In Tokyo, the Nikkei 225 jumped 2.8 percent to 10,688.11, its highest closing in 22 months. Much of the enthusiasm for Japanese shares comes from the steadily weakening yen, a big help to Japanese companies that sell abroad.
Investors have high hopes that new Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's policies, centered on loose monetary policy and public spending, will pull the world's third-largest economy out of the doldrums.
Elsewhere, however, investor fervor wilted. Hong Kong's Hang Seng index fell 0.3 percent to 23,331.09. South Korea's Kospi lost 0.4 percent to 2,011.94, while Australia's S&P/ASX 200 shed 0.4 percent to 4,723.80. China was mixed.
__Pamela Sampson contributed from Bangkok.