How much is Japan?

To live in Japan is NOT expensive anymore. It must have been some kind of legend or misunderstanding or exaggerated media saying about JPY10,000 melon (still there in many department stores not for daily consumption) and JPY5,000 Mango (nothing to do with Urushi Japanning even they are in same family) but truth is that locals usually enjoy eating JPY500-JPY1,000 melon/mango, actually we just bought and enjoyed JPY798 melon from local supermarket in Asakusa. For your rate comparison, we pick some everyday "local" price range at this column. Average can determine that Tokyo is less than London, Paris, New York City, Zurich, Melbourne, but more than Roma, Athen, Lisboa, Bangkok, maybe similar to Singapore now. Life should not be discussed by 5-percent or 10-percent or money-exchange-rate. If your heart tells you, it's the high time that you should visit Japan. Would you like to live in Tokyo already? RealTokyoEstate has lists of apartments and houses. Still worry about money? Hope you could taste a pot of green tea with this page (happiness doubled when we share, worry minimized when we share).


2 liter (2,000cc) mineral water : 78yen - 198yen
0.5 liter (500cc) mineral water at station kiosk : 100yen - 130yen
A cup of coffee at cafe : 180yen - 480yen
A cup of coffee at convenience store : 86yen - 150yen
McDonald regular menu and morning menu : official-mcdonalds-menu
A can of drink from vending machine : 100yen - 160yen
Same softdrink at super market : 39yen - 98yen

Taxi upto 1km (for example, Asakusa - Tokyo Ryokan) : 420yen (max. 4 passengers)
Metro between Asakusa and Ueno (2.2km) : 168yen (ic card) or 170yen (cash)
Metro between Asakusa and Shibuya (14.3km) : 242yen (ic card) or 250yen (cash)
Train (TX Line) between Asakusa and Akihabara (3.1km) : 210yen (ic card) or 210yen (cash)
Shortest JR ride (a few stops upto 3km) : 136yen (ic card) or 140yen (cash)
Toei bus ride (for example, Asakusa - Tokyo) : 210yen (ic card) or 210yen (cash)

Loaf of bread : 98yen - 350yen
Can of beer : 98yen - 250yen
Jug of beer at bar : 280yen - 780yen
Western breakfast : 500yen - 980yen
Japanese breakfast : 380yen - 780yen
An apple : 50yen - 200yen
A mango : 250yen - 5,000yen (really!)
A melon : 500yen - 10,000yen (really!)
Lunch box : 250yen - 850yen
Good ramen noodle : 700yen - 2,000yen
Cheap ramen noodle : starts from 320yen
Kake (plain) soba : 230yen - 600yen
Kake (plain) udon : 230yen - 600yen
Sushi lunch set : 1,000yen - 5,000yen
Sushi dinner set : 3,000yen - 30,000yen

Pair of socks (including the five-toes) : 100yen - 500yen

Domestic post card stamp (anywhere in Japan) : 63yen
International post card stamp (anywhere around the world) : 70yen
Optic Fiber Cable Internet (upto 1Gbps) without limitation : 5,000yen - 6,000yen per month
Optic Fiber Cable Internet (upto 200Mbps) without limitation : 4,000yen - 5,000yen per month
SIM (around 1Mbps - 50Mbps) contract without limitation : 980yen - 2,980yen per month

Movie at theater : 1,000yen - 1,800yen
Disneyland One Day Passport : 8,200yen
Disneysea One Day Passport : 8,200yen
Disneyland One Year Passport : 68,000yen
Disneysea One Year Passport : 68,000yen
Both Disneyland and Disneysea One Year Passport : 99,000yen (life is wonderfu!)
Baseball/Football/Rugby game ticket : 1,000yen - 5,900yen
Public bath (both Sentou and Onsen) : 470yen

