Lexis Japan is located in the centre of Kobe, ‘Japan’s most liveable city’. Enjoy the best of traditional and modern Japan!
SMALL CLASS SIZES
Lexis Japan offers both Japanese and English language programs, with great opportunities for language and cultural exchange
AWARD-WINNING LANGUAGE PROVIDER
Lexis was the winner of the prestigious 2014 STM Star Award ‘World Language School’, placing it in the leading rank of language training institutions worldwide
DISCOVER JAPAN WITH LEXIS EXPLORE
Lexis Japan teaches a modern, dynamic curriculum based on the latest teaching methodologies. Fast paced, fun and interactive classes.
We have a range of courses to suit your interests, level and language goals. Lexis Japan connects your language learning to real-life situations, building your confidence and skills.
High-quality tuition for all levels. Build your speaking, writing, reading, listening and grammar.
Online courses tailored to your interests and level. Learn single topics or enrol in the entire course.
JLPT TEST PREPARATION
An academically-focussed program designed to prepare students for each level of the JLPT.
Designed for Kobe residents who need to sharpen their Japanese language skills.
Receive one on one language training, specifically tailored to your goals and interests.
TEEN SUMMER PROGRAM
Take your child’s learning out of the classroom and into the real world.
Students come to Lexis Japan from a wide range of backgrounds with various reasons for learning the Japanese language. Whether it be for fun, work, exam preparation or for further study at colleges and universities around the country.
At Lexis you will be assured of the best available facilities, highly trained and fully qualified Japanese language instructors and a fun, satisfying study environment.
DISCOVER THE REAL JAPAN
Of course, learning doesn’t stop in the classroom! At Lexis, we have a fantastic mix of after school and weekend activities to ensure you make most of your time in Kobe. Whether you are looking for the 24/7 action that Kobe offers, or would rather contemplate the cherry blossoms in a traditional Buddist temple our activity staff have the skills and experience to ensure you don’t waste a minute of your stay.
Lexis Japan is located on the 9th floor of the landmark Mitsubishi UFJ Shintaku Ginko building, adjacent to Kobe’s traditional meeting place, the Daimaru Department Store complex. To the North, the school looks directly out over the soaring Rokko mountains, while to the south it has wide views of Kobe harbour.
Motomachi marks the junction between various ‘districts’ of Kobe, and is easily accessible to all of the attractions of the city. To the west of the school is Sannomiya, the main entertainment district of Kobe. Sannomiya is a bewildering tangle of nightclubs, bars, cafes and restaurants, where you’re equally likely to find yourself in a ¥1000 all-you-can-drink beer bar or a leading Michelin starred fine dining restaurant. By day, Sannomiya is a great place for bargain shopping, with huge covered shopping malls covering several kilometers of street between the various train stations in the area. You will never lack shopping options!
To the immediate East is Japan’s largest, oldest and definitely most famous Chinatown, while between the school and the harbour to the South is the Motomachi shopping area, a district of boutique shopping and mind-blowingly expensive designer goods.
Within a few minutes walk of the school is everything you would expect in the city centre – cafés, restaurants, shops and offices!
Kitano is Kobe’s entertainment area, and is located about ten minutes walk from Lexis Japan. Kitano covers all of the area north of Sannomiya and Motomachi Stations, and has entertainment options for all interests and budgets.
While the section of Kitano further up the mountain is mostly made up of stunning traditional houses and buildings, mostly now containing fine dining restaurants, the closer to the station area you get the wilder the entertainment becomes, ending up being most cheap all-you-can drink establishments, restaurants and bars. Occasionally tawdry, always exciting, Kitano is wonderful for a big night on the town!
``There’s about a million bars and clubs in Kitano, up behind Sanomiya Station…just ask other students where they’re going tonight. I love Jazz though, so I went with my homestay brother to Sone every Friday. It’s the first place in Japan where they started Jazz music, and it’s still amazing``
Kobe Harborland 神戸ハーバーランド
Kobe Harborland is a huge park / shopping / entertainment area located on reclaimed land around the port area of Kobe, about 10 minutes walk from Lexis Japan. Ideal for those missing a Western style shopping mall, the area is one of restaurants, shops and, when you’re ready for a break, some of the areas nicest parkland. Harborland is Kobe’s traditional ‘first date’ destination!
