fireworks tokyo
Photo by PRONorio NAKAYAMA

Fireworks festivals in Japan are actually called ‘contests’ – with two different locations ‘competing’ with each other for attention.  This weekend takes the competition to new levels with two major festivals on at the same time. The 38th Edogawa Fireworks Festival and the 54th Itabashi Fireworks Festival (link in Japanese) both take place this Saturday from 7:15pm and 7pm respectively.  Both festivals are a decent walk from their closest stations. The Edogawa festival is a 25 minute walk from Koiwa Station on the JR Sobu Line or a 15 minute walk from Shinozaki Station on the Toei Shinjuku Line. The Itabashi Festival is an even longer 30 minute walk from Takashimadaira Station on the Mita Line.

Kyu Yasuda Teien, near Ryogoku Station, is holding their annual Chill Out Evening Festival this weekend.  The garden which dates from the Edo Period will be illuminated for both Saturday and Sunday with outdoor food stands and, tea ceremony performances and Koto playing. You can enjoy the garden earlier in the day but the festivities won’t kick off until 4:30pm.

In the event square at Yoyogi Park there will be the Ocean Peoples (link in Japanese) beach festival. Despite the lack of a beach and an ocean, there will be plenty of summery entertainment, a beer garden and food stalls.  Activities run from 11am until 8pm on both days. The closest station is Harajuku/Meijijingumae on the JR Yamanote Line and the Tokyo Metro Chiyoda and Fukutoshin Lines.

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