Petrol/Gas per liter : https://gogo.gs/
Toyota Prius : 2,597,000yen (Rent-a-car 10,000yen per 24hrs)
Toyota MIRAI 2022 : https://toyota.jp/mirai/grade/
Toyota MIRAI Second-Hand : Official Used Toyota Car
Nissan GT-R Pure Edition : 10,828,400yen (Rent-a-car 30,000yen per 24hrs)
Parking lot in Asakusa and in Ueno : 25,000yen - 50,000yen per month

Water monthly bill per apartment/house : 5,000yen - 10,000yen
Electricity monthly bill per apartment/house : 0yen - 10,000yen (please see below)
Electricity monthly sale (out of your solar panel) per house : 0yen - 30,000yen (yes, you can earn money out of sunshine!)
Apartment 30sqm (to rent a month) in Asakusa : 80,000yen - 150,000yen
100sqm land (to buy) in Asakusa : 60,000,000yen - 300,000,000yen
A night stay in Asakusa : 3,000yen - 20,000yen
Minimum wage per hour (in Tokyo) : 1,072yen (around 170,000yen per month)

Nihongo = Japanese

This page would like to introduce several good quality, content feedback, worth-to-invest, Japanese language school in Japan. Thanks to Bill Gates and Steve Jobs, wherever we are, night and day, we can all learn what we'd like to learn. Japanese language or Nihongo is not an exception, but it is also true that your Kanji words are doubled and tripped much faster if you were actually living here in Japan. With the good exchange rate, well, actually let's not minimize our opportunities due to MONEY, we can ANYTIME do what we'd like to achieve, let's get flight tickets to Japan for next semester (or even next week) to join the circle of happiness!

So, here's the free lesson for you => NHK WORLD's Japanese lesson in your own language
And these on-line lessons are highly "rocketed" (^^) => Rocket Languages and www.italki.com

Meiji Daigaku : Japan study short programs, very intense course, in the heart of downtown Tokyo. The university has the library of manga and subculture.

MLC

INCUL

KAI

Kyushu in Kagoshima

Temple University in Tokyo

Kudan Institute in Tokyo

Subaru in Gifu (west of Nagoya)

Kokusai Daigaku in Niigata

Nanzan Daigaku in Nagoya

Kumamoto YMCA in Kyushu

Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University in Beppu, Oita

After the earthquake and tsunami

It was one kind of sadness of human era, yet this is done by all natural power of earth (except Fukushima nuclear power plant being built without tsunami concrete wall) ....... not like the war. One can be wise if possible to learn the same wisdom as these people who actually faced the event seen on Youtube.

Asakusa had only minor damage in limited nubmer of old wooden house. Tokyo bay area, mainly Urayasu, got liquefaction (liquid type of dirt comes up from underneath, which is not due to drain damage). 30km north of downtown Tokyo, say Omiya, had their Japanese style roof (kawara-yane) fell off.

When something sad, terrible, difficult happened to us, we tend to think it is not fair. But in the end, what end? we have to use our most careful thoughtful mind to consider, probably it takes 10 years or even 50 years to understand, but in the end, it DOES pay off. All burdens we experience look like unnecessary items at the moment, but it surely will change its shape becoming food of our soul/heart. Everyone (no exception) can learn this life-theory from someone's experience, but if you were crying over someone's sadness, if you felt worry for someone's facing difficulties, you are the one who can complete your mission of life. All 7 billions people are no difference to us ourselves. Thanks for all the kind passion and compassion.

Who says that Japan is unique country? Only the country which became this rich in culture after being destroyed down to zero (WW2)? All the nation and all the area around the world is the same (again, no exception). Despite location, era, sex, age, belief, financial or whatever status, single or married, single-parent or lost-both-parents, job or jobless, with paper/license or without, if we could hang in there with our teeth gritted, yes, endurance we need to overcome all the difficulties, yes, love we need to share to conquer the sadness, hopefully with vision of love and vision of peace in full color in each of our brains, we can reach there in the end (actually right at this moment). Good example drama/movie is Oshin which, believe or not, only happened just 100 years ago here in Japan.

Fukushima Daiichi (Number One) Nuclear Power Plant has a Live Camera on your computer. Watching this does not ease pain, but at least you can find that it is under control?! Actually you can ride JR Joban Line through the "area where returning is difficult" with your geiger counter rising!

