Why the French Adore Japan: A Deep Dive into Traditional Culture

Mayumi Folio
Mayumi Folio

The number of French visitors to Japan from 2014 to 2019, just before the Corona Vortex, had surged 1.9 times during that period.

In fact, the French love Japan! I want to visit Japan! I have been living in France for 20 years, and everywhere I go I meet people who have a good impression of Japan.

As of 2022, Japan has been ranked as the best country that foreigners would like to visit.

Of course, the French are included in the survey.

Among them, I met many French people, young and old, both men and women, who have respect and admiration for Japan, which makes me happy as a Japanese.

Even those who have a rough interpretation of Japan as “a country in East Asia” seem to have a very positive image of the country.

So why is it that people from one country have a favorable impression of one country and want to visit it? Why do people from one country have such a good impression of Japan and want to visit it?

In this article, I would like to answer the question, “Why do French people like Japan?” We will discuss the question, “Why do French people like Japan?

Let’s look for hints to promote the inbound effect.

・What do French people like about Japan?

・What is popular Japanese culture in France?

・What is the appeal of Japanese culture from the French point of view?

・The 10 most popular Japanese cultural experiences among French people

Here are some of the various perspectives!

Why are French people interested in Japanese culture?

France, a country that values its history and culture

France is the birthplace of Japonism, a movement that has had a profound influence on modern European culture.

Click here to read a past article detailing Japonism.

Many artists were inspired by Japanese ukiyo-e prints and crafts, which gave birth to the Japonism movement.

Western countries were deeply impressed by Japan’s unique history, religion, culture, art, and philosophy.

Even today, France places great importance on history, tradition, and culture, which are the most respected aspects of Japanese culture.

This is the French way of thinking.

This is also a part of the French identity, where they feel respect and admiration for their own country.

Among French people, there is an awareness that “Japan is a country with a history and culture as deep as that of France,” and out of this respect comes the feeling of “I love Japan.

Of course, as in other countries, there is a high level of trust in Japanese products, and the brand power of products made in Japan is still strong.

The late former President Jacques Chirac, a Japan lover

Recommended Related Articles

Diplomatic Hospitality with a Former French President Who Loved Sumo and Japanese Culture

Among dignitaries from various countries, there are sometimes people who say, “I have a special love for the country of Japan! I have a special fondness for Japan!

One of the most famous pro-Japan people is the late former French President Jacques Chirac.

He visited Japan more than 40 times as a public visitor and more than 100 times as a private visitor.

He is said to have visited Japan more than 40 times in public, and more than 100 times in private.

In the chapter about Japan in the first volume of his memoirs, he says, “When I am in Japan, I feel completely at home.

President Chirac had a deep knowledge of Japanese culture and history, and there are many episodes in which he could tell the difference between Yayoi and Jomon earthenware just by looking at them, and other episodes that made Japanese experts roll their eyes.

President Chirac, who was a great lover of sumo, created the Grand Sumo Presidential Cup, which is now awarded to the winning wrestler as the Jacques Chirac Japan-France Friendship Cup, along with a giant macaron.

Like President Chirac, there are many French Japan lovers who have a wealth of knowledge about Japan and a deep understanding and respect for the culture.

This shows the French people’s respect for history and culture.

Reference link: Memoirs of former French President Jacques Chirac

Philosopher Roland Barthes, Empire of Symbols and Café Philo (café philosophique)

Empire of Signs” (L’Empire des signes) is a book written by the French semiotician Roland Barthes.

From 1966 to 1968, Roland Barthes visited Japan several times as a member of the French Cultural Envoy, spending several months in Japan in total.

Based on his impressions of Japan, he developed his own theory of Japanese culture from the standpoint of semiotics.

This book, described by Barthes as “a novel without a story,” unravels the everyday life of the Japanese from the perspective of Western philosophy.

This book, Empire of Symbols, is easy to read for those unfamiliar with philosophy, and Japanese readers will be surprised by its novelty.

The analysis that Japan is an “empire of symbols” while the Western world is an “empire of meanings” is very interesting.

If you are interested in learning more about Japan from a foreigner’s perspective, I highly recommend picking up a copy.

This is a book about ecriture.

