Autumn

Most Popular Tokyo Autumn Events and Festivals 2018

Anton

Writer

Are you traveling to Tokyo this autumn? Would you like to enrich your trip with something different from following the beaten paths? Then showing up on some of the Tokyo autumn events and festivals will definitely make your trip unique and unforgettable. There is no more summer heat, the leaves on the trees start changing its color, and walking around the city becomes even more enjoyable.

Tokyo is one of the biggest megapolises in the world. Thus, no wonder that there is always something happening in the city. Why not diversify your presence in Tokyo with these fantastic events? In this article, I picked up the most popular and fascinating events for you to attend in each month of autumn 2018.

Contents

September

October

November

September

The summer heat is still in the city, but it doesn’t stop the organizer’s work, and they are looking forward to seeing you at these exciting events. However, it is a bit rainy in September, so you might have to bring your umbrella to the outdoor events.

Kichijoji Autumn Festival 2018 (Sep 8th – 9th, 2018)

This is a very popular traditional festival in a lovely neighborhood full of small restaurants and izakayas close to JR Kichijoji station. On the first day of the celebration, you will see how local people are jostling and giggling around the streets with mikoshi (portable shrine) in the traditional festival wear (happi). On the second day, the festival moves to Musashino Hachimangu shrine as the main venue. Of course, there will be hundreds of yatai (food stalls) with festival treats and games. Please take a look at the following article for more details: https://festivalgo.huber-japan.com/events/7574/

Meguro Sanma Matsuri (Sept 10th, 2018)

Image courtesy of 江戸村のとくぞう

Have you tried sanma (Pacific sauries)? This community festival gives you an extraordinary opportunity to try sanma for free. I heard that in 2018 the fish will be delicious as it could gain more weight than usual. However, you will have to come to the festival venue earlier than the official start time (from 10 am to 4 pm) to line up, as the quantity of the fish is limited. The festival attracts more than 30000 people each year and takes place in central Tokyo close to Meguro station. For more information on Meguro Sanma Matsuri, please click on the following link: https://festivalgo.huber-japan.com/events/6247/

Tokyo Fashion Night Out (Sept 15th, 2018)

Image courtesy of Kazuhisa OTSUBO

This fashionable event takes place around Omotesando shopping area. Vogue magazine will hold this event and arrange an opening ceremony at Omotesando Hills at 4 pm. Indeed, you will notice a lot of beautiful people around. Some boutiques may offer you a free glass of champagne if you are lucky and come early enough. And of course, there is a stamp rally! Here is the official page of the event: https://www.vogue.co.jp/fno/

Ultra Japan (Sep 15th – 17th, 2018)

Image courtesy of Ultrafan123

You came to Tokyo, and you want to party? Ultra Japan is the biggest EDM festival in Japan. It takes place in Tokyo Odaiba Park and attracts about 120000 people every year. A perfect event to have a nice party and dance. The tickets aren’t cheap (from 13000 Yen to 39000 Yen depending on when you’d like to visit), but you are saving on the transportation expenses. Here is the official website of Ultra Japan: https://ultrajapan.com/

Tokyo Game Show 2018 (Sep 20th – 23rd, 2018. Open to the public on Sep 22nd and 23rd)

Image courtesy of SteFou!

A very crowded event that attracts geeks from all over the world taking place at Makuhari Messe. Don’t you associate Japan with a paradise for gamers? Considering the fact that Tokyo Game Show is one of the most important gaming shows in the world, at this trade show you will notice the booths of all major mobile gaming platforms, game publishers, and console makers. Accompanied by a cosplay event this show should definitely be on your “must be there” list. Beware of long lines though and purchase your tickets online or at convenience stores. That will save tour time and money. Here is the link to the official website: https://expo.nikkeibp.co.jp/tgs/2018/public/en/

Ohara Naked Festival (Sep 23rd, 24th)

Technically this event is not in Tokyo. However, I thought that this festival is something that you have to see while you are in Tokyo. Besides, it won’t take you much time to get to the venue. Here you will have an excellent opportunity to whiteness the culture of naked festivals in Japan. Moreover, you will see many half-naked men in fundoshi (loincloth) carrying 18 lavishly decorated mikoshi in the sea and along the beach. Of course, the festival food and drinks are nearby. Please check the following link for more information: https://festivalgo.huber-japan.com/events/6647/

Shinagawa Shukuba Matsuri (Sep 29th – 30th, 2018)

Would you like to see the traditional side of Tokyo with beautiful oirans (courtesans) and be surrounded by people from the Edo period? Then, Shinagawa Shukuba Matsuri is a perfect event to visit at the end of September. This festival takes place at the first rest stop on Tokaido rout heading south. Currently, it is the Shinagawa area, and the closest station is Aomono-Yokocho. For more information on this event, please click on the following link: https://festivalgo.huber-japan.com/events/1345/

October

Temperature wise October is the most comfortable month of autumn in Japan. It’s not too hot and not too cold, just perfect. Comparing with another month, not so many events take place in October. However, this doesn’t mean that there is nothing to see in this season.

