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"Traditions and Celebrations of Golden Week in Japan"

Updated: May 9

Surely everyone who loves Japan, especially Japanese culture, knows about the Golden Week holiday. The Golden Week is a collection of four national holidays within seven days. In combination with well-placed weekends, the Golden Week becomes one of Japan's three busiest holiday seasons, besides New Year and Obon week.

The national holidays making up the Golden Week are: 1. April 29

  • Showa Day (Showa no hi)

April 29 is the birthday of former Emperor Showa, who died in the year 1989. Until 2006, Greenery Day (see May 4) used to be celebrated on this day.

2. May 3

  • Constitution Day (Kenpo kinenbi)

On this day in 1947, the new postwar constitution was put into effect. 3. May 4

  • Greenery Day (Midori no hi)

Until 2006, Greenery Day was to be celebrated on April 29, the birthday of former Emperor Showa. The day is dedicated to the environment because the emperor loved plants and nature. Before being declared Greenery Day, May 4 used to be a national holiday due to a law, which declares a day, that falls between two national holidays, a national holiday.

4. May 5

  • Children's Day (Kodomo no hi)

The Boy's Festival (Tango no Sekku) is celebrated on this day. Families pray for the health and future success of their sons by hanging up carp streamers and displaying samurai dolls, symbolizing strength, power and success in life. The Girl's Festival is celebrated on March 3.

Golden Week 2024

In 2024, the weekends are placed in a way to create a 3-day and a 4-day holiday period. Travel activity is anticipated to peak on May 3 with people leaving the large urban centers (especially Tokyo) and on May 5 and 6 in the opposite direction.

Silver Week

Typically, every five to six years, a fortunate alignment of national holidays such as Respect for the Aged Day, Autumn Equinox, and perhaps an additional holiday in-between, along with a weekend, results in an extended holiday period similar to the Golden Week, occurring in late September. This holiday period is commonly referred to as "Silver Week". The next significant Silver Weeks will be observed in 2026 and 2037, consisting of five-day-long holidays.

Source: Online collected

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