Tokyo is trying to control the usage of electric power especially in hot summer days. So far no sudden black-out (power shortage) happened yet. Nothing to do with controlling the fall-outs, but TEPCO's stock fell to 1/10th one time (JPY2,000 => JPY200) now back a little bit.

Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology is monitoring the figure/number of radioactivity level in every prefecture (state/province), and it looks like some places are worse than Chernobyl. We must listen to our own heart, not always (many times?) government is right. MAFF (Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries) prohibited the rice planting in the red zone (dead zone?). Monthly radioactivity level is available on this page. Amazingly, STILL TODAY after more than decade! Japan is paying a lot, not only money.......

Reconstruction is in rapid, but still better not to visit nor to live in the restricted area especially if you are young (physically growing age), please. Fukushima prefecture radioactivity measurement map is available at this page. Some of our relatives are there living for this long even after the leak of Fukushima nuclear plants, saying their life (including ancestors and spirits) is based there in Fukushima, very Japanese and/or Asian way of viewing the fact. Our ancestors' spirits are with the soil there.

Tokyo's updated results can be found at this page.

Odaiba has Tokyo Rinkai Disaster Prevention Park where you can learn and experience the great earthquake of M8.0.
Ikebukuro Bosaikan has facilities called Earthquake Simulation Section where you can experience the great mega giant earthquake similar or more JMA (Japanese Meteorological Agency) Seismic Intensity of March 11th, 2011. Are you ready? There is a direct bus service (TOEI BUS) #63 and #64 between Asakusa and Ikebukuro.

White Paper, Annual Report, Survey

45,422 people
109,223 people
34,663 people

First one is the number averagely calculated per day at Asakusa station on Tobu Line for the year 2019. The year 2011 made numbers declined due to the earthquake/tsunami/fukushima disaster, but recovered it to this figure. Covid-19 influenced a lot on 2020, 2021 and 2022. It includes ride-on passengers as well as get-off passengers.

Second one is at another Asakusa station on Tokyo Metro Ginza Line.

Third one is for Tawaramachi station daily (Tokyo Ryokan's most nearby station).

Curious about the numbers/figures for another big stations? Here's some statistics of major JR stations. Please note that JR counts ONLY ride-on passengers, therefore, to compare with Tobu Line and Tokyo Metro Line, JR figures need to be doubled.

www.jreast.co.jp/passenger/index.html (this link shows covid influenced 2021, below shows 2019's)

Shinjuku : 775,386
Ikebukuro : 558,623
Tokyo : 462,589
Yokohama : 419,440
Shinagawa : 377,337 (new mag-lev station in near future)
Shibuya : 366,128
Above is Top 6 of JR

Akihabara : 248,033 (Top 9th)
Ueno : 182,704 (Top 13th)

Maihama (Disneyland) : 78,811
Narita Airport (T1) : 7,248
Narita Airport (T2&T3) : 5,629


Hirataki : 2 (only 2 passengers daily did ride on Iiyama line from this station)

You might have heard of that Shinjuku has 3 - 4 million (3,000,000 - 4,000,000, depending on statistic and on which area specificly measure) people everyday which is the figure including not only JR but other private railways such as Toei Subway, Tokyo Metro, Odakyu and Keio. The X crossing, diagonal crossing, scramble intersection in front of Hachiko (the dog statue), Shibuya station, has about 800,000 people a day. It may take several lives to shake all of their hands, so let's not take it (each encounter) for granted.

Do you like numbers/figures? Here's more to satisfy your brain (^^) with how many people live in Top 10 cities in Japan!

Tokyo 23 districts : 9,100,000
Yokohama : 3,700,000
Osaka : 2,700,000
Nagoya : 2,300,000
Sapporo : 2,000,000
Kobe : 1,500,000
Fukuoka : 1,500,000
Kawasaki : 1,500,000
Saitama : 1,300,000
Hiroshima : 1,200,000
Sendai : 1,100,000
.......
.......
.......
Taito-ku (one of the Tokyo 23 districts, where Ueno and Asakusa and Yanaka are located, smallest size at 10.11km2) : 203,000 only!

