Japanese Guide: What to do, explore, visit and expect from your next London trip

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London Walking Tour

As one of the top international cities in the world, London welcomes visitors from all around the globe. While each visitor is unique in their preferences and reasons for visiting, it is certainly true that as a cosmopolitan city, there’s plenty to keep everyone entertained!

Amongst London’s most avid visitors are its Japanese travellers. In this blog, we’ll take a quick look at some of the key things guests from Japan expect from their visit to London – and a few suggestions for making the most of the trip!

Key statistics on Japanese visitors to London

According to data from Visit Britain, around two thirds of all visits from Japan are conducted by people between the ages of 25-54 years of age. Japanese travellers are also noted as showing less tendency to make a repeat trip to the city than travellers from many other nations. However, despite a likelihood that their trip to London will be the only trip they make within a ten year time span, Japanese visitors are highly likely to recommend a trip to the UK – with 77% stating they would suggest others visit.

In addition, Japanese visitors have a generally positive view of Britain in general, classing it as their 5th favourite place to visit.

Top activities for Japanese visitors

There are plenty of commonalities across national boundaries when it comes to a visit to London, and it seems that Japanese visitors to the UK capital enjoy taking part in a range of cultural and foodie activities.

Popular activities include dinner in a great restaurant – providing a chance to sample local dishes and even pick up some authentic cuisine from Japan or simply enjoy coffee with a view in London.

In addition, it seems that shopping is also an enduringly popular activity, with Japanese visitors eager to see some of the city’s famous shopping districts for themselves. Lastly, heading for a museum or an art gallery are key activities enjoyed by visitors from Japan. This would help explain why London is such a popular location to visit, as the city as a wide variety of fantastic, world-class museums for them to choose from.

Accommodation for Japanese visitors

Where to stay is an important part of holiday planning for visitors from Japan. Few are content to stay in basic accommodation such as a hostel, and they would prefer to stay in hotels which have at least a 3-star rating. However, in some cases, this demand for luxury is even greater – with a large number of women in their 20s and 30s favouring hotels which are a 4 or 5-star standard. Interestingly (and perhaps predictably) Japanese students are still happy to stay in budget-friendly accommodation.

Preferences within this audience are specific, with guests preferring to be able to move quickly through the check-in and check-out procedures so they can get on with enjoying their sightseeing. When it comes to Japanese dining at hotels, they also enjoy choice at breakfast and lunch, enabling them to select the ideal dish without feeling they must stick to rigid pre-assigned options

Top London destinations for Japanese visitors

These venues offer some of the most important things which Japanese visitors want from their stay:

The V&A

This is one of the best museums in London and a must-see destination for travellers from around the globe. Championing the world of design (and with collections spanning centuries) it is the perfect place for Japanese visitors to enjoy the city’s museum culture.

Chinatown Bakery

Combining authentic Japanese baking with typical London flair, the Chinatown Bakery is filled with yummy treats which will make any visitor from Japan feel right at home in no time at all!

Comic-Con London

The MCM Comic Con is held twice a year in London and represents one of the major highlights on the event calendar of the city. Arguably the biggest and best celebration of pop culture in the UK, it includes appearances from stars of some of the biggest cult hits.  The reason Comic-Con has been included on this list is because it is also home to a particularly popular Japanese section, which encompasses key attractions from the world of Japanese art, comics, TV and film.

There’s also the chance to try authentic Japanese food and browse a wide range of stalls for unique Japanese-themed goods, making this one of the best ways to engage with the culture while staying at the Montcalm Royal London House.

Hyper Japan Festival

This yearly event brings Japan to London with everything from exhibitions to delicious food and incredible shopping. Held in Earls Court, the event takes place in the summer. In 2020, visitors can look forward to anime-inspired performances, the chance to meet Hello Kitty in person, and many more Japanese-themed activities and sights.

Japan Craft

A delightful little shop which is hidden away within Camden Market, Japan Craft is home to a wide range of Japanese items including dolls, puzzles and even a smaller selection of Japan-centric sweets. This venue is certainly worth a trip for visitors enjoying London city hotel deals, particularly if you’re feeling nostalgic for home.

Las Vegas Arcade

Situated in Soho, the name of this arcade may not immediately make you think of Japan, but it is home to a vast array of Japanese arcade games. If you’re in the mood for a trip down memory lane, this is sure to appeal to anyone who remembers the games from their childhood in Japan.

Harrods

Last but not least, this venue is perfect for anyone looking for some of the best shopping in London. A vast and sprawling department store, Harrods includes floor upon floor of luxury, and gives visitors a chance to experience retail therapy at its very best. With fascinating window displays and a popular food hall, this is also a great place to indulge your love of local cuisine.

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