I used Japan to write about the issues of ecriture that interest me.

Japan has given me poetic material, and I have used it to develop my ideas about symbols.

Tempura, gardens, Kabuki onnagata, pachinko, the student movement… I marvel at the various aspects of “Japan,” the faraway country of Garabagne,

While marveling at the various aspects of “Japan,” the faraway country of Garabagne, he deconstructs these common practices to “zero,” reading them as texts for symbols, relations, and perceptions, and vividly developing his own philosophy on the expressive form (écriture) and the signifier (signe).

Kinokuniya Bookstore:

In France, where philosophy is very popular, it is a little more accessible than in Japan.

In France, there are café philosophique (philosophical cafes) where people gather to discuss philosophy.

The philosopher Marc Sautet (1947-1998) held the first philosophy café at the Café des Phares (Lighthouse Café) in the 4th arrondissement side of Place de la Bastille in Paris, France.

His philosophy was to return to the “basic principles of reasoning,” which he addressed to the general public, not to the pompous upper classes,

Every Sunday he would gather some friends in his philosophy café for a two-hour philosophical debate (“conceptual fisticuffs”).

The first meeting attracted about 10 people, but was gradually followed by college students, eccentric citizens of the city, after-hours cab drivers, and bored, well-to-do women.

This became a regular weekly event, swelling to about 200 people at each meeting.

The subjects discussed at the café could be anything from the legend of Santa Claus to truth, beauty, sex, and death.

Although Sautet brought philosophy back to the general public attending the philosophy cafes, he was ostracized by scholars because he was seen as not being faithful to the usual philosophy taught in higher education.

Thanks to his work, however, caféphilo for the general public lives on in France today.

Today’s Café Philo is centered on cafes, but it is also held in community centers, libraries, and culture centers, where people interested in philosophy gather,

There are also places where people interested in philosophy gather to read philosophy books with lecturers and discuss a single question, and if interested, they can actively participate.

There is also a Café Philo for children, so there are opportunities for children of all ages to experience philosophy.

From the academic side, there are many thinkers and specialists, such as Barthes, who are doing research on Japan, so there are people who get their philosophical ideas from the country of Japan.

Japanese culture is profound, and people respect and are interested in this aspect of Japanese culture.

Popular Japanese culture currently attracting attention in France

The French have always been interested in Japanese traditions, history, and culture.

So what are some of the popular images of Japan today?

Let’s take a look at how the French enjoy Japanese pop culture.

Japanese neighborhood in the Paris Opera House area

Paris is a melting pot of people from so many different countries and regions that it is not an exaggeration to say that it is a melting pot of races.

Small communities from every country in the world are concentrated in every corner of Paris.

However, such “neighborhoods with a strong national or regional flavor” inevitably attract only people from that country, making it difficult for those unfamiliar with the area to drop in.

However, the Japanese quarter is special in that it is used by as many or more French people as Japanese people, which shows the special nature of Japan in France.

In the beautiful streets of Paris, just a few steps off the beaten path, you will find the Japanese quarter.

The Japanese quarter is the area between the Paris Opera House and the Louvre Museum.

During the high-growth period when Japan was a very rich country, the Japanese community was built in the best cartier in Paris.

Thanks to this, Japanese living in France today can enjoy Japan in the most beautiful places in Paris.

There are Japanese grocery stores, ramen stores, bookstores, sake stores, Japanese bakeries, delicatessens, UNIQLO, etc….

Every Japanese living in France stops by when they visit Paris and miss Japan.

It is said that this is one of the biggest Japanese communities in Europe, where you can get quite a few Japanese things.

The Opera House area is a favorite haunt of Japanese residents in France.

In fact, it is very popular among French people and is always crowded with French people.

The restaurants, especially the ramen shops, have lines of customers just like in Japan, and on Saturday lunchtime and Friday night, you have to wait for a long time to get a good bowl of ramen.

Junkudo, a Japanese-language bookstore, is always crowded with more French than Japanese customers.

At lunch time, businessmen line up at the bento shop to buy their lunch boxes, and at the Japanese food store, French people can be seen earnestly shopping for Japanese foodstuffs.

