NIS Stories

Embracing the Adventure: Your Snapshot Guide to Thriving in Japan

things to do in Nagoya with the whole family

Discover things to do in Nagoya with the whole family. Where will you explore first?


Welcome to Nagoya, the Heart of Japan

Welcome to Nagoya, Japan! Nagoya is a city that seamlessly blends tradition with modernity, offering an array of exciting things to do for you and your family. 

From its polite and welcoming people to its central location allowing for convenient access to major cities like Tokyo and Osaka, Nagoya is the perfect destination for your family's next adventure. But you may be wondering - where should I go in Nagoya first?

Get ready to discover a safe and clean environment, family-friendly attractions, and great educational options that will make Nagoya feel like your home away from home as you embark on your expatriate adventure in Japan. This short guide will help you discover where to go in Nagoya and all the amazing things to do as you embark on your international adventure. 


Getting to Know Nagoya

Nestled in the heart of Japan, Nagoya is a city that seamlessly blends rich history with contemporary attractions, making it an ideal destination for expatriate families. As the fourth largest city in Japan, Nagoya is renowned as a major transportation hub and industrial center, particularly in the automotive and aerospace industries. Its strategic location provides convenient access to other major cities like Tokyo and Osaka, while offering a more relaxed and family-friendly atmosphere. 

Getting to Know Nagoya


















Nagoya boasts a safe and clean environment, making it a perfect place to raise a family. Compared to larger cities like Tokyo, Nagoya is known for being more ‘liveable’ without compromising on cultural experiences and urban conveniences. From vibrant festivals and stunning historical landmarks to world-class cuisine and renowned museums, Nagoya has something to captivate every member of the family.


Where to Live in Nagoya

When it comes to settling into the vibrant community of Nagoya, expatriate families have three enticing options to consider. The first option is downtown Nagoya, where you can experience the energy of city life and enjoy the convenience of living in a high-rise apartment. This bustling urban environment offers a plethora of amenities, including shopping centers, entertainment venues, and a diverse culinary scene, ranging from traditional Japanese food to American restaurants and cafes.

For those seeking proximity to Nagoya International School (NIS), one of the top education options in Nagoya, the neighborhood of Moriyama is an excellent choice. Located near the school, it offers the convenience of a shorter commute and the opportunity to be part of a supportive community of fellow NIS families. This proximity allows for seamless access to school events, extracurricular activities, and a strong network of friends, while still having access to the city center via close the train or expressway.

Alternatively, expatriate families may opt for the charm of some of Nagoya's many outlying neighborhoods. Quiet neighborhoods like those found in Meito-ku provide the perfect setting for a larger house with a yard, giving families the space they desire to create lasting memories and a sense of home. These quieter neighborhoods often offer a closer connection to nature, with parks, green spaces, and a more relaxed pace of life.

Choosing the right neighborhood is an important decision, as it sets the stage for a fulfilling expat experience in Nagoya. Whether it's the excitement of downtown living, the convenience of being near the school, or the comfort of the quiet neighborhood  life, each option offers unique advantages. Expatriate families can explore these choices and find the perfect place to call home while being welcomed into the warm and inclusive community of Nagoya.


Exploring Nagoya with Children

Nagoya offers a plethora of exciting and family-friendly attractions, making it a wonderful city to explore with your children. From interactive museums and beautiful parks to unique activities that cater to young adventurers, there is something for everyone. 

 Nagoya City Science Museum

Take your little ones to the Nagoya City Science Museum, where they can marvel at fascinating exhibits and engage in hands-on experiments. Visit Higashiyama Zoo and Botanical Gardens, home to a diverse range of animals and lush plant life that transforms with the seasons. For a touch of history, explore Nagoya Castle and its majestic surroundings. 

But that's not all - Nagoya also boasts some hidden gems waiting to be discovered. From charming local cafes and restaurants to off-the-beaten-path attractions, you'll have no shortage of memorable experiences.


Navigating Education in Nagoya

While Nagoya offers various education options for expat families, it is important to understand what an international school like NIS can uniquely offer expat children. NIS stands out as a leading international school, catering to the diverse needs of expatriate families in Nagoya. 

Founded in 1964, a vision for an English-language learning hub in Nagoya sparked the foundation of Nagoya International School. Today, we're a dynamic international community, nurturing young minds to be creative, lifelong learners, and global contributors. While other local schools may provide Japanese curriculum and language immersion, NIS offers a comprehensive education system that bridges the gap between your children's roots and their new Japanese surroundings.

The school follows an international curriculum, drawing from globally recognized educational frameworks such as the International Baccalaureate (IB) program. This ensures that your children receive an education that aligns with international standards, preparing them for a seamless transition should they need to move again in the future.

For many parents, ensuring that their children receive a high-quality education is of utmost importance. NIS not only offers an internationally recognized curriculum but is also accredited by reputable educational bodies. Accreditation provides assurance that the school meets rigorous standards in terms of teaching quality, facilities, and overall educational experience. By choosing NIS, parents can be confident they are making the right decision for their children's academic development and future opportunities.


Transition Support

Transitioning to a new country can be both exciting and challenging, especially for expatriate families. International schools like NIS understand the importance of having a strong support network during this period of adjustment. 

Being part of our vibrant expat community provides a valuable network of support and a sense of belonging. You can connect with fellow expatriate families who have gone through similar experiences and gain insights from their firsthand knowledge, including where to go in Nagoya and exciting things to do with the whole family. At NIS, you're never alone in your journey. We're here to support you and help make your transition to Nagoya a positive and enriching experience.


Embracing the Adventure

Embrace the adventure that awaits you and your family in Nagoya as you discover the perfect blend of Japanese culture and your familiar lifestyle and find things to do in Nagoya. 

Immerse yourselves in the local traditions by engaging in tea ceremonies, exploring historically significant temples, and indulging in the diverse culinary delights. Create lasting memories together by attending vibrant Matsuri festivals and uncovering the hidden gems that make Nagoya so unique.

Nagoya is your home away from home, offering endless opportunities for growth, exploration, and enrichment. Seize the chance to embrace the adventure and make the most of your time in this vibrant city.

Download our checklist and prepare for your adventure in Nagoya

Join these Gr. 12s and embrace the opportunities, embrace the culture, and embrace the adventure. Your journey in Nagoya awaits – start planning and exploring today!

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