Japan’s government and the Japan External Trade Organization are joining their efforts to create an original tourism strategy: encouraging foreign tourists to visit “sacred places” in the world of anime.
As a “pilgrimage to sacred places,” fans of Japanese anime often visit buildings, streets and other places related to the stories. One such place is a shrine in the town of Washimiya in Saitama Prefecture featured in manga-based anime “Lucky Star,” which is visited by many fans, according to Kyodo news agency.
The Japan National Tourism Organization said the recent boom in pilgrimages to anime-related places was ignited by “Lucky Star,” which has been released in Taiwan, Hong Kong, Canada and other countries.
Tourism information will be provided to the ‘sacred’ anime-related places.
Anime productions feature hand-drawn or computer animation and are named after the abbreviated pronunciation of “animation” in Japanese. Anime productions, like manga, are very popular in Japan and have recognition throughout the world.
The Japanese government is aiming to increase the number of foreign tourists visiting Japan from 8.36 million in 2012 to 10 million in 2013, and over 30 million in 2030.