Fukuro Festival 2018 (Sep 22nd – Oct 7th, 2018)

Image courtesy of elmimmo

Fukuro festival is the most significant event in Ikebukuro neighborhood. Although it lasts for two weeks, generally it is split into two parts: Sep 22nd and 23rd, and Oct 6th and 7th. The celebration started in 1968 as a promotional event for the local shopping district. Nowadays, you can see almost everything of what a real Japanese matsuri consists at the Fukuro festival: mikoshi parades, lion dances, taiko drum shows, yosakoi dance shows, Hayashi festival music, and an Okinawan Eisa Dance show. The closest station is JR Ikebukuro station, and the festivity goes on everywhere around the neighborhood. Here is the official webpage of the festival (Japanese only): https://www.yosakoitokyo.gr.jp/

Tsukiji Autumn Festival 2018 (Oct 13th, 2018)

The Tsukiji Autumn Festival is an event where local vendors gather at a specially designated place in Tsukiji market to show their skills and provide you with various cooking classes. Moreover, you can learn how to sharpen knives from professionals and experience tuna flakes making. Besides, the barbeque event follows, so you won’t stay hungry and enjoy the freshest fish you can find in Tokyo. In 2018 the event will be on Sunday, Oct 13th. Here is the official page of the event: http://www.tsukiji.or.jp/know/info/2018/10/009896.html

Takaosan Beer Garden (June 15th – Oct 15th, 2018)

Image courtesy of Yusuke Kawasaki

Wouldn’t you love to have a glass of a refreshing beer, enjoying a mesmerizing view on Tokyo from a mountain terrace 500 m above the sea level? Takaosan Beer Garden is definitely the highest beer event in Japan. For this magnificent view, all you can drink and eat for two hours you will pay 3500 Yen if you are a guy, and 3300 Yen if you are a girl. Various prices apply to children. The venue is obviously at Mt. Takao one hour away from central Tokyo. Here is the official website of the beer garden: http://www.takaotozan.co.jp/beermnt/

Yakuo-in Temple Autumn Festival 2018 (Oct 17th, 2018)

This traditional festival also takes place at Mt. Takao, in the main temple of the area – Yakuo-in Temple. You will see a beautiful procession of monks and enjoy a breathtaking view of Tokyo from a cloud of the autumn foliage. Besides, if you book in advance, you can receive a blessing, or your car can be blessed as well. Please find more information on this event by clicking on the following link: https://festivalgo.huber-japan.com/events/1501/

Japan Robot Week 2018 (Oct 17th – 19th, 2018)

Image courtesy of Morio

While you are in Japan in October, it would be a nice idea to see the recent achievements in the “service robots” industry, wouldn’t it? You will see various robots that are here to help including different drones, life support robots, nursing robots, etc.  The entrance is 1000 Yen for everybody who is older than a junior high school student. Please look at the official website for this event (Japanese only): https://biz.nikkan.co.jp/eve/s-robot/

Tokyo Grand Tea Ceremony 2018 (Oct 20th – 21st, 2018)

The best way to get closer to Japanese traditions and understand it is to witness it. The Tokyo Grand Tea Ceremony in Hamarikyu Gardens provides you with an excellent opportunity to do so. For 300 Yen you can reserve a seat in the viewing area and enjoy the ceremony that takes place indoors and outside as well. There will even be ceremonies conducted in English. For more information, please visit the official website of the park: http://www.tokyo-grand-tea-ceremony.jp/en/index.html

Kawagoe Festival 2018 (Oct 20th – 21st, 2018)

Even though Kawagoe city is technically not in Tokyo, it won’t take you more than 40 min to get there from Ikebukuro. Kawagoe city is also called Koedo or Small Edo because of its authentic architecture. And Kawagoe Autumn festival is the liveliest event in this city. The feature of this festival is lavishly decorated festival floats that carry traditional dolls around the city center. If you would like to feel yourself in the Edo period surrounded by cheerful people and traditional music, this festival is a perfect celebration to be at. Please look through the official page of the festival for more information: https://www.kawagoematsuri.jp/English/index.html

November

November in Tokyo is the time to admire autumn foliage, taste sake, and enjoy Tori no Ichi festivals in various shrines. The winter is almost here, but the weather is still comfortable for the long walks around the city.

