Marunouchi Winter Illumination

Things To Do In Tokyo In January 2024: Best January Events In Tokyo

Tokyo’s lineup of January Festivities showcase a diverse range of events and traditions that celebrate the start of the new year.

The Geikosai New Year Festival at Yakuoin Temple offers visitors the opportunity to witness goma fire rituals for purification.

The Seven Lucky Gods Pilgrimage allows participants to pay their respects to deities associated with fortune and prosperity.

Cultural exhibitions and winter illuminations throughout the city, such as the Omotesando Illumination and Yebisu Garden Place Winter Illumination, create a magical atmosphere.

Plus, entertainment highlights like Wrestle Kingdom 17 and the Daikon Radish Festival provide further excitement.

Key Takeaways

  • Tokyo offers a wide range of vibrant festivals and events in January, including New Year festivals and cultural traditions.
  • Visitors can participate in various activities such as the Geikosai New Years Festival at Yakuoin Temple, the Seven Lucky Gods Pilgrimage, and the Torigoe Shrine Tondoyaki.
  • Tokyo also hosts entertainment events like Wrestle Kingdom 17, the Daikon Radish Festival, and the Tokyo Auto Salon.
  • Winter illuminations are a major attraction in Tokyo during this time, with popular locations including Omotesando Avenue, Yebisu Garden Place, and Tokyo Dome City.

Events and Festivals

Marunouchi Winter Illumination
Marunouchi Winter Illumination

The month of January in Tokyo presents a vibrant array of events and festivals that cater to a diverse range of interests and tastes.

One such event is the Geikosai New Years Festival at Yakuoin Temple, located on Mount Takao. This festival, lasting from midnight to 5 pm the following day, offers visitors the opportunity to witness the head priest performing goma fire rituals for purification.

Thousands of pilgrims flock to Yakuoin Temple for Hatsumode, the first shrine visit of the year, where they can experience the mesmerizing sounds of mountain ascetics playing conches and priests reciting sutras.

Plus, the Seven Lucky Gods Pilgrimage takes place from January 1-10, allowing participants to pay their respects to the Seven Lucky Gods and seek fortune and prosperity.

Lastly, the Tokyo Auto Salon, held in mid-January, stands as one of the world’s largest automobile shows, showcasing luxury motor vehicles and modifications.

These events collectively contribute to the vibrant atmosphere and cultural richness of Tokyo in January.


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Traditional Ceremonies

Traditional ceremonies in Tokyo during January include the Geikosai New Years Festival at Yakuoin Temple on Mount Takao, the Seven Lucky Gods Pilgrimage, and the Torigoe Shrine Tondoyaki. The Geikosai New Years Festival is a significant event that lasts from midnight to 5 pm the following day.

Visitors pilgrimage to Yakuoin Temple for Hatsumode, where the head priest performs goma fire rituals for purification. The Seven Lucky Gods Pilgrimage, held from January 1 to 10, allows participants to pay respects to the Seven Lucky Gods for fortune and prosperity.

The Torigoe Shrine Tondoyaki, which takes place on January 2, involves bringing used New Year decorations to be burned in a bonfire. This tradition is believed to ensure a healthy year ahead.

Traditional Ceremonies Dates Venue
Geikosai New Years Festival January Yakuoin Temple, Mount Takao
Seven Lucky Gods Pilgrimage January 1-10 Asakusa, Nihonbashi, Shinagawa, Ueno, Yanaka
Torigoe Shrine Tondoyaki January 2 Torigoe Shrine

These traditional ceremonies offer a unique opportunity to experience Tokyo’s rich cultural heritage and participate in age-old customs that bring good fortune and health for the coming year.

Cultural Exhibitions

Kanda Myoin Shrine
Kanda Myoin Shrine

Cultural exhibitions in the month of January include the Monet’s Series Exhibition at Ueno Royal Museum, showcasing works by Claude Monet, and the Daikoku Matsuri at Kanda Myojin Shrine, featuring a festival honoring the deity of fortune.

The Monet’s Series Exhibition offers visitors the opportunity to explore the artistry of Claude Monet, a prominent figure in the Impressionist movement. The exhibition features a collection of portraits, landscapes, and haystacks series, providing a comprehensive view of Monet’s artistic evolution.

Meanwhile, the Daikoku Matsuri presents a vibrant festival celebrating the deity of fortune. This event includes a water purification ritual and a knife-wielding performance, creating an immersive experience for attendees.

These cultural exhibitions offer a unique glimpse into the world of art and spirituality, providing a diverse range of experiences for those seeking intellectual and emotional enrichment.