You can’t really miss Kobe’s Chinatown – it’s located immediately across the road from Lexis Japan. One of Japan’s oldest and definitely best-known Chinatown areas, Nankaimachi is of most interest to students as a location for a cheap meal and a stroll through the chaos of the main shopping street areas.
Former Foreign Settlement 旧居留地
To the domestic tourist market, the Former Foreign Settlement is one of Kobe’s main draw cards. Kobe was originally one of the very few ports ‘open’ to international traders, and a thriving ‘mini Europe’ quickly developed. While in other parts of Japan there are few signs remaining of this era, in Kobe the buildings and streets have been well preserved. Today, the old western buildings mostly house boutique shops and restaurants, but are lovely to stroll through in the evenings….particularly when you discover some of the world class wine bars that are now in the area! The former foreign settlement covers most of the area between Lexis Japan and the harbor.
Kobe’s position in Japan’s ‘cultural triangle’ makes it an ideal base for exploration of Japan’s traditional heartland.
Arima Onsen 有馬温泉
You can’t come to Japan and not visit a hot spring! Arima is located at the top of the Rokko Ranges, about half an hour by train from Sannomiya. Arima is a fantastically preserved traditional town, welcoming overnight visitors and day trippers alike. Many students say that a day spent sipping hot sake in one of Arima’s outdoor baths is a highlight of their stay, and it’s easy to see why.
``Get the train up to Arima, soak in a hot spring and drink too much sake. The best season is winter, no doubt about it”
So many of the traditional images of Japan come from Kyoto that in many ways it already feels like a familiar city. Kyoto is all about tradition – the temples, shrines and gardens are among the best in the world, and it is one of the few places in Japan that you can still see working geisha toddling through the streets on their wooden geta sandals. Kyoto is located around 40 minutes from Kobe’s Sannomiya Station.
“I don’t think I ever spent a day at home on weekends. I suggest that you go and see Kyoto on your first weekend, because you’ll definitely want to go back multiple times. Take the early train and be there as the temples wake up in the morning…It’s so special”
Osaka is just 20 minutes from Kobe, and is a regular stop for students at Lexis Japan. The heart to a regional population of more than 20 million people, Osaka has all the attractions of a major Asian urban centre. For Lexis students, the main stop is Dotonbori, the main entertainment area (and home to the best takoyaki in Japan!). Really though, you can find just about anything you can imagine in Osaka, and Kobe, located just around the bay from the city centre, is actually closer to the city than many of Osaka’s outer suburbs.
``Grab the 9pm train to Osaka on Saturday, head over to Shinsaibashi for a session of ¥500 cocktails, then see where the night takes you. The nightlife in Osaka is utterly insane - I don’t think I’ve been to the same place twice.``
Less famous than Kobe, Nara once served as the capital of Japan. Today, it’s known as a city made for walking, with temples and shrines around every corner. Wild deer roam the streets and vie for your attention with street vendors and buskers. Nara is around 45 minutes from Kobe on local train.
Himei is a charming castle town around 30 minutes from Kobe, and is not to be missed. The main attraction in Himeji is the stunning old castle, which unlike most in Japan is entirely original in its construction. Hollywood fans will recognise many of the scenes in Himeji from movies such as James Bond and The Last Samurai.
Kansai International Airport (KIX), which serves as the main transport hub for Western Japan, is conveniently located around an hour away from Kobe. KIX is serviced by almost 1000 flights a week, making in one of Asia’s key airports.
Transfers from KIX to Kobe are quick and straightforward. The easiest option is by ‘Airport Limousine’ bus. The bus service operates from 6am until 11pm, takes roughly an hour and costs ¥2000. The Airport Limousine bus departs KIX immediately in front of the terminal building, and drops passengers at Sannomiya Station, about 10 minutes walk to Lexis Japan.
Tickets for the Limousine Bus are purchased at the vending machines at the bus terminal area of the airport. All major credit cards are accepted.
