Looking for things to do this Golden Week & in the month of May? Here is a list of events happening in and around Tokyo.
Best places to view Koi-no-bori (colorful Children’s Day carp streamers) in central Tokyo:
Tokyo Sky Tree, Sumida Ward: Until May 6, 1,500 koi-no-bori on display.
Midtown Hinokicho Park, Roppongi: 4/19-5/6 100 koi-no-bori designed by artists will be flying from 11:00-21:00. 5/3-6 kids can crawl through a giant koi-no-bori from 11:00-17:00. 5/3-5. Design your own koinobori 11:00-17:00.
Mid-April to Early May Azelea Festival, Shiofune Kannonji, Western Tokyo. Check this website for up-to-date photos of the progression of azelea blooms. *Photo above on left. http://shiofunekannonji.or.jp/sub_hana.html
4/6 – 5/6 Bunkyo Tsutsuji (Azelea) Matsuri, Nezu Shrine, Bunkyo Ward, Tokyo. Admission to the garden is 200 yen. Nearest stations: Nezu, Sendagi, and Todaimae.
4/13-5/26 Fuji Shibazakura Festival, Fuji Motosuko Resort, Kawaguchi Town, Yamanashi Prefecture. A beautiful ground cherry ‘carpet’ covers the ground in the shadow of Mt. Fuji. http://www.shibazakura.jp/sp/eng/
4/13 – 5/6 Fuji (Wisteria) Matsuri, Kameido Tenjin Shrine, Koto Ward, Tokyo. Nearest stations: Kameido and Kinshicho, then walk 15 minutes. *Photo above on right.
4/27-5/5 Odaiba Hawaii Festival, Venus Fort & MegaWeb, Odaiba, Koto Ward, Tokyo.
4/27-5/3 Meiji Jingu Haru-no-Taisai (Spring Festival), Meiji Jingu Shrine, Shibuya Ward, Tokyo. Main event day is May 3 with archery demonstrations from 9:00, folk entertainment from 11:30, and musical performances from 14:30. Nearest stations: Harajuku and Meijjinjgumae.
4/29-5/5 Oyoge Koi-no-bori Sagamihara (giant carp streamer festival), Sagami River, Sagamihara City, Kanagawa Prefecture.
4/30-5/6 Kurayami Matsuri (Darkness Festival), Okunitama Shrine, Fuchu, Tokyo. Komakurabe (a traditional ceremony on horseback from 8pm on 5/3, and parades with mikoshi on 5/4 & 5/5. Nearest stations: Fuchu and Fuchu-Honmachi.
5/2-6 Haisai Festa (Okinawa Festival), La Cittadella, Kawasaki City, Kanagawa Prefecture. Nearest station: Kawasaki
5/3 The Yokohama Parade, Yamashita Park – Bashamichi to Isezakicho 6-chome, Yokohama City, Kanagawa Prefecture. International masquerade parade. If heavy rain, will be held on 5/4. 10:45 kids parade starts. 11:15 adult parade starts. Nearest stations: Motomachi-Chukagai, Basamichi, and Kannai.
5/3-4 Cambodia Festival, Yoyogi Park, Harajuku, Shibuya Ward. 10:00-19:00.
5/3 & 5/5 Otako-age Matsuri (Giant Kite Flying Festival), Edogawa River, Kasukabe City, Saitama Prefecture. From 13:00. Date might change to 5/6 if it rains.
5/3-5 Doki Doki Flea Market, Makuhari Messe, Chiba City, Chiba Prefecture. 10:00-17:00, 800 yen.
5/4-5 Sagami-no-otako Matsuri (Giant Kite Flying Festival), Shindo Sports Hiroba, Sagamihara City, Kanagawa Prefecture. From 10:00 – 16:00. Nearest station: Sobudai-shita, then take a free shuttle bus or walk 15 minutes.
5/4-8 Special Opening of Shotoen Garden, Ikegami Honmonji, Ota Ward, Tokyo. 10:00-15:00 (last entry at 14:30). *Free guided tours on 5/5-6. Check out this website for details: www.otacitytourguide.tokyo
5/5 Takara-no-mai, Sensoji Temple, Asakusa, Tokyo. Traditional dance in the celebration of Children’s day. A ‘treasure boat’ is pulled by children through town from 11:00 and again at 13:30. Nearest station: Asakusa
5/9-15 Kanda Matsuri (one of Tokyo’s 3 grandest festivals), Kanda Myojin Shrine, Chiyoda Ward, Tokyo. Main parade on 5/11 from 8:00 – 19:00 & on 5/12 from 9:00. Nearest stations: Ochanomizu, Shin-Ochanomizu, and Akihabara.
5/12-5/26 Sumo Tournament, Ryogoku Kokugikan, Sumida Ward, Tokyo.
5/17-19 Sanja Matsuri (one of Tokyo’s 3 grandest festivals), Asakusa Shrine, Taito Ward, Tokyo. Parades on each day (5/17 is smaller than other two days). Nearest station: Asakusa
5/25-26 Yushima Tenjin Sai (Annual Festival), Yushima Tenjin Shrine, Bunkyo Ward, Tokyo. Main event is a parade on 5/26. Nearest stations: Yushima, Ueno-Hirokoji.
5/25-27 Hanazono Jinja Reitaisai, (Annual Festival), Hanazono Shrine, Shinjuku Ward, Tokyo. Main event is a parade of mikoshi on 5/26 from 10:30. Nearest station: Shinjuku Sanchome
5/25-6/23 Suigo Itako Ayame-en (Iris Festival), Itako City, Ibaraki Prefecture. A million irises of 500 different species. Main event is yomeiri-fune (a boat carrying a bride) – every Wednesday from 11:00, every Saturday from 11:00, 14:00, 19:30, and every Sunday from 11:00 and 14:00.