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JAPAN

Japan is situated in northeastern Asia between the North Pacific and the Sea of Japan. The area of Japan is 377,873 square kilometers, nearly equivalent to Germany and Switzerland combined or slightly smaller than California. Japan consists of four major islands, surrounded by more than 4,000 smaller islands.

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JNTO TRAVEL PLANNER

Use the "JNTO TRAVEL PLANNER" for train and map information helpful in traveling around Japan.

  • By simply entering the departing and arrival station, get an overview of train transfer method, fares, and travel time.
  • By simply selecting the arrival airport and major train stations around Japan, find routes to stations nearest your destination.
  • Display a map of the arrival train station and areas surrounding sightseeing spots.

Read the "Usage Guide" and use this service for a safe and enjoyable trip in Japan.

Usage Guide

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  1. Home
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  3. Festivals & Events
  4. Traditional Annual Events

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Attractions

Dezome-shiki(New Year's Parade of Firemen)

Warning people of the dangers of fire through acrobatic stunts on top of ladders.

Date: January 6th
Place: Tokyo Big Sight
City: Ariake, Koto-ku, Tokyo

Organized by the Tokyo Fire Department, this is an event held to pray for a safe year. Although similar events are held throughout Japan, the spectacular New Year's Parade of Firemen has over 100 fire engines and helicopters participating, along with as large-scale fire-fighting and emergency drills.

The main attraction is the ladder stunts. Men dressed as firemen of the Edo Period (17th-19th Centuries) perform circus-like acrobatic stunts on top of bamboo which tower over the heads of the men supporting them. These demonstrations have been held since then to warn people of the dangers of fire.

The ladder was an indispensable fire-fighting tool in the Edo Period. This was because the main method back then was to tear down the surrounding buildings to prevent fire from spreading, so there was a need to climb up onto roofs. As agile movement was required, it was mostly nimble scaffolding workers who served as firemen in each town. These workers set up scaffolding when constructing buildings. As they needed to climb up higher when putting up the scaffolding, they had extraordinary strength and stamina.

Great fires struck Edo several times, burning down the greater part of the city. Following a very big fire known as Meireki no Taika in 1657, the Jobikeshi fire brigade was formed to protect strategic sites such as Edo Castle. Fire corps were stationed full-time in four locations in Edo.

The New Year's Parade of Firemen first started with firemen praying in front of the shrine of Ueno Toshogu for a safe and sound year ahead, free of fires for Edo



Directions

Ariake Station is on the Yurikamome and Rinkaisen Lines.

 

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Festivals & Events

Traditional Annual Events

Traditional Annual Events