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Saturday, December 5, 2015

Project Undiscovered Japan

Above, the Bandai Bridge in Niigata. Photo by Armand Vaquer.

Finding ways to get foreign tourists out of the major tourist areas such as Tokyo, Osaka, Kyoto and other places and into other areas that are not too familiar has been something that Japanese tourism officials have been trying to solve.

They have come up with a new idea of getting foreign tourists to these areas.

According to Japan Today:
TOKYO —Japan has launched a new project to advance tourism in areas that still remain unknown to many, in a bid to deviate tourism from the current golden routes.
The project, called “Undiscovered Japan,” is led by the National Tourism Zones Promotion Council, a government-sponsored private organization, launched in 2014 to develop sightseeing areas in line with the Abe administration’s target of boosting tourism to 20 million visitors a year by 2020. 
“Undiscovered Japan” divides Japan into 12 new tourism zones that foreigners are yet to fully discover. The project encourages officials in each of these zones to improve the quality of tourism in all sectors and actively provide information in English and various other languages to attract new tourists. The project further aims at reviving these small cities, that have for a long time been surviving in the shadows of Japan’s large cities and tourism sites.
I visited once such zone, Niigata, back in 2010. It was interesting to see the countryside and mountains while on the shinkansen while traveling from Tokyo and Niigata.

It will be interesting to see if this project will be successful in drawing tourists into these zones.

To read more, go here.

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