Japan Tourism is Ready for 2015 with Attentions to Hokuriku Region

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With the opening date of the Shinkansen (Bullet Train) service approaching on March 14, 2015, Japan National Tourism Organization made the final push for the new Shinkansen service to the region of Hokuriku. In the exclusive showcase event held on November 19 in New York City, the detailed model of the new train car was displayed to the media, giving them a better sense of the train’s design and engineering.

Historic cityscape in Takayama

Japan's design and culinary region gets much closer to the gateway of Japan.

As the new year of 2015 approaches, Japan’s tourism industry prepares the launch of the latest extension of the Shinkansen service to the Hokuriku region. In the exclusive showcase event to the media industry held on November 19 in New York City, the detailed model of the new train car was displayed, which provides more direct feeling of train’s design and engineering. Two American editorial professionals joined the final push of the promotion, and visited the Hokuriku region to preview the unique attractions for foreign travelers. They visited and photographed multiple destinations in Hokuriku, and were introduced to Hokuriku’s unique cultural hospitality, regional culinary life, and long history of craftsmanship that has been applied to global modern design and arts.

They also unveiled lesser known destinations in the region; Local natural hot springs outside of Kanazawa, one of Japan’s top fishing towns of Himi, UNESCO recognized historic farm villages of Shirakawago and Gokayama nestled between the mountains, traditions of festivals with beautiful floats in a mountain town of Takayama, and one-of-a-kind island life at a former exile island of Sado. With professional visual materials and narrative performances, the comprehensive introduction of Hokuriku was also officially launched online at JNTO’s US website.

Hokuriku’s craftsmanship has a strong connection with geographic background and local history, which captures travelers' interest in Japan’s rich culture and adventure. Along with the transport advantage of express train service from Tokyo, the year 2015 will be the starting point of Hokuriku experience for those who look for a comprehensive yet authentic Japanese experience. Hokuriku boasts the traditional arts and designs that have been meticulously developed and applied to local life in the harsh winter, rugged coastline, steep mountain ranges and rich agriculture. Hokuriku has been re-developing the region’s tradition into modern lifestyle, and travelers can experience unique contrast between old and new essences.

The new train service makes Japan’s design and culinary richness from Hokuriku much closer to Tokyo, the gateway of Japan, and initiates a completely new cultural route between Tokyo and the western region of Japan including Kyoto and Osaka in the next few years.

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Nori Akashi