Experience History in Japan

Study Anthropology in Japan

Amidst plenty of fast-paced urban development, there is also a lot of cultural history in Japan. In order to preserve the cultures that exist today, you can add an impact by speaking directly with locals, listening to their stories and passing them on.

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Sojourn – Gain a better understanding of the community you’re visiting. Learn about different religions or spiritual practices. How do these impact the communities? How does religion or spirituality influence local traditions?

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Savor – Will you choose sweet or savory? Take the time to visit local markets and discover unique local ingredients. Learn how to prepare traditional meals & local favorites.

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Tip of the Tongue – Each morning, take the time to learn a few basic greetings and phrases in the local language. Learn how to write greetings & your name in the local script.

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A Wrinkle in Time – History influences our present. Discover the history of the country you visit. Hear the stories of your guides & their family history. Where do they come from?

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Journal Journeys – Take some time to reflect on the day’s events and document your journey. Spend a moment journaling about the day had & day ahead. These are memories for a lifetime!

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Culture – From local dances, festivals, or simple gestures to communicate – all of these make up a country’s culture. Learn and practice cultural norms & how to show respect in the culture you visit.

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Upon your arrival at the Osaka International Airport, you will be greeted by your local guide. Your guide is also a well-versed anthropologist and will be touring around the country’s remote islands with you for the week. Get ready to study anthropology with an expert in Japan!

After you’ve connected with your guide, you will transfer to your accommodation in the city of Osaka. Take the rest of the afternoon to explore the surrounding area at your leisure or stick with your guide to uncover some of the city’s hidden gems.

To kick-start your first morning in Japan you will join your guide for a traditional Japanese-style breakfast. Afterward, you will check out the stunning Osaka Castle. This iconic castle played a major role in uniting the Japanese in the 16th century and remains one of the most emblematic places in the city today. Tour around the area with your guide and gather in-depth knowledge about how this site affected the history of the country. 

In the afternoon you will be connecting with the members of the Department of Anthropology from the University of Osaka. During this meeting, you will gain a deeper understanding of Japan’s cultural diversity, social organization, institutions and more. In the evening, head up to the Kuchu Teien Observatory to take in some panoramic views of the city.

Early this morning you travel by train from Osaka to Awaji Island. The first stop on your island-hopping tour is Gossakaito. The ruins here will give you a glimpse into how society was nearly 2,000 years ago. Observe this site, which was originally used as an iron workshop as your guide helps you uncover how its function shaped the development of the surrounding area. 

In the afternoon, check out the island of Eshima. This island is made of geological sandstone that is said to be up to 20 million years old and it is beautifully illuminated after nightfall. In the evening you will connect with some locals for a traditional dinner and get the chance to hear about their lives growing up on the island. After dinner, you will take the train back to Osaka.

Today you will be flying into Okinawa’s Naha Airport. The flight time is about two hours; however, once you arrive you will feel as if you are a world away. Okinawa is a melting pot created by several other cultures in Southeast Asia and is referred to as the Ryukyu culture.

Your first stop will be the Shurijo Castle, which is located a mere a 20-minute monorail ride from Naha Airport. While you’re here, you will get a glimpse into the history of the Ryukyu Kingdom. During the 15th century, this UNESCO World Heritage Site was the epicenter for culture, politics and diplomacy that lasted approximately 450 years. 

Tour around this vast area alongside your guide and one of the residents of the temple for the afternoon. In the evening, you will head to your accommodation and take it easy with a delicious dinner followed by a relaxed night discussing the Ryukyu culture with your guide.

Today you will start the morning with a stroll through the Shikinaen Royal Garden. This UNESCO World Heritage Site was the royal family’s second home in the 18th century and was used as a place to entertain Chinese emperors. As you wander through the forested gardens, take note of the Ryukyu-style architecture that mixes both Chinese and Japanese influences. 

In the afternoon you will venture over to the Makishi Public Market to get a sense of Okinawan cuisine. Joining you to the market will be a local chef, who will provide you with insights about the local ingredients found here. While you’re here, you will be selecting ingredients in order to prepare a home-cooked meal as led by the chef.

Today you will check out the ruins of Katsuren Castle (also known as Katsurenjō-ato in Japenese). This is yet another UNESCO World Heritage Site that will give you more insight into the Ryukyu culture. Situated at the tip of the Katsuren Peninsula, this area boasts plenty of history and epic views of the surrounding area. 

To wrap up the day, you will head to the north of the island to catch the sunset at the stunning Cape Manza. This interesting rock formation caused by continuous breaking waves is an excellent spot to take in spectacular ocean views. Just make sure your camera is charged!

After a week of exploring a few of the islands in Japan, it is now time to pack your bags and carry on. From Okinawa, you will be flying back to Osaka in order to connect internationally or continue exploring the country. Although your seven-day adventure is coming to an end, the knowledge you have gained will last forever.

Join us for a week and study anthropology as you explore some of the stunning islands throughout Japan. During the trip, you will explore alongside an anthropologist and gain in-depth knowledge about the various cultures and history throughout the country. 

As time goes on, some cultures remain strong and others fade away. However, it’s important that we recognize cultures both of the past and present in order to preserve their longevity. To really immerse yourself, listen to locals and experience their traditional costumes first-hand.


3-6 Day
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7-12 Day
Group Trips


7-14 Day
Group Trips

Interested in adding or modifying activities? No problem! All Worldwide Navigator itineraries can be customized to your liking!

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