Japan Wish

We say goodbye to our Japan Wish winner and look back on her time in Japan【Video】

Ashley is now safely back in the US after her exciting adventure here in Japan, so it’s time for a wrap-up post!

Our Japan Wish competition winner’s time with us was a whirlwind of fun, food, and typhoons as her dream of coming to Japan became a reality. Go ahead and watch the video below for a glimpse at just some of the amazing things Japan has to offer for a visitor, as well as to see Ashley’s emotional goodbye.

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The quintessential Kyoto experience: becoming a maiko for the day! 【Pics & video】

They say that it’s rare to see a real maiko walking the streets of Kyoto, since these artists usually work at night and live in their own secluded world, far from the rest of Japanese society. In fact, if you spot a maiko strolling around Gion during the day, there’s a good chance she’s a tourist who’s undergone a fabulously elaborate makeover.

We took our Japan Wish competition winner Ashley to a studio in Kyoto’s Gion neighborhood to have a maiko-over and be transformed in an amazing process that yielded completely stunning results. Ashley was able to choose her own kimono and obi sash, and as part of the deal she was treated to a professional photography session and the opportunity to take a stroll around the streets of Gion in full maiko garb!

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Smoking food and sword juggling at Kyoto’s Ninja Labyrinth restaurant【Video】

Time to rewatch Naruto and brush up on your ninjutsu, folks! We took our Japan wish competition winner to experience a modern twist on an ancient part of Japanese culture. Come and take a look at the spectacle inside Kyoto’s mysterious and shadowy ninja restaurant.

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Despite raging typhoon, Gion Matsuri goes on as it has for over 1,000 years【Video】

The Gion Festival, or Gion Matsuri, has been celebrated consistently for over a thousand years and is one of the most famous festivals in Japan. The highlight is the Yamahoko Parade which occurs twice, on July 17 and July 24, and our competition winner’s wish was to see it happen with her own eyes here in Japan. This year, with a incoming typhoon, there were rumors swirling about the festival being cancelled, but with hardly any interruptions in its long history, this parade wasn’t about to be stopped by mere weather!
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Faster than a speeding bullet! Ride the Tokyo to Kyoto “Nozomi” Shinkansen with us! 【Video】

Even if you’re not exactly a trainspotting otaku, chances are you still find the idea of riding a Japanese bullet train seriously appealing. After all, those things get up to some crazy speeds, and the whole process runs like smooth, scientifically adjusted clockwork. Even the cleaning crew get their job done, making the trains absolutely spotless, in seven minutes max!

But if you haven’t quite made it to Japan yet, then we invite you to take a Shinkansen ride with us and our Japan Wish competition winner Ashley. Strap yourself in and feel those G-forces!

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Just how confusing is Japanese onsen culture for a first time visitor?

Onsen etiquette can be confusing for a foreigner visiting for the first time, and there are many small rules and customs that even many Japanese people aren’t quite clear on. There aren’t usually any written instructions around the baths as it is expected that everyone will already know the basic customs surrounding communal bathing. This means that things people who have grown up in Japan take for granted, such as putting your shoes in a locker when you arrive or knowing which towels to use for what, can be hard to figure out for first-timers, and your supposedly relaxing spa break can become a little bit stressful.

Check out the video below to see how our Japan Wish competition winner Ashley navigated her first ever trip to an onsen and see if she found it relaxing…or stressful!

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Is super-salty Tokyo ramen too much umami for foreign tastes? 【Video】

Ramen is the ultimate Japanese hunger-busting food. With its combination of greasy, fatty soup combined with carb-heavy noodles, it’s the perfect meal for when you’re REALLY hungry in Tokyo (or just really hungover.) But that doesn’t mean that this taste is for everyone. In fact, there’re probably a lot of people out there who just can’t handle that heavy hit of garlicky, salty grease.

Our Japan Wish competition winner Ashley mentioned in her winning video entry that she really wanted to get a taste of Tokyo ramen. We accompanied her to Ramen Jiro to watch as her tastebuds tangled with the pungent umami of a bowl of their finest slurping fare. Unfortunately, Ashley soon realised that the reality of the truly salty ramen might be a little hard to swallow – along with the actual ramen itself! Check out our video report!

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What are Tokyo trains at rush hour really like? Check out our eyewitness account!【Video】

Tokyo’s Shinjuku Station is the Guinness World Record holder for busiest transport hub in the world, with an average of 3.64 million people passing through the station, which has 36 platforms and over 200 exits, each and every day. And it’s never busier than during the morning rush hour, with commuters from all over Tokyo and its neighbouring prefectures pouring through the station on their way to work. No wonder the trains are so crowded!

Since Ashley, our Japan Wish” competition winner is currently in town soaking up as much Japanese culture as she can, we thought it would be great if she could experience the rush hour crush for herself and share her thoughts with her fellow RocketNews24 readers.

Check out the video we took of Ashley being squished like a sardine and see for yourselves how she rates the experience!

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Does arriving in Japan meet Ashley’s expectations? Our lucky winner gets emotional

Ever imagined yourself stepping off the plane onto the Land of the Rising Sun for the first time? If you’ve not had the chance to experience it for yourself yet then you can do so vicariously with our competition winner Ashley in the video below. Warning: things get a little bit emotional!

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Our winner is on her way to Japan!

It’s almost time for our competition winner to come to Japan and have her wish granted! And we’ll be blogging about it every step of the way under the tag Japan Wish.

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Announcing the winner of the RocketNews24 Japan Wish competition!

We know you’ve kept you waiting, but it’s finally time to announce the winner of the RocketNews24 competition!

Join us after the jump to find out who we’ll be flying over to Japan to fulfil their Japan dream experience!

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Win the chance to have your Japan wish granted by RocketNews24!!

Hello everyone! Thanks as ever for your loyal readership of RocketNews24. Today we have an exciting project that we want to share with you all, and we think it’s one that will make you very happy. Presenting: “Have your Japan wish granted by RocketNews24!

We’re sure that many of you have dreams of visiting Japan and fulfilling long-held wishes. But perhaps you haven’t quite been able to save up the cash for a plane ticket or didn’t know anyone in Japan to help you out once you got here, so you’ve been unable to realize those dreams.

If that sounds like you, then we’d like to help! If you have a wish you’d like to have granted in Japan then we invite you to enter our competition. RocketNews24 will use our funds and knowledge to make your dreams a reality here in Japan.

Join us after the jump for more details!

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