The new year is only hours away, and with the promise of a new year also comes the promise of new adventures and experiences here in the lucky island. Let us all keep warm, eat our osechi, and welcome in the year of the inoshishi(wild booar.) The zodiac year of the boar is the last in the 12-year zodiac animal cycle, and it is noteworthy in that it is the only Japanese zodaic year different from the Chinese zodiac, where it is the year of the pig. To our Akabeko’s still travelling for the holidays, safe journeys and we can’t wait for your adventure to start fresh here in the lucky island!
Date: Now – Monday, January 14th
Area: Koriyama City
Time: 5:30pm – 11:30pm
Address: Around the west exit of Koriyama station
Details: Check out Koriyama’s annual illumination with over 330,000 lights during the holiday and winter season around the station!
Name: Hikari Shizuku Illumination
Area: Fukushima City
Date: Now – Thursday, January 31st
Address: Paseo Street in Fukushima City
Details: This event is one of the main illuminations in Fukushima City. 200,000 lights will illuminate Paseo Street during December and January. This illumination has occurred annually since 2007 and is a signal of the winter holidays to the people who live there.
Date: Now– January 14th
Address: The main street in front of Iwaki station
Details: During December and January, the trees that line the streets in front of Iwaki station will be illuminated. This illumination is meant to recall the memories of another festival, the Midnight Cherry Tree festival in Tomioka.
Date: Thursday, January 3rd
Time: 10am – 3pm
Price: 700 yen (which includes one tea ceremony)
Address: Oyakuen Garden
8-1 Hanaharumachi, Aizuwakamatsu, Fukushima Prefecture 965-0804
Details: Better late than never to welcome in the New Year! Celebrate a fresh start with a traditional Japanese tea ceremony in the beautiful gardens of Oyakuen in the winter.
Area: Tamura City
Date: Now – Thursday, February 28th 2019
Address: Abukuma Caves
Details: For a fifth year,Abukuma Caves will be illuminated during December, January, and February. The illumination is meant to make the observer feel as though they are among the stars in outer space. The illumination will be up until the end of February.
Date: Monday January 7th
Address: Enraku Temple
Details: Every year, the men of Yanaizu brave the snowy, Aizu weather wearing nothing but fundoshi and compete to climb a rope and reach a bell hanging at the top. Whether you participate or just watch, it’s sure to be an interesting event you won’t want to miss!
Date: Thursdayday, January 10th
Area: Aizuwakamatsu City
Time: 9am – 9pm
Address: Shinmei Street, City Hall Street and all along the main road
Details: Visit the traditional New Year’s market with over 400 years of history! There will be over 400 street stalls selling lucky charms and talismans, food, traditional goods, and much more!
Japanese website: http://www.aizukanko.com/event/115/
Date: Wednesday, January 13th
Time: All day
Address: All long the main road, Hon-machi and Shinmachi Street
Details: This market started in 1336 and sells delicious food and local products such as daruma, okiagarikoboshi, windmills, and much more!
Japanese Website: https://sci.inawasiro.com/event.html
Date: January 20th (Sunday)
Time: 10am – 6pm
Address: Matsuri Street
Details: On January 20th, daruma will line the streets of Miharu to bring luck for the coming year. Visitors to the festival can buy their own daruma, or just observe the different shapes and sizes of the daruma displayed along the street.