Metsa Christmas

Metsa Village is the ‘free’ part of the Moominvalley theme park in Hanno, Saitama. Each year they have a Christmas market. In 2018 and 2019 they had a lot of additional events and Christmas decorations during the period. However, in 2021 there was just the food market. In 2022, they have the Christmas Market and a new element “Christmas Food Garden”. Within Metsa, there is also a winter illumination event in Moominvalley Park, which is the part of the village you have to pay into.

Metsa Village Christmas 2022

Metsa Christmas

In 2022, Metsa will have a Christmas market, a Christmas Food Garden, a three meter high Christmas tree (fir) and there is also soft illumination around Metsa Village for the occasion. Moreover, Santa Claus will be visiting for the first time in three years. Before the pandemic, he used to visit on November 9th, the anniversary of Metsa, as well as select dates in December. However in 2022, he will just visit in December. Three dates in total. You need to book a ticket in advance and there are a limited number of tickets – first come, first served. Please see the Santa paragraph for more information.

Ten places you could visit Santa in 2021.

Christmas Market

Christmas Market at Metsa Village

Metsa as a Nordic theme park, actually sells some Christmas goods all year round. But for the Christmas period they have a market in the Metsa Hall. Metsa Hall is actually quite small, so its that not large of a market. The Christmas market in Saitama Shintoshin is larger. But Metsa does have some cute and original seasonal goods that are hard to come by elsewhere in Saitama. They also sell traditional Christmas goods from Europe such as wreaths, tree decorations and Christmas stockings.

Christmas market at Metsa Village

The Metsa Christmas will start on Saturday October 29th and run until Christmas Day, Sunday December 25th. The market is in the Metsa Hall from 10 am to 6 pm daily. Before the pandemic they had Christmas workshops to make your own Christmas decorations such as wreaths and Christmas candles. Currently, there are no workshops scheduled, which has been the case since the pandemic began.

Christmas Food Garden

The Christmas Food Garden is new in 2022, but it is in Utepils, which has existed since the park opened. Utepils is an outdoor food court of sorts. It is located by the lake, so right now you have a good view of the autumn colors around Miyazawa lake.

Utepils food area that will host a Christmas Food Garden in 2022
View from Utepils

The Christmas Food Garden is on from Saturday November 5th to Christmas day. However, it won’t be available on Wednesday November 9th and Wednesday November 16th. The Christmas Food Garden is at Utepils. It opens for lunch and dinner. Lunch time is from noon to 4 pm and dinner from 5.30 pm to 7 pm.

Santa Claus Visit

Santa Claus as we all know is from Finland, formerly known as Lapland. Thus, it is quite fitting that one of the few places Finland’s most famous icon should visit this year, is the Finnish village in Hanno! Santa Claus will visit Metsa Village on December 11th, 18th and 24th. You need to purchase a ticket in advance to meet him. There are three time slots on the three dates and each time he will meet with 50 visitors. Tickets are sold on a first come, first served basis. They cost 500 yen (per group) and go on sale on on November 21st 2022. Participants will receive a certificate to say they met ‘the real Santa’!

Certificate of meeting the real Santa Claus at Metsa Village Hanno Saitama Prefecture
From the official website, linked in information box.

Please note that it will be only a brief visit and that Santa will practise social distancing! He will not be able to hold babies or pets. You need to have your own camera and Santa’s little helper will only take one photo with one camera (i.e. you can’t request they take a photo with more than one camera). A maximum of 6 people per one group is permitted. The photo is taken in front of the Christmas tree by the lake.

Metsa Christmas tree

We visited Metsa Christmas Village in the winter of 2019. We visited on the opening day so unfortunately we didn’t get to see it in its prime. That year, they only had one small tree with some miserly decorations at that stage. But this year the tall Christmas tree is definitely up and decorated nicely for the market. Because the day we visited was actually a bit too early for the festivities, we ended up going to Funmock ‘an athletic playground in the sky’, which was a blessing in disguise. We probably wouldn’t have checked it out otherwise and for us it is the highlight of Metsa Village!

Funmock Panza Miyazawako Metsa Hanno insaitama (5) Metsa Christmas

Metsa Christmas Information

Address: 327‐6 Miyazawa, Hanno City, Saitama〒357-0001 Japan
Dates:Christmas Market from October 29th to Christmas Day
Christmas Food Garden from November 5th to Christmas Day, except November 9th and 16th.
Santa Claus on December 11th, 18th and 24th.
Hours:10 am to 6 pm for the Market
12 to 4 pm and 5.30 pm to 7 pm for the Food Garden
English:Metsa Village
Online:Official website


The Metsa Village Christmas market is located about 10 minutes by car from the Sayama Hidaka Interchange of the Ken-o expressway. Parking is now free on weekdays and capped to a maximum of 1800 yen on weekends.

By public transport you can get a bus from the North exit of Seibu’s Hanno Station. It takes about 13 minutes and costs 200 yen. You can also walk, it takes about 40 minutes on foot. There is sometimes a bus from Higashi Hanno Station, but the route was temporarily suspended a couple of times.



    1. Author

      Haha! I am not a fan of KFC at all, so we skip that particular Japanese Christmas tradition now! Although, I admit we did do it a few times in the past!!

Comments are always appreciated...

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.