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Japan Diaries: Greenery Day (Golden Week)

Happy Greenery Day! Also known as Midori No Hi. Today is centred on nature and showing appreciation for its blessings, but also has a pretty cool history behind it,

Originally this day was celebrated on April 29th, the birthday of Emperor Hirohito (or Emperor Showa) who died in 1989. After his death, the holiday was transformed into a more national celebration of nature and in 2007 was given its current date of May 4.

Greenery Day was established to honour the Emperor’s love for nature, and Japanese people take this day very seriously. Hirohito was a vastly popular leader and was also the author of approximately 14 books on biology. He was the first “human” emperor of Japan, ending the belief that emperors were divine beings. Source, Planet Tokyo

Things to do:

  • Visit a tea room and sample some of the BEST green tea in celebration of all things green.
  • Tokyo tower is one of the most popular places to visit. The tower is lit up with bright colours to represent flows and natural beauty associated with nature and spring.

At the main Greenery Day celebration, the Emperor of Japan gives a speech about the holiday to kick off the festivities. After the Emperor is done speaking, all of the people in attendance take turns planting seeds for various kinds of trees. This action is performed in a ceremonious manner that honours both the emperor and the people of Japan. It also shows respect for nature and the simpler things in life. These festivities also serve to encourage the Japanese people to be good stewards of the Earth. Source, Public Holidays

Are there any nature appreciation days held where you are? If so, how is it celebrated?

*Image source: Unsplash




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  1. Pingback: Golden Week a cluster of holidays from late April to early May | From guestwriters

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