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Comprehensive highlights and news about sporting experiences and tourism in Japan

Looking Back at Tokyo 2021

The International Sports Tournament held in Tokyo in 2021 had a theme of sustainability and diversity, striving to "Be better, together - For the planet and the people." Japan successfully demonstrated this theme through the use of renewable energy, resource management, implementation of biodiversity and through following human rights, labor and fair business practice guidelines.

The numbers alone are impressive, and represent another wide range of diversity! Japan welcomed more than 11,000 athletes from 205 countries and regions, and hosted 339 events in over 33 different competitions. Additionally, Japan also welcomed more than 4,400 para-athletes from 162 countries and regions, and hosted 539 para-events in over 22 different para-competitions!!

339 is the largest number of events held in a single year in the entire history of the Summer Games, and this year’s Para-Sports Games had the most para-athletes participate in its entire history! All of these events were accomplished despite the coronavirus pandemic! Some said it could not be done, but these Games were held in a special “bubble,” with few to no spectators. This “bubble” was created to enclose the various venues with a virtual barrier that isolated players, coaches and related parties from those who had no direct involvement in the Games, essentially blocking contact. Spectators cooperated with this bubble by watching the athletes’ activities on TV and online.

Due to the bubble method implemented to stop, or at least slow the spread of the virus, the movement of the players was greatly restricted, and they were unable to go about sightseeing freely, if at all. Yet within that limited environment, it seems that many athletes were impressed with the 'Japaneseness' that could be found and experienced even in the limited area within the bubble.
The most talked about topic was "delicious Japanese food." There was constant praise from athletes who ate sushi, ramen and dumplings - here in Japan - as opposed to trying out lesser versions or imitations in their home countries. And, due to the recent increase in popularity of delivery services in Japan, it seems that tournament officials involved in the Games enjoyed Japanese sushi and ramen in their hotel rooms as well.

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And although not as well known as sushi or ramen, Japanese snacks and ice cream are actually quite reasonably priced and are of excellent quality. Apparently, many of the athletes and others related to the Games have become fans of the fabulous convenience and wide variety of products available at Japanese convenience stores. To top it off, Japanese convenience stores are open 24 hours a day, so in the future when you visit us here in Tokyo, you can get delicious snacks and a bit of alcohol very easily! And vending machines can be found just about everywhere - in various facilities and out on the streets, adding even more convenience for your stay!

And although not as well known as sushi or ramen, Japanese snacks and ice cream are actually quite reasonably priced and are of excellent quality. Apparently, many of the athletes and others related to the Games have become fans of the fabulous convenience and wide variety of products available at Japanese convenience stores. To top it off, Japanese convenience stores are open 24 hours a day, so in the future when you visit us here in Tokyo, you can get delicious snacks and a bit of alcohol very easily! And vending machines can be found just about everywhere - in various facilities and out on the streets, adding even more convenience for your stay!