If you’ve been keeping up with Groundhog Day news, you’ll know that Punxsutawney Phil—the most famous of all furry forecasters—did not see his shadow on February 2nd, thus predicting an early spring. And we can’t help but agree with him, seeing as plum blossoms here in Tokyo have already begun to bud and bloom. Check out our list of gardens to visit for plum blossom viewing. (Note that the blossoms have just begun sprouting, so don’t expect petal-dense visions just yet.)
Looking to pick up a unique souvenir? Head to the Kite Market taking place at Oji Inari Shrine where traditional kites are for sale. You might be thinking that it seems odd for a market to be devoted entirely to such a thing, but kites were considered very lucky during the Edo period; they were said to ‘cut the wind’ that fueled fires (which were extremely commonplace and detrimental in those days). The market returns annually so locals and visitors alike can ensure their luck for another year.
The screening of the Doglegs, a documentary on a wrestling league where the disabled battle the able-bodied, is still on until Feb 15th.
Yokohama kicks off Chinese New Year celebrations on Mon, Feb 8 with an impressive lion dance throughout the streets of its Chinatown. Watch as the ‘lions’ dance about gobbling up vegetables and red envelopes (containing money) that are hung up outside of shops and homes—all in the spirit of bringing good luck and prosperity. (Access: Motomachi Chukagai Station) This is just the first of many events for the Chinese Spring Festival. For more events, check here.
Wanna kick back and hang with the Tokyo Cheapo crew and fans? Meet us on Monday night at Commune 246 for our Downtown Drinks event. Super casual. See ya there!
Our video guide to the tuna auctions at the shiny new Toyosu Fish Market
Recommended hotels located nearby
Jūjō, from ¥4,800
Sugamo, from ¥4,500
Higashi Ikebukuro, from ¥5,320