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Summertime in Japan
By Honoka Eguchi, Scholastic Student Reporter


Mount Fuji, Japan
(Photo: Travel Pix/Taxi/Getty Images)
Nothing beats riding high on the world's largest roller coaster and seeing beautiful mountains, especially during the summertime. Home of the world's biggest video games and most aggressive baseball players, I want to welcome you to Japan.

An archipelago, or a chain of islands, in the Pacific Ocean, Japan is the world's second largest economy and 10th most populous nation. However, Japan is quite a small country—it's only 145,882 square miles, a little smaller than California. Yet it is the 10th most populous nation in the world, with over 127 million people.

Filled with manga (Japanese comics) lovers, media and electronics, western clothing trends, and sports, it is extremely easy to have a fabulous time in Japan. Just outside of Tokyo, the capital, is Disneyland, which is extremely popular. Japan is also close to the ocean, making it fun to visit the beaches and soak up the sun or just chill out.

When you hear about Japan, what do you think of? Sushi? Ramen? Well, those aren't the only delicious foods made in Japan! Fried shrimp, noodles, curry, and miso soup are also popular dishes. And there are always nearby fast food restaurants for backup.

Although Japan is indeed modern, there is still a strong culture that reminds Japanese of their history. During the summertime, Japan's customs are to have festivals, with traditional dancing and drumming. Kimonos, or long robes with wide sleeves, and traditional clothing are worn during these times. Visiting a shrine is a common tradition during holidays and on special occasions as well. Families and friends also go to tea ceremonies and meet with each other.

Japan is definitely a special place. So the next time you're planning a vacation, put Japan at the top of your list!