Golden Week: Exploring Japan's Week-Long Festive Spring Holiday

Japan celebrates Golden Week between April 29 to May 5

What is Golden Week?

Golden Week (ゴールデンウィーク or 黄金週間 Ogon Shukan), recognised as one of Japan's most prominent and bustling holiday periods, usually spans from late April to early May and encompasses four national holidays: Showa Day (29 April), Constitution Memorial Day (3 May), Greenery Day (4 May), and Children’s Day (5 May). This long holiday, sometimes made even longer when lined up with the weekend, typically aligns with the spring season’s delightful weather and abundance of festivities and activities, making it one of the most anticipated holidays in Japan. 

A period earmarked for relaxation, leisure pursuits, and quality time spent with loved ones, many Japanese people take advantage of the consecutive holidays to travel domestically or abroad, resulting in crowded transportation and popular tourist destinations. This year, individuals can potentially indulge in a remarkable stretch of 10 consecutive days off by strategically utilising paid leave between 30 April–2 May!

 

How did Golden Week come about?

It's Golden Time!Coined from the term ‘golden time’ used to describe the primetime listening hours, Golden Week referred to the long holiday period during which the number of listeners largely increased. | Photo by PhotoAC

Originating in 1948 under the National Holiday Laws (国民の祝日に関する法律), this seven-day long holiday marks the celebration of the nation’s citizens’ contributions towards building a better society and enhancing the quality of life. 

The term “Golden Week”, written in katakana and frequently abbreviated to “GW”, emerged in 1951, having been inspired by the phrase “golden time”, commonly used in the Japanese radio industry to denote peak listening hours. During this period, an increase in the number of individuals tuning in to the radio, frequenting movie theatres, and engaging in leisure activities caused a significant spike in the entertainment and leisure sectors, prompting the movie industry to dub this extended holiday week “Golden Week”, with the intention of conveying it as a “wonder week”, particularly for these industries.

 

National Holidays That Fall on Golden Week 

Now, let’s have a look at the holidays that comprise Japan’s Golden Week.

 

29 April: Showa Day (昭和の日)

The Showa Memorial Park (国営昭和記念公園) in Tokyo was established in 1983 in celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Showa Emperor’s reignThe Showa Memorial Park (国営昭和記念公園) in Tokyo was established in 1983 in celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Showa Emperor’s reign. | Photo by PhotoAC

Initially commemorating the birthday of Emperor Hirohito (裕仁天皇), or more widely known as the Showa Emperor (昭和天皇), Showa Day (昭和の日 Showa no Hi) provides an opportunity for individuals to contemplate the Showa Period (1926–1989), characterised by recovery following a tumultuous period, and an opportunity to ponder over the nation's future. 

Following the transition from the Showa Period to the Heisei Period (1989–2019), which occurred after the passing of Emperor Hirohito and the accession of Emperor Akihito (明仁天皇) in 1989, the national holiday was renamed “Greenery Day” as a tribute to Emperor Hirohito's profound appreciation for nature. However, in 2007, the name was again revised to Showa Day, serving as a reminder for Japanese citizens to reflect on the Showa era and to commemorate a part of the nation's rich historical legacy.


3 May: Constitution Memorial Day (憲法記念日)

The National Diet Building of Japan opens its door for public viewing only on Constitution Memorial DayThe National Diet Building of Japan (国会議事堂) in Tokyo opens its door for public viewing only on Constitution Memorial Day. (Image credit: PhotoAC)

Japan’s Constitution Memorial Day (憲法記念日 Kenpo Kinenbi) was established to commemorate the ratification of the new postwar constitution on 3 May 1947. Unlike the preceding Meiji Constitution (明治憲法), the new constitution prioritises the sovereignty of its people, the preservation of fundamental human rights, and the promotion of pacifism. This national holiday not only celebrates a constitution dedicated to creating peace, but also symbolises a new beginning for the nation. 

On this day, the building and the constitutional documents are open for public viewing, making it the sole occasion for such access, encouraging people to take photographs and celebrate the nation's history and progress while also serving as a reminder of the paramount importance of peace and prosperity in today’s world. 

 

4 May: Greenery Day (緑の日)

Embrace Greenery Day by immersing yourself in the serene nature presented by Hamarikyu Gardens in the midst of the bustling metropolitan of Tokyo.Embrace Greenery Day by immersing yourself in the serene nature presented by Hamarikyu Gardens in the midst of the bustling metropolitan of Tokyo. | Photo by PhotoAC

Originally observed on 29 April and later moved to 4 May, Greenery Day (緑の日 Midori no Hi) is dedicated to celebrating Japan's magnificent nature. Coinciding with the pleasant spring weather, it presents an ideal opportunity to bask in the lush greenery while paying homage to the late Showa Emperor, renowned for his deep adoration for Japan's majestic landscapes. 

On this occasion, numerous public gardens and attractions such as Tokyo's Hamarikyu Gardens (浜離宮庭園) and Ueno Zoo (上野動物園) offer complimentary admission to the public, encouraging citizens to unwind amidst nature's embrace. 