Reference URL :Articles on Japanese culture in France

NINJA Parkour and NINJA Warrior

The popularity of the ninja in France has a different fan base from that of other foreigners.

One of them is the street sport of parkour, which is popular among young people.

Parkour is a sport that originated in French military training, in which ninjas run around freely on top of tall buildings and rooftops.

In 2001, the sport was introduced to the world by Luc Besson’s YAMAKASHI ! in 2001, the sport became internationally recognized.

Their appearance has always been likened to that of ninja, and in fact, the Ninja Parkour World Championships are held every year in Kanazawa, which is famous as the land of ninja.

Official website:

The new image of NINJA is taking root in France, partly due to the influence of the popular French TV program “Ninja Warrior”.

Ninja Warrior” is the French version of the Japanese TBS TV program “SASUKE,” which is aired on TF1, a French commercial broadcaster.

Official site:

Each country’s remake of the “SASUKE” series is so popular that it is broadcast in 165 countries around the world, including the U.S. and the U.K. It is also very popular in France, where it will be broadcast in season 6 in 2021.

It is also very popular in France, where it is one of the longest-running programs, with season 6 scheduled to begin in 2021.

Reference URL : Articles related to SASUKE

There is also something called “Parkour Ninja,” which was born out of the sport of parkour and the TV show “NinjaWarrior,” and which can be enjoyed by children as well.

It is a form of exercise based on bouldering, in which the entire body is used to overcome various obstacles, and is recommended for health as a form of physical balance and full-body exercise.

Of course, adults can also enjoy this exercise, and there are parks in public spaces where parkour ninjas can play for their health, and you can see people stopping to enjoy it while running for their daily health.

Map of parks in Paris related to ninja:

In France today, the popularity of Ninjas is not only as an image or character, but also as a sport.

JAPAN Culture Dedicated Program

One of the French TV channels is called J-ONE.

Official website:

It broadcasts all day long about Japanese animation, games, music, and Japanese and Japanese culture.

It is supported by an audience of mainly young people interested in Japanese culture, and has been on the air without interruption since its launch in 2013.

Some French TV channels specialize in various countries, but these are programs for people from those countries.

Only in Japan can you find a channel that continuously introduces the culture of a country to the French people, and not to the people of that country.


And JAPAN Expo PARIS is held every year in the suburbs of Paris.

It is the world’s largest Japan festival, attracting more than 250,000 visitors every year.

Official website:

This event, which began in 2000 and is dedicated exclusively to Japanese culture, is one of the largest and most exciting events of its kind in the world every year.

The JAPAN Expo not only showcases manga, anime, and Japanese music, but also Japanese culture in general, attracting people from all over Europe who are interested in Japan.

Many Japanese companies and tourism companies also participate in the event, and each year they introduce new Japanese attractions to the French public.

Various international festivals and Japanese productions in France

Every year, France hosts the Cannes Film Festival, the Annecy International Animated Film Festival, and the Angoulême International Bandcine Festival.

These festivals attract attention from all over the world and are very important in France, a country that values culture.

Here we would like to introduce the Japanese interest in France that these international festivals provide.

International Cannes Film Festival and Japanese Cinema

France, a country of the arts, holds festivals in a variety of genres to honor outstanding works internationally every year.

Among them are films, animation, manga, and other forms of cultural expression in which Japan excels, and every year numerous Japanese films win awards in France and attract worldwide attention.

Japanese films participate in the international Cannes Film Festival, the world’s premier film festival.

The French people’s curiosity about Japanese cinema has never changed, as many Japanese films are introduced at the annual Cannes Film Festival.

In France, the birthplace of cinema, movies are still very important in the lives of French people.

Even in casual conversation, French people often exchange information with each other about films they have recently seen or enjoyed.

Unlike American films, French films are often literary and express delicate human emotions, which are similar to Japanese films.

Japanese films popular in France are slightly different from those popular in the U.S., and poetic works such as Yasujiro Ozu and Kenji Mizoguchi are still popular, which Japanese people can feel Japan even when watching them.

This is one of the reasons why French people are particularly attracted to Japan.

Annecy International Animated Film Festival

Annecy International Animated Film Festival

Official site:

Near the border between France and Switzerland, there is a small town called Annecy with a beautiful lake.

