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November 2023: What to do in Tokyo!

Looking for things to do in Tokyo this November? From early holiday celebrations to traditional Japanese festivals, we got you covered!


Dream Yosacoy (Yosakoi) Festival

November 4th - November 5th

Location: Odaiba, Tokyo

Image Provided by Takeshi Oda (小田岳史)

The Dream Yosacoy Festival is a Japanese dance festival held at the beginning of November that attracts crowds of over half a million that come to see the 7000+ performers! Here, the dancers perform "yosakoi" which is a more creative form of dance that combines artistic expression with tradition. The performers wear a variety of outfits and costumes in addition to unique dances!



Tori-noichi Festivals

Day One: November 11th

Day Two: November 23rd

Locations: Asakusa, Shinjuku

Image Provided by Asakusa Tori no Ichi

If you need some good fortune in your career definitely stop by a Tori-noichi festival! These festivals are a yearly occurrence in Japan that celebrate good prosperity in business and take place on three different days.


Like most other Japanese festivals, here you can find a lively atmosphere with a variety of vendors. However, what is unique to these festivals is their "kumade" which is a decorative bamboo rake meant to bring good luck. If you decide to purchase one the vendors will perform a clapping ritual before handing it over to you.


Here's a list of some of the festivals to help you find the right one!

First Asakusa Tori-no-ichi Fair: November 11th

Second Asakusa Tori-no-ichi Fair: November 23rd


First Shinjuku Tori-no-ichi Fair: November 11th

Second Shinjuku Tori-no-ichi Fair: November 23rd

Image Provided by Okunitama Shrine



Hachiōji Ginkgo Festival

November 18th - November 19th (9:00-16:30)

Location: Hachiōji

Image Provided by Hachioji Ginkgo Festival Committee


If you're looking for beautiful fall colors in Tokyo, you have to stop by the Hachiōji Ginkgo Festival. Here, you'll get the chance to see the ginkgo trees at the height of their fall colors surrounded by vendors, shows and even an activity that takes you back in time.


At this festival you can pick up a "tsuko tegata" a block of wood that was used as a transportation pass. You can use this pass to explore the 12 checkpoints around the festival!

Image Provided by Hachioji Ginkgo Festival Committee




11th Hirosaki Neputa Asakusa Festival

(Tentatively) November 18 - November 19

Location: Asakusa

Image Provided by Aomori Tourism

Normally you would have to go all the way to Aomori to see these magnificent paper floats that represent scenes from different Kabuki stories. But at the Hirosaki Neputa Asakusa Festival, for one weekend these floats travel to Tokyo!

After 5 PM you can see these floats hoisted by people on the streets, with the lights on showcasing amazing craftsmanship! This is a rare thing to see in Tokyo so definitely don't miss it!

Image Provided by Aomori Tourism



Candlelight Concert: Best of Joe Hisaishi (Studio Ghibli Concert)

November 25th

Location: Nakano

Image Provided by Carey Finn

At the Umewaka Noh Theatre in Nakano, you can witness a live string quartet play some of Joe Hisaishi's best pieces from Studio Ghibli movies! This is for sure a popular event so be sure to snag your tickets soon! Tickets start at 4,200 JPY and can go up to 8,000 JPY for the 4:00PM and 6:15PM shows.


Set-list:

  • Kikujiro: “Summer”

  • Kiki’s Delivery Service: “A Town with an Ocean View”

  • Howl’s Moving Castle: “Merry Go Round of Life”

  • Spirited Away: “Chihiro’s Waltz”

  • Laputa: Castle in the Sky: “Carrying You”

  • My Neighbour Totoro: “Path of the Wind”

  • Princess Mononoke: “Main Theme”


Tokyo Mega Illumination

November 11th 2023 - January 8th 2024

(Closed from Nov 13-17 + Dec 4-8 + Dec 26-Jan 1)

Location: Oi Racecourse (Oimachi)

Image by Greg Lane

If you're a big fan of the holidays and are looking to get into the Holiday spirit early, then stop by the Tokyo Mega Illumination! The Oi Racecourse is a horse race-track thats converted into an amazing display. This yearly illumination features millions of LED lights, fountains and more!


Image by Greg Lane



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