Additionally, Greenery Day prompts individuals to contemplate the intrinsic connection between nature and humanity, fostering gratitude for the gifts bestowed by the natural world and promoting awareness of our collective responsibility towards the environment.

 

5 May: Children’s Day (こどもの日)

Carp streamers, or koinobori, being flown in celebration of Children’s Day, symbolising luck and good fortuneCarp streamers, or koinobori, being flown in celebration of Children’s Day, symbolising luck and good fortune. | Photo by PhotoAC

Established in 1948, Children’s Day (こどもの日 Kodomo no Hi), also referred to as Boys' Day (男の子の日 Otoko no Ko no Hi), is an annual celebration held on 5 May dedicated to praying for the healthy growth of all children, including both boys and girls, while also honouring and respecting each child’s unique individuality and happiness. It also serves as an occasion to express gratitude towards mothers for their nurturing role in their children’s lives. 

On this day, one might observe carp-shaped streamers, known as koinobori (鯉のぼり), being flown on poles and displayed on public buildings, private residences and even near rivers as a symbol of luck and good fortune. The carp, believed to be strong and spirited, displays fierce determination in nature as it swims upstream against the rapid currents, embodying the aspiration for children to grow up brave and strong. 

Additionally, during Children’s Day, it is also customary for children to indulge in kashiwa mochi (柏餅), a type of race cake wrapped with oak leaves and stuffed with bean paste, representing longevity and fortune. Traditional baths, known as shobuyu (菖蒲湯) are also taken, featuring floating iris leaves which are believed to ward off evil.

Subscribe to JAPAN RAIL CLUB!
 

Other Festivals to Enjoy During Golden Week

Hamamatsu Kite Festival takes place during Golden Week in JapanThe Hamamatsu Kite Festival features battle kites decorated with symbols marking the different towns the contestants are from. | Photo by PhotoAC

In addition to the national holidays, Japan hosts a myriad of colourful and lively events, adding to vibrancy and excitement of Golden Week, offering diverse experiences for locals and tourists alike, such as the Hamamatsu Kite Festival (浜松まつり) held in Shizuoka Prefecture, where up to 174 kites take to the sky on Children’s Day, as well as Fukuoka Prefecture’s Hakata Dontaku Festival (博多どんたく), featuring tens of thousands of participants adorned in colourful traditional attire, joyously dancing along the streets of Fukuoka. 

As cherry blossoms tend to bloom later in the season further north, places in the northern region, especially Hokkaido (北海道), become popular destinations for locals and tourists, drawing crowds to its pristine nature and historical sites, with Daisetsuzan National Park (大雪山国立公園) being particularly popular during this season.

 

Silver Week (シルバーウィーク)

Respect for the Aged Day is one of the significant national holidays encompassed within Silver Week, alongside the Autumn Equinox.Respect for the Aged Day is one of the significant national holidays encompassed within Silver Week, alongside the Autumn Equinox. | Photo by PhotoAC

Apart from Golden Week, Japan experiences another favourable alignment of national holidays around late September, including Respect for the Aged Day (敬老の日 Keiro no Hi) and the Autumn Equinox (秋分の日 Shubun no Hi), along with a weekend every five to six years. This period, popularly referred to as Silver Week (シルバーウィーク), mirrors Golden Week in terms of its extended holiday duration and is eagerly anticipated by many for travel and leisure activities. 

 

Tips to Enjoy A Stress-Free Golden Week

CrowdAvoid the crowd by planning and making your reservations early! | Photo by Adobe Stock

Although Golden Week in Japan is an exhilarating time for locals, it can be somewhat daunting for unsuspecting tourists. As many locals take advantage of the holidays and take time off from work during this period, popular venues and sightseeing spots can become exceptionally crowded. Thus, it is crucial to plan in advance so that you can make the best of your holiday during this hectic period.

Here are some tips to help you navigate through Golden Week and ensuring a hassle-free and pleasant holiday experience:

 

1. Book your flights early

Secure your flight reservations well in advance, aiming to arrive several days prior to the commencement of Golden Week and depart several days after its conclusion. This will not only help in saving costs, as flight prices often surge during peak travel periods, but also allow you to evade the crowds for a few additional days.

 

2. Snag your accommodations

Booking your accommodations well in advance can alleviate one of the most stressful aspects of holiday planning: finding a place to stay. By determining your itinerary and planning your accommodations early, you not only reduce costs but also guarantee lodging, since accommodations tend to fill up rapidly during Golden Week.

 

3. Secure your transport

Knowing when to expect traffic provides not only flexibility but also an edge in selecting your travel arrangements. Corresponding with the beginning and end of Golden Week, when locals return home from their week-long holiday, trains and buses experience heavy congestion, and securing tickets can be exceptionally challenging. 

