Far from the buildings and neon lights of Tokyo, an unknown Japan is revealed to curious travellers. Inaka means countryside in Japanese; a new kind of tourism based on the discovery of Japanese landscapes tends to develop beyond the country's megacities. From rice paddies near humid tropical forests to the snow-covered meadows of Hokkaido, it can be said that there is not one campaign but campaigns in this vast archipelago more than 3,000 kilometres long. Leaving Kansaï and Kanto and going on the roads is an enriching and extraordinary experience. Even today, few Westerners still venture off the beaten track in the Land of the Rising Sun.

Places to discover

Japan's many cities are perfectly served by Shinkansen (Japanese TGV) and many other train lines. Punctuality is always a must and it is quite possible to access remote areas with this means of transport. Head to Shikoku, one of the least visited islands in the archipelago. This one shelters an incredible pilgrimage path that allows you to discover some 88 temples in 3 weeks of walking. Further south, Kyushu is a surprising island where a green countryside borders volcanoes and rainforests. In the far north, don't miss Hokkaido, its pastures, lavender fields and the famous village of Biei where coloured flowers (Shikisai-no-oka) are cultivated, making up a true natural patchwork! Finally, don't forget to book your ryokan (traditional Japanese inn) if you decide to escape for a few days to the countryside.