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July, often considered the best month to visit Japan, is a time when the country is abuzz with vibrant festivals and cultural celebrations. It’s the perfect time for a trip to Japan, offering a unique blend of traditional events and modern attractions. From the awe-inspiring Mt. Fuji Opening Fireworks Festival to the enchanting Kihoku Lantern Festival, there are numerous events that offer a glimpse into Japan’s rich heritage and traditions.

Cultural experiences also abound in July. You could find yourself ringside at a sumo wrestling match, exploring the tranquil gardens of Tokyo’s famous shrines, or immersing yourself in the unique cultures of Okinawa and Hokkaido. Each of these experiences offers a different perspective on Japanese culture, adding depth to your visit.

In this article, we will explore some of the most captivating festivals, must-do things, and best places to visit in Japan in July. we’ll share tips on festival etiquette, including dress codes, expected behaviors, and interacting with locals. So, whether you’re planning your first visit to Japan in July or returning. 

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Weather in July and Packing Tips

Weather in Japan

Visiting Japan in July promises an unforgettable experience with its blend of warm weather and vibrant festivals. As temperatures can soar into the high 80s (Fahrenheit), it’s essential to pack light clothing such as cotton shirts, shorts, and breathable dresses to stay cool. Sun protection is crucial, so include a wide-brimmed hat, sunglasses, and a high SPF sunscreen in your luggage. Comfortable footwear is a must, especially if you plan to explore bustling festival grounds or hike scenic trails like those around Mount Fuji. Don’t forget to bring a reusable water bottle to stay hydrated, as July can be quite humid.

When preparing for the various festivals, consider packing a portable fan to keep cool amidst the crowds. A small mat or picnic blanket can be handy for sitting during outdoor events, such as the fireworks displays or traditional parades. If you’re planning to visit shrines or temples, modest attire is appreciated—pack a lightweight scarf or shawl to cover your shoulders if needed. Embrace the festive spirit by wearing a yukata, a casual summer kimono, which is both comfortable and culturally respectful.

Essential Tips for Enjoying Japan’s July Festivals

Participating in Japan’s July festivals is a delightful way to immerse yourself in the local culture, but it’s important to be mindful of festival etiquette. Dressing appropriately is a sign of respect; if you choose to wear traditional attire like a yukata, ensure it’s properly worn. Footwear should be comfortable yet clean, as some events may involve removing your shoes, especially when entering sacred areas. Behaving courteously and observing the local customs will enhance your experience. For instance, keeping noise to a minimum and not obstructing pathways during parades is appreciated.

Interacting with locals can greatly enrich your trip. Politeness goes a long way—use phrases like “arigatou” (thank you) and “sumimasen” (excuse me). When photographing, always ask for permission, especially during private or religious ceremonies. Additionally, disposing of trash properly and following the guidelines provided at festival venues helps maintain cleanliness and order. By embracing these cultural norms, you’ll not only enjoy the vibrant festivities but also leave a positive impression on the communities you visit.

JetPac Sim: Your Essential Travel Companion for Japan in July

best esim for japan

July is the best time to visit Japan, with the country coming alive with vibrant festivals and cultural events. Planning a trip to Japan in July? Jet Pac Sim is your perfect travel companion! From the dazzling Mt. Fuji Opening Fireworks Festival to the serene beauty of the Kawaguchiko Lavender Herb Festival, there are countless things to do in Japan in July. Visit Japan and experience the magic of traditional festivals like the Hakata Gion Yamakasa and the enchanting Kihoku Lantern Festival. 

Enjoy the warm summer weather as you explore the best places to visit in Japan, such as Kyoto’s historical shrines and Tokyo’s bustling streets. With Jet Pac Sim, navigating these unforgettable experiences is seamless and stress-free. Don’t miss out on the must-do things in Japan in July—make your adventure unforgettable with Jet Pac Sim!

Mt. Fuji Opening Fireworks Festival – July 1

Japan in July

Kickstart your summer with a dazzling fireworks display against the majestic Mt. Fuji backdrop. As dusk settles, vibrant colours burst into the night sky, mesmerising spectators of all ages. With its awe-inspiring beauty, this festival is a must-see attraction for tourists visiting Japan in July.

Capture the perfect Instagram-worthy moments as the fireworks illuminate the surrounding landscape. From the opening spark to the grand finale, each explosion paints the night with a palette of brilliance. The event brings together locals and tourists, creating a lively atmosphere filled with joy and excitement.

The Tanabata Festival: A Star-Crossed Celebration July 7

Things to do in Japan in June
Images Credit: Wonderland Japan

One of the must-do things in Japan in July is to experience the magic of the Tanabata Festival, also known as the Star Festival. This traditional event celebrates the meeting of two lovers, Orihime and Hikoboshi, who are separated by the Milky Way and are only allowed to meet once a year on the seventh day of the seventh month. Cities and towns across Japan come alive with vibrant decorations, parades, and performances. Visitors can participate in the tradition of writing wishes on tanzaku papers and hanging them on bamboo trees. The festival offers a unique blend of romance, tradition, and community spirit, making it a highlight of any trip to Japan in July.