If you intend to travel during this period, it's essential to plan ahead to secure your transportation, particularly if you have the advantage of making complimentary bookings with a Japan Rail Pass (JR Pass), which also proves especially useful when reserving seats on the bullet train or shinkansen. Looking to travel within East Japan? The JR EAST PASS is highly recommended and more affordable than the nationwide one—you can find out more about it here.

 

Stay Golden with JAPAN RAIL CLUB

JAPAN RAIL CLUB April 2024 Box

With these three tips in mind, you can successfully evade the crowds and maximise your holiday experience, whether you're exploring bustling cities or tranquil countryside settings. Embrace the opportunity to immerse yourself in one of Japan's busiest holidays, navigating seamlessly through Golden Week with minimal hassle. All that's left is to revel in the excitement and vibrancy of this festive season in springtime Japan!


If you’d like to have a taste of spring in Japan in the comforts of your home, JAPAN RAIL CLUB is offering a spring-themed Omiyage Snack Box titled “Spring Beginnings”, filled with sakura and plum-flavoured snacks from Japan! From snacks like Sakura Karinto to Kigoyomi Mini Rice Crackers, this snack box is your gateway to a Japanese spring vacation. Subscribe to a 6-month plan by 30 April 2024 to renjoy discounts of up to USD33 — simply apply the promo code “SPRING14” at the checkout page. Happy spring!

Meet the author

Dawn Sim

An avid lover of nature, photography, and Japanese literature, you will find Dawn (@oyakodawn) either lost in the midst of a historical pilgrimage route or in any local book cafes from the north all the way to the south of Japan. Dawn has lived in Kyoto for a year and still can’t get enough of its cultural and historical richness - not to mention the hipster cafes that serve to satisfy their coffee addiction!

Hungry for more?

Get on track with our monthly offerings of exclusive snacks from all over Japan!

Find what you’re interested in

10 Fun Facts about the Yamagata Shinkansen to Celebrate the Debut of the E8 Series Trains
Sue Lynn

Hello E8 Series! 10 Fun Facts about the Yamagat...

To celebrate the debut of the new E8 series trains by JR East, here are 10 fun facts that you may not know about the Yamagata Shinkansen

Carissa Loh

Hello E8 Series! 10 Fun Facts about the Yamagat...

To celebrate the debut of the new E8 series trains by JR East, here are...

Hydrangeas
Sue Lynn

Tsuyu in Japan: Must-Visit Spots for Hydrangeas...

Planning to visit Japan during the rainy months? Check out this guide to learn more about hydrangeas and the must-visit places to enjoy viewing hydrangeas in Japan. 

Wendy Ng

Tsuyu in Japan: Must-Visit Spots for Hydrangeas...

Planning to visit Japan during the rainy months? Check out this guide to learn more...

美味山形: 6個必吃的山形美食
Sue Lynn

美味山形: 6個必吃的山形美食

在日本東北地區的山形縣,因四面環山,自然景觀優美,加上豐富的美食文化而聞名。而山形的美食,也因受了當地豐富的歷史文化和自然環境深遠的影響,形成了獨特的飲食風格。 在這篇文章中,讓我們來看看山形縣六道必嚐的美食佳餚。

Carissa Loh Food

美味山形: 6個必吃的山形美食

在日本東北地區的山形縣,因四面環山,自然景觀優美,加上豐富的美食文化而聞名。而山形的美食,也因受了當地豐富的歷史文化和自然環境深遠的影響,形成了獨特的飲食風格。 在這篇文章中,讓我們來看看山形縣六道必嚐的美食佳餚。

Yamagata Delights include Yonezawa Beef and Cherries
Sue Lynn

Yummy Yamagata: 6 Must-Try Yamagata Delicacies

Nestled in Japan’s northeastern Tohoku Region, and surrounded by mountains on all sides, Yamagata Prefecture (山形県) is renowned for its natural beauty and culinary heritage. Its local cuisine is deeply...

Carissa Loh Food

Yummy Yamagata: 6 Must-Try Yamagata Delicacies

Nestled in Japan’s northeastern Tohoku Region, and surrounded by mountains on all sides, Yamagata Prefecture...

Yummy Yamagata Fruit Kingdom
Sue Lynn

Yummy Yamagata: Best Fruits to Try in Japan's F...

Japan is renowned for producing high quality and a rich variety of fruits. Blessed with four distinct seasons and abundant natural resources, fruits are cultivated and harvested seasonally based on...

Wendy Ng

Yummy Yamagata: Best Fruits to Try in Japan's F...

Japan is renowned for producing high quality and a rich variety of fruits. Blessed with...

Sakata Beika Maker's Story by JAPAN RAIL CLUB
Sue Lynn

Maker's Story: Rice Crackers from Yamagata by S...

When it comes to rice crackers from Yamagata, no other company does it better than Sakata Beika (酒田米菓)! Priding themselves with creating the best rice crackers made with non-glutinous domestic...

Sue Lynn Maker's Story

Maker's Story: Rice Crackers from Yamagata by S...

When it comes to rice crackers from Yamagata, no other company does it better than...

