Your Guide to Japan

Jeremy Dezani

In this article, I will not talk about MTG but instead about Japan.

If you did not know I am living in Japan nowadays. I am learning everyday a little more about Japanese culture, language etc. Some of you proably went to Japan before, for others it will be the first time.

This article has as its goal to help you during your travel for Grand Prix and Pro Tour Kyoto or just a regular holiday in Japan.


For ideas about what places to visit while in Kyoto, you should definitely have a look at Shuhei’s article.

Nara Park

About Nara Park

Nara is located less than one hour from Kyoto and Osaka. Due to its past as the first permanent capital, it remains full of historic treasures, including some of Japan’s oldest and largest temples. Over 1,200 wild sika deer freely roaming around in the park.

From Kyoto Station, both the JR Nara Line and the private Kintetsu Kyoto Line will get you to Nara quickly. The Kintetsu Nara Station is better located than the JR Nara Station, and all-reserved Tokkyu trains leave Kyoto twice an hour, making the run to Nara in 35 minutes.


The Yamanote Line is the most popular subway Line in Tokyo. It will bring you to many famous and incredible places.


Akihabara is considered by many to be an otaku cultural center and a shopping district for video games, anime, manga, and computer goods. Icons from popular anime and manga are displayed prominently on the shops in the area, and numerous maid cafes are found throughout the district.


The name “Shibuya” is also used to refer to the shopping district which surrounds Shibuya Station, one of Tokyo’s busiest railway stations. This area is known as one of the fashion centres of Japan, particularly for young people, and as a major nightlife area.

Ueno Park

Ueno Park is a spacious public park in the Ueno district of Tokyo. The home of a number of major museums, Ueno Park is also celebrated in spring for its cherry blossoms. In recent times, the park and its attractions have drawn over ten million visitors a year, making it Japan’s most popular city park.

Shinjuku Gyoen

Shinjuku Gyoen is one of Tokyo’s largest and most popular parks. Located just a short walk from Shinjuku Station, the paid park’s spacious lawns, meandering walking paths and tranquil scenery provide a relaxing escape from the busy urban center around it.

Hareruya Tournement Center

Boasting Japan’s largest playspace at 310 seats! It’s none other than the Hareruya Tournament Center! It is situated very close to Takadanobaba station. We host tournaments every day for just about every format, rain or shine, weekday, weekend, or holiday.

How to Get to Hareruya Tournament Center:Click here

Sensoji Temple

Sensoji Temple is Tokyo’s largest ancient Buddhist temple and a major Tokyo attractions for Japanese and foreigners located in Asakusa. It is Tokyo’s oldest temple, and one of its most significant.

Located just before Sensoji, Nakamise is one of the oldest shopping centers in Japan. Apart from typical Japanese souvenirs such as yukata, keychains and folding fans, various traditional local snacks from the Asakusa area are sold along the Nakamise.

Opening Hours: 06:00am – 05:00pm Nakasime=> 10:00am – 5:00pm


The current Imperial Palace is located on the former site of Edo Castle, a large park area surrounded by moats and massive stone walls in the center of Tokyo, a short walk from Tokyo Station. It is the residence of Japan’s Imperial Family.

Opening Hours: Daily except Monday & Friday 09:00am – 4:30pm

Mount Fuji

Mount Fuji is located on Honshu Island close to Shizuoka, it is the highest mountain in Japan. All travellers eager to climb the top of Mount Fuji must bear in mind that the climbing season lasts from July until September.

During summer, all hiking trails are open. In any other period, trails and mountain huts will be closed. To climb Mount Fuji, there are four Fuji trails, which will take you to the mountaintop

@pi From Tokyo you can take a Bus as shown on this website this website

Japanese Language

I will not teach you any difficult grammar, just some vocabulary you will probably find useful during your trip.

Communication words

English Japanese
Good MorningOhayo Gozaimasu
Good EveningKonbanwa
Good NightOyasumi Nasai
Thank youArigato Gozaimasu
Sorry / Excuse meGomen nasai / Sumimasen
Nice to meet youHajimemashite
When you arrive, or leave a shopOtsu Kare Sama desu
No problemDaijobu desu
You welcomeDou itashimashite
No thanksKekko Desu
I don’t speak JapaneseNihongo wo hanasemasen
Do you speak English?Eigo wo anasemasuka?
IWatashi wa
YouAnata wa


English Japanese

Example: 23467 → Ni-man san-sen yon hyaku roku-ju nana

Very useful for Japanese money, \ = Yen


English Japanese
Bathroom (Toilet)Otearai / Toire
BreakfastAsa gohan
Internet is not workinginnta-netto ga tsunagarimasen
The water in the shower is coldShawa no mizu ga tsumetai desu


English Japanese
Water pleaseo mizu kudasai
BarIzakaya / Nomiya
The bill pleaseO kaikei kudasai
Japanese foodNihon shoku
Western foodYou shoku
Is this vegetarian food?Sore wa vegitarian yo-u no ryouri desuka?


English Japanese
Where is XXXXXX wa doko desuka?
I am going to XXXXXX e ikimasu
Ticket Machine Kippu hanbaiki
To loseUshinau
I lost my BaggageWatashi no nimotsu wo ushinaimashita

Japanese food

Everybody know about sushi but Japanese food is more than only this. There are some dishes you should try during your stay in Japan.


Yakitori is a Japanese type of skewered chicken. They are grilled over a charcoal fire. During or after cooking, the meat is typically seasoned with either Salt ”Shio” or a Sauce “tare” [Think teriyaki sauce]


Ramen is noodles served in a meat or fish-based broth, often flavoured with soy sauce or miso, and uses toppings such as sliced pork and green onions

Curry (kare)

A wide variety of vegetables and meats are used to make Japanese curry. The basic vegetables are onions, carrots, and potatoes. For the meat, beef, pork, and chicken are the most popular. Katsu-kare is a breaded deep-fried cutlet with curry sauce.


Gyoza are dumplings filled with ground meat and vegetables and wrapped in a thin dough. Also known as pot stickers, gyoza originated in China, but have become a very popular dish in Japan. The typical gyoza filling consists of ground pork, nira chives, green onion, cabbage, ginger, garlic, soy sauce and sesame oil


Tempura consisting of seafood and/or vegetables that have been battered and deep fried.


Katsudon is a popular Japanese food, a bowl of rice topped with a deep-fried pork cutlet, egg, vegetables, and condiments. Beef (gyu-katsu) and chicken (oyakodon) can substitute for the pork.


Takoyaki is a ball-shaped Japanese snack made of a wheat flour-based batter and cooked in a special moulded pan. It is typically filled with minced or diced octopus, tempura scraps, pickled ginger, and green onion. Takoyaki toppings are usually Katsuobushi flakes, Takoyaki sauce and mayonnaise.


Okonomiyaki is a Japanese savoury pancake containing a variety of ingredients. Osaka-style okonomiyaki is the predominant version of the dish, found throughout most of Japan. The batter is made of flour, grated nagaimo (a type of yam), water or dashi, eggs and shredded cabbage, and usually contains other ingredients such as green onion, meat, octopus, squid, shrimp, vegetables or cheese.

Sushi Bar

If you want to have sushi, I recommend you to go to one of the conveyor belt sushi places, they are cheap and still way above the level of most sushi restaurants you would find outside of Japan.

I hope you will enjoy your trip in Japan.

Thank you for reading,

Jeremy Dezani

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