The annual Animation Film Festival is held here and many animated films from all over the world are submitted each year, as prizes are awarded to the best films.

Among them, many films from Japan participate, and many awards are given to Japanese films every year.

In particular, films that have participated in the Cannes Film Festival and the Annecy Animation Festival are screened even in small towns, making it easy to see Japanese films.

One of the reasons behind the French love of cinema is the fact that French people are often exposed to movies outside the home from childhood.

There are many cinemas throughout France that offer weekend movie programs with snacks for children.

After an animated film for children is shown, fruit, baked goods, juice and syrup are served in the hall, and the children are free to enjoy themselves and discuss their impressions of the movie with their friends.

Then, there are days when the students go to the movies at school, either at public or private schools, and everyone goes to a movie theater in town as if it were a field trip, and the theater is rented out to all the students to watch the movie.

Many of the movies are animated films, as they are for children, and many Japanese films introduced at the Annecy International Animation Film Festival are also screened, both in the movie program with snacks and on school movie days.

Many Japanese films introduced at the Annecy International Animated Film Festival will also be screened.

Angoulême International Cartoon Festival and Manfra, a bande dessinée x cartoon born in France.

In France and Belgium, there is something called bande dessinée (bande dessinée), which is different from both American comics and manga.

It is also called B.D., which stands for bande dessinée, and is one of the three major comics in the world, following American comics and manga.

In France, there are various genres of art, and comics are called “le neuvième art” (the ninth art), and are officially treated as a subject of study in the academic and art worlds.

Although in a different form than in Japan, manga is also recognized as an important and valuable cultural element in French society.

And in the 21st century, a mixture of Japanese-style manga and bande dessinée styles of expression has emerged.

The French original Japanese-style bandes dessinées, called manfra or franga, were influenced by Japanese manga and have become a new market for bandes dessinées.


This bande dessinée has its own international bande dessinée festival, like the Festival de Cannes and the Annecy Animation Festival, which celebrates the best films.

The “Angoulême International Bande dessinée Cartoon Festival”, held in the city of Angoulême near the Atlantic Ocean, is a cultural festival that attracts much attention every year.

The official website of the Angoulême International Cartoon Festival:

Although the festival is dedicated to bande dessinée (bande dessinée), Japanese and American comics translated in France are also eligible for nomination, and many Japanese works are now entered in the competition.

The Angoulême International Manga Festival also holds a competition to award the best work, with Japanese artists Shigeru Mizuki and Katsuhiro Otomo winning the Grand Prix for the first time in 2007 and 2015, respectively.

With this background, French people have more opportunities to come into contact with a variety of Japanese works than in other countries, and may have a better image of Japan as a country.

The library has a large number of translated Japanese manga as well as band cine, and children can enjoy them for free anytime.

In libraries, children can relax on sofas or large cushions while reading manga.

It is in this country that many people have an image of Japan through its works.

Japanese food attracting attention in France

In France, a country known for its gastronomy, there is no shortage of interest in Japanese cuisine.

From everyday Japanese dishes to kaiseki and vegetarian cuisine, French people are interested in a wide range of topics.

Let’s take a look at some of the most interesting Japanese foods for the French.

Japanese ingredients placed in macrobiotic and BIO organic food stores

Macrobiotics first came to France in the 1960s, around the same time as the U.S., during the hippie era.

Macrobiotics is a diet that originated in Japan, with brown rice as the staple food and a menu based on beans and vegetables, and which considers the balance of yin and yang in the human body and food.

Nowadays, it has spread all over the world with great enthusiasm among health-conscious people and those interested in natural remedies.

Of course, there are many people in France who practice macrobiotics.

French people as a whole have a very high awareness of food, and many of them actively incorporate healthy, pesticide-free, and organically grown foods into their daily lives.

There are many more stores specializing in organic foodstuffs than in Japan, and even in ordinary supermarkets, you can easily find products labeled “BIO”.

These organic food specialty stores carry a wide variety of Japanese food ingredients.

Since more people who consciously incorporate natural remedies into their diet visit BIO organic food specialty stores than other stores, Japanese ingredients necessary for macrobiotics can be found at these stores.