Japan’s Culinary Wonder: Exploring the Delights of Konnyaku Jelly
Sue Lynn

Japan’s Culinary Wonder: Exploring the Delights...

If you visited a Japanese restaurant before, chances are you have encountered one of Japan’s unique culinary marvels known as konjac jelly or konnyaku (こんにゃく・コンニャク). Captivating food enthusiasts and health-conscious...

Snack Lover Food

Japan’s Culinary Wonder: Exploring the Delights...

If you visited a Japanese restaurant before, chances are you have encountered one of Japan’s...

The Art of Shinrin-yoku: Best Places to Experience Forest Bathing in Japan
Sue Lynn

The Art of Shinrin-yoku: Best Places to Experie...

Have you heard about Japan’s staggering number of national parks? With a total of 34 parks stretching from Hokkaido to Okinawa, Japan’s national parks are endowed with lush forests, dynamic...

Wendy Ng Nature

The Art of Shinrin-yoku: Best Places to Experie...

Have you heard about Japan’s staggering number of national parks? With a total of 34...

Uncovering the secret to Shizuoka's green tea
Sue Lynn

Shizuoka Green Tea: Uncovering the Secrets of J...

Having continuously cultivated and refined its flavours for centuries, Shizuoka produces exquisite green tea that is distinctively Japanese. What exactly sets Shizuoka tea apart and makes it so highly sought...

Dawn Sim

Shizuoka Green Tea: Uncovering the Secrets of J...

Having continuously cultivated and refined its flavours for centuries, Shizuoka produces exquisite green tea that...

Japanese matcha powder
Sue Lynn

So Much Matcha: The Many Ways to Enjoy Matcha

One of the most recognised flavours of Japan, matcha (抹茶) is a finely ground powder made with young tea leaves, characterised by its vibrant green colour that come from its...

Carissa Loh Culture

So Much Matcha: The Many Ways to Enjoy Matcha

One of the most recognised flavours of Japan, matcha (抹茶) is a finely ground powder...

Matcha
Sue Lynn

抹茶饗宴:探索抹茶的世界與日本頂尖抹茶產地

當我們提到日本,抹茶無疑的會被視為該國最具代表性的產品之一,但你知道抹茶的來源嗎?抹茶是由遮陽的環境下生長的綠茶茶葉,以石磨的方式加工成抹茶粉。並以其鮮豔的綠色、獨特的風味和多種健康益處而受到大家喜愛,也是長久以來一直讓日本人引以為傲的傳統。

Dawn Sim Culture

抹茶饗宴:探索抹茶的世界與日本頂尖抹茶產地

當我們提到日本,抹茶無疑的會被視為該國最具代表性的產品之一,但你知道抹茶的來源嗎?抹茶是由遮陽的環境下生長的綠茶茶葉,以石磨的方式加工成抹茶粉。並以其鮮豔的綠色、獨特的風味和多種健康益處而受到大家喜愛,也是長久以來一直讓日本人引以為傲的傳統。

Beyond beverages, matcha is also used in many other aspects of Japanese food, including Japanese wagashi and even in staples such as buckwheat noodles and mochi.
Sue Lynn

So Much Matcha: Exploring Matcha and The Top Ma...

Matcha, Japan’s most iconic green tea that has attained global popularity. | ©PhotoAC When you think of Japan, matcha (抹茶) or maccha inevitably comes to mind as one of the...

Dawn Sim Culture

So Much Matcha: Exploring Matcha and The Top Ma...

Matcha, Japan’s most iconic green tea that has attained global popularity. | ©PhotoAC When you...

抹茶饗宴:日本綠茶探索指南
Sue Lynn

抹茶饗宴:日本綠茶探索指南

你知道嗎?日本是世界第二大綠茶生產國,僅次於中國,而靜岡縣的茶就占全國生產量約40%。 一般來說,茶葉會經過蒸、揉和乾燥等過程來製作成飲用茶。採摘後的茶葉會被蒸熟以停止氧化,以保持茶葉的鮮綠色、營養和清新的香氣。

Carissa Loh

抹茶饗宴:日本綠茶探索指南

你知道嗎?日本是世界第二大綠茶生產國,僅次於中國,而靜岡縣的茶就占全國生產量約40%。 一般來說,茶葉會經過蒸、揉和乾燥等過程來製作成飲用茶。採摘後的茶葉會被蒸熟以停止氧化,以保持茶葉的鮮綠色、營養和清新的香氣。

So Much Matcha: An Essential Guide to Green Tea in Japan
Sue Lynn

So Much Matcha: An Essential Guide to Green Tea...

High in anti-oxidants and packed with anti-inflammatory properties, green tea (緑茶) is one of Japan’s most popular beverages and an important part of its culture, and can be found all...

Carissa Loh Culture

So Much Matcha: An Essential Guide to Green Tea...

High in anti-oxidants and packed with anti-inflammatory properties, green tea (緑茶) is one of Japan’s...

