Travel guide: Tokyo - Episode 04 - Breakfast in Tokyo

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day and this rule also applies to Tokyo! Today for the new post dedicated to our practical guides we will talk about the best places to have breakfast in Tokyo.

colazione a tokyo

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The typical breakfast in Tokyo and Japan

When it comes to "breakfast", each of us has different ideas according to their habits: sweet, savory, protein.

I'm accustomed to fresh fruit and oat smoothies every morning, and I recently said to myself: "If I lived in Tokyo and wanted to try Japanese traditions, what could I eat for breakfast?"

Fortunately, even in Japan, breakfast has long been considered the most important meal of the day and is prepared and eaten at home. The traditional breakfast of the Rising Sun is based on the concept of ichiju-sansai (一汁三菜 = a soup, 3 dishes). The main dishes are Gohan (ご飯), a bowl of steamed rice, Shiru (汁) a bowl of soup, Okazu (おかず) the main dish and Kouno mono (香の物) a small dish of pickled seasonal vegetables.

Hatsufuji in Nihonbashi

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This is a place loved by everyone who goes to the office every morning. Hatsufuji in Nihonbash i is a restaurant where, through a simple machine, you can order a complete set of breakfast dishes between 7:00 and 11:00 in the morning.

Tsumugi in Tsukiji

colazione a tokyo

photo credits: favy-jp.com

As part of the information center of the ancient Tsukiji Hongan Temple, Tsumuji offers a small shop and a spacious cafe with a warm and relaxing atmosphere. The breakfast, served until 11, offers the possibility to choose between two menus. The first choice is the traditional set which includes grilled fish, sweet and sour vegetables, tamagoyaki, rice and miso soup, muesli with rice crackers and fresh fruit.

Alternatively, the spectacular 18 Hinmoku No Asagohan which includes 18 dishes! Inspired by the teachings of the 48 great vows of Amitabha Buddha, it includes rice porridge, miso soup and 16 small seasonal dishes, such as duck with sansho pepper, konnyaku shiroae, tamagoyaki, tofu with white bean paste, yuzu and matcha jelly.

Tsukiji Sushi Sei in Marunouchi

colazione a tokyo

photo credits: picrumb.com

Walking through Tokyo station, in the GranSta Dining sector, you come across the Tsukiji Sushi Sei. Here breakfast, served from 7 to 10, includes a special dish. We are talking about tai goma (red snapper sliced with sesame) and many other variations such as braised fish with salmon bacon and ikura. Each portion is rigorously accompanied by a bowl of rice, miso soup, tamagoyaki and sweet and sour vegetables.

Shinpachi Shokudo in Shinjuku

colazione a tokyo

photo credits: tripifyapp.com

The morning frenzy of the Japanese can be experienced in this particular place located between the back streets of Shinjuku. Inspired by a rustic farm, the horseshoe-shaped counter guarantees fast service and tasty food. Here breakfast includes mackerel, grilled saikyo, marinated salmon and goma-aji.

Odashi Tokyo in Shinagawa

colazione a tokyo

photo credits: ryutsuu.biz

Odashi belongs to a chain and as such offers a set menu and small ones extra additions that can be chosen from various offers. Breakfast, served between 7 and 10, includes lobster miso soup, pork and spinach in ginger soy milk broth, chicken congee, lotus root and Chinese pumpkin congee. These are all dishes to which you can add tofu, broth with pork and potatoes and saikyo miso soup.

Which of these local traditions intrigued you? Have you already found your favorite or do you know other fantastic niches to suggest? One thing is certain: breakfast in Tokyo is also an extraordinary experience!


2020, the year of the Rat

We are in 2020 and the time of the year of the rat has officially struck. Have you ever wondered why in Japan, at the stroke of each new year, the name of an animal is announced? For example "the year of the ram" or "the year of the ox" and so on?

Topo Topo

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This custom originates from the Chinese zodiac, which unlike our tradition, is not based on the month of birth, but on the year! Therefore, each year corresponds to one of the 12 animals of the horoscope: rat, ox, tiger, hare, dragon, serpent, horse, ram, monkey, bird, dog and boar.

