Christmas and New Year in Tokyo for Families

Spending Christmas and the New Year holidays with your family in Tokyo can be a lot of fun. There are numerous places adorned with beautiful winter illuminations, such as Roppongi Hills, Tokyo Midtown, Tokyo Dome City and Odaiba, just to name a few. But that's only the beginning.

disney xmas

If you are after a day out with the family, there’s Tokyo Disneyland, which never fails to impress and entertain people of all ages. This year, Disneyland’s Christmas theme is “Christmas Fantasy.” There are numerous shows and also parades with Mickey, Minnie and the gang bringing you all the fantasies of Christmas! For more information, click here.

Apart from having fun yourselves, you can also choose to give back to the community during the holiday season. Every second and third Saturday afternoon at the Franciscan Chapel’s kitchen in Roppongi, you and your family can join other volunteers in making rice balls (onigiri) for those in need. Training is provided, and for more information, click here.

mieji by Yoshikazu Takada cropped

With New Year’s, the first thing that comes to mind is visiting a shrine or temple. Famous shrines like Meiji Shrine in Harajuku and popular temples like Senso-ji in Asakusa are packed with people queuing up to ring the bells or just being there to listen to the bells ringing.

Another tradition is to watch the first sunrise of the year, and there’s no better place up high than Tokyo Tower and Tokyo Skytree.

The Imperial Palace grounds will also open on New Year’s Day, making this a great opportunity to see the palace up close, as well as the imperial family, who wave from behind bulletproof glass. The palace gates only open to the public twice a year, on December 23 (the emperor’s birthday) and on January 1.

So there’s something for everyone this coming holiday season. We wish you a safe and happy holiday season!

By Anna K.


Meiji Shrine photo by Yoshikazu Takada.


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