製茶故事:京都舞妓之茶本舖
Sue Lynn

製茶故事:京都舞妓之茶本舖

當提到日本的綠茶,大家都知道日本京都是茶文化的中心。 綠茶一開始是在西元9世紀,由幾個佛教僧侶從中國引進到日本的。在日本人的生活中,綠茶已經成為一種有著許多用途而且對人體健康的飲品。 作為日本文化的一部分,抹茶、煎茶和玉露等的綠茶品種也提供了多樣的口味選擇和體驗。例如傳統的日本茶道,不僅喝茶能帶來健康,茶道更成為了日本獨一無二的文化。

Sue Lynn Maker's Story

製茶故事:京都舞妓之茶本舖

當提到日本的綠茶,大家都知道日本京都是茶文化的中心。 綠茶一開始是在西元9世紀,由幾個佛教僧侶從中國引進到日本的。在日本人的生活中,綠茶已經成為一種有著許多用途而且對人體健康的飲品。 作為日本文化的一部分,抹茶、煎茶和玉露等的綠茶品種也提供了多樣的口味選擇和體驗。例如傳統的日本茶道,不僅喝茶能帶來健康,茶道更成為了日本獨一無二的文化。

Maker's Story: Gyokuro Tea from Kyoto by Maikonocha Honpo
Sue Lynn

Maker's Story: Gyokuro Tea from Kyoto by Maikon...

When it comes to green tea from Japan, Kyoto stands as the hub of tea culture. Originally introduced by returning Buddhist monks from their travels in China in the 9th...

Sue Lynn Food

Maker's Story: Gyokuro Tea from Kyoto by Maikon...

When it comes to green tea from Japan, Kyoto stands as the hub of tea...

Maker’s Story: Premium Matcha Products from Uji, Kyoto by Kyoeiseicha
Sue Lynn

Maker’s Story: Premium Matcha Products from Uji...

This May, JAPAN RAIL CLUB celebrates the joy that matcha brings to our lives with the special “So Much Matcha” Omiyage Snack Box. May marks the start of the traditional...

Sue Lynn Maker's Story

Maker’s Story: Premium Matcha Products from Uji...

This May, JAPAN RAIL CLUB celebrates the joy that matcha brings to our lives with...

綠之日快樂!一起來探索日本新綠季節中五個不能錯過的景點
Sue Lynn

綠之日快樂!一起來探索日本新綠季節中五個不能錯過的景點

在日本眾多節慶與珍貴傳統之中,有一個特別關於自然崇敬的慶典——綠之日。這個國定假日訂於每年五月四日,見證了日本與自然的深厚連結,也提醒人們欣賞這個70%都是山區的島國上,那些美麗的綠色景觀。

Carissa Loh Culture

綠之日快樂!一起來探索日本新綠季節中五個不能錯過的景點

在日本眾多節慶與珍貴傳統之中,有一個特別關於自然崇敬的慶典——綠之日。這個國定假日訂於每年五月四日,見證了日本與自然的深厚連結,也提醒人們欣賞這個70%都是山區的島國上,那些美麗的綠色景觀。

Happy Greenery Day: 5 Must-Visit Places to Explore During Japan's Shinryoku Season
Sue Lynn

Happy Greenery Day: 5 Must-Visit Places to Expl...

Nestled amongst Japan’s vibrant festivities and cherished traditions lies a celebration rooted in reverence for nature―Midori-no-Hi (みどりの日 Greenery Day). Observed annually on 4 May, this national holiday is a testament...

Carissa Loh Culture

Happy Greenery Day: 5 Must-Visit Places to Expl...

Nestled amongst Japan’s vibrant festivities and cherished traditions lies a celebration rooted in reverence for...

Fresh From Hokkaido: A Guide to Sapporo Central Wholesale Market
Sue Lynn

Fresh From Hokkaido: A Guide to Sapporo Central...

Hokkaido is Japan’s food paradise as the northernmost part of the country is the top producer of agricultural products and seafood: the vast lands covering Japan’s second largest island and...

Wendy Ng

Fresh From Hokkaido: A Guide to Sapporo Central...

Hokkaido is Japan’s food paradise as the northernmost part of the country is the top...

Nihon Sankei (日本三景): The Three Scenic Views of Japan
Sue Lynn

Nihon Sankei (日本三景): The Three Scenic Views of ...

Japan is an island nation that has always been known for its stunningly beautiful landscapes but even amongst these, there are three locations that rise above the others and are...

Dawn Sim Nature

Nihon Sankei (日本三景): The Three Scenic Views of ...

Japan is an island nation that has always been known for its stunningly beautiful landscapes...

Japan celebrates Golden Week between April 29 to May 5
Sue Lynn

Golden Week: Exploring Japan's Week-Long Festiv...

What is Golden Week? Golden Week (ゴールデンウィーク or 黄金週間 Ogon Shukan), recognised as one of Japan's most prominent and bustling holiday periods, usually spans from late April to early May...

Dawn Sim Culture

Golden Week: Exploring Japan's Week-Long Festiv...

