Postcards from Japan: Drag, ‘kizuna’, and revolutionising the face covering in Tokyo with Temanda-san

With the explosion in popularity of shows like RuPaul’s Drag Race in the US, Canada and even in the UK, too, the art of drag has never been more celebrated.

Drag in Japan has been alive and well for centuries across its big cities like Tokyo, Osaka, Fukuoka, Sapporo and even Kyoto, but one drag queen recently snatched a headline with her innovative approach to social distancing amidst the global COVID-19 pandemic. 

Yearning in Yamagata with Tohoku Enthusiast Clarissa Combe

With the Sea of Japan to its west and mountains to its east, Yamagata Prefecture perfectly embodies the natural beauty that Tohoku is so often associated with. Co-ordinator of International Relations (CIR) for Aomori Tourism Clarissa Combe journeyed south to Yamagata for a closer look at some of the prefecture's most revered attractions, including Zao Onsen, picturesque Ginzan Onsen, awe-inspiring Yamadera and Dewa Sanzan, one of the holiest sites in Japan.

A Heart Made from Metal: OIGEN and the History of Metalwork in Iwate

Located in the northeast of the Tohoku region, Iwate overlooks the Pacific Ocean via the Sanriku coastline and is buttressed by the Ou Mountains, home to some of Japan's best ski resorts and hot springs. Roughly divided into four distinct regions, Iwate is also marked by common themes of nature worship and traditional folklore, as well as samurai history and a long-standing tradition of high-quality metalwork craftsmanship. To find out more about this remote corner of Japan, we caught up with Oikawa-san to discuss all things Iwate and ferrous. 

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