Tourism in Japan: Treasure hunt

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Tourism in Japan



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IN GINZA, Tokyo’s best-known shopping district, a dozen-odd tour buses disgorge crowds of determined Chinese shoppers at their first stop: a suitcase emporium from which they emerge with the extra capacity they need to cart home the cornucopia of Japanese goods they are about to amass, including what mainlanders now dub Japan’s “four treasures”—brand-name rice cookers, vacuum flasks, ceramic knives and high-tech lavatory seats (see article). In the funky boutiques of Daikanyama, Chinese dandies are hard to tell apart from local counterparts in cropped trousers and round, horn-rimmed spectacles (until recently Chinese tourists always stood out a mile for their unsophisticated dress sense). Meanwhile, mainland Chinese, Hong Kongers, Taiwanese and South Koreans are filling hotels and ryokan, traditional inns, from Japan’s …

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