Torinoichi Fair at Juzaisan Chokoku-Ji Temple 2018 (Nov 1st, 13th, 25th)

Tori no Ichi fairs are annual fairs that take place in many shrines all over Japan in November on Rooster days according to the Chinese Horoscope. In 2018 there will be three fairs in Asakusa Juzaisan Chokoku-Ji Temple. At this traditional festival, people pray for prosperity and good luck parallelly buying special festival rakes that should bring you good luck. There will be over 300 rake stalls at the venue. Besides, it will become a great souvenir from Japan. For more information, please check the following link: https://festivalgo.huber-japan.com/events/749/

Meiji Jingu Shrine Yabusame (Horse Archery) (Nov 3rd, 2018)

Image courtesy of 江戸村のとくぞう

On November 3rd you will have a rare opportunity to see an ancient Japanese martial art show right in the heart of Tokyo – in Meiji Jingu shrine (at its west approach). Yabusame is horse archery when the riders in traditional leather armory hit the target from a moving horse. The very impressive event, so try not to miss it if you have time! The yabusame starts at 1 pm. Here is the official site of Meiji Jingu shrine: http://www.meijijingu.or.jp/english/ceremonies/2.html

Design Festa (Nov 10th – 11th, 2018)

This event assembles various artists not only from Japan but other countries as well. It takes place in Odaiba at Tokyo Big Sight. You will see about 3000 booths and over 10000 exhibitors. It is supposed to be the largest art event in Asia if not the world according to the organizers. The entrance fee is 800 Yen if you book it in advance. Also, there will be live performances, dance shows, and movies displays. Their official website will provide you with more detailed information: https://designfesta.com/en/

Jingu Gaien Icho Festival (Nov 16th – Dec 2nd, 2018)

This is a great autumn festival if you want to spend a chilly afternoon outside. It celebrates the shift from Fall to Winter with the yellow ginkgo trees, or Icho, like in the name of the festival. About 150 ginkgo trees are lining the avenue, which is split into two lanes for viewers to walk through. The venue features food booths and small shops selling souvenirs and snacks for visitors to enjoy. On certain days, traditional performing arts also take place. Please look through the following article for more information on this festival: https://festivalgo.huber-japan.com/events/836/

Aoyama Sake Flea (Nov 17th – 18th, 2018)

This flea started only four years ago but becoming more popular every next edition. It takes place right in front of the United Nations University (UNU) in Aoyama, the same place where the farmers market takes place every weekend. You will be able to taste sake from 30 different breweries, ask the vendors about sake processing, and have a wonderful time. Also, you can purchase tasting tickets online. Please visit the official page of this event for additional information: http://farmersmarkets.jp/

Autumn Evening Illumination at Rikugien Gardens (Nov 18th – Dec 6th, 2018)

Rikugien Garden is one of the most famous traditional Japanese gardens in Tokyo built in the Edo period. It has been designated as a national scenic beauty spot since 1953. And there are obvious reasons for it that you can see when admiring autumn foliage at night at the end of November. During the event, the garden stays open until 9 pm, when usually it closes at 5 pm. For additional information, please review the following article: https://festivalgo.huber-japan.com/events/1979/

Doburoku Matsuri at Koami Shrine (Nov 28th, 2018)

Image courtesy of bryan…

Doburoku might remind you of a rice porridge because it is white and thick. But don’t hesitate to try it. It is the grandfather of modern, transparent sake. The Doburoku Festival in Koami shrine is of the two major doburoku festivals in the Kanto region. You will have a chance to try it for free after you pray to the shine’s deity for the productiveness of grain. Also, there will be Sato-kagura Shinto dance performance at 12:30. A lovely festival to experience Japanese traditions and taste something different. You will find more information on the official page of the shrine: http://www.koamijinja.or.jp/international.html

Closing Remarks

It is evident that there are many more events in autumn in Tokyo. However, in this article, I picked the activities that can show you Tokyo from various perspectives. There is much you can do while you visit this busy city. Either chill at a tea ceremony or while admiring the autumn foliage or have a sip of sake and dive into a festival procession and have fun at a music event, you are the one to choose the pastime. I hope this article gave you some ideas on what to do during your trip to Tokyo this autumn.

If you would like a local guide to spend a day with you or take you to a festival and tell you even more information, please check the banner below!

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URL: https://festivalgo.huber-japan.com/events/5975/

Pick the Best Autumn Foliage in Japan!

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Check it out! URL: https://festivalgo.huber-japan.com/events/4274/

Would You Like to Know How to Enjoy a Japanese Festival Even More?

A lot of people when they get to a Matsuri for the first time feel a bit lost. They confuse about what is happening around. If you are new to Japanese Festivals or want to know an alternative way of how you can enjoy these events, the following article will provide you with a set of helpful tips on how to choose a proper festival and activities you should try there. Please don`t hesitate to take a look at it!

URL: https://festivalgo.huber-japan.com/events/5363/

Anton

I`ve been living in Japan for over 10 years and still fascinated with this unique country. I always discover something new about the land of the rising sun when there is a chance!

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