Invest in Tokyo? Here's some more official data for your happy retirement.

Environment => www.env.go.jp/en/wpaper/

Health, Labour and Welfare => www.mhlw.go.jp/english/wp/index.html

Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism => www.mlit.go.jp/en/statistics/white-paper-mlit-index.html

Energy => www.enecho.meti.go.jp/en/category/whitepaper/

Crime => www.moj.go.jp/EN/hakusyo_index.html

Cabinet Office => www.cao.go.jp/en/whitepaper.html

Hokkaido (Ainu Mosir)

Video and clips are available here. Japan's northern island, where you could swim from/to Russia, is nature paradise, used to be the Land of Ainu, but before Ainu, it was the land for every animals, plants and rocks and rivers. Sapporo attracts many winter visitors for the February Snow Festival, snow becomes popular shapes of cartoon characters. Otaru is famous for its beautiful canal which remains the pioneer days of Japan, and the Sushi Restaurant Street offers us the freshest sushi in the world. The largest ski slopes in the area, the Niseko Ski Resort is situated not far from Otaru. Hakodate was the last place for Samurai who was surrendered by new government, Meiji. Furano is famous for its beautiful lavender fields, which blooms in full color from June to July. Note that Hokkaido has no rainy season. Mt.Taisetsu is the center of Hokkaido island surrounded by many hot springs. Biei has what you cannot see in other part of Japan. In the eastern and northern part of Hokkaido, the Kushiro Shitsugen is an extensive national park with beautiful Lake Mashu, Lake Akan and Lake Kussharo, which are spread around the outskirts of northern Kushiro. Shiretoko Peninsula has the best primitive landscape covered with ice cube from Sea of Okhotsk in winter time (best time to visit Hokkaido).

Northern Honshu

Video and clips are available here. Oomazaki is the best maguro tuna port. The Shirakami mountain range that velvets to Aomori and Akita is a world heritage. Kakunodate is a historic town with samurai residences and storehouses. Hiraizumi was originally modeled of Kyoto and is the site of the noted Chusonji Temple built in 1109. It is famous for its gold covered Amitabha Hall. Southern Tohoku centered by Sendai, the largest city in Tohoku called the 'forest capital'. Mt.Zao, located between Yamagata and Miyagi prefectures, attracts summer skiers and winter onseners. Yamadera Temple has its famous poem, 'Shizukesaya Iwani Shimiiru Seminokoe' by Basho MATSUO who eventually found Maktub in a dewdrop of a single leaf. Aizu-Wakamatsu city is the castle town of Tsurugajo Castle with Tokugawa Spirits. Nearby has Mt.Bandai and Lake Inawashiro, which is world-renowned for its natural beauty in color. Fukushima gave itself a bad name, worst name, on google search (T_T) Niigata, about 90 minutes from Tokyo, is one of the world's snowiest areas and, as such, attracts large numbers of skiers throughout the winter. Sado Island in Niigata is the fifth largest of Japan's islands on the way to Russia. The island made Japan's instruction to the west (Europe) due to its gold mine.

