Tandem Bikes: The Ultimate Japanese Date

Being a “couple” in Japan is fun.

On one hand, you have to opt out of PDA (public display of affection) which, to be honest, takes quite a bit of getting used to.
On the other hand, I get to enjoy being a “couple” in Japan. It seems like couples in Japan are able to get away with a lot more than couples in America – at least “cute-wise.”

For instance, Ryosuke and I have couple shirts. We actually have three pairs of couple shirts, ranging from Disney characters to H&M shirts. While I would rather go naked than wear matching shirts in America, in Japan it’s more… normal. Couples are just more “cute and couple-y” here. I love it.

Couple interracial matching shirts

Specifically, I love Tandem Biking.

Growing up, we had a tandem bike. But I rarely saw my parents use it together, it was mostly for my dad to bike around with my little sister (before she learned to bike on her own). Before getting to Japan, I think I had only ridden a tandem bike a couple times.

But now, I’m in Akita. Akita is famous for, well, having nothing (except for high suicide rates in the winter due to the piling snow and absolute nothingness). So what do we do on clear days? We tandem bike.

At roughly $1.50 for an hour, tandem biking is cheap and fun. And the ultimate Japanese date.

Back when I only had one bike, I used to sit on the back of the bike shelf while Ryosuke biked me to class (so he could keep the bike for later). When one of my friends saw us, she came up to me later and was like,

“I’m so jealous! I want a boyfriend so we can double-bike!”

But then we got pulled over by the cops. Apparently while double-biking is a strong fantasy for most girls in Japan, it’s also illegal. Oops. So now Ryosuke and I spend our weekends tandem biking throughout the Akita countryside.

tandem bikes biking in Japan AkitaAnd aside from the fresh air, exercise, sun, and chance to swim in nearby rivers, it’s a great chance to see rural Japan.

Biking, double biking, electric biking, and tandem biking. All of them are great – you should try all of them!

A graveyard in the middle of an Akita (Japan) rice patty

A graveyard in the middle of an Akita (Japan) rice patty

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About Grace Buchele Mineta

I got into the writing business by accident. Now I live in the countryside near Tokyo with my husband, Ryosuke, where I draw comics, blog, and make videos about our daily life. Contact: Website | More Posts

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