Effortlessly polite, endlessly efficient and thoroughly modern yet with multi-layered history and culture, the economic giant of Japan is a fascinating country. Its sleek manufacturing industry spans cars through to high technology, its successful companies are some of the most famous and admired around the globe and it plays a leading role in cutting edge medical research.
Japan carefully preserves its historic culture while also boasting a thriving contemporary art scene. The Land of the Rising Sun has neon-lit high-rise cities and sacred temples, bullet trains and romantic natural hot springs.
The old and new merge wonderfully in Japan and that is perhaps one of its main surprises. For tourists and foreign residents alike, even as Japan occasionally baffles with its unconventional ways it regularly wins legions of new admirers for its easy lifestyle and low-key welcome.
Tokyo is the largest city, as populous as the next three cities combined. Other cities of note include Kobe, Osaka and Yokohama. Kyoto, south of Tokyo, with good schools and medical universities, Fukuoka City on the southern island of Kyushu and Hiroshima City are all attractive to foreign investors.