


Best Fireworks Show


1. Tokyo Bay Fireworks

2. Sumidagawa Fireworks

3. Edogawa Fireworks


Best Department Store


1. Mitsukoshi

2. Matsuya Ginza

3. Isetan


Best Shopping Complex/Mall


1. Shibuya 109

2. Roppongi Hills

3. Omotesando Hills


Best Art Museum


1. National Museum Tokyo

2. Japan Ukiyo-e Museum

3. National Art Center


Best History & Science Museum


1. Tokyo National Museum

2. Edo Tokyo Museum

3. Samurai Museum


Best Special Interest Museum


1. Ghibli Museum

2. Cupnoodle Museum

3. Sapporo Beer Museum



Go back to the Category

Thursday, 16 March 2017 21:42

Tokyo Journal's Top 10 Rankings



What are your favorite things about Japan and Japanese culture?

You vote. You decide!


Pop Culture




Vote for the 2020 Tokyo Journal Top 10 Readers' Choice Rankings: Coming soon!

Tokyo Journal readers will be able to vote once a day for their favorite things in Japanese entertainment, food, pop-culture, and travel locations.

TJRankings Entertainment2  TJRankings PopCulture5 
TJRankings Food3  TJRankings Travel

TJRankings ProductReviews2

Thursday, 02 February 2017 18:15

Japanese National Tea Ceremony

Japanese Nagtional Tea Ceremony
Treasures Displayed in L.A.

THE 92-year-old Daisosho (Grand Master) Dr. Genshitsu Sen XV visited the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) on May 24, 2015 to showcase the museum’s March 29 – June 7 exhibition Raku: The Cosmos in a Tea Bowl. The exhibition of 100 ceramic tea ceremony objects spanning five centuries was the first of its kind in the U.S. free of the items were Japanese national treasures, two of which were tea bowls made by the earliest Raku potter Chojiro and lent to LACMA by the Daisosho out of the Urasenke Foundation’s collection.

Wednesday, 01 February 2017 22:12

Cosplay Conventions

Cosplay Conventions in Tokyo and Los Angeles

Monday, 30 January 2017 21:30

Samurai Spirit

Virtu in Japan

Samurai Spirit

Tetsuro Shimaguchi, known for his samurai choreography and appearance in the Quentin Tarantino movie Kill Bill, is the founder of the sword performance group Kamui, as well as the creator of Kengido, a fusion of martial arts with performing arts that delivers the beauty of the samurai. Samurai are well-known warriors of feudal Japan, who fought for their clans and their country. However, Tetsuro believes samurai were artists more than warriors who followed a strong ethical code. If we define a samurai as an artist, rather than a warrior, what makes a strong samurai? What strength are they are pursuing? According to Tetsuro, the key is shingitai (心技体). Shingitai is a term often used in Japanese martial arts. Shin (心) stands for the mind or heart, gi (技) is skill and tai (体) means body. Combined, shingitai is the balance of the mind, skill and body — and you may notice that mind comes first in this word. Tetsuro is spreading the samurai ’s sense of respect to the next generation and to the world through his workshops. He also arranges photo shoots of people in samurai armor at Sengoku Photo Studio Samurai in Yoyogi, Tokyo. Nanami Chinatsu spoke with Tetsuro Shimaguchi to learn more about the samurai spirit.


Staff Continued

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