I have not been to Japan up to the day, which I regret, but I have read much about the country and its cultures, and I have seen countless music videos from Gackt to Utada to Kuu (preferring live shows). To me, Ayaka Hirahara is one of the best singers in the world.
I think it is a big advantage that Buddhism is strong in Japan. It also helps to preserve deep and old wisdom against the globalized shallowness. The Shinto side of the religious beliefs is a bit harder to understand, seems to have some fascinating aspects though, e.g. the interesting description of the components of the human "soul".
I like the sound of the language, esp. when women are talking
What I don't like so much is the oldfashioned "shouting" of men, with growling low voice, as shown in some history movies.
Japanese belongs to the "geometric" grammar languages. The Western expression and way of thinking around the verb "to be" / "to exist" seems difficult to translate correctly (if I'm not mistaken). I think we Europeans should learn Japanese language and philosophy about the same level as for English. It would improve our reasoning that is otherwise a bit too "digital" and dialectic.
OTOH perhaps some Japanese people might feel better when they become more open and informal in interhuman relations, while the complex formal requirenents of good behaviour should not make forget the deeper meaning of respect and also tolerance and broad-mindedness.
Accelerated urban life has sometmes not enough room for the maintaining of formal rules of the society and some individuals may lack of the framwork that helps to lead a stable good life. I think here is some fascinating innovation and development going on, with some artists, movie authors and writers going ahead.