I’ve been hearing these words for a couple of weeks now; it seems everyone is talking about it and all I know is that it is one of Japan’s holidays. But hearing several people talked about it, got my curiosity level high so I decided to put an end to all my guesses by doing a little bit of research online and share it with you.
Golden week in Japan is a period between 29th April and first week of May where workers have a several days off (almost a week) due to the number of holidays within that time of the year.
Tourist destinations in different parts of Japan get crowded during this period. As a result, (and it’s quite expected) buses, airplanes, trains even hotels/rooms accommodations are packed with both local and foreign tourists.
Here is Japan’s national holidays during Golden Week:
April 29 – Showa no Hi (Showa Day)
It is an annual holiday in honor of Emperor Hirohito’s(Showa) birthday, who reigned during Showa period from 1926 until 1989. After the Emperor’s death, his birthday was no longer celebrated and the holiday was replaced as “Greenery Day”. However in 2007, the holiday was renamed Showa day after the government passed the bill supported by Democratic Party of Japan to encourage people to reflect on the turbulent years of the Emperor’s reign.
May 3 – Kenpō Kinenbi (Constitution Memorial Day)
Another holiday, which is a part of Golden Week, is the celebration of the day when Japan’s constitution was formally proclaimed and took effect.
May 4 – Midori no Hi (Greenery Day)
After the death of Emperor Hirohito (Showa), the public holiday in honor for his birthday was renamed Greenery Day. However in 2007, it was moved to May 4th. In between those periods, May 4th was a public holiday (National day of rest) since it falls between the two national holidays, which are Constitution Memorial Day on May 3rd and Children’s Day on May 5th. According to Japan’s law regarding public holiday, a day that falls between two national holidays shall become a holiday.
May 5 – Kodomo no Hi (Children’s Day)
It was originally called Boy’s Day (Tango no Sekku) and exclusively for male (sons and fathers) but have been changed to include kids of both genders and parents.
Indeed a long holiday, so if you’re planning to go somewhere in Japan during this period, better have your reservations on hotels/accommodations and tickets needed for your travel ahead of time.
Happy Golden Week!
“See that you do not despise one of these little ones. For I tell you that their angels in heaven always see the face of my Father in heaven.”-Matthew 18:10