new year

Joya no Kane: Ring in New Year’s the Spiritual Japanese Way

Along with the coming of the new year, people are making preparations here and there and in other countries, people are now putting up Christmas decorations in their houses, schools and offices. While in Japan, Christmas is traditionally not a celebrated event due to the differences in religion. However, the new year here is what…

Try your Shopper’s Luck with Fukubukuro (Lucky bags) this Winter!

Do you consider yourself a person with luck on your side? If you do, then that’s great! There are many things in Japan where you can test that luck. Sadly, this article won’t be about your luck in playing the pachinko game though. From the first of the new year to about a week long,…

Hatsuhinode: Meet the First Sunrise of the Year in Japan

It’s finally November! And with only a month to spare we’ll soon be saying goodbye to 2015 and hello to 2016! Whether to take off from their bucket list or to experience something new, I’m sure there are some people who are thinking of coming to Japan to celebrate the New Year. There are a…

Ring in the New Year with Nengajo, the Japanese New Year’s Postcard

One popular part of the culture in Japan is celebrating the New Year’s Day. It is a time for merriment such as eating osechi and mochi, ringing temple bells and of course, sending out dozens of postcards! Postcards are known as “nengajo” in Japanese. The original purpose it served was telling people who were living…

Craving Soba? Learn the Many Ways to Enjoy It!

Japan has a special food culture. There are several unique dishes, including many types of noodles. One popular type of noodle which dates back to the Jomon Period is “soba.” The Jomon period. Since then, many ways of enjoying this noodle have emerged. Toshikoshi Soba A traditional dish which also came about during the Edo…

Japan’s New Year’s food: Osechi

The New Year or “Shogatsu” is the perfect time for Japanese to carry out their yearly rituals, though it may not hold religious significance for them. One of their beliefs is that the God of the Year or “Toshigama-sama”, who brings abundance and happiness to each family, visits their homes. In preparation for this, each…

Overworked? Japanese Holidays to the rescue!

Japanese people have a reputation for working very long hours with only a few paid holidays. However, what most people tend to overlook is that Japan has relatively generous national holidays mandated by the government, which allow most of the Japanese workforce to take well-deserved breaks throughout the year. In Japan, there are 15 national…

The10 Annual Celebrated Events in Japan

Whether you want maximize your travel experience or you just want to stock some knowledge in the pocket of your head, it is good to know the annual events of a country we want to visit. Annual events in Japan is called Nenchuu Gyooji 年中行事. Below is a list of holidays and events celebrated all…

Japanese New Year Parties, Bonenkai and Shinnenkai

BONENKAI Bonenkai (忘年会 in Japanese Kanji) is a Japanese drinking party, which is held among co-workers’ groups or friends at the end of the year (on December). 忘 (“bou”) means to forget, 年 (“nen”) means year, and 会 (“kai”) means gathering. It can most easily be explained as a year-end party. THE PURPOSE As its…

Seasonal Japanese attractions, Winter

Winter in Japan is ‘proper’ winter, with temperatures dropping below zero degrees and snowfall across most of Northern Japan, even in Tokyo. Winter can truly bring out the beauty of the Japanese landscape, with snow peaked mountains and snow covered fields. Winter Illuminations Winter illuminations are a great draw in Japan, one such festival is…