Meguro Sanma Festival: Thanks for all the (free) fish!

Aug 20, 2019 By Jason Gatewood

It’s no secret that Japan is a seafood lover’s paradise. Everything that swims, crawls or otherwise calls any body of water home can be found on a dinner table here. Of course, the national dish, sushi, is served raw but grilling fish over coals is also part of traditional Japanese...[ Click to read more ]

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Stepping Back in Time at the Arimatsu Float Festival

By Mark Guthrie

Sometimes when you visit festivals, with everyone dressed in their finest kimono or yukata, the street stalls lining the streets, and the local historical curiosities paraded around the town, if you squint just enough, you feel like you are able to capture a small glimpse of how the old Japan...[ Click to read more ]

Going Potty over the Setomono Matsuri

By Mark Guthrie

Although Japan has one of the oldest ceramic traditions in the world, with earthenwares being created as early as the Jōmon period (10,000–300 BCE), as a heavily wooded country most domestic utensils in Japan were usually made of either natural or lacquered wood. This all changed when Katō Shirōzaemon, the...[ Click to read more ]

Light up the Beach at the Enoshima Toro Lantern Festival

Jul 26, 2019 By Jason Gatewood

The area to the southwest of Tokyo proper located in Kanagawa Prefecture called Shonan, is known for being a longtime beach playground for anyone into the summer beach scene in Japan, and a local getaway spot for those of us living in Greater Tokyo whenever the stifling heat of summer...[ Click to read more ]

Asakusa Samba Carnival in Tokyo

By Ray Proper

If you are looking for a lively and colorful way to draw your summer to a close there is no better option than the annual Asakusa Samba Carnival.  This carnival is the largest Samba dance-related event in Japan, and it draws crowds of over 500,000 to view the spectacle of...[ Click to read more ]

Sansa Odori : THE Summer Festival of Morioka

Jul 16, 2019 By Jade Brischke

Mention the name, ‘Sansa,’ and many people will inevitably think of the character Sansa Stark from, ‘Game of Thrones.’ The word, ‘Sansa,’ in Morioka, however, is all about dancing and the annual festival. The Morioka Sansa Odori Festival is held every summer in August from 1-4 and is one of the...[ Click to read more ]

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Gero’s Ryujin Fire Festival in Gifu

Jul 15, 2019 By Mark Guthrie

While sitting in your air-conditioned room, sheltering from the humidity outside, perhaps the last thing that you would be thinking of doing is sinking into a nice hot bath. It seems somewhat counterproductive, doesn't it? However, here in Japan, there is a train of thought that says that it the...[ Click to read more ]

Understanding Japan: The Tanabata “Star Festival”

Jul 08, 2019 By Mark Guthrie

Tanabata, also known as the 'Star Festival', is a popular summer event celebrated all over Japan. As the festival's name suggests (literally 'Evening of the Seventh'), it is held on the seventh day of the seventh month, and depending on where in the country you are, this can follow either...[ Click to read more ]

Great Japan Beer Festival Nagoya

Jul 03, 2019 By Admin

When I first arrived in Japan, I was somewhat disappointed by the perceived paucity of decent beer selections. It seemed that no matter where I went I could find nothing more on draft than the near-identical brews of the ‘big 3’: Sapporo, Kirin, and Asahi. While these can be refreshing...[ Click to read more ]

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Nippon Domannaka Matsuri in Nagoya

Jul 02, 2019 By Ray Proper

The Nippon Domannaka Matsuri, commonly called Domatsuri, is the largest dance festival in the Nagoya/Chubu region, and involves dancers from all over Japan and abroad. This festival is one of the highlights of the Nagoya summer.  Every year over 200 dance teams and 23,000 performers participate by sharing original music, costumes, and dance routines that incorporate their...[ Click to read more ]

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