The wide selection of basic Japanese ingredients such as soy sauce, miso, umeboshi, tofu, seaweed, etc., is similar to that of a Japanese food ingredients specialty store.

Kaiseki Cuisine and Nouvelle Cuisine

French cuisine has evolved from the court cuisine to the present day, and has wowed gourmets around the world.

Among these, there is a movement that began in the 1970s, a genre known as nouvelle cuisine.

At that time, Paul Bocuse, Roger Verger, and the food critics Henri Gault and Christian Millot launched a cuisine that broke with the conventional wisdom of grand cuisine.

Until then, the basic French fishing season had been based on sauces that perfectly matched tender, stewed ingredients, but nouvelle cuisine overturned the conventional wisdom of the crunchiness, color, and freshness of the ingredients.

The nouvelle cuisine of Kaiseki, a traditional Japanese dish, has greatly influenced the Nouvelle Cuisine.

Japanese spices such as yuzu, sansho, and wasabi, as well as basic seasonings such as soy sauce, miso, kelp, and bonito flakes, which are the foundation of Japanese cuisine, are used in abundance in Nouvelle Cuisine.

The chef’s attention to detail, including the use of utensils and the temperature at which the food is served, has given birth to a new Japonism in France.

Click here for related articles

Popular in France! What is French cuisine with a Japanese taste? What is Japanese cuisine?

Japanese Home Cooking and French Popular Mochi

More and more French people are enjoying Japanese home cooking at home.

Many people are posting Japanese recipes on Youtube and SNS, and Japanese food that can be easily prepared in France is attracting attention.

Among the most popular dishes are those with a sweet and spicy soy sauce flavor, such as ginger yaki and teriyaki chicken.

You can find thickened sweet soy sauce, which is not available in Japan, in ordinary French supermarkets.

And for those who are a little more interested in Japan, curry is also popular.

It is easy to make with a simple roux and can be found in most supermarkets in large cities.

Another hot item among French people is rice cake.

Where can I buy rice cakes? I have actually been asked by several French people recently, “Where can I buy rice cakes?

I answered, “Maybe at a Japanese grocery store. But later on, I found that they are usually sold in large supermarkets.

The boxed type like this is the easiest to get.

Le marché japonais :.

Until a decade ago, when I offered rice cakes to French people, they would say that they could not be chewed or that the texture was unpleasant, making it a failed souvenir, and I was disappointed.

I was disappointed. Now, I want to try such rice cakes! What does it taste like? What does it taste like?

Mochi became popular among French people because of the popularity of tapioca milk tea in France as well as in Japan.

Recently, more and more cafes with a new atmosphere and casual waffle and crepe stores are offering tapioca milk tea on their menus.

The most popular type of tapioca tea is the Gyuhi type, which is more like Daifuku (rice cake) than mochi (rice cake) in Japan.

The mochi are not only filled with red bean paste, but also with coffee cream, coconut, mango, black sesame, and many other interesting flavors.

In summer, ice cream wrapped in gefu like yukimi daifuku is also popular, and ice cream like yukimi daifuku is sold at Picard, a major frozen food supermarket that is an essential part of the daily lives of French people.

picard :https://www.picard.fr/rayons/cuisine-du-monde/types-de-plat/desserts

I tried it myself and it was quite delicious, just like the Japanese Yukimi Daifuku.

Le marché japonais :.

Until a decade ago, when I offered mochi to French people, they would say that they could not chew it or that the texture was unpleasant, and it became a failed souvenir.

I was disappointed. Now, I want to try such rice cakes! What does it taste like? What does it taste like?

Mochi became popular among French people because of the popularity of tapioca milk tea in France as well as in Japan.

Recently, more and more cafes with a new atmosphere and casual waffle and crepe stores are offering tapioca milk tea on their menus.

The most popular type of tapioca tea is the Gyuhi type, which is more like Daifuku (rice cake) than mochi (rice cake) in Japan.

The mochi are not only filled with red bean paste, but also with coffee cream, coconut, mango, black sesame, and many other interesting flavors.

