theme #3

ATTRACTIONS AND IMPRESSIONS

Similarities and difference. If it were my home provides an interesting statistics in regards to everyday living in Japan compared to Australia. Other than belonging to first world economics, and being equally likely to have HIV/AIDS and a low birth rate, Japan and Australia are nearly polar opposite countries. Australia can’t even begin to compare with the traditional culture, food, architecture, clothing, etc. that Japan offers. Where Australia has vegemite, tim tams and sausage sizzles, Japan has udon, ramen, takoyaki, sukiyaki, okonomiyaki, even their own version of curry! I guess that’s what makes Japan a very popular destination for Australians!

The most striking difference between the countries lie in Australia being a heavily multicultural society compared to a more mono cultural society of Japan. Australia lack deeply ingrained values, traditions and customs due to being one of the youngest countries in the world. Whereas Japan’s history can be traced all the way back to 40,000BC. If Australia was a child, Japan would be their great-great-great-greatx10-grandfather. This age gap is very evident in the way things are done in each country – the modern and individualistic nature of Australia and the traditional and collectivistic nature of Japan.

Appeal. Just as a child’s eye widen seeing things it has never seen before, it can be said the same for Australia. The wide range of never-seen before temples and shrines, castles, cute girls in kimonos and yukatas, strange Japanese novelties, etc, are new concepts to Australians who have never visited Japan before. Australians can also find familiarity in modern theme parks such as Disneyland Tokyo and Universal Studios Japan. Being home to a country that rarely snows and blistering heat, Australians will also find northern prefectures such as Hokkaido and other surrounding cities very appealing especially during winter.

There is no doubt that most tourist destinations will please most Australians. However, one of the very least appealing aspects of Japan that might drive the Australian away might be the Japanese themselves and their rules. It is a general known fact that Australians usually abide by the rules but are also very unrestricted in the ways we do things. It is the opposite for the Japanese where there is a lot of non-verbal and verbal rules and social customs that by having many Japanese people usually taking up any empty space, the Australian might feel very uncomfortable and restricted. This is very different to having an insane size of personal bubbles in the wide and empty space here in the land down under. Also, most Japanese still treat white, Western people like purple unicorns, through actions like prolong staring and such, the Australian might uncomfortable or even offended.

However due to the hospitable nature of the Japanese and the friendly nature of the Australian, it is very easy for both parties to get along especially if there is little language barrier. Australia having 108 sister-cities/sister-states with Japan is proof of that! So differences aside, I think that the Australian will find Japan a very appealing country to visit.

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