Central Honshu

Video and clips are available here. Chubu area is central main island which is the backbone of Japan, the Northern Japan Alps and Southern Japan Alps, which rise to 3,000m and higher. Mt.Fuji is one of the most famous mountains throughout Asia, and is the symbol of Japan, now became the world heritage even with self defence force practice field attached. Izu Peninsula is a popular resort area as well as geo performed area. There are open-air onsen that views Mt.Fuji and the Pacific Ocean. 2020 is another milestone not only for Tokyo but for all Japan and the world. Nagoya is the largest city in central honshu, and the capital of JR Tokaido Shinkansen, also popular due to unique airport called Centrair with hot spring inside the terminal. Nagoya Castle, originally a residence and military headquarters for Tokugawa Ieyasu. In 2027, it is only 40 minutes away from Shinagawa Tokyo with Mag-Lev ride at top speed of 505km/h. Hida-Takayama where you feel the best of traditional Japan. Shirakawago is an intermountain village registered as a world heritage site. Old wooden houses called Gassho-Zukuri, constructed with thatch, remains as it used to be for hundreds of years. Kenrokuen in Kanazawa is one of Japan's three most beautiful gardens. Kanazawa has 21st Century Museum as well. Noto Peninsula has unique atomosphere stick into the Japan Sea. A 90 minutes train ride from Kanazawa via Fukui takes you to Eiheiji Temple, celebrated as one of the headquarters of the Soto sect of Zen Buddhism. 2015 started Shinkansen connected to Tokyo direct, now aiming west bound to Kyoto. Tateyama mountains and Kurobe canyon are known as a cool point of summer time. Tateyama Kurobe Alpine Route is not JR, but very recommended for the scenic route. Nagano became world-famous as the host for the 1998 Winter Olympics. Zenkoji Temple is a representative old temple of Nagano. The main tower of Matsumoto Castle in the city of Matsumoto is nicknamed as Crow Castle because of its black walls. Monkey hot spring cannot be missed in winter time.

Tokyo (Edo)

Video and clips are available here. The capital of Japan, is located center of Japan. The region not only has the biggest city in the world (along with Shanghai and Mexico City) but also has some premitive beauties in nature such as Nikko, Okutama, Mitsumine and southern islands beyond Tokyo Bay. Nikko remains of historical constructions reflect its glory during the Edo Period when it flourished as an area associated with the Tokugawa Shogun. Day trip to popular sightseeing areas and historical sites can be made from Tokyo. Such areas include Yokohama, which is one of the largest ports in Japan, the ancient city of Kamakura, which used to be operated by Ashikaga Samurai Shogun in 12 and 13 centuries, and the hot-springs area of Hakone, which orginated in the old Nara Period (8 century). Oze has nice walking trails over wetland located 1,400m above sea level, extending through Gunma, Fukushima and Niigata, three prefectures. Kusatsu, Ikaho, Shima, Takaragawa and Nasu are also the famous for hot-spring.

Kyoto

Video and clips are available here. Kyo = capital + to = capital, therefore, capital of capital had been Japan's center for over 1,200 years (from AD794), and during that time became the best of Japanese art, culture, religion, and spirit. Located some 500km west of Tokyo, Kyoto can be reached in 2 hrs. 20 min. by Shinkansen super express from Tokyo. Nara was also a major center of Japan's arts, crafts, literature, and industries (founded on AD710). The most famous and national treasured attraction is Todaiji Temple, where the Great Buddha sits under the wooden roof. And Horyuji Temple is the oldest temple complex in Japan. Osaka is the central city of west Japan with a population of 3 million business comedian (^_^) The Osaka castle is the symbol of their heart and spirit, although they lost their originality by adding the Universal Studio :p Kobe is the one of Japan's main ports as well as the Japan's main China Town, along with Yokohama. Nearby, Akashi has national longest bridge connects Awaji Island, maybe also to open the Akashic Records. Mt. Rokko, located near Kobe city, has one of the spectacular night view over the port. Himeji Castle is registered as a world cultural heritage site, must visit. Mt. Koya was founded in 816 by Kobo Daishi KUKAI, the great Shingon sect of Buddhism, the monastery is consist of over 120 temples. Kumano Kodo, which is an old religious pilgrimage path, has achieved world heritage registration in 2004. People come to this path after the Shikoku 88 temples pilgmirage. Lake Biwa with its small sacred island inside is the largest lake in Japan.

