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20 Photos That Sum Up Japan's Weird and Wonderful Culture

Themed Collections

31 August 2017

Posted by Will Sloane

Culture shock; it's the term used to describe a feeling of disorientation when experiencing a culture wildly different to your own. If there's one place on Earth a Westerner can experience it, it's Japan. From Mario Kart tours of Tokyo City, to vending machines that dispense almost anything (including bread and pornography), Japan does things differently. To celebrate this culture that is almost alien to many of us, we've compiled 16 images that we think show how wonderful and wacky Japan can be.

Pachinko gambling machines in Osaka

Pachinko gambling machines in Osaka Read less

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Stockimo

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Real-size statue of a robot from the animated sci-fi series Gundam.

Real-size statue of a robot from the animated sci-fi series Gundam. Read less

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Leo Hartadi

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A group of youngsters walk the streets of the Harajuku neighbourhood in Tokyo

A group of youngsters walk the streets of the Harajuku neighbourhood in Tokyo Read less

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JJPerspectives

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Mario Kart city tours in Tokyo

Mario Kart city tours in Tokyo Read less

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pakkawit anantaya

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Japanese teenagers with unique costumes walk down Takeshita street in Harajuku, where cosplay street fashion walks take place every Sunday.

Japanese teenagers with unique costumes walk down Takeshita street in Harajuku, where cosplay street fashion walks take place every Sunday. Read less

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pakkawit anantaya

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The Takenokuzoku in Harajuku are the forerunners of the costume players, and still make occasional appearances regularly in Harajuku on Sunday, dancing their hearts out after ca... Read more

The Takenokuzoku in Harajuku are the forerunners of the costume players, and still make occasional appearances regularly in Harajuku on Sunday, dancing their hearts out after carefully coiffing their hair-dos. Read less

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John Lander

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Vending machines, offering anything between drinks and ramen.

Vending machines, offering anything between drinks and ramen. Read less

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JustinaKo

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Shinjuku, Tokyo.

Shinjuku, Tokyo. Read less

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Trevor Mills

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Group of Maneki Neko, or 'Beckoning Cat'

Group of Maneki Neko, or 'Beckoning Cat' Read less

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Pumidol Leelerdsakulvong

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Japanese business men juxtapose the playful billboard behind them

Japanese business men juxtapose the playful billboard behind them Read less

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Trevor Mills

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Taken in Akihabara Tokyo, Japan

Taken in Akihabara Tokyo, Japan Read less

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Trevor Mills

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Eyeball men watching you in Tokyo

Eyeball men watching you in Tokyo Read less

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Vanessa Oguchi

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Nurse cosplayer on Akeshita Street in Harajuku.

Nurse cosplayer on Akeshita Street in Harajuku. Read less

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pakkawit anantaya

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Thousands of Japanese people queuing to see the opening of the Emperor's gates.

Thousands of Japanese people queuing to see the opening of the Emperor's gates. Read less

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Robin Baumgarten

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Commuters cram in, waiting for the metro to depart in Tokyo.

Commuters cram in, waiting for the metro to depart in Tokyo. Read less

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JJPerspectives

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Hanabi (fireworks) event in summer. Picnic wearing yukata (Japanese traditional summer clothes).

Hanabi (fireworks) event in summer. Picnic wearing yukata (Japanese traditional summer clothes). Read less

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Leo Hartadi

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A red fish is on display at the Tsukiji Fish Market, Tokyo

A red fish is on display at the Tsukiji Fish Market, Tokyo Read less

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Chris Petersen-Clausen

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Japanese schoolgirls blowing bubbles into the sky at sunset.

Japanese schoolgirls blowing bubbles into the sky at sunset. Read less

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Warren Showalter

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In the sumo quarter of Tokyo, Ryogoky, you'll find interesting scenes.

In the sumo quarter of Tokyo, Ryogoky, you'll find interesting scenes. Read less

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journeylism

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Shibuya crossing is one of the busiest in the world.

Shibuya crossing is one of the busiest in the world. Read less

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Pumidol Leelerdsakulvong

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