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Hina-matsuri

3 Mar

Today is 「ひな祭り」 (Hina-matsuri (“Princess (Doll) Festival“)) in Japan.

It’s sometimes still called “Girls’ Day” because families with daughters set-up special elaborate doll displays of Japanese royalty and eat a special sushi dinner.

The city of Katsuura in Chiba Prefecture is known for their huge Hina-matsuri display.

katsuura-hina1

This year’s display could be seen there until today (2014 March 3rd).

chirashi

Even if you can make it to that area to see their big doll display, Katsuura is still a very beautiful place to visit.

katsuura-torii

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Valentine Pizza

14 Feb

Today is Valentines Day.

Japan celebrates Valentines Day too…but not the same way as in America and other western countries.

Also, Japan has an “original” holiday one month later that is more similar to America’s Valentines Day.

Click here to read a post that I wrote three years ago that explains Valentines Day and White Day in Japan.

In addition to what I wrote in that post, Dominos Pizza in Japan offers a heart-shaped pizza for Valentines Day.

valentine-pizza

Anniversary of Japan’s Foundation

11 Feb

Today is 建国記念日 (Kenkoku-kinenbi). In English, “Anniversary of Japan’s Foundation” or “National Foundation Day”.

kenkoku-kinenbi

In theory, people are meant to reflect on their love of country and what it means to be “Japanese”.
In reality though, hardly anyone does anything special on this day. Many generations ago, it may have been different…but today, it’s just seen as “a day off” to most people.

You can see Japanese flag hung from street lights and also on the front grill of city buses…but that’s not particular to this holiday—that’s done on every national holiday in Japan.

Groundhog Day

2 Feb

In America, it’s Groundhog Day

New Years Meal

1 Jan

In Japan, New Years means a big traditional meal with relatives!

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toshikoshi-soba

31 Dec

It’s now New Year’s Eve. New Year’s is Japan’s biggest holiday.
There are many customs and decorations in Japan at this time of year.

I’ll introduce one to you:
年越しそば (Toshikoshi-soba).

toshikoshisoba

Toshi-koshi-soba are noodles that are eaten on New Year’s Eve.

It is said to bring good luck for the coming year if the last thing you ate on New Year’s Eve was this dish.

よいお年を! (Have a happy new year!)

メリークリスマス

24 Dec

メリークリスマス (Merry Christmas)!

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