Written by Monami I
Japan's Seasons In Photos: July - Say Hello To Summer!
July is the month when summer begins in Japan. It's an eagerly awaited time of the year, with many local festivals and events that make you want to take long walks outside and enjoy nature with all your senses.
July - The Beggining of Summer in Japan
Summer in Japan begins right after the rainy season is over, around mid-July. After nearly a month of cloudy weather and frequent showers, it's sunny all of a sudden.
The first days of summer are usually pleasantly warm. It's the best time to have fun outdoors, either in the city or in a place full of greenery. The beach season starts around the beginning of July and firework festivals are held almost every weekend all around Japan.
It's the season of small, local summer festivals and events celebrating nature.
The Chinese Lantern Plant Festival at Sensoji Temple
One of the first events announcing the arrival of summer in Tokyo is Hoozuki Ichi, or The Chinese Lantern Plant Festival, held at Sensoji Temple in Asakusa.
Hoozuki, the Chinese lantern plant, is considered an auspicious plant that keeps illness and other misfortune away.
People rush up to get branches of hoozuki or potted plants, which they will keep for the whole year in their homes.
The Hoozuki Festival happens to be the first event of the year to have large displays of wind chimes.
The sound of wind chimes symbolizes summer in Japanese culture. It is considered a refreshing, cool sound, just like the sound of water - the type of sound you would want to hear to forget about the heat.
When you hear the clear sound of wind chimes in Japan, you know that it's summer.
Summer Marches - Refreshing Flavors
Early summer is synonymous with walking outside, enjoying the greenery and scenic nature scapes. Farmer markets are some of the popular events of the season.
For instance, Yatsugatake, an area in Yamanashi with rich water resources, is famous for the quality of the fruit and vegetables produced here.
This type of marche is the ideal place to find fresh vegetables and fruit, or other produce made with fresh ingredients such as jams, pickles, and veggie snacks.
Summer flavors such as watermelon, peaches, berries, pineapple, tomatoes, and others can be best enjoyed in smoothies and fruit drinks. Their fresh flavors and vitamin content is just what you need to get ready for the hot days of summer.
Get Ready for Summer!
July is the month of early summer festivals, heralding the large celebrations coming up in the hot days of August. It's the best time to take in the light of the sun and enjoy the refreshing flavors of summer.