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EXPERT'S GUIDE

Nordic winter sports destinations are friendlier and less fashion conscious than the Alps -- but they’re still cool

Japan

Mesmerized by Okinawa's dramatic underground caves

Mesmerized by Okinawa's dramatic underground caves

iReporter Michael Lynch takes a tour of the ancient caves in Okinawa and discovers glowing streams, psychedelic stalactites and lots of bottles of booze
Kyoto

Kyoto

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Adventures in ramen: Japan's ever-changing soup scene

Adventures in ramen: Japan's ever-changing soup scene

After slurping down noodles in 1,000 stores, the "ramen guy" untangles the complex flavors of Japan's diverse dish.
Japan's amazing Nabana no Sato winter light show

Japan's amazing Nabana no Sato winter light show

Millions of solar-powered light bulbs make this small botanical garden the hottest spot this winter
Gallery: Gratuitous photos of monkeys in hot springs

Gallery: Gratuitous photos of monkeys in hot springs

Different year, same pictures. But still very cute
Ultimate guide to Japanese beef

Ultimate guide to Japanese beef

Kobe beef has the bigger name, but Wagyu beef can be as flavorful and important in a Japanese restaurant
Japan’s hottest new souvenir: Schoolbags

Japan’s hottest new souvenir: Schoolbags

Thanks to Zooey Deschanel, traditional randoseru schoolbags see a surge in popularity among travelers
Gallery: Okinawa hosts world's biggest tug-of-war

Gallery: Okinawa hosts world's biggest tug-of-war

Hundreds of thousands in Naha pull together on 43 tons, 200 meters of rope
Gallery: Snapshots of Japan's blistering summer

Gallery: Snapshots of Japan's blistering summer

Swimmers, sun worshippers, festivals and jumbo lotteries are just a few of the sights of the sweltering Japanese season
Now eat! Okinawan cuisine gets a makeover
Article

Now eat! Okinawan cuisine gets a makeover

How a unique island culture is taking its own version of "local" a step further
The stories behind the most gorgeous dishes in Japan

The stories behind the most gorgeous dishes in Japan

The menu at Tokyo's Takazawa restaurant is one of the most coveted in the world. These photos show why