The Most Popular Hobby in Japan: Exploring Traditional Arts and Crafts

Choose the hobby you think is the most popular!

Author: Gregor Krambs
Updated on Apr 10, 2024 07:12
Welcome to StrawPoll, your go-to destination for discovering the most popular hobbies in the Land of the Rising Sun! We've compiled an exciting ranking of "What is the most popular hobby in Japan?" and now it's your turn to let your voice be heard. With a diverse mix of traditional and modern pastimes, this list showcases Japan's rich cultural heritage and its ever-evolving interests. Dive into the world of manga, master the art of bonsai, or explore the adrenaline-pumping realm of martial arts – the choice is yours! Cast your vote or suggest a hidden gem that deserves the spotlight. So, buckle up and get ready to embark on a fascinating journey to uncover the ultimate hobby that reigns supreme in the hearts of millions of Japanese people!

What Is the Most Popular Hobby in Japan?

  1. 1
    Karaoke is singing along to popular songs in a private booth or public venue is a favorite pastime in Japan. It's a way to unwind and bond with friends after work or school.
    Karaoke is a form of interactive entertainment where individuals or groups sing along to pre-recorded instrumental music tracks while the lyrics are displayed on a screen. It originated in Japan in the 1970s and has since gained immense popularity worldwide.
    • Origin: Japan
    • Year of Creation: 1971
    • Type: Interactive entertainment
    • Equipment: Microphones, sound system, karaoke machines
    • Lyric Display: On-screen lyrics
  2. 2
    Japan has a rich history of producing animated shows and comics that are enjoyed by people of all ages. Fans of anime/manga often gather at conventions to cosplay and discuss their favorite series.
    Anime/Manga refers to the vibrant and widely popular form of entertainment in Japan that encompasses animated television shows (anime) and comic books (manga). It has gained international recognition for its distinctive art style, storytelling, and diverse genres.
    • Wide Appeal: Anime/Manga caters to a broad audience, from children to adults.
    • Unique Art Style: It features recognizable, exaggerated character designs with large eyes and expressive features.
    • Variety of Genres: There are genres for everyone, including fantasy, romance, sci-fi, action, comedy, and more.
    • Rich Storytelling: Anime/Manga often explores complex themes, character development, and intricate narratives.
    • Influence on Pop Culture: It has greatly impacted global pop culture through its iconic characters, fashion, and catchphrases.
  3. 3
    Japan is home to some of the biggest video game companies in the world, such as Nintendo, Sony, and Capcom. Many people enjoy playing games on consoles, handheld devices, and smartphones.
    Video games are a form of interactive electronic entertainment that involves player engagement and interaction with a virtual world. It typically includes visual and audio feedback and can be played on various gaming platforms such as consoles, computers, and mobile devices. Video games have become a popular and influential form of entertainment, with a wide range of genres and styles available for players to enjoy.
    • Graphics: High-quality visual rendering and realistic animations.
    • Gameplay: Interactive and engaging mechanics, offering challenges and objectives.
    • Multiplayer: Ability to play with or against other players online.
    • Storyline: Narrative-driven games with compelling plots and character development.
    • Platform Availability: Available on various platforms such as consoles, computers, and mobile devices.
    Video games in other rankings
  4. 4
    Origami is the Japanese art of paper folding is a popular hobby that can be enjoyed by people of all ages. It's a creative way to make decorations or gifts for loved ones.
    Origami is the ancient Japanese art of paper folding. It involves creating intricate designs by folding a single sheet of paper, without the use of scissors or glue.
    • Creativity: Origami allows for endless creativity, as artists can fold paper into various shapes, animals, and objects.
    • Precision: Origami requires careful folding and precise creasing to create intricate designs.
    • Simplicity: Origami starts with a single sheet of paper, making it a simple and accessible art form for people of all ages.
    • Mindfulness: Origami can be a meditative and calming activity, promoting focus and mindfulness.
    • Cultural Significance: Origami is deeply rooted in Japanese culture and is often associated with concepts like patience, perseverance, and creativity.
  5. 5
    Calligraphy is the art of writing beautiful characters with a brush and ink is a traditional Japanese hobby. It's a way to express oneself through writing and create beautiful art pieces.
    Calligraphy is a visual art form that involves the design and execution of elegant and decorative handwriting. It is characterized by flowing lines, precise strokes, and attention to detail. Calligraphy is often used in artistic and ceremonial writing, such as wedding invitations, certificates, and religious texts.
    • Styles: Calligraphy encompasses various styles and scripts, including Gothic, Italic, Copperplate, Uncial, and more.
    • Tools: Calligraphy is executed using specialized tools, such as pens, brushes, quills, or reeds. Each tool offers a unique effect and flexibility.
    • Ink: Ink is an essential component of calligraphy. Traditional calligraphy ink is made from natural materials, such as carbon black, while modern variations include various colors.
    • Letterforms: The art of calligraphy emphasizes the beauty and proportions of letterforms. Each letter is carefully crafted using specific strokes and techniques.
    • Line Variation: Calligraphy showcases a wide range of line thickness and variation. Thin and thick lines are achieved through pressure control or pen angle adjustments.
  6. 6