Sake Spring Kyoto Festival- July 8 to July 9

Experience the vibrant Sake Spring Kyoto Festival in Japan in July. Firstly, immerse yourself in the cultural extravaganza featuring traditional dance and music performances. Moreover, witness the exquisite craftsmanship of local artisans at the bustling market stalls. Furthermore, indulge your taste buds with various delectable street food offerings. Participate in interactive workshops to learn about the ancient art of sake brewing. Transitioning into the evening, marvel at the breathtaking fireworks illuminating the night sky.

Continue your exploration of Japan in July by visiting the picturesque city of Kyoto. Firstly, wander through the enchanting Arashiyama Bamboo Grove, basking in its serene beauty. In the historic district, discover magnificent temples and shrines, such as Kinkaku-ji, known as the Golden Pavilion. Moreover, embrace tranquillity as you stroll through the iconic Zen gardens of Ryoan-ji. Furthermore, take advantage of the opportunity to savour traditional kaiseki cuisine, renowned for its seasonal ingredients and delicate flavours. As the sun sets, witness the mesmerising spectacle of illuminated torii gates at Fushimi Inari Taisha.

Ise Shrine Dedication Fireworks Festival- July 15

Celebrate the awe-inspiring Ise Shrine Dedication Fireworks Festival in Japan in July. Experience the sacred atmosphere as the sky comes alive with brilliant bursts of colours. Additionally, witness the traditional rituals and ceremonies at the revered Ise Shrine. Moreover, explore the surrounding area and discover charming shops offering local crafts and delicacies.

Immerse yourself in the rich history and spirituality of Ise Shrine. Transitioning into the evening, prepare to be mesmerised by the grand fireworks display, symbolising dedication and celebration. Furthermore, savour the flavours of traditional Japanese street food, adding a delightful culinary experience to your visit.

Hakata Gion Yamakasa- July 1 to July 15

Japan in July

Experience the vibrant festivities of Hakata Gion Yamakasa in Japan during July. Immerse yourself in the cultural extravaganza, featuring traditional parades and lively music. As you stroll through the streets, witness the stunning floats adorned with intricate designs.

The atmosphere is electric, filled with excitement and joy, as locals and tourists come together to celebrate. Indulge in delicious street food, savouring local delicacies like yakitori and takoyaki. Capture breathtaking moments with your camera as the festival lights up the night sky.

Kawaguchiko Lavender Herb Festival- June 24 to July 17

Experience the beauty of Japan in July at the enchanting Kawaguchiko Lavender Herb Festival. This annual event celebrates the blooming of vibrant lavender fields, creating a mesmerising spectacle for visitors. As you wander through the picturesque landscape, the gentle fragrance of lavender fills the air, creating a serene and relaxing ambience.

Immerse yourself in a sea of purple as you admire the meticulously arranged rows of lavender plants. The festival offers a variety of activities, including lavender picking, where you can gather your own bouquet of fresh blooms. Capture unforgettable moments amidst the stunning scenery, with Mount Fuji providing a breathtaking backdrop. Whether you’re a nature enthusiast or simply seeking tranquillity, the Kawaguchiko Lavender Herb Festival in Japan is a must-visit destination in July.

Nagoya Port Fireworks Festival- July 17

Japan in July

Immerse yourself in a dazzling display of light and colour at the Nagoya Port Fireworks Festival. Held annually in July, this spectacular event illuminates the night sky and captivates spectators of all ages. As darkness falls, the atmosphere becomes electric with anticipation. The vibrant fireworks paint the sky with a kaleidoscope of hues, creating a magical and unforgettable experience.

From sparkling bursts of gold to cascading showers of multicoloured lights, each explosion is choreographed to music, adding an extra layer of excitement. As you gaze up at the magnificent spectacle, the reflection of the fireworks on the shimmering water of Nagoya Port adds to the enchantment. Join the thousands of spectators who gather along the waterfront and are mesmerised by the light and sound symphony. The Nagoya Port Fireworks Festival is a true celebration of summer, filling the night with joy, wonder, and awe.

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Tobata Gion Yamagasa Festival- July 22

Japan in July

Celebrate the vibrant spirit of the Tobata Gion Yamagata Festival in July, a cultural extravaganza showcasing Fukuoka, Japan’s rich heritage. This lively event, deeply rooted in tradition, brings together locals and visitors for a week-long celebration. The festival centres around the Yamagasa, towering floats adorned with vibrant tapestries and ornate decorations. Teams of dedicated participants race through the streets, carrying these magnificent floats on their shoulders with incredible strength and coordination.

The air is filled with the energetic beats of drums and the crowd’s cheers, creating an electrifying atmosphere. As the floats weave through the narrow lanes, spectators line the streets, cheering and encouraging the teams. It is a spectacle of endurance and skill as participants push themselves to the limits to showcase their pride and determination. The Tobata Gion Yamagata Festival is not just a visual feast but also a testament to the community’s unity and the unwavering spirit of the people. Join the festivities and immerse yourself in the cultural heritage of Fukuoka during this exciting event.