Winter Illuminations

Marunouchi Winter Illumination
Marunouchi Winter Illumination

Winter illuminations in Tokyo offer a captivating display of lights and decorations, transforming the city into a magical wonderland. These enchanting light displays can be found throughout Tokyo, creating a festive atmosphere during the winter season. Here are five must-see winter illuminations in Tokyo:

  • Omotesando Illumination: With 900,000 champagne-colored LED lights and 154 decorated zelkova trees, this illumination creates a winter wonderland along Omotesando Avenue. It is a breathtaking sight to behold from sunset until 10 pm daily.
  • Yebisu Garden Place Winter Illumination: Featuring a 5-meter tall Baccarat chandelier and approximately 100,000 lights, this illumination at Yebisu Garden Place in Ebisu exudes a luminescent blue glow at 5 pm every day.
  • Kioi Winter Forest Illumination: Located at Tokyo Garden Terrace Kioicho, this illumination showcases a winter forest-themed installation. The trees used for the event will be replanted, and the champagne-gold illuminations along Benkei moat create a magical ambiance.
  • Tokyo Dome City Winter Lights: With two million LEDs and a beautiful Christmas tree display, Tokyo Dome City transforms into a romantic date night destination during the winter season.
  • Marunouchi Illumination: This illumination in the Marunouchi Area near Tokyo Station features 1.2 million fairy lights decorating trees, illuminated sculptures, and an ice-skating rink. It is a must-visit for those seeking a festive atmosphere during the winter months.

These winter illuminations in Tokyo offer a mesmerizing experience, allowing visitors to immerse themselves in the enchanting beauty of the city.

Januaary Grand Sumo

Grand Sumo Tokyo
Grand Sumo Tokyo

The January Grand Sumo Tournament, one of the six major sumo tournaments, provides spectators with an adrenaline rush as they witness the thrilling matches at the Ryogoku Kokugikan in Sumida.

This highly anticipated event showcases the traditional Japanese sport of sumo wrestling, where skilled wrestlers, or rikishi, compete in a dohyo, a raised clay ring.

The tournament spans over 15 days, with each day featuring multiple matches between wrestlers from different sumo stables.

The atmosphere in the Kokugikan is electric, with passionate fans cheering on their favorite wrestlers and eagerly anticipating the intense clashes on the dohyo.

Spectators can choose between box seating and arena seats, both offering excellent views of the action.

The January Grand Sumo Tournament is a must-see event for those seeking an exciting and culturally significant experience in Tokyo.

Entertainment Highlights

Wrestle Kingdom 17, held in Tokyo Dome on January 4, 2024, is considered the biggest event of the year for New Japan Pro-Wrestling, attracting top wrestlers from around the world. This highly anticipated event showcases the athleticism, skill, and showmanship of professional wrestling.

The Tokyo Dome, with its capacity to hold over 50,000 spectators, provides a grand stage for the wrestlers to perform their high-impact moves and captivating storylines. The event features a diverse roster of talented wrestlers, each bringing their unique style and persona to the ring.

Fans can expect to witness intense matches, dramatic moments, and surprise appearances. Wrestle Kingdom 17 promises to deliver an unforgettable experience for both dedicated wrestling enthusiasts and casual viewers looking for entertainment and excitement.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the significance of the Geikosai New Years Festival at Yakuoin Temple on Mount Takao?

The Geikosai New Year’s Festival at Yakuoin Temple on Mount Takao is significant for its purification rituals and pilgrimage. Visitors gather to witness the head priest’s goma fire rituals and seek blessings for the new year.

How can I participate in the Seven Lucky Gods Pilgrimage in Tokyo?

To participate in the Seven Lucky Gods Pilgrimage in Tokyo, one can visit various locations such as Asakusa, Nihonbashi, Shinagawa, Ueno, and Yanaka. These areas offer different courses to explore Tokyo on foot and experience local customs while paying respects to the Seven Lucky Gods for fortune and prosperity.

What is the tradition behind the Torigoe Shrine Tondoyaki ceremony?

The Torigoe Shrine Tondoyaki ceremony is a tradition in which used New Year’s decorations are burned in a bonfire for purification. It is believed that having smoke blown across you during the ceremony brings good health. Mochi is also roasted in the fire as part of the ritual.

What is the main attraction of Wrestle Kingdom 17 in Tokyo Dome?

The main attraction of Wrestle Kingdom 17 in Tokyo Dome is New Japan Pro-Wrestling’s biggest event of the year. It features top wrestlers from around the world and offers an adrenaline-filled experience for spectators.

What is the history and purpose of the Setagaya Boroichi flea market event?

The Setagaya Boroichi flea market event has over 400 years of history and takes place in January. It features food, arts and crafts, and daikon mochi rice cake. Visitors can experience a traditional Japanese market atmosphere.

The Sum Up

To sum it up, Tokyo in January is a vibrant and lively city with a multitude of festivities and events to celebrate the new year. From traditional ceremonies like the Geikosai New Year Festival and the Seven Lucky Gods Pilgrimage, to cultural exhibitions and winter illuminations, there is something for everyone to enjoy.

The city truly comes alive with its diverse range of festivities, offering a unique and memorable experience for visitors. Whether it’s witnessing goma fire rituals, paying respects to deities, or enjoying entertainment highlights like Wrestle Kingdom 17, Tokyo in January is the perfect destination to kick off the new year in style.