Category: New Year’s celebrations

Posts about New Year’s events and celebrations in Japan, particularly the Kanto areas of Saitama and Tokyo

New Year Countdown Events Japan 2017 ➡ 2018 | Tokyo

New Year Countdown Events 2018 – New Year’s has become a popular time for overseas visitors to visit Japan and yet there is very little New Year count down event information available in English online.  Over the last couple of years I have tried to bridge that gap by sharing information of events I know of in the Greater Tokyo […]

Naritasan Temple (& Rilakkuma amulets) | KAWAGOE

Naritasan Kawagoe Betsuin Hongyoin Temple is a branch of the Naritasan Shinsoji Buddhist Temple of Narita, Chiba. It has a very interesting, but complex history with many layers of detail.  The founder Ishikawa Tomegoro, with the financial backing of wealthy locals, restored what was previously the ruined Hongyoin Temple to be the first branch of Narita’s Shinsoji Temple.   The story […]

Shishimai Lion Dance at New Year’s | KAWAGOE

January is one of my favourite months in Japan.  It is one of the driest months of the year and probably the sunniest in Winter.  Between the weather and the festive atmosphere, as New Year’s is as big in Japan as Christmas is in Ireland,  Japan is a great place to be in the first weeks of the New Year. […]

Fuku Daruma / Daruma Market | KAWAGOE & TAKASAKI 【GUNMA】

Daruma / Daruma Market – I often get asked about Japanese New Year’s traditions. There are a  lot, but one close to my heart is the ancient tradition of purchasing Daruma dolls. It was the very first quintessentially Japanese New Year’s tradition I had the fortune to try. My first New Year in Japan, 16 years ago, was spent in […]

Mt Takao with children (includes New Years data) | HACHIOJI 【TOKYO】

Mt Takao with children – The first time I went to Mt Takao with my 4 kids, they were all under 7 at the time. The youngest had just turned one.  I did the trip sans husband, but thankfully with my best friend, Japanese food writer Fiona Uyema, and her 2 children. I had chosen to take Fiona there, who was visiting […]

lucky bags saitama

January 2nd Lucky Bags | SAITAMA

Lucky bags Saitama – Yesterday, I wrote about lucky bags and shared the places you could buy them today, January 1st. This article shares places that offer them from tomorrow the 2nd of January. Snippets from yesterday’s article explaining fukubukuro. Lucky bags are a very popular New Year’s tradition. …福 fuku means luck and 袋 bukuro is a bag… It reminds […]

First sunrise countdown new year

When and where can I see the first sunrise? | GREATER TOKYO AREA

First sunrise Japan – My latest contribution to City-cost.com; where you can see the first sunrise in Japan. Source: When and where can I see the first sunrise of 2016? | Living | Choshi-shi, Chiba – Hachioji-shi, Tokyo | City-Cost   The first sunrise is an important aspect of New Year’s celebrations in Japan. Many plan their first visit to […]

New Year Races Japan

New Year Races – Boats, Bikes and Horses | SAITAMA CITY & TODA

New Year Races – It is very common in my homeland of Ireland, for people to attend horse races during the winter holidays. Around where I lived it is the Leopardstown Races on St Stephen’s Day. Here in Japan, Christmas is not a main event, but New Years is like our Christmas. So when I saw an advert for horse races […]

New Year’s Day in Saitama | Lucky Bags

Lucky bags Japan – Lucky bags are a very popular New Year’s tradition. I first happened upon lucky bags quite by accident when I was a student here. It was early in the New Year and myself and my friends were shopping in Takasaki station. They had a sealed Hello Kitty box on sale in a clearance bin. We asked […]

UPDATED. New Year’s (Countdown) events | Tokyo

This post was for New Year’s Eve 2015 New Year’s Day 2016, you can find New Year’s Eve 2016, New Year’s 2017 here: New Year Countdown Events Japan 2016/7 | Tokyo There have been a number of queries on Japan Travel Friendly Discussion Group, a Facebook group I help administer, about things to do in Tokyo for the New Year.  […]