It is hot in Tokyo now and hot summer days are celebrated with fireworks in the city. One of the biggest firework festivals in Japan is coming up at the end of the month. The Sumida River Fireworks will light up the sky between Tokyo Skytree and Asakusa.
Sumida River Fireworks Festival
Saturday, July 28, 2018 (Sunday, July 29, 2018 in case of bad weather)
Nearest stations: Asakusa and Kuramae
Japanese event page with map https://www.sumidagawa-hanabi.com/venue/
Overall more than 20,000 fireworks will be launched from two locations on Sumida River, one near Sakura-bashi Bridge and one near Komagata-bashi Bridge. If you have studied some Japanese, you might know that fireworks are called “hanabi” in Japanese, meaning fire flowers. Of course there will fireworks like that, but also fireworks in many other shapes. Every year new types of fireworks are shown as part of the event in a competition – glittering colors, intricate shapes, and fun surprises like smileys, Pokeballs, or cat-robot Doraemon’s face.
Be prepared to join the crowds. Over a million people come to watch the firework displays here every year. So come early if you want to find a spot to sit down. Or watch the fireworks walking around the area around Askusa and Kuramae. This way you can take pictures from different angles and check out the street vendors selling cold drinks and tasty snacks. No Japanese festival is complete without street food favorites like takoyaki, yakisoba noodles, or baby castella cakes - all definitely worth trying.
To take extra special pictures and experience more Japanese summer traditions dress up in “yukata”. This light summer kimono comes in many colorful designs, befitting the fireworks. Many shops in the Asakusa area near Senso-ji Temple sell and rent yukata. If you are on a budget take a look at the second-hand kimono shops where you can find yukata and traditional clothing accessories for as little as 1000 yen. Yukata make great souvenirs.