Niponica – Nipponia

Since I discovered during my studies that the japanese consulate general in Düsseldorf sends out a magazine, to promote japanese culture,  I made sure to receive every issue and read it with delight as soon as it arrived at my doorsteps (and it’s even free of charge!). The first Issue I read was Nr. 43 (2007), back then still titled Nipponia (にぽにか). In 2008 they changed the magazine and named it Niponica (にっぽにあ). But it wasn’t until two weeks ago that I discovered that the new issues are also available online at (the back numbers of the Nipponia are also available, here). The web-japan website contains a lot of information and articles about trends in Japan, if you don’t know it already, have a look (^_^)

Every issue has a special topic it concentrates on and the latest one, which came out today, is “Another Side of Japan: Snacks and Sweets” and needless to say, I loved it. Even if you are a long-term Japan enthusiast, I am sure that Niponica will still contain one or two interesting facts you didn’t know about. So here’s the teaser for the newest issue (taken from the web-japan Niponica website). I hope you’ll enjoy 😉




Traditional Japanese confections (wagashi) have subtle flavors, and are often associated with the current season. As the shelves in many shops demonstrate, sweets in Japan come in a multitude of tastes and shapes. They play an important role in the culture of giving, and their packaging can be surprisingly beautiful—so many types, so good to eat, so nice to look at and intriguing as well. This issue welcomes you to a land of wonderful snacks and sweets.


Cherry blossom petals in layers, fresh green maple leaves, insects in a grove chirping at the harvest moon, snow resting on a holly leaf—wagashi sweets are designed to celebrate the season. (All made by Akasaka Shiono, Photos by Takeuchi Akio)

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