While it's quite understandable to stray away from places you can always visit at home when traveling abroad (or simply try and step outside from under the corporate umbrella of chain restaurants), Starbucks in Japan has quite a selection of exclusive items that might entice even some of the more dedicated travelers. The menu often features seasonal items such as Sakura Cherry Blossom products and even off-the-wall types like Cherry Pie Fraps, and in terms of sightseeing, there is even a tatami-style Starbucks in Kyoto made from a century-old renovated traditional teahouse.

What most coffee-drinking collectors gravitate towards, however, are the area-specific tumblers and mugs that Starbucks Japan offers. Tokyo, Kyoto, Yokohama, Okinawa, and other cities have their own special edition tumblers and mugs that come decorated with artwork showing off what each area is famous for in lavish fashion. For those not well-traveled in Japan, it can be hard to pick out a favorite. Fortunately, the Starbucks "You Are Here Collection" offers a mug and espresso cup adorned with artwork emblematic of the general beautiful scenery Japan has to offer.

The "You Are Here Collection" has previously featured different countries in its lineup, but the Japanese expansion is being made available all throughout Japan for the first time. Both the mug and espresso cup show off an all-encompassing picturesque view of Japan, centered around a snow-covered Mt. Fuji, Japan's highest mountain and the most recognizable symbol of the country's natural beauty in front of a rising red sun. Up front, as cherry blossoms dance around, Japanese monkeys (macaques) soak in the relaxation of a hot spring. While not visible in release pictures, the back of the mug and cup feature sushi, ramen, castle, a bonsai tree, and even a daruma doll. The idea is that rotating the cup will give foreign visitors a scenic and cultural view of Japan that provides memories of their trip through the country.

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As of October 2nd, both items are available at Starbucks throughout Japan, an expansion beyond previously being limited to airport gift shops. The mug is 1,800 yen, and the demitasse espresso cup is 1,600 yen. Because of it's small size, it comes equipped with an ornamental string to hang on your wall decoratively.

By - grape Japan editorial staff.