January 5, 2017
The Holiday Season is a really wonderful time to be in Japan.
The weather's not that bad... it's been a little bit chilly but nothing too bad, and Japan really does get into the Christmas Spirit.
This is no more evident than in the winter illumination that malls and cities put on this time of year.
Now I say winter illumination rather than Christmas illumination because the lights get turned on before December and will stay on until after the New Year.
So the best way I can describe it is as winter illumination.
It really is something.
Like I said, starting in late November you'll start to notice that the news begins covering illumination turning on events.
These usually involve a popular actor or singer of the day stepping up to a box with a large button on it in front of a large crowd of people.
Then they hit the button and the lights come on. Actually, sometimes they don't; but most of the time they do no problem.
Winter illumination in Japan can be a really big thing, and places that have them really go all out making the experience memorable.
There's probably no bigger illumination than in places like Shiodome and the Shinjuku area. We're not talking a few tastefully hung decorations.
This even goes beyond Macy's famous Christmas window displays.
We are talking about an honest-to-God SEA of lights, like you suddenly got sucked into a computer and were in the Tron world now.
It really is unbelievable and it's oh so romantic.
Winter illuminations have become go-to spots for couples to share a romantic evening.
You'd see a lot of them around drinking coffee, holding hands, and taking pictures of themselves surrounded by the seemingly endless colorful lights.
Some places even have light tunnels that you can walk down and places especially set up for lovers to pose.
But this wonder doesn't restrict itself to only Tokyo. You can find an amazing display in Kobe, too. If you're in that area check out the Kobe Luminarie.
It's mind blowing.
Osaka, too, has some absolutely fantastic twinkle that they put out, and if find yourself around there it's not to be missed.
Yes, for all its hustle and bustle, Japan really can be a country for lovers. Just come here now and take a look around. There's no denying it.