Topo

photo credits: pinterest.it

Astrology has always fascinated everyone, even the most scepticals. 2020 is the year of the Rat, the first of the 12 signs, characterized by positivity and energy. In fact, if its influence will be that promised, this new year should see the evolution or start of new projects, promising juicy fruits for those who work hard.
In addition, famous astrologers such as Jessica Adams and Cathryn Moe say that 366 days await us in which "the union will be a strength". In this new year, nobody should face big challenges alone but join together to achieve a goal. Consequently, "sharing of power" will be one of the keywords.

anno del topo

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We could witness an evolutionary process on a global scale, in which people could come to understand each other and collaborate for the collective good. This would have great positive social consequences.

The rat represents that part of the darker psyche where the true "I" expresses itself. The masks that have surrounded us so far will fall. This would lead to greater compassion and understanding even towards our own Planet (just think of the fight for climate change).

New energy within us will release all its power. And you? Are you ready to face this revolution given by the year of the rat?


"Giapponismo, Venti d’Oriente nell’arte europea. 1860 – 1915" at Palazzo Rovella, Rovigo

Still today, after two centuries, Japan "contaminates" us with its elegance and its mystery, we are talking about the "Japonism" exhibition available at Palazzo Rovella, Rovigo.

Giapponismo

photo credits: palazzoroverella.com

How simple can falling in love with Japan be and how easily are we affected? Form, synthesis and refinement are the elements that characterize the "Japonisme". A sort of "addiction", a "fashion", a suggestive and innovative art that has swept western art and culture. In fact, in 1853, the Rising Sun opened its doors to diplomatic and commercial relations with the rest of the world by bringing its culture to our lands.

First in London in 1862 and then in Paris, the world capital of art from the second half of the nineteenth century, the style of Japonism conquered Europe. From the spectacular porcelains, the clothing, the ukiyo-e prints and the Japanese furnishings that spread to all the remaining nations at great speed. From Germany, Holland, Belgium, Austria, Bohemia, up to Italy.

The artists of Japonism

Also, the great artists like Gauguin, Van Gogh, Klimt, Monet, Manet, Degas, Renoir, Sir John Lavery, Giuseppe De Nittis Antonio Mancini, Antonio Fontanesi, Maurice Denis and Henry Van De Velde (just to name a few) mixed their own style with that of the rising sun. All these artists took inspiration from that wave of "Japonism" that unveiled and amplified the new style coming from the magical overseas, translating into Art Nouveau.

Giapponismo

photo credits: arte.it

That stranger beauty to the superficiality that is behind every form, trait, and curve hides concepts foreign to western culture and it began to spread in society. From the upper classes of the bourgeoisie, to the lower social ones where the posters contributed to the expansion of Japonism.

Society changes, evolves, runs, collides with new needs and consumerism makes its way. Advertising becomes a weapon, but also a catalyst of influences, which attracts, which speaks for itself, which gives rise to needs just before unknown. An art form that drew from the precise morphological and aesthetic oriental characteristics. Japan becomes a model and guide, with its colors, its balance and the Japanese graphics that captures with its key concepts.

Giapponismo

photo credits: ansa.it

The exhibition Giapponismo, Venti d’Oriente nell’arte europea. 1860 – 1915

A real artistic current to be counted among the immortal ones and this is the purpose of the great exhibition "Japonism, Winds of the East in European art. 1860 - 1915 " in progress since 28 September 2019. The exhibition on display in Rovigo at Palazzo Roverella will be available until 26 January 2020. A journey in 4 stages expertly designed by Francesco Parisi to help us admire the priceless artistic and cultural heritage that we have inherited.

Absolutely not to be missed!

photo credits: palazzoroverella.com

Details

Official Website: http://www.palazzoroverella.com/mostra/giapponismo/
Information: info@palazzoroverella.com
Opening hours: Mon-Fri 9.00 - 19.00 | Sat - Sun - Holidays 9.00 am - 8.00 pm
Online Tickets: Buy now


Travel guide: Tokyo - Episode 03 - Best places to stay in Tokyo

Finding accommodation in Tokyo is extremely simple as the city offers types that fit everyone's needs. Whether it's a luxury hotel, a family one, a ryokan, the brand new capsule style, or something cheaper, Tokyo offers everything. However, what really makes the difference is the neighborhood. As we have seen in our blogs, each of them proposes splits of a complex and fascinating society, characterized by history, culture, modernity, technology and much more.

For this episode dedicated to our practical guides, we have decided to offer you and collect a list of what for us are the best areas to stay in Tokyo based on interests and their most outstanding characteristics.

