• Kyoto -- The former Imperial capital of Japan, Kyoto is home to more than 2,000 temples and shrines, including 20 percent of the country's national treasures. Among the must-see attractions here are the Kinkaku-ji Temple, Nijo Castle and Ryoan-ji.
• Hiroshima Peace Memorial -- This memorial, located in a park that surrounds the only building left standing after the atomic bomb explosion, is a sobering reminder of the cost of war.
• The Great Buddha of Kamakura -- This revered symbol stands more than 40 feet tall and dates from the 13th century.
• Nara -- Home to the oldest wooden building in the world, the ornate Tadaiji Temple.
• Universal Studios Japan -- Located in Osaka, Universal Studios is one of the most popular attractions in Japan.Japanese is the national language of Japan, although English is also widely spoken and understood, particularly in the tourist areas and by Japanese under 40.
The official currency in Japan in the yen.