If you prefer to travel by train, the Japan Rail Rapid Express connects Kobe to Kansai International Airport with a change at Osaka. By JR, the ride costs ¥1740 and lasts 90 minutes, taking the Kanku Kaisoku (関空快速) to Osaka station and changing there to the Shin-kaisoku (新快速) that runs to both Sannomiya and Kobe stations. If you’re feeling adventurous or are in a huge hurry, there is also the option to transfer directly across the harbour by ferry. Services run from Kobe Airport to Kansai International Airport every 45 minutes, and take roughly 25 minutes to make the crossing. The ticket cost is ¥1880. You can then transfer to the Portliner Monorail service from Kobe Airport to Sannomiya (¥340).
Kobe Airport 神戸空港
Kobe Airport (UKB) is built on reclaimed land in front of the harbour. Kobe Airport handles domestic flights only. From Kobe Airport, the Port Liner monorail runs about every 10 minutes, reaching Sannomiya in less than 20 minutes (¥340).
ShinKobe Station 新神戸駅
Kobe connects to the Shinkansen network at Shin-Kobe station, one subway stop or ten minute walk from Sannomiya. From Tokyo station, Shin-Kobe is 2 hours, 50 minutes away (¥14420).
Train and subway
Kobe is very well serviced by local transport, and the Sannomiya/Motomachi district acts as a regional hub. Four local rail lines converge at Sannomiya Station, while you are never more than a short stroll from an underground station (the nearest to Lexis Japan is in the basement of the school building).
Lexis Japan is located around 2 minutes walk to JR and Hankyu Motomachi Stations, while it is around 6 or 7 minutes walk to the Sannomiya transit hub.
Kobe also has a very efficient network of buses, with most routes having a service in two minute intervals. You can travel anywhere in the city for a fixed rate of ¥210.
Kobe is one of Japan’s most ‘bike friendly’ cities, though if you choose to live on the mountain side you will need to manage some decent hills! Lexis staff will be pleased to assist you in purchasing a bike for your time in Kobe, while there are always students keen to buy your bike off you again when you leave!
The streets around Lexis Japan come to life at the end of January each year for the Chinese New Year Festival. While the street performances and dances are popular, the main attraction is undeniably the endless lines of street food vendors!
Kinosaki Onsen Festival (城崎温泉まつり)
Each April, the traditional onsen town of Kinosaki is transported back in time to its founding, 1400 years ago, in a festival of street food and events. Students enjoy the chance to spend the weekend in traditional kimono…when they aren’t soaking in the hot springs!
Arima Onsen Cherry Blossom Festival
You can largely take your pick of cherry blossom festivals in April (and you’ll be sure to attend more than a few!), but the best of the bunch is definitely the Arima Onsen Hanami. From the start of April, the festival is held at Shinsui Park when the rosebud cherry trees at Shinsui Park and Zenpukuji Temple and the cherry trees lining Arima River are lit up. Take a picnic blanket, a bag full of snacks and a bottle of sake, and spend the day mingling with locals and admiring the blossoms!
The Kobe Festival (神戸まつり)
The Kobe Festival is one of the city’s most famous: an international parade with stage performances, markets, musical bands, and plenty of food stalls. The event is held over two-days, but it is the main parade on the final day for which the crowds come: 70 groups of up to 200 people with costumes and floats.
The festival dates back to 1971 and the main parade is typically held on the third Sunday of May each year. Our Brazilian students report that the Copa Samba team is the highlight of the event!
The Himeji Yukata Festival (姫路ゆかたまつり)
The streets of Himeji come alive each June with the Himeji Yukata Festival. A tradition over 260 years old and commemorating the opening of the Osakabe temple, this very popular festival runs over three days and nights.
Lexis students report that the highlight of the festival is the amazing array of street food (with huge discounts for anyone wearing a yukata!).
Osaka Tenjin Matsuri (天神祭)
One of Japan’s ‘big three’ festivals, the Tenjin Matsuri is one absolutely not to miss. It has taken place annually on July 24 and 25 since the 10th century and its roots are in Shinto, the ancient animistic religion of the country. The festival celebrates Sugawara no Michizane, a deity of learning and scholarship. Also known as “Tenjin,” this god is enshrined at the legendary Osaka Tenmangu Shrine in Tenma. Tenjin Matsuri literally means “festival of the gods.”