Back in time: Asakusa, Edo all the way!

photo credits: ar.jal.co.jp

Asakusa, with its picturesque streets, offers history and culture without precedent. This neighborhood allows its visitors to immerse themselves in what used to be the old Tokyo of the Edo period. Traditional restaurants, inns, and shops where crafted souvenirs can be found everywhere. The center is the Sensōji temple, dedicated to Kannon Sama, the Buddhist goddess of mercy, the oldest place of worship in Tokyo.

Charm at great heights: the romanticism of Ebisu

photo credits: tokyocheapo.com

One of the Yamamote Line stations is Ebisu, a district of Shibuya with its tall skyscrapers. Here we also find the Yebisu Garden Place, a tower with European architecture, whose entrance is free. Surrounded by squares and gardens, here you can dine in a restaurant that looks like a French castle and you can fall in love with a breathtaking view of all of Tokyo. Ebisu is also home to the Mitsukoshi department store, the Beer Museum and the Tokyo Photographic Art Museum.

Extravagant nightlife: Roppongi & Shinjuku

Tokyo

photo credits: flickriver.com

Roppongi is the neighborhood that, par excellence, hosts bars, izakaya and restaurants that offer any type of cuisine. Roppongi is especially known for the Roppongi Hills, a gigantic complex that includes offices, apartments, shops and restaurants. But also cinemas, parks, a museum, a hotel, a television studio, and an outdoor amphitheater. At the center of this whole area stands the Mori Tower, a 54-story building.

Even more "outside the box" is Shinjuku, whose nightlife is vast and in some ways even perverse thanks to Kabukicho, the famous red-light district and the Golden Gai, a maze of narrow streets lined with an impressive number of tiny bars.

Far from the frenzy: Meguro

Tokyo

photo credits: realestate.co.jp

Predominantly residential, metropolitan life pauses in Meguro and the atmosphere is hipster. Here there are unique boutiques, elegant cafes, restaurants and vintage shops. However, what makes it all magical is the tree-lined area along the Meguro River. Here in spring the cherry trees give this neighborhood a rosy and extremely relaxing hue in which to enjoy a traditional picnic.

Kids will love Odaiba

Tokyo

photo credits: livejapan.com

There is no place more suitable then Odaiba for families. This artificial island offers plenty of entertainment for children of all ages. In fact, here we find the Toyota Mega Web, the famous Miraikan museum, Joypolis, Legoland and many shopping centers, overflowing with restaurants for every taste.

For lovers of luxury and food, nothing is comparable to Ginza

photo credits: gotokyo.org

There is no neighborhood known for its luxury shopping area like Ginza. Here we can find famous (and expensive) shops, but also department stores that, in the basement, host truly unique food shops. Moreover, Ginza is also famous for its restaurants that range from French haute cuisine to fusion dishes. But also for small izakaya and sophisticated cocktail lounges. In short, if you love drinking and eating and you want to devote yourself to gastronomic tourism, this is for you!

Fashion, dynamism and transport: Shibuya

Tokyo

photo credits: photo-collection.geo.fr

Want to experience the real frenzy of Tokyo? Shibuya will not disappoint you! This is in fact one of the most dynamic areas of the city. Constantly illuminated by the giant screens that are present on all the buildings, it is also the most colorful and characteristic area thanks to the young people who are dedicated to the art of cosplay. Not to mention the ganguro fashions (flashy and kitsch alternative clothing) and kogal (clothing and makeup are flashy and inspired by the West, exasperating our characteristics). Shibuya is one of the largest transport hubs in the country. From here, trains, metro, and highways will allow you to get anywhere at any time!

After reading each neighborhood's offers, which of these areas correspond to your personality? What do you look for in your stay in Tokyo? Write us your opinions and tell us about your experiences related to one of the most beautiful cities in the world!


Travel guide: Tokyo - Episode 01

Traveling is a unique experience that allows us to broaden our cultural background and come into contact with realities that are more or less distant from ours. In the same way, however, one of the most widespread customs is that of returning home, bringing back even material memories.
For this reason, in this new episode of our special guides, we want to show you where, how and what to buy in Tokyo!

We do not want to nourish the spirit of consumerism in you, but rather to lead you on the path of unique, cute, useful, necessary, satisfying purchases. In fact, the human being also needs to feel pampered and to spend some extra money for the sake of it.
So here is our little trip to the Tokyo shopping world!

