TRAVEL

Jul 24
The end of the rainy season is typically marked by the staging of summer festivals around the nation. Though such festivities were once suspended in areas hit by the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake, local people are again putting on their festivals, with some festivities similar to pre-disaster days. (The Japan News)
Jul 23
The estimated number of foreign visitors to Japan in the first half of 2014 hit a record high of 6.26 million thanks to the yen’s weakness and increased international flights at Tokyo’s Haneda airport, a government body said Wednesday. (Nikkei)
Jul 22
Excitement is building as the month-long Gion Festival, one of the nation’s most celebrated festivals, prepares over the next few days to revive a tradition for the first time in 49 years. (Asahi)
Jul 22
As geisha numbers continue to dwindle, performers in western Tokyo’s Hachioji are stepping out of the shadows of their private “floating world” and into the public domain. (Asahi)
Jul 22
As comedian and noted lover of cinnamon rolls and burritos Jim Gaffigan famously said, going whale watching is kind of boring. It’s a handful of hours of waiting around, a brief glimpse of “something I wouldn’t even watch on television,” and then your most likely drunk tour captain whisking you back to shore in time for happy hour. (rocketnews24.com)
Jul 19
A capsule hotel catering to those who take early morning flights is scheduled to open Sunday in a parking garage adjacent to Narita International Airport’s Terminal 2. (Japan Times)
Jul 19
A new model of the Tokyo Monorail’s 10000 series leaves Haneda Airport Terminal 2 Station in Ota Ward, Tokyo, on Friday morning, as Rino Sashihara of the idol group HKT48, second from left-appointed stationmaster for a day-and other station staff members give the signal. (The Japan News)
Jul 19
The Internal Affairs and Communications Ministry Friday called for steps to be taken to shorten waiting time for immigration examinations at two of the country’s four major international airports. (The Japan News)
Jul 18
Residents of Kyoto have paraded colorfully decorated floats through the streets of Japan’s old capital, a highlight of the month-long Gion summer festival. (NHK)
Jul 16
A village in Aomori Prefecture, northeastern Japan, has depicted Mount Fuji in a paddy using rice plants. (NHK)