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Why 47 Prefectures Are Prefectly Perfect

Updated on March 5, 2019
botakyen profile image

Yen is a freelance writer and UI/UX design enthusiast. From tropical lands of Malaysia, she currently resides in the land of the rising sun.

Since my writing career took flight here in Japan, I have found myself wondering and trying to make great pitches and topics to write about to companies I work with and for my readers. Every travel itinerary was planned out following recommendations found on the internet, and I never quite understood why bloggers and social media influencers would find taking on all prefectures in Japan addictive, until, I myself started exploring Japan while living here.

Spring by BOTAKYEN
Spring by BOTAKYEN

"Why does everyone want to fulfil the 47 prefecture challenge in Japan?"

Imagine it as a puzzle and conquering each prefecture is like finishing the puzzle.

The first few different prefectures you visit will seem like a holiday. It is nice, breezy and interesting to see the cultural difference each prefecture, city and its people have.

These are the corner pieces of the puzzle.

Any Big Bang Theory fans out there? You know how Sheldon likes to start his puzzle off with the corners of the puzzle before slowly getting into the main parts?

Visiting some or most of the much more popular prefectures and cities in Japan during your first few trips are similar to figuring out the corner sides of the puzzles before actually entering into the main bit:

The actual puzzle

Seeing one prefecture and comparing it to another saw a new light into traveling in Japan. Bringing my readers and followers on this journey around Japan felt like I was bringing them on this prefectural journey with me. Every step - getting to know and understand the different histories and people behind each prefecture, made the quest so much more exciting and desirable every holiday! Before I knew it, I have gone in too deep and there was no looking back.

Every holiday, I wound just want to open up that box and finish the puzzle I started with only the intentions of curiosity.

Now, it is a challenge, a dream, a goal.

Once started, I had to finish it. It has now become an accomplishment at this point. A reward I deemed worthy of every opponent.

Gifu prefecture by BOTAKYEN
Gifu prefecture by BOTAKYEN

I am so close. So close to finishing the puzzle.

Ticking off the prefectures on the map of Japan never felt so good and rewarding!

Sounds familiar?

Welcome to the addictive challenge of taking on all 47 prefectures Japan has to offer.

Kamakura by BOTAKYEN
Kamakura by BOTAKYEN

Initially, I was baffled and pleasantly surprised when I visited the outskirt prefectures such as Nagano, Tochigi and Akita where I often get asked why? These cities left a warm impact in my heart and I will always remember the people and culture I bonded with as I traveled around.

As much as I would love to see the whole of Japan, I wanted to see every culture, every person, and every breathtaking moment these different prefectures brought forth. Maybe a part of me was trying to figure out which prefecture would I ultimately like to live and settle in with my future family.

But above it all, I wanted to see how vastly different each culture had.

Tochigi by BOTAKYEN
Tochigi by BOTAKYEN

Just 32 prefectures left.

Living would never see myself exploring.

It can be costly, time consuming but you only have this one opportunity, why not take it?

I sometimes wondered would my favourite prefecture change as I venture more and more into the different prefectures Japan has.

Well, only time will tell and isn't it why I am trying to see all 47 prefectures Japan has?

BOTAKYEN

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