December 4, 2023

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The Best Gifts For Japanophiles

Ever since Japan reopened their border to travelers visa-free in October, the country has seen an almost unprecedented surge in tourism.

According to Japan National Tourism Organization (JNTO), the number of foreign visitors rose to nearly 500,000 tourists and business travelers in October, and that figure continues to rise.

While numbers speaks for themselves, between a travelers desire to take advantage of weaker yen and stronger dollar, and make up for lost time by taking those big bucket list trips, all signs are pointing towards a major comeback for the country in 2023.

Whether or not you’re planning a trip to the land of the rising sun, for the tried and true Japanophiles out there (this writer very much included) these gifts are the perfect way to show some love, get inspired or kickstart your Japanese wanderlust this holiday season.

Wabi-Sabi Kintsugi Repair Kit

Fans of Marie Kondo’s Tidying Up can now purchase a number of gifts that spark joy. The shop has a fantastic selection of authentic Japanese gifts including this kintsugi gold leaf repair kit which really comes in handy for those chipped or broken pieces that you just can’t bear to part with. $25

Set of 10 Miyabi Kaizen II Magnetic Easel Knives

For the serious chefs in your life, this set of 10 Miyabi Japanese knives available only at Williams Sonoma blends Japanese craftsmanship with German blade-hardening technology. Originally $1607, the set is on sale now for $1,149.95

Enamel Koi Chopstick Set

Heirloom-quality and hand-enameled, this koi chopstick set from home accessories designer Joanna Buchanan are the gift that keeps on giving for the Asian food loverer in your life. Koi fish are an auspicious symbol and in this set they serve as a gorgeous resting place for these elegant gold chopsticks. $198

Bokksu Japanese Snack Subscription Box

For the snack lovers, this beautifully curated selection of Japanese snacks by Bokksu is a great way to show some love. Each box comes packed with a hand-picked selection of treats from around Japan and you can opt for a subscription plan depending on your budget that ranges from one month to 12 months starting at $39.99.

The Japanese Art of The Cocktail

One part memoir, another part travelog, Michael Anstendig’s gorgeous photo and recipe driven The Japanese Art of The Cocktail tells Masahiro Urushido’s story of growing up in Japan where he cut his teeth as a bartender in Tokyo before making the move to New York City. With more than 90-recipes to flip through and drool over, this book is credited with winning the Spirited Award for “Best Cocktail or Bartending Book” at Tales of the Cocktail as well as being a James Beard Media Award nominee. $18

Gustav Klimt Kimono

Tokyo-based kimono shop Salz Tokyo is not only one of the best places to find a authentic kimono, but with an incredible variety of traditional Japanese clothing and accessories, this made-to-order Gustav Klimt print is truly special. Just note, this one of a kind print takes between 1-3 months ship. $309

Sake Hundred

Sake Hundred is a balanced sake made from the “king of rice,” Dewasansan, at the Tatenokawa Brewery in Yamagata, Japan. Requiring over 200-hours of meticulous polishing, Byakko Bespoke features delicate aromas of white flowers, stone fruits and a particularly rich flavor. $380

Mudpuppy Puzzle

Perfect for puzzle lovers, Mudpuppy’s adorable Open for Business 500 Piece Family Puzzle features bright illustrations of local stores and restaurants in Japan warmly welcoming locals. $14.99