What is Golden Week? Golden Week (ゴールデンウィーク or 黄金週間 Ogon Shukan), recognised as one of...

春暖花開:櫻花之外的六種當季花卉
Sue Lynn

春暖花開:櫻花之外的六種當季花卉

賞花的樂趣之一,就是它們轉瞬即逝的特性:花期每季只有幾天,但那短暫幾天卻難忘極了。來看看六種春天當季花卉,以及賞花最佳時機!

Carissa Loh Nature

春暖花開:櫻花之外的六種當季花卉

賞花的樂趣之一,就是它們轉瞬即逝的特性:花期每季只有幾天,但那短暫幾天卻難忘極了。來看看六種春天當季花卉,以及賞花最佳時機!

Spring Beginnings: 6 Seasonal Flowers Other Than Sakura
Sue Lynn

Spring Beginnings: 6 Seasonal Flowers Other Tha...

Flowers herald the beginning of spring, and in Japan, no flower is more synonymous with spring than the beloved cherry blossom (桜 sakura). However, other than these pretty, pink blossoms,...

Carissa Loh Nature

Spring Beginnings: 6 Seasonal Flowers Other Tha...

Flowers herald the beginning of spring, and in Japan, no flower is more synonymous with...

Spring Beginnings: 7 Things to Do in Japan in April and May
Sue Lynn

Spring Beginnings: 7 Things to Do in Japan in A...

Cherry blossoms, or sakura, are flowers symbolic of spring, often alluded to the promise of a new beginning in many Japanese literature. | Photo by Dawn Sim   A symbol...

Dawn Sim Spring

Spring Beginnings: 7 Things to Do in Japan in A...

Cherry blossoms, or sakura, are flowers symbolic of spring, often alluded to the promise of...

Spring Beginnings: 6 Must-Try Spring Foods in Japan
Sue Lynn

Spring Beginnings: 6 Must-Try Spring Foods in J...

Spring in Japan is a time for celebration as the season marks new beginnings. Other than the mesmerising cherry blossoms painting the landscape, spring is the best season to experience...

Wendy Ng Food

Spring Beginnings: 6 Must-Try Spring Foods in J...

Spring in Japan is a time for celebration as the season marks new beginnings. Other...

Spring Beginnings: 6 Must-Visit Spring Festivals in Japan
Sue Lynn

Spring Beginnings: 6 Must-Visit Spring Festival...

Photo by cyesuta (CC BY-SA 2.0)   Spring is a season of new beginnings, bringing with it beautiful flowers, comfortable temperatures, and a time of celebration. While most travellers head...

Carissa Loh Festival

Spring Beginnings: 6 Must-Visit Spring Festival...

Photo by cyesuta (CC BY-SA 2.0)   Spring is a season of new beginnings, bringing...

Castle Day (6 April): 10 Must-Visit Castles in Japan
Sue Lynn

Castle Day (6 April): 10 Must-Visit Castles in ...

Matsue Castle in spring. | Photo by 島根県観光連盟 Japan, a nation celebrated for its rich history and enduring cultural heritage, is particularly famous for its magnificent Japanese castles (お城 oshiro)....

Carissa Loh Culture

Castle Day (6 April): 10 Must-Visit Castles in ...

Matsue Castle in spring. | Photo by 島根県観光連盟 Japan, a nation celebrated for its rich...

Sakura Karinto and Marui Suzuki
Sue Lynn

Maker’s Story: Seasonal Karinto Snacks from Tok...

April marks the official arrival of spring in Japan, and one of the cherished traditions of celebrating this season is to enjoy “ohanami” (お花見)! Ohanami means “flower-viewing”, and this is...

Sue Lynn Maker's Story

Maker’s Story: Seasonal Karinto Snacks from Tok...

April marks the official arrival of spring in Japan, and one of the cherished traditions...

A Guide to Sakura in Tohoku: Best Cherry Blossom Viewing Spots in Northeast Japan
Sue Lynn

A Guide to Sakura in Tohoku: Best Cherry Blosso...

Hirosaki Castle Park | Photo by Aomori Prefecture Cherry blossoms or sakura (桜) herald the start of springtime in Japan. Spring is the prettiest and most enjoyable season with radiant...

Wendy Ng Spring

A Guide to Sakura in Tohoku: Best Cherry Blosso...

Hirosaki Castle Park | Photo by Aomori Prefecture Cherry blossoms or sakura (桜) herald the...

A Guide to Japanese Shochu: A Tasting Tour of Shochu Distilleries in Miyazaki
Sue Lynn

A Guide to Japanese Shochu: A Tasting Tour of S...

Shochu (焼酎) is one of the most consumed alcoholic beverages in Japan and the Japanese drink more shochu than sake. Considered to be Japan's national spirit, Shochu is gaining great...

Wendy Ng

A Guide to Japanese Shochu: A Tasting Tour of S...

Shochu (焼酎) is one of the most consumed alcoholic beverages in Japan and the Japanese...

Tohoku: A Tale of Tradition through its Cultural Icons
Sue Lynn

Tohoku: A Tale of Tradition through its Cultura...

