Win a Trip to Japan!
JTS Online Certification Program

JNTO Toronto invites Canadian travel agents to enrol in the Japan Travel Specialist (JTS) certification program as it continues to support travel agents promoting Japan.  The e-learning program, now available in English and French, provides travel agents with an accessible, efficient way to learn the key facts about Japan as a tourist destination.  The information is provided in a clear and concise manner with many photos to help agents remember the information.  Even better, agents who complete the JTS certification program are eligible to enter a contest to win a free trip to Japan!

Summertime in Japan - A Unique Experience

Mount Fuji Officially Opens
for Climbing

Summer is here, and that means that for the adventurous, the brave, the athletic, or simply the determined, it is climbing season.  Mount Fuji, Japan's highest mountain, will be officially opened for climbing in July and August.  Known for its stunning beauty and magnificent views, the mountain is by all accounts worth the climb.  This once-in-a-lifetime challenge can be undertaken from five possible starting points around the mountain.  Even on the easiest route to the top, starting at the Fifth station, the trek takes 5-8 hours and has some steep sections.  Travellers must be sure to wear sturdy footwear, dress appropriately (it can be very cold at the top), and bring supplies.

For more information, visit:

Summer Festivals

If mountain hiking is not for you, there is no need to worry. Another amazing summer experience awaits you:  Japan's summer festivals.  Taking place across the country in small towns and big cities alike, these festivals are an important part of Japanese culture, with something for everyone to enjoy. 

The festivals typically include delicious food and drinks, parades, dances, live music and other performances, costumes and masks, games and activities for children and adults, and a fireworks display at night.  Festivities usually occur throughout the day and continue late into the night and are enjoyed by the whole community.  This is an excellent way to experience many aspects of Japanese culture, and travellers are more than welcome, so make the most of it!

Kansai Airport Duty Free Shops Open

Travellers passing through the Kansai International Airport (KIX) can now take advantage of great deals at a number of exciting new duty-free shops.  These shops are located in the "KIX Airside Avenue" an area recently redesigned as part of the KIX renovations (described as a "renewal").  The KIX Airside Avenue includes many great options for shoppers.  Whether you are picking up last-minute souvenirs, looking for bargains on brand-name items, or stocking up on everyday items, you will find what you need and more among these great shops.

Tokyo Metro Guide Launched

Figuring out the subway system in a foreign country and a foreign language can be a challenge.  Figuring out a subway system that transports an average of almost 8 million passengers daily through 14 lines and 282 stations... well, that can be downright overwhelming.  Fortunately, Tokyo metro has launched a guide.  Free and convenient to download, the guide contains a useful map of the subway system, an excellent chart with Japanese phrases you can point to, and additional advice on how to use the subway.  Users will also find important information on fares, as well as suggested routes for sightseeing.

Buy a JR East Pass and Receive a Coupon Booklet

Any of the JR passes are of outstanding value—including the JR East Pass, which covers the area approximately corresponding to the north half of Honshu, including Tokyo.  As if unlimited travel on virtually all JR lines weren't enough, now for a limited time travellers who buy the pass will also get a book of coupons full of amazing savings on attractions in the Nikko and Kinugawa area.  Coupons can be used at 30 locations and include great deals on restaurants, souvenir shops, and hot spring facilities.  There is even a coupon for 10% off admission to Rinnoji Temple's Treasure House and Garden, a world heritage site.  The coupon book also gives great suggestions on lesser-known locations in the area worth visiting, as well as updates on seasonal events.

Regional Website Updates

A number of great websites on regions in Japan of interest to tourists have recently been updated.  Below are brief descriptions of the regions and links to their updated websites.

Located in the northeast corner of the southern island of Shikoku, Ehime’s dramatic mountains and brilliant blue coastlines make for natural eye candy.  Traditional Japanese ways of life can be experienced in this warm, rural environment.
Located in Central Japan, this coastal prefecture offers unique experiences, including observing firefly squid, experiencing the healing properties of deep sea water, and traditional crafts.  It also features a beautiful pass through the northern mountains where nature is at its finest, such as the Shomyo-daki waterfall.
Located near Tokyo, this prefecture is small but mighty when it comes to tourism power.  Well worth the trip outside of Tokyo, the area features exciting sightseeing opportunities such as the Giant Buddha, as well as vast stretches of natural delights such as Oku-Sagami woodlands.

Where in Japan?

In this section, you will find a photo of a location in Japan.  Please enjoy guessing where you think it might be.  Watch for the answer in our next newsletter to see if you were right, and learn more about travel destinations in Japan!
(Please note this is not a contest.  It is not necessary to contact JNTO Toronto with your guesses.)

May Newsletter Answer 
The May newsletter featured a photo of DOGO ONSEN in Matsuyama city, Ehime Prefecture.  The hot spring spa is Japan's oldest at 3000 years.  The three-story wood structure is rumoured to be the inspiration for the bathhouse of the gods featured in the Academy Award-winning film “Spirited Away” by Hayao Miyazaki.

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Japan National Tourism Organization
481 University Avenue, Suite 306 Toronto, Ontario M5G 2E9
Tel: 416-366-7140
Fax: 416-366-4530