This Month in Japan | December

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“Shiwasu, the traditional name for December, refers to teachers or priests rushing around hastily. This is because the teachers and priests at temples or shrines are busy preparing and cleaning for upcoming New Year celebrations.

The Emperor’s birthday, December 23, is the primary national holiday in Japan this month. His birthday is one of the only two occasions per year when the Imperial Grounds are open to the public. The end of year holidays on December 29, 30 and 31 that continue into the beginning of January (1-3) are also official national holidays for the purpose of enjoying the end of the year.

Bonenkai parties (or “year forgetting parties”) are often held in December with companies, organizations, families, and friends to forget the troubles and worries of the year.” – Rightful owner

Fun facts & info:

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Photo credit belongs to http://kelly.cybr.org/

  • Nabe is a popular dish to eat during the cold season! What is it? It’s Japanese hotpot and usually, there is a group of people eating the food that’s cooked on a pot with a gas burner. It is a great way for people to bond through eating!
  • Hotsprings or onsen, are a popular attraction year round, but even more so during the colder season. It is a public bathing house and can be indoors or outdoors. It is a great way to relax the body!
  • December is a popular month for people to visit shrines and temples as it is coming close to the New Year! People gather around from all over the country to pray and ask their wishes to come true.
  • There will be tons of festivals occurring happening all over in Japan! Just to name some, Fukugonji Fire Festival, Akou Gishisa, & Sanpoji Daikon Festival. Here is a link for more info!

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