Statues of the Namahage located in Oga Peninsula. | Photo by PhotoAC Steeped in tradition, Tohoku (東北), the northeastern part of Japan comprising of six prefectures – Aomori (青森), Akita...

Dawn Sim Culture

Tohoku: A Tale of Tradition through its Cultura...

Statues of the Namahage located in Oga Peninsula. | Photo by PhotoAC Steeped in tradition,...

Tasty Tohoku Treats: 6 Must-Try Food from Northeast Japan
Sue Lynn

Tasty Tohoku Treats: 6 Must-Try Food from North...

Japan is a food paradise and beyond the major cities and well-trodden travel routes, you can unearth more culinary treasures spread throughout the country if you venture into the less...

Wendy Ng Food

Tasty Tohoku Treats: 6 Must-Try Food from North...

Japan is a food paradise and beyond the major cities and well-trodden travel routes, you...

Sakura 2024: 5 Must-Visit Cherry Blossom Spots in Tokyo for Ohanami
Sue Lynn

Sakura 2024: 5 Must-Visit Cherry Blossom Spots ...

If you have visited Tokyo between late March and early April, then chances are you have witnessed the enchanting sight of cherry blossoms (桜 sakura) in full bloom. A cherry...

Carissa Loh Culture

Sakura 2024: 5 Must-Visit Cherry Blossom Spots ...

If you have visited Tokyo between late March and early April, then chances are you...

Tasty Tohoku Treats: 6 Must-Buy Souvenirs from Tohoku
Sue Lynn

Tasty Tohoku Treats: 6 Must-Buy Souvenirs from ...

Located on the north-eastern part of mainland Japan, Tohoku (東北) is made up of six prefectures, and is a treasure trove of beautiful nature and fascinating history. It’s a wonderful...

Carissa Loh Food

Tasty Tohoku Treats: 6 Must-Buy Souvenirs from ...

Located on the north-eastern part of mainland Japan, Tohoku (東北) is made up of six...

Omiyage Day (8 March): Exploring Japan's Souvenir & Gift-Giving Culture
Sue Lynn

Omiyage Day (8 March): Exploring Japan's Souven...

Have you heard of omiyage (お土産)? If you’ve been to Japan, then you have probably seen the colourful and beautifully packaged boxes of local confectionery filling the gift shops along...

Carissa Loh Culture

Omiyage Day (8 March): Exploring Japan's Souven...

Have you heard of omiyage (お土産)? If you’ve been to Japan, then you have probably...

March Maker's Story: Hand-grilled Rice Crackers from Akita by Kanaeya
Sue Lynn

March Maker's Story: Hand-grilled Rice Crackers...

The Tohoku Region is home to some of Japan’s best untouched nature. Take Akita as an example, a prefecture where lush landscapes meet premium rice fields. Renowned for its exceptional...

Sue Lynn Maker's Story

March Maker's Story: Hand-grilled Rice Crackers...

The Tohoku Region is home to some of Japan’s best untouched nature. Take Akita as...

March Maker’s Story: Obuse Chestnut Snacks from Takachiho (Winner of JR East Omiyage Grand Prix 2023 - Koshin’etsu Area Prize)
Sue Lynn

March Maker’s Story: Obuse Chestnut Snacks from...

If you have been to Japan, you will understand the universal struggle of finding the perfect souvenir or omiyage (お土産) to bring home for your loved ones and colleagues. While...

Sue Lynn Maker's Story

March Maker’s Story: Obuse Chestnut Snacks from...

If you have been to Japan, you will understand the universal struggle of finding the...

Hina Matsuri (3 March): Japan’s Spring Festival Celebrating Girls’ Day
Sue Lynn

Hina Matsuri (3 March): Japan’s Spring Festival...

Displaying exquisitely made hina-ningyo dressed in traditional Heian attire is the main activity associated with the Hina Matsuri | ©photoAC Have you ever heard of Japan’s Hina Matsuri (雛祭)? Otherwise known...

Dawn Sim Culture

Hina Matsuri (3 March): Japan’s Spring Festival...

Displaying exquisitely made hina-ningyo dressed in traditional Heian attire is the main activity associated with the...

Inspired by Izu: Exploring Izu Peninsula Through The Eyes of Japanese Writers
Sue Lynn

Inspired by Izu: Exploring Izu Peninsula Throug...

If you are a fan of Japanese literature, take a walk in the footsteps of literary giants and look no further than Izu Peninsula (伊豆半島), which lies just about 1-2...

Dawn Sim Travel

Inspired by Izu: Exploring Izu Peninsula Throug...

If you are a fan of Japanese literature, take a walk in the footsteps of...

Mount Fuji with tea plantation in the foreground
Sue Lynn

Mount Fuji Day (23 February): 5 Ways to Enjoy J...

Standing at 3,776m above sea level, the almost perfectly symmetrical Mount Fuji (富士山 Fujisan) is Japan’s highest mountain, and has become a symbol of the country, recognised worldwide for its...

