Tag Archives: summer in Japan

August 17

The Last Art Aquarium

Art Aquarium, I’m going to miss you! <sob!> Yes, this is the last year they’re going to produce this eye-popping cross between goldfish and SFX, and they’re making up for the last few lackluster seasons by putting on the equivalent of a fireworks grand finale! And they added one installation that put a crink in […]

August 07

If Only Japanese Rock Gardens Were Filled With Cooling Mist & Illuminations…

Oh. Wait. At Tokyo Midtown this summer, they are! On the lawn that hosts those amazing winter illuminations, they’ve constructed a wide wooden veranda enclosing a “rock garden,” complete with clouds of mist and a fireworks-themed lightshow. And the best part is, you can sit and dangle your feet for as long as you like, […]

July 30

Floating Lanterns

Candle-lit lanterns floating across a pond in the moonlight? Yes, please! This Toro Nagashi lantern ceremony was at the Ueno temple that sits amid the nodding lotus heads of Shinobazu Pond, and it was lovely. What I didn’t know was that it signals the end of annual O-bon festivities, the three days in summer when the […]

July 24

Japanese Fireworks: The Many-Splendored Fire Flowers Of Summer

Fireworks happen all over Tokyo in the months of July and August, and if you haven’t been to see them yet, go. Last weekend I went to the Adachi Fireworks Festival (13,000 gorgeous explosions!) but they’re just the first in a parade of splendor, and the biggest is yet to come. And even though this […]

July 13

Things I Did Not Know You Could Do With A Lotus Leaf

This morning I was at the Sankei-en garden in Yokohama at the ungodly hour of 7:00 a.m. to see their field of lotus in bloom, but it was the bonus attractions that really made my day! Sankei-en has special early weekend opening hours during The Season, because (who knew?) lotus flowers only bloom in the […]

August 29

It Must Be Fake Peach Flavor Season Again

The vending machines are suddenly stuffed with pink drinks. Of course, there hasn’t been a genuine fuzzy-skinned stone fruit within a thousand kilometers of these so-called “peach” libations, but that doesn’t stop them from making the point that even drinks flavored with highly unnatural chemicals must only appear when they’re “in season” in Japan. • Read a novel set in Tokyo

August 27

The Waterfall Made Of Light

This waterfall made of animated LEDs is conveniently paired with a pop-up mojito stand, so you can ooh and ah at the light-up while getting lit up yourself. Which would you rather do: Enjoy the serenity of a cascading river while sipping a cocktail? Or swat mosquitoes while smearing on blister cream after a pesky hike? They look kind of pixellated in the still photo, so […]