The end of the year is here and that means the annual nationwide illumination events. Here, I would like to tell you about two of the most beautiful illumination events held in Kobe.
One of the famous illuminations in all of Japan is held in December every year since 1995 to commemorate the Hanshin earthquake that occurred that year. There are be different themes every year and the designs of the illumination change accordingly.
To reach the place, take the train and get off at either Sannomiya or Motomachi station. Motomachi station might be better as the beginning of the “glowing street” is closer to this station. From the station, follow the one-way directions and signboards (there will be some barricades to control the traffic) all the way to the luminaire central spot. Be warned that during the weekends, there will be huge crowds and it can take around 2 hours to reach the actual event area.
Compared to the Kobe Luminarie event, this place is less known and therefore less crowded. In the morning, this place serves as a flower park and fruit picking area. During the night, from the end of October, beautiful illuminations light it up. The whole park will be lit up and decorated with various illuminated displays, which simply looks spectacular. The illuminations start at 17:00, just about the time suns begin to set. Check out the link to see what are on the displays this year.
Just like all parks, an entrance fee is of 1000 yen for adults is required. However, the main problem most people might face is the lack of public transport to reach this park. When I went there, I got off at Sanda (三田) station. From there, there are 2 options to travel further. During the weekend nights, the park provided some free shuttle buses for the even times. The problem is, they are not frequent and once fully boarded, it may take some time before the next shuttle bus arrives. Since I did not want to wait in the cold, I and my friends took a taxi to the park, which took us around 15 minutes. Nevertheless, I do not regret paying this place a visit as it was truly magical!
If you too like illumination events and want some “magical” Christmassy atmosphere, make sure to check these places, they are truly worth it.
3 Reasons You Need to Go to the Sapporo White Illumination Festival