The aim of this study is to examine the issue of socio-cultural aspects of online learning from distant tutorial sessions as a consideration of participants` experience in the interacting with and describing the ethnography in resolving the issue. Data for this study were collected from 20 pairs of Japanese language learners and Japanese native speakers and qualitatively analyzed using an ethnographic approach. Furthermore, follow-up interviews were conducted to investigate participants` awareness and understanding of distant communication and interaction. The results revealed that socio-cultural aspects of online learning at the distant tutorial sessions involved 1) creating a motivating environment and circumstances, 2) encouraging the learner to improve his or her motivational attitude, 3) managing oneself to remain motivated, 4) reflecting on oneself and the other with metacognition. From the above, it was suggested that correspondence of learning goals and inter-cultural communication with online communities support and encourage the participants` motivation and enhance second language learners` communication competency. Consequently, I examine how the ethnography works to construct the view to socio-cultural aspects of distant tutorial sessions and discuss the possible use of ethnography in evaluating online Japanese learning.