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Motor Cycle on the beach, motor sports

Sports & Motorsports

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Cycling

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This indicates a link is in Japanese only.

Sumo, Japanese traditional sports
Snowboarding in Japan, skiing in Japan
family seal, Kamon
Toyota Race car, driving a sport car in a real racing track
Skiing & Snowboarding
Canyoning/Shower Climbing/Sliding

​Sports & Motor Sports

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Japan has many great spots for sports all year long.

Popular Sports

Ski & Snowboarding

Did you know there are almost 600 ski resorts in Japan?! Niseko, Hakuba, Zao, and Myoko Suginohara are some of the most well-known, but with so many options, you can find one with a specialty that you can find to make sure your stay is tailored to your preference. You can find all 597 ski resorts here on this website.

If you want to learn the most popular spots, you can read them on JW Magazine.

Canyoning/Shower Climbing/Sliding

Do you enjoy white water rafting and swimming in a river? How about Canyoning? If so, Japan has opened its first canyoning tour company. If you’re adventurous, you’ll love jumping, sliding down waterfalls, and floating downstream in a beautiful river gorge. You can read about it more in All About Japan. For English tours, check out Canyons Tours

 

Surfing

When you think of surfing, Japan may not be the first place that comes to mind. But you may be surprised to find out that there are some great spots for surfing in Japan. You can find great info here at JNTO such as where to surf and how to prepare to surf in Japan. This website, Surfing in Japan, also has tons of useful information.

 

Snorkeling & Scuba Diving

If you think of scuba diving in Asia, you may first consider Thailand or the Philippines. It may surprise you that Japan offers some of the most exciting scuba diving spots in the world. If you want to swim with Mantas or a giant cuttlefish, you might love a Japanese scuba trip. Read all about these options in the World Adventure Divers publicationPADI blog also has some great info on diving in Japan.

 

Cycling

There are many fantastic cycling opportunities throughout Japan. For quick bike rentals, rental bikes are available in many places throughout the country, especially in more dense cities. JR Pass isted their recommended place, and Outdoor Japan has an article that specifically recommends Long-distance biking trails.

 

Popular biking spots

 

Below are some of the most popular biking areas in Japan with US websites:

 

If you prefer to travel with experienced guides, you can check out John Morrell’s Cycle Japan. John is an adventurer from Australia. You can bring your own bike for one of his tours or rent one from his company. His tours take place in the four best places to travel on a bicycle in Japan.

Glamping

You love camping, but don’t have any gear with you or would prefer to camp in style with luxurious amenities? Glamping is becoming very popular in recent years in Japan, which means there are many beautiful glamping sites to choose from. Time Out Tokyo, Tokyo Weekender, JW-Web Magazine, Metropolis and Japan National Tourism Organization have a great list of glamping sites.

Surfing
Snorkeling & Scuba Diving
Glamping/camping
Traditional Sports

Traditional Sports

JNTO, Japan National Tourism Organization, has a good introduction about various Japanese traditional sports.

 

Nihon Budokan is the largest venue for Budo/Martial Arts in Japan. They hold both practice sessions and tournaments throughout the year. You’re allowed to watch some events. The best thing to do is have your hotel clerk call them and find out if there are any events you’re allowed to visit during your stay. Or, if you’re a student of a particular martial art, ask your sensei to contact your Budo organization in Japan. You may be able to practice or fight at the affiliated Dojo there. 

 

Recommended Resources:

Kendo: International Keno Federation

Judo: Kodokan

Kyudo: All Nippon Kyudo Federation

Karatedo: Japan Karatedo Federation

Aikido: Akikai Foundation

Shoriji Kempo: 

Shojinji Kempo Federation

Naginata: All Japan Naginata Federation

Jukendo: All Japan Jukendo Federation


 

Kobudo/Ninjutsu

Masaaki Hatsumi Sensei may be one of the most globally famous masters in Budo. He has taught at militaries, police organizations, the FBI, and other special forces worldwide. At his Dojo, you learn the 900-year-old Togakure school of Ninpo, the fighting arts of the ninja. You can take the seminars and practice with his fellow Deshi. Read more about it on Nippon.com 

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Sports events/games

Attending Sports Events

There are a few different ways to purchase tickets. You can directly go to the venues, buy them from the teams’ or official association websites, or you can use ticket services like Klook or Rakten.

