In the blink of an eye, the first month of the year is over. We hope that 2021 has been good to you cheapos so far.
If you made a New Year’s resolution to go out and explore the city, here’s your handy guide to Tokyo February events. We admit that the line-up is pretty thin this month due to Japan’s current state of emergency. However, the festivities listed below will get you outside and exploring until warmer weather and calmer times allow for safer gatherings.
1. Setsubun (Feb 2)
Drive out bad luck and evil spirits in your life, and welcome good fortune with Setsubun, a festival during which people throw soybeans while chanting “Out with demons; in with good fortune!”
This year, most major temples and shrines around Tokyo have canceled their Setsubun festivities. The Mt. Takao Setsubun event is the only one that is yet to be canceled (but we will update it here if it does get canceled closer to the date). While temples and shrines often have celebrities helping to throw beans, as well as other activities lined up, including ritualistic dances, performances, and free food and goodies, we expect to see pared down festivities in 2021.
You may also want to check out your local temple or shrine for small-scale Setsubun events.
Mt. Takao Setsubun
2. Miura-kaigan Cherry Blossom Festival (Feb 13–28)
An early blooming cherry blossom, the Kawazu is the most common tree on the coast of Kanagawa Prefecture and is usually in full bloom by the end of February. On the road from Miura-Kaigan to Komatsugaike Park there are over 1,000 trees with intensely pink blossoms.
Miura-kaigan Cherry Blossom Festival
3. Lunar New Year lantern pavilion (Feb 12–26)
As with many other events this month, the usual Lunar New Year celebrations that take place every year in Yokohama’s Chinatown will be canceled. That means lion/dragon dances, traditional performances, nor parades. However, to ring in the new year, various lantern installations will illuminate Yamashitacho Park nightly from 4 pm to 11 pm.
4. Plum Blossom Festival in Atami (Jan 9–Mar 7)
The Atami Plum Garden is famous for its early-blossoming plum trees. There are almost 500 tress of ranging varieties and colors, including plum trees over a century old! Open hours are from 8:30 am to 4 pm and admission is ¥300 (outside of the festival dates, admission is free.
Atami Plum Garden
5. Polyphonic Lifestyle Exhibition (Feb 5–7)
Ego Art and Espresso Bar is hosting a half art exhibition, half pop-up shop. There will be locally handmade items, upcycled kimonos, and pastries on offer.
Polyphonic Lifestyle Exhibition
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