Tag Archives: seasonality in Japan

Memories of Cherry Blossoms

I still hold the simple memories of cherry blossoms heralding change and hope dearly in my heart.There is so much written about the beauty and profoundness of cherry blossoms. And yet, my childhood memories of them are quite simple.

I grew up in Mimasaka, a small town in Okayama prefecture. There, like in everywhere else, spring … Read the rest

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Japanese Festival of Dolls (Hina-Matsuri)

Japanese Festival of Dolls 2019

In Japan, one of the sure signs of the arrival of spring is Hina-Matsuri, the Festival of Dolls.

Japanese have celebrated Hina-Matsuri since at least the 8th-century Heian period. During this time Japan experienced a great flourishing in culture. In Heian, playing … Read the rest

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Gentle rains of early May

Shinto priestess ladies about to begin their work dayA sure sign of summer’s arrival in Japan is warm, pleasant rains of early May, called Samidare.

The picture above was taken in Miyazaki Shrine. The priestess ladies are about to begin their work day, which includes tasks such … Read the rest

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What is the best season to visit Japan?

Ever-changing beauty of Japanese seasons

I often get asked about the best season to visit Japan. Such a seemingly simple question. However, there are more choices and more “seasons” than most people realize.

Japan is a land of ever-changing seasonal tapestries in urban and rural … Read the rest

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Irises, Yomogi and Traditions of May

The deeply-hued, passionate ayame irises are an unmistakable sign of spring and early summer. Their vivid color and bold beauty have inspired poets, artists and kimono makers for generations.

It’s early May. The Japanese countryside is blanketed with some of the most beloved symbols of Japanese spring: passionate irises and yomogi, the Japanese “wonder herb”.

The love affair with irises and yomogi runs deep in Japan’s national psyche, … Read the rest

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