[Top 5] Japanese events in January / What Japanese do in January, except new year day

This page consists of …

  • Top 5 major events in January, except new year days
  • Brief guidance about 5 events
  • A piece of advise by webmaster

This page is to help the people :

  • Who want to know Japanese culture
  • Who want to know items Japanese like
  • Who want to enjoy staying in Japan


I enjoyed new year days in Japan !


That’s nice, when you will go back to your country ?


Next month, any event in Japan after new year days ?


No problem, I would like to introduce 5 popular events in Japan in January !

With reading of this page, you will get above listed knowledges as well as Japanese have. I will be very glad if you could read this article to the end.

Thank you !


SHINTA+ / Japanese blog writer, born and raised in Japan, visited more than 20 countries, introducing Japanese culture to the world, with both domestic & international experiences.

Hakone Ekiden

quotation source : https://www.hakone-ekiden.jp

’Hakone Ekiden’ is very famous sports event in new year in Japan, which is long distance relay road race between Tokyo and Hakone, for University in Kanto area. In day 1, on 2nd January, it’s from Tokyo to Hakone, in day 2, 3rd January, from Hakone to Tokyo.

This race has very long history. 1st race was held in 1920. Except suspension in 1941-42, 44-46, race is held in every year. In 2021, it became 97th race. The race is broadcasted from start to finish completely. It’s tradition in new year.


Hakone Ekiden is very special sports event in January !


quotation source : https://www.odakyu-sc.com/shinjuku-mylord 

In beginning of January, there are winter sale in various department stores and commercial facilities in Japan, which is called as ‘Bargain’ in Japan. In earliest case, it’s started in January 1st or 2nd.

In a very happy atmosphere of new year days, people has much desire to purchase various items. So many people are coming to shopping in this season.


A lot of people are going to shopping in this season !

Seijin Shiki

‘Seijin Shiki’ is very important event in Japan, which is generally held in ‘Seijin no hi’ as national holiday on 2nd Monday in January. There’s a ceremony to celebrate people getting adult, 20 years old.

In ‘Seijin Shiki’, a lot of people wear very traditional dress, ‘Kimono’. We can see very gorgeous ‘Kimono’ on the street in ‘Seijin no hi’. This is also tradition in January.


We can see beautiful Kimono wear in this season !

Dezome Shiki

quotation source : https://www.sankei.com/smp/photo/story/expand/200105

‘Dezome Shiki’ is very traditional event, since 17th century. This is the ceremony for firefighters to start working in new year. A lot of fire departments held this event all over Japan.


Japanese fire fighters make ceremony to start working in new year !

Nanakusa gayu

’Nanakusa Gayu’ as thin rice porridge with seven herbs is a very traditional food, which is eaten in January 7th, in Japan. This tradition was already started in 1000 years ago.


It’s said that with eating Nanakusa Gayu in January,
we got healthy year !

Sports events

quotation source : https://www.jfa.jp/match/alljapan_highschool_2019/news/00024237/?utm_source=jfa&utm_medium=kv/

There are many sports events in January, other than ‘Hakone Ekiden’. Major events are as follows:

  • New year Ekiden on 1st. January (long distance relay road race)
  • Emperor’s cup final on 1st January (Football, date possible to be changed from 2021)
  • High school football tournament (Final : 2nd week in January)
  • Rice Ball (American football)


In the end, I would like to summarize the points of this article as follows


January, it’s cold in Japan

Major 5 events in January in Japan (except new year day)

  • Hakone Ekiden
  • Seijin Shiki
  • Bargain
  • Dezome shiki
  • Nanakusa-Gayu


That’s all today.
How was the topic today ?

There are many kinds of events in January in Japan. We feel that new year has come, when we have above listed events, in every year. If you have a opportunity to be in Japan in January, please try to find them in your staying.

In the end, thank you very much for your reading and see you again !