If you do have the misfortune to experience more than a minor rumble, follow the safety procedures listed below:

  • Extinguish any fires and turn off electrical appliances.
  • Open any doors leading out of the room you’re in, as they often get jammed shut, blocking your exit.
  • Stay away from windows because of splintering glass. If you have time, draw the curtains to contain the glass.
  • Don’t rush outside (many people are injured by falling masonry), but get under something solid, such as a ground-floor doorway, or a desk.
  • If you are outside when the quake hits, head for the nearest park or other open space.
  • If the earthquake occurs at night, make sure you’ve got a torch (all hotels, ryokan, etc provide flashlights in the rooms).
  • When the tremors have died down, go to the nearest open space, taking your documents and other valuables with you. It’s also a good idea to take a cushion or pillow to protect your head against falling glass.
  • Eventually, make your way to the designated neighbourhood emergency centre and get in touch with your embassy.

Book through Rough Guides’ trusted travel partners

Japan features

The latest articles, galleries, quizzes and videos.

An expert's guide: the best homestays in Japan

An expert's guide: the best homestays in Japan

With a reputation for expensive hotels, Japan is the perfect place to try a homestay. There’s no better way to experience the real Japan than with a stay with…

15 Dec 2017 • Joe Minihane
All aboard: the most incredible sightseeing trains in Japan

All aboard: the most incredible sightseeing trains in Japan

None of this choo-choo stuff – Byun! Shu! are the sounds that a Japanese train makes. And while bullet trains – shinkansen – are one of the symbols of mod…

28 Nov 2017 • Neil McQuillian insert_drive_file Article
Sipping sake: a dispatch from one of Japan's oldest breweries

Sipping sake: a dispatch from one of Japan's oldest breweries

Sake is quickly replacing craft beer as the cool kid on the drinks scene globally – and a number of breweries have recently opened in the UK, USA and Austral…

10 Nov 2017 • Tamara Hinson local_activity Special feature
View more featureschevron_right