Japan’s gift–giving culture is like no other. The word omiyage translates to “souvenir” but is tied to traditions and customs more nuanced than western notions of what a travel keepsake can be. Often, omiyage means edible gifts that you give to others, not to yourself. (Even returning from a short weekend away empty–handed is a serious faux pas among family, friends and colleagues.)
Cities and regions across Japan have their own omiyage. Whether you’re in Tokyo, Kyoto or sub–tropical Okinawa, just look for windows lined with colourful boxes filled with delicately wrapped treats. For some omiyage ideas, here are eight of the best food souvenirs from Japan.