    Tea ceremony

    Sen no Rikyu
    Tea ceremony is the Japanese tea ceremony is a ritualistic way of preparing and serving tea. It's a way to appreciate the beauty of nature and the simplicity of life.
    The tea ceremony, also known as chanoyu or sado, is a traditional Japanese cultural activity that involves the ceremonial preparation and presentation of matcha, a powdered green tea. It is a highly ritualized practice that encompasses various elements, including the aesthetics of tea utensils, the art of serving and receiving tea, and the connection between the participants and the natural surroundings.
    • Tea house: Specially designed tea rooms
    • Origin: Japan
    • Origins: 9th century
    • Etiquette: Strict rules and procedures
    • Tea type: Matcha (powdered green tea)
  7. 7

    Flower arrangement

    Ikenobo Senkei
    Flower arrangement is the art of flower arrangement, or ikebana, is a way to create beautiful and harmonious compositions using flowers, leaves, and branches. It's a way to appreciate the beauty of nature and express oneself creatively.
    Flower arrangement, also known as Ikebana, is a traditional Japanese art form that emphasizes the balance and harmony of floral compositions. It involves arranging flowers, branches, and other natural materials in a unique and aesthetic manner. The goal of flower arrangement is to create a graceful and balanced composition that reflects the beauty of nature.
    • Origins: Developed in the 7th century
    • Styles: Various styles such as ikenobo, sogetsu, and ohara
    • Principles: Emphasis on minimalism, asymmetry, and appreciation of seasonal beauty
    • Materials: Uses flowers, branches, leaves, and even grasses
    • Container: Typically uses a shallow dish or vase
  8. 8
    Japan has a strong tradition of photography, with many famous photographers coming from the country. Many people enjoy taking pictures of nature, architecture, and people, and sharing them on social media.
    Photography is the art, science, and practice of capturing visually appealing images using a camera. It encompasses various techniques and equipment to capture and manipulate light, resulting in stunning visual representations of the world. Photographs can evoke emotions, tell stories, and provide a means of creative expression for both amateurs and professionals alike.
    • Camera Types: Digital, film, instant, DSLR, mirrorless
    • Aperture: Controls the amount of light entering the camera lens
    • Shutter Speed: Determines the duration of time the camera sensor is exposed to light
    • ISO Sensitivity: Defines the camera's sensitivity to light
    • Focal Length: Determines the field of view and magnification of the lens
  9. 9
    Bonsai is the art of growing and pruning miniature trees is a traditional Japanese hobby. It's a way to appreciate the beauty of nature and create living art pieces.
    Bonsai is a traditional Japanese art form that involves the cultivation and shaping of small trees in containers. The word 'Bonsai' itself means 'planted in a container.' The goal of bonsai is to create a miniature representation of a natural tree, capturing its essence and expressing harmony between nature and human intervention.
    • Size: Bonsai trees are typically small in size, ranging from a few inches to a few feet in height.
    • Container: Bonsai trees are grown in shallow containers, usually made of ceramic or clay.
    • Tree Species: A wide variety of tree species can be used for bonsai, including pine, maple, juniper, and cherry, among others.
    • Training Techniques: Bonsai trees require regular pruning, wiring, and shaping to achieve the desired aesthetic.
    • Aesthetic Principles: Bonsai trees are designed following various aesthetic principles like asymmetry, balance, simplicity, and proportion.
  10. 10
    Japanese cuisine is famous around the world for its unique flavors and presentation. Many people enjoy learning how to cook traditional dishes at home or taking cooking classes.

Missing your favorite hobby?


Ranking factors for popular hobby

  1. Participation rate
    The number of people who regularly engage in the hobby, as a percentage of Japan's population.
  2. Cultural significance
    The historical and cultural importance of the hobby in Japanese society, as well as any traditional elements associated with it.
  3. Accessibility
    The ease at which people can participate in the hobby, including access to facilities, equipment, and opportunities to learn.
  4. Age demographics
    The popularity of the hobby among different age groups and the extent to which it appeals to both young and old generations.
  5. Gender balance
    Participation rates by gender and any gender-specific preferences for the hobby.
  6. Social aspect
    The extent to which the hobby encourages interaction and socialization with others, as well as its ability to foster a sense of community.
  7. Media presence
    The coverage and representation of the hobby in mainstream media, such as newspapers, television shows, and popular culture.
  8. Commercial success
    The economic impact of the hobby, including sales of related products and services, as well as any professional leagues or competitions associated with it.
  9. Regional popularity
    The prevalence of the hobby in different regions of Japan and the extent to which it appeals to people from diverse backgrounds.
  10. Trends and innovations
    The extent to which the hobby adapts to new technologies and societal changes, as well as its ability to evolve and remain relevant over time.

About this ranking

This is a community-based ranking of the most popular hobby in Japan. We do our best to provide fair voting, but it is not intended to be exhaustive. So if you notice something or hobby is missing, feel free to help improve the ranking!


  • 188 votes
  • 10 ranked items

Voting Rules

A participant may cast an up or down vote for each hobby once every 24 hours. The rank of each hobby is then calculated from the weighted sum of all up and down votes.

More information on most popular hobby in japan

Japan is a country renowned for its unique culture, rich history, and diverse traditions. The Japanese people have always been known for their hardworking nature and dedication to their hobbies. In recent years, Japan has become a popular destination for tourists seeking to explore the country's exotic hobbies and cultural activities. One of the most popular hobbies in Japan is Otaku culture, which centers around anime and manga fandom. Other popular hobbies include martial arts, music, calligraphy, tea ceremony, and flower arrangement. With so many options available, it's no wonder that Japan is known as a haven for hobby enthusiasts from all over the world.

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