The entire Tenma district comes alive during the festival. Food stalls are installed on residential streets and in parks. The festival officially kicks off with a Shinto ritual and dance at Osaka Tenmangu on the 24th, with the main events taking place on the following day, when a procession carrying a gilded mikoshi (portable mini shrines that weigh around two tons) is paraded through the shopping street. Massive floats, elaborately costumed marchers (including one dressed as Sarutahiko, a demon-like deity, atop a horse), dancers, drummers, and more march through the streets singing and shouting joyously. The procession then makes its way further around the neighborhood before reaching the Okawa River.
Kobe Luminarie (神戸ルミナリエ)
The Kobe Luminarie is perhaps the high point of Kobe’s annual events. Kobe festival of lights is, above all, a tribute. On January 17th 1995, a huge earthquake hit Kobe city. Buildings and roads collapsed, 6,000 people died, and thousands more were injured. In the city, destroyed and grieving, two men – one Italian and one Japanese, had the idea to illuminate the city to help restore hope to the people. The Italian government donated thousands of lights and thus the Kobe festival of lights was born, called Luminarie (the Italian word for light). It is one of the oldest celebratory light displays in Japan.
Beginning directly beneath the Lexis Kobe campus building and stretching through the streets around, the Luminarie festival usually attracts between 3 and 5 million people in the space of ten days. With thousands of tiny bulbs arranged on frames in various patterns and designs, Japanese and Italian artists have created tunnels of light, towers and cathedrals that sparkle in the winter night.
Almost as important as your choice of school is your choice of where to live. Kobe is blessed with a range of affordable accommodation options, most of which are very convenient to the Lexis Japan school.
Travel time between accommodation and the city centre is far shorter in Kobe than in any of the major cities in Japan, meaning that you are not spending your time jammed into overcrowded trains. Accommodation in Kobe is also far more reasonably priced than in the major centres.
Students can choose between Student Dormitory style accommodation, warm and welcoming Homestays or our private Students Apartments.
Whichever option you choose, you can be assured of affordable, high quality living arrangements that have been carefully selected by Lexis staff.
There is no doubt that the best way to reach your Japanese goals is to live with a local family, making immediate use of the language you have acquired during your day at Lexis Japan. Lexis Japan offers high-quality homestay accommodation within an easy commuting time of the school. Homestay accommodation includes breakfast and dinner each day.
Lexis homestays provide a private, fully furnished room for students. Families are happy to welcome students into their homes and are keen to share Japanese culture with them.
Host families are carefully selected and regularly inspected to ensure that the quality of the accommodation experience if a highlight of your stay in Kobe.
Student Dormitory - DK House
The DK Student House has 3 floors of small, studio style accommodation, shared kitchen space, shared bathrooms, theatre and lounge. Wifi is available throughout, and there is a separate ‘women’s floor’. The area around DK House is very attractive to international students, with supermarkets, bars, restaurants and cafes all within 5 minute’s walk. The JR Rokko transport hub is about 10 minutes stroll away, while Shinzaike Station, which is a direct link to Motomachi, is about 5 minutes from DK.
DK House is 13 minutes travel time to Lexis Japan on the subway, or around 20 minutes by bike.
``DK House was a second home to me when I was in Japan. It's big enough that there's always someone to talk to, but small enough that you know everyone's name. Great atmosphere and a great crew.``
Find out what our students have to say about their learning experience.
I studied at Lexis Japan for 2 weeks. It was lots of fun studying here. The teachers and staff were very kind. Thank you very much.
The teachers at Lexis Japan are very patient and helpful and I found the materials and textbooks were great. The activities are always fun and different every week. I've had a fantastic time here and had the chance to meet people from all over the world!
The Lexis Japan teachers are very knowledgeable and you'll be amazed how much more Japanese you can pick up after just a few weeks.
United States of America
九週間レクシスでお世話になりました。ありがとうございました。10月に台湾に帰ってからレクシスの皆さまに挨拶の手紙を書きます。 早く日本語が上手になって、レクシスの皆さまともっと日本語で話したいです。 Thank you very much Lexis Japan Team! I will send a letter from Taiwan when I go back in October. I would like to study Japanese more and talk to Lexis Japan Staff in Japanese.
TAKE THE FIRST STEP IN
YOUR JOURNEY TO JAPAN
Contact us below and a member of our student support team will be in touch shortly.
TAKE THE FIRST STEP IN
YOUR JOURNEY TO JAPAN!
Contact us below and a member of our student support team will be in touch shortly.