10 Traditional Gifts You Can Buy in Japan

December 29, 2023

Are you looking for the perfect gift for someone who loves Japanese culture? With its rich history and unique traditions, Theres’s a wide array of gifts japan willl offer that can delight anyone interested in its art, food, and aesthetics. From intricate handicrafts to local arts and traditional items, there are various ways to express the beauty and depth of Japanese culture. 

Japan has an array of delicious foods, intricate handicrafts, and local arts that are craved by travellers all over the world. 

This article explores some of the best gift ideas for a Japanese enthusiast, providing tips and recommendations for finding the ideal present for any occasion. Whether it’s a birthday, anniversary, or holiday gift, these Japanese-inspired ideas are certain to impress and bring joy to any Japanese fan.

Matcha

Derived from green tea leaves and rich in antioxidants, matcha is famous for its great health benefits. Even if you’ve never tried it before, consider getting a small bag while you’re in Japan, as the matcha here is the most flavorful and artfully crafted on earth.

If you’re searching for gifts from Japan for family and friends back home, matcha stands out as one of the best items to buy in Japan. Small bags of this powdery green tea are affordable and easy to pack.

Explore Tokyo’s Chanoha Green Tea House, which specializes in full-flavored matcha and offers on-site taste testing to help you discover your perfect flavor.

Yukata / Kimono

Get a taste of Japanese summer fashion with a yukata, a breezy cotton kimono perfect for hot days in Japan. With prices ranging from JPY 3,000 to JPY 10,000 / MYR 110 to MYR 370, you can find a variety of designs and colors at department stores and specialty shops in Tokyo and Kyoto.

Look for shops that offer Kimono rental or purchase, and consider taking a lesson on how to wear it properly. 

Customize your look with a matching obi belt and get sandals for a truly unique style. Whether you’re strolling through a festival or lounging at home, a yukata is a comfortable and stylish addition to your wardrobe.

Japanese Sake

Sake is Japan’s traditional rice wine, known in Japan as “Nihonshu”, and is enjoyed by people around the world. Sake holds deep roots in Japanese culture and history, with its production process perfected over centuries.

Sake is an alcoholic beverage of Japanese origin made by fermenting rice that has been polished to remove the bran.

Whether enjoyed hot or cold, sweet or dry, the diverse flavors and aromas of sake are certain to leave a lasting impression. Bringing back a bottle or two of this fine liquor as a souvenir will always serve as a reminder of your amazing trip to the land of the rising sun.

Bonsai Tree

Bonsai trees are a distinctive symbol of Japanese culture, making them an ideal addition to any plant enthusiast’s collection. Priced between JPY 2,000 to JPY 100,000 / MYR 74 to MYR 3,700, specialty shops in Tokyo and Kyoto provide a range of meticulously cultivated miniature trees in various species and styles. This is one of the popular gifts Japan will offer you

Bonsai is the Japanese art of growing and training miniature trees in containers.

A bonsai tree can fit any budget and bring a piece of Japan’s natural beauty into your home. With proper care, your bonsai tree can endure for years, serving as a lasting and meaningful souvenir from Japan.

Knives

Japanese knives are renowned for their exceptional quality and expert craftsmanship, making them a coveted choice for home cooks and professional chefs alike. Priced between JPY 3,000 to JPY 50,000 (equivalent to MYR 110 to MYR 1,850), these knives are a worthwhile investment.

Japan has a long history of blacksmithing, and its knives are renowned for their precision and quality.

You can explore a variety of Japanese knives at specialty shops in Tokyo and Kyoto, where skilled artisans have been honing their craft for generations. From a versatile chef’s knife to a specific type of knife for a particular task, Japanese knives are sure to exceed your expectations in terms of performance and durability.

Kokeshi Dolls

Looking for things to buy in Japan for your kids? Kokeshi dolls are a beloved symbol of Japanese culture and a popular souvenir among tourists. Known for their simple yet charming design, Kokeshi dolls feature distinctive painted hairstyles and floral motifs.

Skilled artisans craft these wooden dolls, offering a variety of sizes and styles to choose from. Whether as a perfect gift for your kids or a decorative addition to your home, Kokeshi dolls capture the essence of Japanese craftsmanship.

You can easily find them in souvenir shops or specialty stores in Tokyo and Kyoto 

Buying adorable Kokeshi Dolls in Tokyo or Kyoto in our 12 Day Wonderful Japan

Furoshiki

Furoshiki is a versatile and eco-friendly alternative to paper or plastic bags, as it can be used repeatedly. Available in various colors and designs, furoshiki can be used to elegantly wrap items such as bottles or bento boxes.

Furoshiki are traditional Japanese wrapping cloths traditionally used to wrap and/or to transport goods.

Beyond its practical uses, furoshiki serves as a beautiful and unique souvenir from Japan. With prices ranging from JPY 1,000 to JPY 5,000, depending on the size and material of the cloth, it is an affordable and practical gift option for those looking to bring a piece of Japanese culture back home. 

Wagasa

Bring home a wagasa, a traditional Japanese umbrella crafted with washi paper and bamboo. You can easily find them at specialty umbrella shops in Tokyo and Kyoto with various styles and designs, with prices ranging from JPY 5,000 to JPY 20,000, or MYR 185 to MYR 740.

The Wagasa, the Japanese umbrella/sunshade is a symbol of the ancient Japanese elegance used to protect against both rain and sun

Some shops even offer custom designs, allowing you to personalize your wagasa as a special memento of your trip to Japan. Don’t forget to take one home with you as a useful and thoughtful keepsake.

Japanese Ceramics

Japanese ceramics are a great way to bring home a piece of Japan’s rich cultural heritage. With a price range of JPY 1,000 to JPY 20,000 / MYR 37 to MYR 740, you can find a unique piece at specialty shops and markets in Tokyo, Kyoto, and Osaka.

Pottery and porcelain is one of the oldest Japanese crafts and art forms

From simple teacups to decorative plates and vases, each piece is handmade using traditional techniques, making them a cherished addition to any collection.

Soba Noodles

If you’re a foodie, then you can’t miss trying the delicious soba noodles during your visit to Tokyo and Kyoto. Soba noodles are a staple dish in Japanese cuisine and are made from buckwheat flour, giving them a unique nutty flavor.

Soba Noodles are served either chilled with a dipping sauce, or hot in a noodle soup.

You can find them at most grocery stores and specialty food shops throughout the city, and they are an affordable souvenir option, with prices ranging from JPY 500 – JPY 2,000 or MYR 18 – MYR 74. So, bring back a taste of Japan with you by buying a pack of soba noodles to prepare at home or to gift to your foodie friends.

Conclusion

Japan is a land of beauty, tradition, and innovation, and its gifts are just as unique and inspiring as the culture itself. Whether you’re looking for a one-of-a-kind artisanal craft, a delectable culinary delight, or a practical and stylish accessory, Japan has something to offer for every taste and budget. If you need any suggestions about Japan’s traditional gifts, feel free to contact us at 1800 229 339 for more details.

Reference article: Japan Destination: Tokyo

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