From north to south, day to night, these Instagram accounts are chock full of Japan travel inspiration – making us want to quit everything and explore it all right now. Because Japan isn’t just Tokyo and temples, it’s four separate islands, 47 prefectures and almost 130 million people.
And this is the great thing about each and every account on this list; behind the camera there’s a person or people who’ve fallen in love with Japan; its diversity and its detail, its ugly and its beauty. You can’t help but document it.
1. Hikaru in Hokkaido
For poetic, oh-so-chic shots of the Hokkaido wilderness, check out the very well-dressed Hikaru’s @pikaring account. Think Cathy playing on the moors in Wuthering Heights transported to the northern tip of Japan.
2. Tohoku Kokeshi in and around Tohoku
A page all about the art of Japan’s traditional kokeshi dolls, underneath this account @tohokukokeshi is a rambling, unabashed and moving love letter to the Tohoku region.
3. Tokyo Big City in Tokyo
The official Instagram for the world’s largest city, this is a curated account of daily follower’s photos. Shots tagged with #tokyo_bigcity get a chance to be featured in a collection that’s as bright, eclectic and diverse as the city itself.
4. Kyoto Iitoko in Kyoto
Find the latest updates from tourist magazine Kyoto Iitoko on this account @kyoto_iitoko which basically just proves over and over how ridiculously photogenic Kyoto is.
5. Feel Kiyomizudera in Kyoto
The idea that a temple would need to have it’s own Instagram is totally justified with this stunning account @feel_kiyomizudera which grants enlightenment just by looking at it. Serene and contemplative moments are exquisitely captured – whoever is behind this account deserves a round of applause.
6. Atsushi Aizawa at Mount Fuji
How do I love thee? Let me count the ways. Atsushi’s account @a_aizawa is all about photographing Japans most iconic landmark: Mount Fuji. You’d think he’d run out of angles but he manages to surprise us every time with another breathtaking capture.
7. Yama Ok5 in Okinawa
For images that wouldn’t look out of place in a luxury travel brochure advert follow @yama_ok5, an Okinawan native whose account gives us existential wanderlust every.single.time. Is this place even real?
8. National Parks Japan
Follow @nationalpark_japan for breathtaking, boundless vistas of Japan’s incredible natural landscape, more than 70% of which is made up of mountains. There are 32 national parks spread across the country – just take your pick.
9. Japan Night View
It could be argued that Japan’s cities look best at night. For supporting evidence, we’d cite this Instagram account @japan_night_view. While the logo can be distracting, darkness has never looked this good.
10. GaijinPot Travel
Shameless plugs aside, the GaijinPot Insta account @gaijinpot is all about showcasing the best of Japan-related photography. If you tag your photo with #gaijinpottravel, you could be featured on our dedicated travel site in a new monthly roundup of the best readers’ travel photos. Check it out!
Research by Shizuka Sakamoto. Follow her @ril_13