Tokyo, the capital of Japan, is a city famous for its vibrant culture, cutting-edge technology, and bustling nightlife. The city is also home to so many world-renowned festivals, which are celebrated with great enthusiasm and joy. Here is our ultimate list of the best festivals in Tokyo.
The Sanja Matsuri Festival in Tokyo is an event that celebrates the legends of three men who founded a local shrine. This festival takes place over two days and attracts thousands of people to its colorful parade, where they watch mikoshi (portable shrines) being paraded through the streets accompanied by traditional music played on taiko drums.
Throughout both days there are various other performances such as kabuki stage shows, lion dances, and many stalls selling food from all around Japan. There’s also plenty for visitors to take part in like tug-of-war games or carrying portable shrines themselves!
Tokyo Rainbow Pride
This is a yearly event that celebrates the LGBTQ+ community in Japan. The festival features a parade, live performances, and stalls selling food and merchandise. The festival is a symbol of acceptance and unity and is attended by people from all over the world.
A dance festival that is held annually in August and features teams of dancers performing traditional Yosakoi dances. The festival originated in Kochi prefecture but has since spread to other parts of Japan, including Tokyo. The dancers wear vibrant costumes and perform to the beat of Yosakoi Naruko, which is a traditional percussion instrument.
Tokyo Game Show
One of the largest gaming conventions in the world and is held annually in September. The event attracts thousands of gamers, developers, and industry professionals from all over the world. Attendees can try out the latest games, meet with developers, and participate in various events and competitions.
Tokyo International Film Festival
This is a yearly event that is held in October and showcases the best of Japanese and international films. The festival features a range of film genres, including dramas, comedies, and documentaries. It is a great opportunity for movie lovers to see the latest films and meet with filmmakers and actors.
A traditional festival that is celebrated in February and marks the start of spring. The festival involves tossing roasted soybeans out of the house to drive away evil spirits and bringing good luck for the new year. Many temples and shrines in Tokyo hold special events and performances to celebrate Setsubun.
This is a festival that is held in August and is dedicated to the Hozuki plant, also known as Chinese lantern or ground cherry. The festival features a variety of food and merchandise stalls, as well as performances of traditional music and dance.
Oedo Antique Market
This is a monthly market that takes place on the grounds of the Tokyo International Forum. The market features a variety of antiques and vintage items, including kimonos, pottery, and traditional crafts. The market is a great place to find unique and one-of-a-kind items.
Every Halloween, the streets of Shibuya transform into a lively celebration with costumes, music, and dancing. The festival attracts hundreds of thousands of people, making it one of the biggest Halloween events in the world.
Meguro Parasitological Museum
This museum is dedicated to parasites and is located in the Meguro district of Tokyo. The museum holds an annual festival in November that features a variety of educational and entertaining events, including a parasite beauty contest and a parasite food festival. The festival is a unique and fascinating way to learn about parasites and their impact on the world.
Tokyo International Anime Fair
This is a yearly event that is held in March and is dedicated to anime, manga, and other forms of Japanese pop culture. The event features a variety of exhibitions, screenings, and events, including cosplay competitions and live performances by voice actors.
Tokyo Ramen Show
A food festival that is held annually in October and showcases the best of Tokyo’s ramen culture. The festival features a variety of vendors serving up their unique takes on the popular noodle dish, as well as live cooking demonstrations and other food-related events.
A yearly festival that is held in August celebrates Japanese pop culture, including music, fashion, and technology. The festival features live performances by popular Japanese musicians, as well as a variety of exhibits, workshops, and other events.
This is a yearly event that takes place in December and features a stunning display of lights and decorations in the Odaiba district of Tokyo. The event is a celebration of the holiday season and is a popular destination for families and couples looking to enjoy the holiday atmosphere.
Tokyo International Festival of the Arts
This is a yearly event that is held in January and showcases the best of Japanese and international art and performance. The festival features a variety of performances, exhibitions, and workshops, including classical music, theater, dance, and visual arts. The festival is a celebration of the rich cultural heritage of Tokyo and provides a unique opportunity to experience the best of the city’s art scene.
Tokyo Hotaru Festival
An annual event that is held in July and features thousands of floating lanterns on the Sumida River. The festival is a celebration of summer and a display of Japanese tradition, with live performances and food stalls set up along the river.
Yebisu International Festival for Art and Alternative Visions
This is an annual festival that is held in February and features a diverse range of contemporary art and alternative forms of expression. The festival includes exhibitions, screenings, performances, and other events, providing a platform for emerging artists and unique perspectives.
Tokyo International Great Quilt Festival
This is a yearly event that is held in January and showcases the best of Japanese quilting. The festival features a variety of exhibitions and workshops, including quilt making demonstrations and competitions. The festival is a celebration of the art of quilting and a unique opportunity to experience this traditional craft.
Akihabara UDX Dancing Fountain Show
This is a nightly fountain show that takes place in the Akihabara district of Tokyo. The show features a synchronized display of lights, music, and water, and is a popular destination for both tourists and locals. The show is a unique way to experience the energy and excitement of Akihabara.
Tokyo International Art Fair
An annual event that is held in November and showcases the best of Japanese and international art. The fair features a variety of exhibitions, galleries, and events, including live performances, workshops, and talks by artists and art professionals. The fair is a celebration of the diversity and creativity of the art world and provides a unique opportunity to experience the latest in contemporary art.
Tokyo International Fantastic Film Festival:
Each October, this festival showcases an eclectic mix of Japanese and international films in the fantasy, sci-fi, and horror genres. With screenings, Q&As with filmmakers, and other events, the festival provides a platform for emerging and innovative films in these genres.
Tokyo International Film Festival
In October, this festival offers a wide-ranging display of Japanese and international cinema. With screenings, Q&As with filmmakers, and other events, the festival offers a platform for the newest and most innovative films from around the world.
Tokyo International Photo Festival
Each November, this festival highlights the best in Japanese and international photography. Featuring exhibitions, screenings, and other events, the festival offers a platform for fresh and innovative photography
Tokyo Game Show
September is the time for the Tokyo Game Show, where the latest in Japanese and international video games are on display. With exhibits, demonstrations, and other events, the festival provides a platform for upcoming and inventive games.
Tokyo Fashion Week
Twice a year, in March and October, the fashion world converges in Tokyo for this event. It features runway shows, exhibitions, and other events that serve as a platform for new and creative fashion designers to showcase their work.