Japan has a rich array of annual events and festivities that are celebrated through the seasons, each with their own special traditions, and each with their own special foods. In this article we are going to look at some of Japan’s most important seasonal foods, and examine their significance.
We often say that the Japanese culture is very different from the rest of the world and it sometimes feels like the codes of conduct expected by society are even the complete opposite of what could be applied elsewhere. Here are some of the first situations that you will most likely come across at the beginning of your journey through the world of Japan.
On May 1 st 2019 Japan entered a new official era to mark the new emperor’s ascension to the Chrysanthemum Throne. The name chosen for this era, Reiwa, uses two Chinese characters 令和 which were taken from an ancient Japanese poetry collection called the Man’yōshū.
Traditionally the Japanese celebrate their wedding in a shrine while wearing gorgeous kimonos and following a procession led by the kannushi (Shinto priest). From the perspective of an outsider, the event looks very sober and yet imposing probably due to the humility and spirituality that emanates from it.
Prior to living in Japan, I had a rather hazy image of it as an exotic land with a sultry climate. Summer in Japan is indeed hot and humid, but unless you live on the southernmost subtropical islands of Okinawa, you will find that Japanese winters are very, very cold.
Hina Matsuri (雛祭り) is a special festival which is held in Japan every year on March 3rd. This festival, which is known either as "Girl’s Day" or "Doll’s Day" in English, is a family celebration for young girls and is dedicated to their health and happiness.