Plum Flower Festival Starts At Kairakuen Garden

Plum flower festival starts at Kairakuen Garden

People are enjoying the first signs of spring at an annual plum flower festival at the Kairakuen garden in Mito City, north of Tokyo.

The festival began on Saturday. Kairakuen is widely regarded as one of the three most beautiful gardens in Japan.

Contestants Impersonate Cranes For Winter Festival

Contestants impersonate cranes for winter festival

Contestants have mimicked cranes for a winter festival in Japan's northernmost prefecture of Hokkaido.

The event was held on Sunday in the village of Tsurui, where red-crowned cranes spend the winter. The species is designated as one of Japan's special natural treasures.

Sapporo Snow Festival Kicks Off

Sapporo snow festival kicks off

Visitors are flocking to the city of Sapporo on Japan's northern island of Hokkaido to see snow and ice sculptures as the annual snow festival kicks off.

The festival, which marks its 70th anniversary this year, is being held in three locations across the city. At its main Odori Park site, the event opened with a trumpet fanfare.

Celebrities Join Bean-throwing Festival At Temple

Celebrities join bean-throwing festival at temple

Top sumo wrestlers and a popular kabuki actor have joined a traditional bean-throwing festival to invite good luck at a Buddhist temple near Tokyo.

The annual event was held on Sunday at Naritasan Shinshoji Temple. The event is a centuries-old tradition dating to the Edo Period.

Traditional New Year's Festival Held In Sea

Traditional New Year's festival held in sea

People in Ibaraki Prefecture, north of Tokyo, have enjoyed a unique New Year's festival in which they parade portable shrines in the sea.

About 150 people gathered in the city of Takahagi to carry the 2 shrines, or "mikoshi" in Japanese, on their shoulders. One weighs about 150 kilograms and the other 300 kilograms.

Anime Festival In New York

Anime festival in New York

Fans of Japanese animated cartoons have flocked to an event in New York dressed up in costumes of their favorite characters.

The second edition of the event, which opened on Friday, was organized by anime fans residing in the US city.

Jidai Matsuri Festival Held In Kyoto

Jidai Matsuri festival held in Kyoto

About 2,000 people have taken part in a parade in the ancient Japanese capital of Kyoto in one of the city's major festivals.

The Jidai Matsuri, or the Festival of the Ages, was held on Monday for the first time in 2 years. Last year's event was cancelled due to a typhoon.

Takayama Float Festival Gets Underway

Takayama float festival gets underway

An autumn festival featuring 11 elaborately decorated floats is drawing people to Takayama City in central Japan.

The floats were carefully pulled out of warehouses on Tuesday and moved to a shrine in the city center. Children played music as the floats arrived.

Film Festival Showing Japanese Anime Opens In La

Film festival showing Japanese anime opens in LA

A festival of animated films from Japan has opened in the US city of Los Angeles.

The Los Angeles Anime Film Festival is sponsored in part by the Japan External Trade Organization. The organizers say the annual event, launched last year, is North America's biggest film festival featuring Japanese animations.

Sapporo Autumn Food Festival Begins

Sapporo autumn food festival begins

People are getting a taste of Hokkaido cuisine at an annual food festival in the city of Sapporo.

The Sapporo Autumn Fest began on Saturday, 8 days later than scheduled. The delay was caused by a powerful earthquake that hit the northern prefecture last week.

Tokyo Festival Offers Free Pacific Saury

Tokyo festival offers free Pacific saury

Crowds have gathered at a Pacific saury festival in Tokyo to sample the autumn delicacy from northern Japan.

The annual event was held on Sunday in front of JR Meguro station. The organizers brought in a fresh catch of about 7,000 fish from the city of Miyako in Iwate Prefecture.

'owara Kaze No Bon' Dance Festival Kicks Off

'Owara Kaze no Bon' dance festival kicks off

A Japanese festival known for its traditional dances and folksongs has kicked off in central prefecture of Toyama, attracting tourists from across the country.

The Owara Kaze no Bon festival dates back 300 years. It has been held to pray for safety from typhoons and for a good autumn harvest.

Empress Plays Piano At Music Festival Workshop

Empress plays piano at music festival workshop

Japan's Empress Michiko gave a piano performance at a music workshop in the resort town of Kusatsu in Gunma Prefecture, north of Tokyo.

The Empress attended the Kusatsu International Summer Music Academy & Festival on Monday. She and Emperor Akihito are on summer holiday in the town.