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Christmas weekend in Tokyo
Here comes Christmas once again! If you’ll be spending it in Tokyo, there are plenty of spots to see lights sparkling and bells ring ting tingling too.
Christmas Illuminations: Christmas in Japan is bright, so bright in fact it hurts if you look for too long, but the illuminations also make the perfect setting for a romantic stroll. There are plenty to choose from, with some running until February 2017, and some finishing on Christmas day (Tokyo Midtown and Roppongi Hills)—so be sure to look up the final days. With new themes, music accompaniments and increasingly impressive displays every year, you’re sure to enjoy what the bright city streets have to offer.
Christmas Markets: Consider pairing your light-up gazing with a nearby Christmas market as well. German-style favorites like mulled wine, sausages and soft pretzels will be on offer, not to mention stalls of oh-so-yuletide ornaments.
Christmas Dinner: If you’re just looking for some holiday eats, we’ve got you covered on where to get a Christmas dinner (traditional or otherwise) in Tokyo.
World Christmas Festival (Dec 24-25): Yoyogi Park is hosting its third annual Christmas festival. There will be food and music performances, without a doubt with some sort of festive flair.
Kasukabe Hagoita Market (Dec 21-23): Take a trip to Saitama for a spot of traditional Japanese culture at the Kasukabe Hagoita Market (the venue is about an hour from central Tokyo). Hagoita are ornamental rackets based on an old-school (700 years old in fact) New Year’s game. The rackets are brightly decorated with famous kabuki actors, sports stars and other celebs.
Live from the Kitchen Disco (Dec 23): There’s another killer line-up for this month’s free showcase of all the best talent in Tokyo. Featuring a combination of Japanese and international bands including The Applepie, Jumeaux, Parallel Lives, you can be sure of a great night of music. There’s also a great menu with Indian food, beers and more beers… what more could you want?
Michi Terrace Light-Up (Dec 24-28): Always a crowd-pleaser, Michi Terrace is back this year from Dec 24-28 and features lights shone on the facade of the Tokyo Station building. This year’s theme is “Harmonious”, with some way to interact with the illuminations using “smart devices”. Take the station’s North Exit for the event.
National Museum of Western Art – Free Admission Day (Dec 24): This Saturday, check out the extensive collection at the Museum of Western Art in Ueno Park—an activity that which would normally cost you 430 yen. Works includes paintings from the late medieval period through to the 20th century and modern French sculpture. Artists include Ruebens, Renoir, Monet, Van Gogh, Picasso, Pollock and many more.
Odaiba Rainbow Fireworks (Dec 24): See a grand fireworks show every Saturday night throughout December. The fireworks will go off between Odaiba and the Rainbow Bridge from 19:00-19:10. Makes for a good date night!
Japanese Antique Market (Dec 25): This monthly antique market is back which aims to educate people on Japanese culture and art, while creating an opportunity for locals to sell their antique goods. Great spot to practice your Japanese and/or pick up some souvenirs!