Western Honshu

Video and clips are available here. The Japan's Mediterranean Sea, Seto-Naikai, is surrounded by the three main islands of Honshu, Shikoku, and Kyushu. Because of the strategic reason, during World War, Japan made her best battleships in this area (Yamato, Nagato and more). Chugoku locates in the far west of Honshu, main island. Shikoku (literally four countries) Japan's fouth largest island, can be reached via the Seto Ohashi Bridge by JR trains. Tottori Sand Dunes lasts 5km along the Japan Sea where you can ride 'imported' camel. Izumo Shrine, which origins go back to the times of Japanese myth, is situated in the eastern part of Shimane Prefecture known as the Izumo sacred region where so-called 8 million gods gather, the number is very similar to Sikh. The atmosphere of a historical castle town can be felt in Matsue, which is referred to as the 'Water Capital' because of her bordering to lakes, seas and rivers. The highest peak of the Chugoku region is Mt. Daisen where you can ski in winter time. The Hiroshima Peace Memorial and The Dome are symbols of everlasting peace, portraying the horror of atomic bombs which we don't want to see anymore anywhere in our universe. Warehouses with white colored wall stand along the Kurashiki River. Miyajima is among one of the Three Views of Japan, is an island in the Seto Inland Sea, also called as floating shrine, Itsukushima Jimja is located on the island and is known as the center of the island's belief.

Shikoku

Video and clips are available here. Shi = four + koku = country, therefore, shikoku is indeed the 4th biggest island of Japan, which has 4 of 12 original built castles (not re-built one) Marugame, Matsuyama, Uwajima and Kochi. Also 88 Temples which attract young and old for their enlightment and impermanence of life and death. Matsuyama holds the oldest hot-spring in Japan called Dogo Onsen. The Shimanto River is one of the clearest streams in Japan (no damn dams!) with best eel swimming naturally. Should you be interested in the Pilgrimage, we'd also like to invite you to hit and surf on Three Years in Tibet and pray some mantra before becoming an itinerant trader of soul here in Asia.

Kyushu

Video and clips are available here. Kyushu has Fukuoka as its capital city which is the transport hub of Kyushu, also connected to South Korea by ferry and short haul flight, as well as the center of economy and administration. Dazaifu Temmangu Shrine is the God of education, sister of Yushima Shrine in Ueno, Tokyo. A port town, Nagasaki, developed her ties with foreign countries especially Holland and China in early era. Huis Ten Bosch is a theme park with 17th century Holland. A Nagasaki Peace Park was established at the epi-center of the atomic bomb blast to appeal the forever peace. The generous nature of Kyushu where Japanese Emperor landed from heaven, has stunning hot springs and mountains, can be seen in Takachiho, Beppu and Kirishima. The Aso Panorama Line, a large-scale landscape on the plateau access to the active vocano Mt. Aso. Kumamoto Castle, constructed in 1608, is one of Japan's three beautiful castles. Beppu is a hot-spring-town with one of the greatest quantity mineral water from the earth. Yufuin is another well-known hot spring region in mountain area, surrounded by beautiful zen nature. Southern Kyushu is pleased with a warm climate throughout the year which has almost a tropical atmosphere. Sakurajima is most active mountains in the island, errupts ashes all over the city (almost everyday). The "sand bath" where one is buried under heated sand evaporated by underneath hot spring, is a specialty of Ibusuki in southern Kagoshima-ken. One of the largest evergreen forests in Japan can be observed on Yakushima Island, located 4 hours slow ferry ride from Kagoshima port, you can feel the 8,000 years giant trees as you might have seen on Mononoke-Hime (Princess-Mononoke). Amami islands are the Christmas present from the USA in 1953.

Okinawa (Ryukyu Kingdom)

Video and clips are available here. Shuri Castle belonged to the Ryukyu Dynasty, which reigned in Okinawa for 450 years from 1429 till Japan's lost World War (when USA occupation started). And all Okinawa islands were "refunded" from the USA in 1972. Kita-Daitoujima and Minami-Daitoujima were inhabited only after 1900. The first settle came from Hachijo-jima (south of Tokyo Bay). The main island has one mono-rail from the airport to the city center. Western most island called Yonaguni is only 110km away from Taiwan, yes, you can see the Formosa! Each island has its own language, not Japanese direct, but their own, and has its own god at each Utaki.

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