Traveling in Japan with Kids

Japan is great country to visit, even with kids. It’s safe and clean, and there are a ton of things to do and see. Lauryn Axelrod, a writer for, explores Japan with her husband and son in her article; Traveling With Kids in Japan; How Many Ways Can You Say “Thank You” in Japanese.

“Japan is a land of contrasts. From modern, neon-lit cities to remote hillside temples, from groups of business-suit clad salarymen racing down crowded sidewalks to lone Geishas tiptoeing along lantern-lit alleys; from awe-inspiring mountains and clear rushing rivers to ruined monuments to atomic horrors, Japan beguiles, bemuses, inspires and arouses.

But, for all its fascinating history and modernity, most people don’t think of Japan as a family or budget destination. True, Japan is expensive and will stretch your budget to the max. But for families, Japan can be a wonderful destination: it is clean, safe, interesting and surprisingly inviting.

In Ginza, we meandered past discreet boutiques and expensive restaurants where kimono clad women shuffled by with Gucci bags. In the Sony Building, we stopped to play with the latest tech gadgets, oohing and ahhing over digital cameras and mini-laptops. We ate lunch in one of the inexpensive noodle shops in the basement of an office building, and hung out with salarymen after work snacking on grilled chicken and vegetables at one of the Yakitori stands in Yakitori Alley.

In Shinjuku, we listened to Japanese pop music at the Virgin Mega-Store (Japanese Ska is really fun!), and played videogames in one of the ubiquitous arcades that line the streets of all Japanese cities. In Aoyama, we poked around art galleries exhibiting contemporary and classical Japanese paintings and ceramics. In Harajuko, we joined the ever-trendy Japanese teenagers taking pictures in photo booths, shopping for funky fashions, and in Sendagaya, we escaped the crowds and joined the older theatre-goers for a meditative, late afternoon Noh Theatre performance at the National Noh Theatre.”