 

Sumo

You can check the tournament schedule and purchase tickets at the official Nihon Sumo Kyokai website. GijinPotBlog lists Sumo stables you can visit and watch the practice. I like the site because it has a Heya list (beya/stables) outside the Tokyo area. My aunt lived in Ryogoku, where the Kokugikan Sumo Stadium and many Sumo stables are located. Sumo wrestlers are easy to spot. They are so big and wear a yukata or kimono. In the area, you can try a traditional dish, Chanko Nabe. National Public Radio website has a good article about the dish, and Tsunagaru Japan has a recommendation of 10 Chanko Nabe restaurants. 

 

Soccer

The Japan Football Association or J-League website has more on the professional teams and ticket information.

 

Rugby

Japan Rugby Football Union: You can check the game schedule and purchase tickets. or Rugby Top League site

 

Professional Baseball League

Some teams have pages in English. If not, you can go to the stadiums or use those internet ticket service companies to purchase tickets. Simon and Martina have vlogs of their first visit to a Japanese baseball game. It’s a pretty unique experience from MLB games. 

 

-Central League-


 

-Pacific League-

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Car & Motorcycle

Cars & Motorcycles

If you’re a car or motorcycle enthusiast, visit the right county. The places listed below are absolute paradise for car and motorcycle enthusiasts. Rent a formula race car or motorcycle and feel like a racecar driver by driving on the international track. You can even participate in a race and be an actual race car driver.  

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Cars

If you’d like to visit automobile museums, factories or showrooms, there are a few I would highly recommend. 

 



Toyota

The Toyota Showroom is in Nagoya.

 

Toyota Kaikan Museum is their showroom where you can their latest newest vehicles. You can also you can take a plant tour there. At Toyota Automobile Museum, you can learn the history and culture of automobile. If you want to learn about the history of Japanese auto manufacturing and the founder of Toyota, Mr. Sakichi Toyoa, visit  at the Mr. Sakichi Toyota Memorial House and Toyota Commemorative Museum of Industry and Technology

 

Nissan

Japan is home to the Nissan Global Headquarters/showroom. You can view the Nissan Heritage Collection in Zama City, Kanagawa which stores 400 cars including 300 displayed cars as a permanent collection.

 

Honda

The Honda Showroom

 is located in Tokyo. You can also view the Honda Plants, however the websites are in Japanese language only. They have 5 car plant locations you may want to visit located in Saitama, Mie, Tochigi, Kumamoto, Shizuoka as well as a motorcycle plant in Kumamoto (ask your hotel front desk to make a reservation a few months in advance.)

 

Mazda

The Mazda Museum is located in Hiroshima. The Nasu Classic Car Museum includes great Mazda vehicles but their website is in Japanese language only. 


 

Rare and Exotic Cars

There are many car collections in Japan, but below I’ve listed the most well-known and popular ones here:

 

 

Shops

If you are a vehicle enthusiast, these are a must see. The Autobacs Auto Accessories mega shops have numerous locations in Japan. Ask your hotel front desk.

Motorcycles 

Rental Motorcycles

Rental 819/Nationwide

 

Rental Bike System SMC

 

Motorcycle Group/Osaka area

 

Marutomi Rental Bike/Kanagawa Prefecture

Rental Motorbike.com in Okinawa 

 

Honda

Honda Motor Bike showroom (the center of Tokyo, Aoyama area)

 

Large Honda showroom and race track (a day trip from Tokyo)

Honda Collection Hall Museum

 

Yamaha

Yamaha Communication Plaza in Shizuoka. You can learn more about it in Motorcycle Paradise 

 

Suzuki

Suzuki Plaza/Suzuki History Museum

 

Suzuki World Shinjuku Tokyo/Suzuki Bike shop


 

Kawasaki

Kawasaki Plaza

Japanese language only. Ask your hotel clerk to find one nearby.

 

Kawasaki Company Museum 

 

Royal Enfield/Mutt Motorcycles Showroom in Kobe City (Japanese website only)

 

Mutt Motorcycles Tokyo Showroom

 

Shops

Ricoland

Ricoland is one of the most significant motorcycle parts shops. You can find some rare parts only found in Japan. The English banner/slide will show up in a few seconds when you get to this website. 

 

Cheery’s Company

Kaichiroh is a motorcycle custom builder who has dealt with Harley-Davidson for over 20 years. He is also an expert on Japanese brands and other foreign brands. He is globally well-known and has many celebrity customers from the US and other countries. He can ship products overseas.


 

SCS Tokyo Japanese website only

Motorcycle super store

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Activities & Interests

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Useful Tips & Apps

Torii, traditional Japanese gate, arch in temples and shrines
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