In summer, ice cream wrapped in gefu like yukimi daifuku is also popular, and ice cream like yukimi daifuku is sold at Picard, a major frozen food supermarket that is an essential part of the daily lives of French people.

picard :https://www.picard.fr/rayons/cuisine-du-monde/types-de-plat/desserts

I tried it myself, and it was quite delicious, just like Japanese Yukimi Daifuku.

Le marché japonais : 

Sake and Wine Very popular Japanese Whisky

The French, the land of wine, are also fussy about the taste of their alcoholic beverages.

There are a variety of wines from all over France, and the world of wine, including regional characteristics and the types of grapes grown, is very deep and attracts people from all over the world.

Until a decade ago, what French people used to drink as SAKE was a kind of rice shochu with an alcohol content of over 40%, served at Japanese-style restaurants run by Chinese owners.

Even today, the word “SAKE” conjures up images of a strong, mysterious liquor, but even so, the understanding of true sake is growing.

One possible reason for this is that sake and wine have many things in common.

First of all, sake is a drink that can be enjoyed with food.

In France and Japan, when enjoying food, alcoholic beverages are also enjoyed with the food.

This is a food culture that is not found in other countries, and is a characteristic of both countries’ food cultures, which place great importance on the combination of flavors and tastes.

Sake is also often enjoyed with meals, and has more connections to wine than other alcoholic beverages, such as the region where it is produced, the sake brewery, the type of rice, and the water used.

Against this backdrop, authentic sake is becoming increasingly popular among French people, and the number of wine sellers who carry it is also increasing.

In addition, Japanese whiskey, which is popular all over the world, is of course very popular in France as well, and the Japanese whiskey brand is respected.

With the spread of Japanese whisky, more and more French people are interested in Japanese sake, and it is common to see Japanese sake on sale alongside Japanese whisky.

Sake is often seen for sale alongside Japanese whisky.

10 Japan lover cultural experiences for French people

The charms of Japan include its deep history, the heartwarming hospitality of its polite people, its natural attractions, and its deep cultural heritage.

The charm of nature and the depth of Japanese culture can also be mentioned.

Here are 10 of the most popular Japanese cultural attractions among French people.


Many French people are very focused on activities outside of work and school in their lives.

Among these activities, Japanese martial arts such as karate, aikido, kobudo, kyudo, kendo, and iaido are popular.

These martial arts can be pronounced in Japanese and understood by most people.

Many French people who practice Japanese martial arts say that they are attracted to the philosophy behind the Japanese martial arts.

They say that they are attracted by the philosophy of Japanese martial arts.

There is no end to the number of people who are fascinated by the philosophy behind budo and Japanese culture, rather than the martial arts that focus only on defeating the opponent.

Many French people say that the reason they visit Japan is to study martial arts.

Many French people say that their reason for visiting Japan is to study martial arts.

There is a new type of inbound travel that is not for sightseeing but for martial arts.

origami (paper folding)

Folding small pieces of paper to create shapes at will.

Every Japanese person can fold at least one origami.

Origami is so popular in France that the word “origami” is used as it is.

You can easily buy beautiful origami at bookstores and stationery stores, and you can often find origami stylishly displayed in select stores.

During the Christmas season, gift boxes with origami books and beautiful origami paper sets are often sold in many stores.

Many times I have been asked for Japanese washi chiyogami as a souvenir from Japan! I have been asked many times for Japanese washi chiyogami as a gift from Japan.

flower arrangement

In France, where floral arrangements are also popular, many people have a strong attachment to flowers.

Flowers are a part of daily life in France, and people give each other bouquets of flowers in everyday life, as souvenirs when visiting friends, for anniversaries, celebrations, and so on.

The basic idea of Japanese ikebana is different from that of European flower arrangement, which is to arrange flowers as if they were there.

There are also many differences between Japanese and French plants, which makes it a very enjoyable experience for flower lovers.

Because of this background, flower arrangement is very popular among French people.

tea ceremony

Many people want to experience Japanese culture through the tea ceremony! Many people think, “I want to experience Japanese culture through the tea ceremony!

The tea ceremony is filled with the fundamental ideas of the Japanese people, and by experiencing it, you will feel a stronger sense of Japan.

There are courses where you can experience the tea ceremony while wearing a kimono, which is recommended for those who want to experience Japan in a more authentic way.

