Media Contact:
Krista Erickson

David Samra

February 27 – 28, 2016, Long Beach, CA

Japan Named #2 Top Country to Visit in 2016 by Lonely Planet

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE (November 11, 2015) Los Angeles, CA – The Japan National Tourism Organization (JNTO) will once again exhibit at the Travel & Adventure Show in Long Beach, CA for two days next year (February 27-28, 2016) to promote and encourage travel from the US to Japan. In an effort to let travelers know there is much more to Japan than the popular tourist destinations like Tokyo and Kyoto, JNTO will focus on promoting lesser traveled areas of Japan, such as Sapporo, Hiroshima, and Kanazawa. This year’s booth (#723) will be vibrant and interactive with games, giveaways, and a wealth of information on traveling to Japan. In addition, there will also be a cooking demonstration sponsored by JNTO on the main stage with renowned Ramen Master, Shige Nakamura. Neighboring booths also promoting travel to Japan include the Central Japan Railway Company, Kansai & Kansai Airport, JETRO Los Angeles, and the Tokyo Tourism representatives EXA Partners.

Japan: So Much To Experience
Named as the #2 country to travel to in 2016 on Lonely Planet’s Best in Travel 2016, Japan is “always number one for travelers in search of an otherworldly experience,” according to Lonely Planet. Beyond the big cities, Japan possesses colorful and inspiring natural attractions beautifully interwoven by four distinct seasonal changes that have long been a great source of enjoyment. Many of these destinations can be accessed conveniently via Japan’s bullet trains which connect Japan’s metropolitan areas to the more rural and less explored areas. This makes navigating the entire country easier for foreign tourists. The bullet train service allows travelers to see a totally different world outside the cities, uncovering the natural beauty, charm and sightseeing spots of the country—peaceful pastoral areas with lush mountains, temples, shrines, gardens, and communities with great cultural variety. In addition, Japan has been preparing for the 2020 Olympics and the 2019 Rugby World Cup with new luxury hotel openings and brand new air routes into Japan.

Japan Is More Affordable Than Ever
Current economic conditions have made traveling to Japan more affordable than ever. Most travelers think a trip to Japan requires years of planning and saving. However, travel to Japan is often times less expensive than a trip to Europe—and that is truer now with the current exchange rate. JNTO wants travelers from the U.S. to know Japan is not an unattainable “bucket list” destination and will be encouraging travelers to make plans now to visit Japan and experience all the unique things that can only be done in Japan—from the history and landmarks, to the culture, food, and people.

More To Japan Than Just Tokyo
Most U.S. travelers who do travel to Japan only visit the large cities like Tokyo and Kyoto, but JNTO wants travelers to know there is so much more to Japan.


With extensive history and many unique, local cultures throughout the country, visitors can encounter life-changing experiences unlike any other in the world. And now, visitors can explore the nature, history, food and hospitality of Japan beyond the major cities by taking the new Hokuriku Shinkansen bullet train. With quick access to rural areas and undiscovered regions of Japan, travelers can discover the true spirit of Japan with a journey through the scenic areas of the Hokuriku region.

Areas JNTO will be promoting include:

  • Kanazawa – known for its nature and history, Kanazawa is an important industrial, administrative and cultural center and is home to time-honored industries that turn out highly refined traditional products such as Kaga-yuzen silk fabrics, Kutani and Ohi pottery, and various artistic objects made from paulownia. It is the center for gold leaf production, an industry that started in the 16th Kanazawa is the ultimate destination for travelers who love art and design.
  • Sapporo – the capital of Hokkaido is the nation’s 4th largest city and known for its Winter sports, snow festivals, amazing seafood and as the place that pioneered miso ramen. Known outside Japan as host city to the 1972 Winter Olympics, Sapporo still has the ski hills and jumps from the Olympics that are scattered within the city limits; and a renowned ski resort, Niseko, is nearby. Sapporo is also home to the city’s annual Yuki Matsuri, internationally referred to as theSapporo Snow Festival.
  • Shikoku – one of Japan’s four principal islands is filled with places of great tourist interest including Tokushima and Matsuyama. Tokushima is blessed with the bounty and diversity of nature, highlighted by the Naruto area, home to some of the world’s most powerful whirlpools Additionally, Tokushima is home to the Otsuka Museum of Art and the Awa Odori Dance festival, which is held every August and attracts over 1 million spectators. Matsuyama is blessed with historical attractions and natural beauty including the Matsuyama Castle, Dogo Onsen and the Ishiteji Temple, to name a few. The Matsuyama Castle was completed in 1627 and is one of the few castles in Japan preserved in its original condition and offers an amazing panoramic view of the city. Dogo Onsen is considered the oldest spa in Japan housed in a structure built in 1894. The Ishiteji Temple is one of the 88 temples in Shikoku of the Shingon Sect, famous for Ohenrosan, or pilgrims in white costumes traveling on foot to visit the 88 temples.
  • Hiroshima and Miyajima – known as the “City of Peace,” Hiroshima is the largest city in the western end of the Japanese mainland. This beautiful city is endowed with nature that has six rivers flowing through its mountains, and an urban area full of green. Miyajima, or Shrine Island, has long been revered as a sacred island even before Itsukushima Shrine was founded there in 593 A.D., which is dedicated to the maritime guardian goddesses. The island, noted for its magnificent landscape, is an ideal summer resort, replete with excellent beaches and trails. It is also noted for its cherry blossoms and its autumnal tints.

About JNTO

The Japan National Tourism Organization (JNTO) was established in 1964 to promote international exchange through tourism. Headquartered in Tokyo and with 14 offices in key cities around the world, including New York and Los Angeles, JNTO is involved in a broad range of activities to promote travel to Japan through programs overseas as well as tourism-promoting activities throughout the United States. Activities include operating Tourist Information Centers in Japan for foreign visitors, arranging reception facilities for foreign visitors, promoting international conventions and trade fairs, conducting tourism-related research, and publishing travel literature and videos about Japan. The U.S. JNTO branches are responsible for promoting travel and tourism from the United States to Japan by providing up-to-date information on travel to and in Japan, participating in local travel fairs and exhibitions, assisting in developing tours to Japan, supplying free brochures to the travel industry, and lending display materials, award-winning films and video tapes to travel professionals to show to their clients. For more information about JNTO, visit http://www.us.jnto.go.jp.


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