カリフォルニアについて知っておくべき7つのこと|7 Things you may want to know about traveling to California 

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California. California. Also know as the golden state. What you need to know to enjoy it. I’ll tell you. So California is known for having some of the best weather in the world. Maybe the best. I can tell you. Because we have no humidity and it’s completely dry. And it’s warm and little hot sometimes. Not having humidity is a big big plus because in Japan we have so much humidity and it changes everything. The popular cities in California are Los Angeles area which is home to Hollywood, Venice beach, Disney Land and Anaheim which is a city that’s near or mixed in LA basically and has Disney Land. You can also drive to Las Vegas in about 4 hours. But Las Vegas is not California. As much as you might believe. It’s not. I’m sorry. Also, the northern California is the bay area which actually has two cities. In Silicon Valley, you might know, you should know, one called Cupertino and the other called Monroe Park. Cupertino is the home of Apple. And Monroe Park is where google was started. Both of those power houses were started in those two cities. And what I can tell you about those two cities, because I’ve been to both of them, is they both, when I was young, they both were absolutely no fun. And they probably still aren’t any fun anymore. But they make good stuff. Thanks for watching the video. Subscribe below and click the notification bell also so you can get all of our new videos. Also come to eigo2020.jp to get some of our rapid English training courses. See you. 


[日本語文へ]

1. Geography

San Francisco bay area and Los Angeles areas are about the same distance Tokyo and Osaka are. So be aware of this if you are trying to visit both areas. And use extreme caution with time if you are trying to visit other states around California.

You could have an only California trip and be able to experience everything a country has to offer: Multiple metropolitan areas, countrysides, and long drives; Along with to the mountains you can ski on in the morning and beaches you can surf on in the afternoon. Did I forget to mention this all can happen on the same day?

California is a country unofficially. It has the Ocean, bays, lakes, ponds, rivers, deserts, agriculture, gigantic national parks and nearly everything you want in a country visit. And it boarders Mexico. Bam!

2. Food

Order the small! The small size in America usually equals the large size in Japan. One thing I recommend in restaurants is for you to eat some and take the rest home in a To-go box. We normally do this because not everyone can actually finish their meals. Order a big lunch, and the leftovers can be eaten for dinner or the next days breakfast. This is our lifestyle.  

Regarding healthier foods, we have so many semi-fast food places that are not as unhealthy as the burger places known to Japanese. You have a choice of eating unhealthy or healthy. If you gain weight, it’s probably because you chose the wrong places (or you just like high calorie food like me!). Whatever your lifestyle is you can satisfy it. Even good Japanese food is there. Not just the California roll.  We have kaitenzushis popping up everywhere. I would recommend going to Japanese places just to see the atmosphere and how western people are experiencing it. It’s becoming more trendy every year. 

3. Big City make-ups

Los Angeles centers are very spread out unlike Tokyo and New York.

I was born in the San Francisco Bay Area, but went to University in Los Angeles. I was surprised that there is no one particular center in LA. I would estimate there are as many as Tokyo (Ginza, Shibuya, Ikebukuro, Ueno, etc.), but they are spread out, so you have to plan your day accordingly. Not to mention the traffic that can change your day entirely. 

The San Francisco Bay Area is centered in San Francisco, but has smaller centers around, but no place you would want to plan a big night out at. Stick to what we call “the City” (San Francisco) and you’ll enjoy yourself more than likely. 

4. Transportation

It’s easier and more reasonable to travel around Los Angeles now because of individual taxi companies with applications like “Lyft”

In the past people used to drive or try their luck taking buses. On the west side of Los Angeles with the Big Blue Bus (Santa Monica’s bus) and the Culver City bus (Which is green) they are quite reasonable and fairly safe. Other buses like the Metro take some street smarts. In certain areas it can be quite risky. But if you communicate with the bus driver they can help you get off where you need. 

I would recommend a car for the San Francisco Bay Area, but the public transportation is a little better than Los Angeles if I remember correctly. But it’s been almost 7 years since I’ve been back there, though I doubt it’s gotten any worse with the expansion of Google and Apple (Which headquarters are in the Bay Area). The option of using a taxi application is available there also. 

5. Weather

Humidity free summer and no rainy season…ever! There are times when it’s not sunny, however, usually that’s only in the morning, and by the afternoon it’s usually a heavenly blue sky. Just thinking about it makes me want to go back to see it.  In Los Angeles you can go to the beach almost in every season, it only depends on the temperature of the day. Yes, winter beach visits are normal! 

One thing I recognized when I went back to Los Angeles for the first time in 5 years was, almost every day was sunny! Because I’m California born, I didn’t notice how spoiled I was. Until I came to Japan. But I live in Japan and supplement my weather complaints with Okinawa visits (Which is a place I also recommend!). 

6. Safety

Unlike what appears in the movies, not everyone is walking around with guns, shooting…everyone. Although some areas are dangerous, and the media dramatizes any incident with a gun, in the safe areas it’s extremely rare for a gun to appear. To paint the picture: I was in Los Angeles for about 10 years and didn’t hear or see a gun on the streets. Stick with finding a place to stay on the westside: Santa Monica, Westwood, Beverly Hills, and the other beach cities. When you go to other places just make sure you follow your map and go straight to when you plan to go to avoid any risk. If you go with another person it’s even safer. But that’s not a necessity. You can also visit little Tokyo in downtown Los Angeles and they could give you a local Japanese perspective. 

The San Francisco Bay Area is even safer than Los Angeles. Entire cities are very safe and suburban, so if you did a little research you would be fine also. 

Researching how other Japanese live in these areas can be very helpful.

7. Shopping

Usually I hear from Japanese people that went to California that shopping for clothing and items was expensive.  This can be true, if you don’t know where to go. Every single time I go back to California for a visit I go the the very same places: Department stores.  Don’t be deceived, these are not the Katakana Waseigo Department stores. Those I known to be somewhat expensive. Department stores in America are discount stores. These stores mostly have clothing or shoes that could not be sold at the normal stores. This could be for any reason.  So when I was young I used to go and by Nike shirts that originally cost about 4500 yen for around 1000 yen.  Shoes that normally cost 20,000 yen for 4000 yen. There is a catch though.  The places are not well organized, and sometimes you can’t find anything your taste. So you have to be patient and look though every nook and cranny to find something. However, this is highly unlikely, because that was my particular situation because of my shirt and shoe sizes (2XL and 33cm). I always wished I was a little bit smaller.

Trust me, you’ll strike gold and be happy you took my advice. Japanese people don’t know the names of the stores, so let me tell you them:

  • Ross
  • Marshalls
  • TJ Maxx

In the main areas of California they are everywhere, just look on you map application and star (bookmark) them so you can stop by if you ever are going to pass. 

If you’re looking for particularly high fashion, just find the outlet stores. There are much more of a relatively wider selection than the ones I’ve found in Japan, and you’ll be able to buy items that are exclusive to America. 

I hope these 7 things about California can encourage you to go. It’s a place like no other. It’s hard to lose if you choose to go during any season (so pick a time when you can get a cheap ticket).

Please go to California if you have a chance, you’ll be so happy you did.

[日本語文へ]

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