The popularity of mochi (rice cakes) has also attracted some people who are interested in authentic Japanese wagashi, which can be enjoyed with green tea.


In France, there is a discipline called calligraphy, which is similar to the study of writing.

Some people are interested in Japanese calligraphy because of its cultural background.

In the calligraphy experience, you will be taught by a calligrapher and write characters using ink and a brush.

The beauty of the Japanese language and kanji characters is a favorite of French people, so the experience of actually using a brush and writing the characters yourself is an unforgettable Japanese cultural experience.

Calligraphy performances are also very popular, and you are sure to see a calligrapher performing at any Japan-related event in France.

Related Articles

Experience Japanese Culture through Calligraphy! Which Kanji performance is popular among foreigners?

shrine and temple tour

When visiting Kyoto, you will see more French tourists than in any other city.

Many French people are interested in shrines and temples, and are eager to tour temples and visit unique Japanese architecture.

Even in Tokyo, we often hear that they enjoyed strolling through downtown areas such as Asakusa.

Many people are impressed by the Japanese philosophy of wabi-sabi, and would like to visit the ancient capital to experience its unique aesthetics.

Many French people are also drawn to the Japanese cultural heritage registered with UNESCO.

Many of them have always had a strong interest in cultural things, and they will definitely visit cultural heritage sites when they come to a certain place.

Appreciation of Japanese traditional performing arts

Noh, Kyogen, and Kabuki.

French people have a longing for the beauty of the solemnity and serenity of Japanese traditional performing arts.

In France, the country of the arts, enjoying the performing arts is an everyday part of life, and some people want to see a good performance.

Some people even incorporate an appreciation of traditional Japanese performing arts, which can only be seen in Japan, into a short stay in France.

Japanese-style meal

France is a country of gastronomic delights.

Surprisingly few countries in the world place such importance on three meals a day, and it is easy to see the similarities between Japan and France in their commitment to food.

French people love delicious food.

In addition, they place great importance on the beauty of food, which is why they are so passionate about Japanese cuisine.

At the French dining table, whether at an everyday meal or in a school cafeteria, the basic menu consists of an appetizer, main dish, and dessert.

The people are very curious about food, so they are quite flexible to accept foods that are not part of their own food culture.

Many French people respect the delicacy found in Japanese food.

Also, as evidenced by the popularity of ramen in the Japanese neighborhoods of Paris, many people are interested in everyday Japanese food.

Sake Whiskey

France is the land of wine.

Sake and wine are both good or bad depending on the region where they are made and the skill of the person who makes them, and many French people are interested in sake because it is one of the most profound alcoholic beverages.

However, while sake is not yet a major drink in France, Japanese whiskey is remarkably popular.

In the liquor section of large supermarkets, there are shelves dedicated to Japanese whiskey, and Japanese whiskey is proudly displayed in the show windows of specialty liquor stores.

Japanese whiskey is deeply loved by French whiskey lovers.

Recommended Related Articles

Characteristics and Definition of Japanese Whiskey: 10 recommended whiskies

Cartoon / Animation

Since the 1980s, the influence that Japanese anime and manga have had on young people around the world is immeasurable.

Of course, Japanese works have always been very popular among today’s French youth as well, and the trends are almost always the same as those introduced in Japan.

Oni no Kiri no Kai, Jutsu Kaisen, Shinkoku no Kyojin, and many other works that are popular in Japan today are also popular among French youths.

Many middle-aged adults are also interested in Japan because they loved Japanese works when they were children.

A deep historical and cultural longing and an interest in contemporary Japanese pop culture continue to captivate the French.


A country far to the west and a country far to the east.

France and Japan have different cultures, histories, languages, and national characteristics.

However, what they share in common is a deep respect for history and culture.

The Japanese people are very friendly to each other, and they are both very friendly to each other.

By looking at Japanese culture from the perspective of a country that knows the good things about Japan, we can reconfirm the good and interesting things about Japan that we Japanese do not notice.

In this way, Japanese culture is loved and enjoyed in various aspects in France.

Just as the Japanese are longing for France, the French are also longing for the distant country to the east.

Reference URL :French Tourists to Japan: A Data-based Understanding