Kihoku Lantern Festival- July 22

Step into a world of enchantment at the Kihoku Lantern Festival. This mesmerising event illuminates the summer nights in July. Nestled in the scenic beauty of Wakayama Prefecture, Japan, this festival is a celebration of light, tradition, and community. As dusk settles, the streets come alive with a warm glow as thousands of intricately designed lanterns light up the surroundings. The soft flickering flames dance with the gentle evening breeze, creating a captivating ambience. Locals and visitors gather to witness the breathtaking spectacle, strolling through the illuminated streets adorned with various shapes and sizes of colourful lanterns.

Experience the joy of participating in the traditional lantern parade, where participants carry lanterns, adding to the magical atmosphere. The festival also offers traditional performances, delicious local cuisine, and lively music, further immersing you in the region’s cultural richness. The Kihoku Lantern Festival is an enchanting experience showcasing the harmony between light, community, and tradition, making it a must-see event in July.

Hita Gion Festival- July 16 to July 23

Indulge in the vibrant festivities of the Hita Gion Festival, an extraordinary event that brings the streets of Hita, Oita Prefecture, alive in July. Steeped in centuries-old traditions, this captivating festival celebrates the local culture and heritage. As you wander through the charming town, you’ll be greeted by the rhythmic beats of taiko drums and the melodious sounds of traditional music. Furthermore, spectacular floats, known as kamaboko, adorned with intricate decorations, are paraded through the streets by dedicated participants.

These magnificent floats showcase the skill and craftsmanship of the local artisans. Firstly, be awestruck as teams manoeuvre these colossal structures with precision and grace. Additionally, the atmosphere is filled with excitement and anticipation as the floats compete in a lively procession. Moreover, marvel at the resplendent colours, ornate costumes, and the joyous cheers of the crowd. Lastly, the Hita Gion Festival is a visual spectacle and a vibrant showcase of community unity and cultural pride. Ultimately, immerse yourself in this enchanting celebration and experience the timeless traditions that make the Hita Gion Festival a cherished event in July.

Minato Maizuru Chatta Fireworks Festival- July 23

Japan in July

Prepare to be dazzled by the breathtaking Minato Maizuru Chatta Fireworks Festival, a magnificent display of pyrotechnic artistry that graces the skies of Maizuru, Kyoto Prefecture, in July. This captivating event combines the splendour of fireworks with the serene backdrop of Maizuru Bay. As darkness descends, the air fills with anticipation. Lastly, the Spectators gather along the waterfront, their eyes fixed on the starry night sky.

From cascading waterfalls of sparks to sparkling bursts that resemble blooming flowers, the fireworks showcase the creativity and skill of the pyrotechnicians. Furthermore, the reflections of the fireworks on the tranquil waters of Maizuru Bay add an extra touch of enchantment to the spectacle.

Outdoor Activities: Embrace the Japanese Summer

July is the best month to visit Japan if you love outdoor activities. Firstly, the country offers a plethora of options for beach trips, hiking, and island hopping. Additionally, the beautiful beaches in Okinawa, Chiba, Wakayama, and Fukuoka are perfect for sunbathing, swimming, and water sports. Moreover, for those who prefer the mountains, hiking in the Japan Alps or Kamikochi offers breathtaking views and refreshing nature trails. Lastly, if you’re interested in art and culture, visiting the art islands in the Seto Inland Sea is a must. These activities allow you to explore the diverse landscapes of Japan and make the most of the warm summer weather.

Cultural Experiences: Dive into Japanese Traditions

A trip to Japan in July is incomplete without immersing yourself in the country’s rich cultural experiences. Firstly, attending a sumo wrestling match is a unique opportunity to witness Japan’s national sport up close. Additionally, visiting famous shrines and gardens in Tokyo provides a peaceful retreat from the bustling city and a glimpse into the country’s spiritual and aesthetic traditions. Moreover, if you’re looking for a different kind of summer experience, a trip to Okinawa to embrace the heat on its stunning beaches or a visit to Hokkaido to enjoy its mild climate and beautiful lavender fields could be just what you’re looking for. Ultimately, these cultural experiences add depth to your visit, making your trip to Japan in July a truly unforgettable one.

In conclusion, Japan in July offers a myriad of captivating festivals and events that showcase the country’s rich culture and traditions. From the vibrant Kawaguchiko Lavender Herb Festival to the awe-inspiring Nagoya Port Fireworks Festival, the Tobata Gion Yamagata Festival pulsating with energy, and the enchanting Kihoku Lantern Festival, each event immerses visitors in unique experiences. Moreover, the Hita Gion Festival and Minato Maizuru Chatta Fireworks Festival captivate with their grandeur and elegance. If you’re concerned about getting lost or not having a reliable network while traveling in Japan, remember to explore JetPac Sim for convenient travel options with budget-friendly plans. These festivals provide visual delights and offer a glimpse into Japan’s vibrant spirit and community unity. Therefore, in July, Japan comes alive with a tapestry of colours, sounds, and cultural celebrations that leave a lasting impression on all participating.

 

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About Vishankh Dutta

Vishankh, lover of Japan's charms, Haiku words flowing with open arms. Sushi master, sake sipper, Lost in anime, a passionate flipper.