Carissa Loh Travel

Mount Fuji Day (23 February): 5 Ways to Enjoy J...

Standing at 3,776m above sea level, the almost perfectly symmetrical Mount Fuji (富士山 Fujisan) is...

Happy Cat Day (22 February): 5 Cat Islands in Japan to Meet Feline Friends
Sue Lynn

Happy Cat Day (22 February): 5 Cat Islands in J...

Are you a cat (猫 neko) lover? If you’ve been to Japan, you might have noticed how beloved cats are over there. Think maneki-neko (招き猫) cat figurines that beckon luck,...

Carissa Loh Culture

Happy Cat Day (22 February): 5 Cat Islands in J...

Are you a cat (猫 neko) lover? If you’ve been to Japan, you might have...

In the Mood for Love: Romancing on Valentine’s Day in Japan
Sue Lynn

In the Mood for Love: Romancing on Valentine’s ...

Love is in the air in February with Valentine’s Day! On 14 February, Valentine’s Day is universally celebrated across the globe where presents like chocolates, candies, and flowers are gifted...

Wendy Ng Culture

In the Mood for Love: Romancing on Valentine’s ...

Love is in the air in February with Valentine’s Day! On 14 February, Valentine’s Day...

Romance Izu in the Air: 5 Romantic Spots in the Izu Peninsula
Sue Lynn

Romance Izu in the Air: 5 Romantic Spots in the...

With so many captivating attractions, you can spend days exploring the Izu Peninsula with your loved one, but where to start? Here are our top five picks for romantic dating...

Carissa Loh Travel

Romance Izu in the Air: 5 Romantic Spots in the...

With so many captivating attractions, you can spend days exploring the Izu Peninsula with your...

A Side Trip to Saitama: Discovering “Little Edo”, Cafes, and the Railway Museum
Sue Lynn

A Side Trip to Saitama: Discovering “Little Edo...

Located just about half an hour north of Central Tokyo, Ōmiya Station (大宮駅 Ōmiya-eki) is the gateway to the neighbouring Saitama Prefecture (埼玉県). It is also a stop on more...

JAPANKURU Travel

A Side Trip to Saitama: Discovering “Little Edo...

Located just about half an hour north of Central Tokyo, Ōmiya Station (大宮駅 Ōmiya-eki) is...

February Maker’s Story: Shizuoka-grown Wasabi by Kameya Foods
Sue Lynn

February Maker’s Story: Shizuoka-grown Wasabi b...

Are you familiar with wasabi (わさび)? Made from the Wasabia japonica plant, wasabi or the Japanese horseradish is a unique spice native to Japan and is a staple in Japanese...

Sue Lynn Maker's Story

February Maker’s Story: Shizuoka-grown Wasabi b...

Are you familiar with wasabi (わさび)? Made from the Wasabia japonica plant, wasabi or the...

Winter Wonderland: 7 Snowiest Cities in Japan and Must-do Activities
Sue Lynn

Winter Wonderland: 7 Snowiest Cities in Japan a...

Winter season in Japan boasts some of its most amazing and picturesque sceneries, especially in regions lying alongside the Sea of Japan (日本海), otherwise known as Yukiguni (雪国), or Snow...

Dawn Sim Festival

Winter Wonderland: 7 Snowiest Cities in Japan a...

Winter season in Japan boasts some of its most amazing and picturesque sceneries, especially in...

Winter Wonders: 8 Winter Foods & Delicacies to Enjoy in Japan
Sue Lynn

Winter Wonders: 8 Winter Foods & Delicacies to ...

Winter in Japan is not just a season to enjoy snow activities and festivals; it’s also a time to indulge in winter cuisine as Japan is blessed with bountiful harvest...

Wendy Ng Food

Winter Wonders: 8 Winter Foods & Delicacies to ...

Winter in Japan is not just a season to enjoy snow activities and festivals; it’s...

Nuts About Chiba! Exploring Chiba, Peanuts, and Setsubun Culture
Sue Lynn

Nuts About Chiba! Exploring Chiba, Peanuts, and...

Have you been to Chiba Prefecture (千葉県)? Located in the Kanto Region and neighbouring Tokyo on its east, perhaps, unknowingly, you have already stepped foot into Chiba Prefecture. If you...

Carissa Loh Culture

Nuts About Chiba! Exploring Chiba, Peanuts, and...

Have you been to Chiba Prefecture (千葉県)? Located in the Kanto Region and neighbouring Tokyo...

More Than Just Disneyland! Exploring Hidden Gems in Every Corner of Chiba
Sue Lynn

More Than Just Disneyland! Exploring Hidden Gem...

Looking for a short getaway from the bustling crowds of Tokyo? Look no further than the prefecture of Chiba (千葉県). Contrary to the popular belief that “There is nothing much...

Dawn Sim Travel

More Than Just Disneyland! Exploring Hidden Gem...

Looking for a short getaway from the bustling crowds of Tokyo? Look no further than...