Walking through Asakusa: Nakamise Dori

photo credits: thejapanesedreams.com

The Nakamise Dori is one of the most characteristic pedestrian shopping streets in Asakusa. Lined with numerous stalls where you can find traditional souvenirs and snacks, it is a perfect stop for last-minute purchases. The shops that line the street are a real paradise for those looking for washi, the Japanese paper for origami.

In the heart of Shinjuku: Okadaya

Tokyo shopping

photo credits: shinjuku-guide.com

The Okadaya store offers 6 floors of craft items, yarns, sewing kits, DIY guide books, linings, traditional Japanese materials, and other special fabrics. A destination much loved by students attending the design and fashion school nearby!

100 Yen or so: Daiso

Tokyo shopping

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Daiso today is a brand known in many countries around the world and there are plenty of shops throughout Japan. In Tokyo, it's the ideal place to spend little and find a lot of objects more or less useful, cute, funny, particular and so on. Despite the extremely low cost, they are of a surprising quality!

Cuteness overload: Aranzi Aronzo, Character Street, Sunshine City e Yamashiroya

photo credits: matcha-jp.com

In the Tokyo sky tree shopping center, Aranzi Aronzo was opened, a store where everything is "cute, strange and cuddly". Here we can find tender characters in the form of toys, household items, stationery, accessories and craft books.

On the lower level of the Tokyo station, from the Yaesu and Marunouchi exits, the Character Street peeps out on First Avenue. It is an entire commercial street overflowing with shops dedicated to the most beloved characters in Japan. Here we find Hello Kitty, Rilakkuma, Totoro, Miffy, Tamagotchi, Rement, and Pokemon! Also at the Okashi Land, it is possible to stock up on the most famous sweets and desserts known as Pocky!

Tokyo shopping

photo credits: happyjappy.com

Instead, near the Ikebukuro station, there is a skyscraper of 60 floors inside which we find two shopping centers! In Sunshine City, there are wonderful shops like Donguri Kyowakoku, where you can find anything with a Studio Ghibli theme. And let's not forget about Dagashiya, where you can buy all kinds of sweets in lovely packages. HAPiNS, where you can find unique and delicious utensils and objects for the home and the plush toys of Hannari Tofu and Alpacasso. In addition, we also find the Pokemon Center, the Sanrio Vivitix, Kutsushitaya, the Village Vanguard, Swimmer. In short, there is certainly plenty of choice!
Yamashiroya is right in front of the entrance to Ueno station. A splendid store of 6 floors to be explored that offer all kinds of toys, collectors' items, action figures. But also stuffed animals of every kind and brand, souvenirs and lots of gacha-machines that supply some of the most beautiful gashapons!

The Creative Life: Tokyu Hands

Tokyo shopping

photo credits: gotokyo.org

The Tokyu Hands has really many branches scattered around Japan and here in Tokyo, they are easily traceable to Ikebukuro, Shibuya, and Shinjuku. It is the store par excellence where you can really find everything and everything typically Japanese! Whether they are creative, artistic and craft items, household items, beautiful stationery. Or suitcases, pots, furniture or tools for DIY, Tokyu Hands is a paradise. This is probably the place for which I would recommend an absolutely mandatory visit!

Which of these stores struck you most? Do you already have in mind a list of things that you absolutely must buy once you arrive in Tokyo? I believe that you will go crazy and you will probably spend money on absurd objects that you never thought you needed ... at least until that moment!


Travel Guide: Osaka

Let's continue the through among the prefectures and cities of Japan and today we take you to Osaka!

Osaka Osaka

photo credits: easyviaggio.com

The ancient capital

During the Tokugawa period, from 683 to 745, Osaka (大阪) was the capital of Japan with the name of Naniwa (難波). However, during the Meiji era the capital was moved to Tokyo. Subsequently, Osaka became the center of land, sea and river transport thanks to the entrepreneurs who took command of industrial development. During the Second World War, the city was razed to the ground, but the great Japanese spirit did not allow its defeat. In fact, Osaka was rebuilt more prosperous than it ever had been.
Today Osaka is considered as "the cuisine of Japan". Moreover, it is an important economic and port center, as well as the third most important city in the country.

Osaka Osaka

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Falling in love with Osaka

Holder of unique charm, Osaka is a city that must necessarily fit into your wish list as it will make you fall in love in a short time!
A fundamental stop is the Osaka Castle, a place so loved during the Hanami period thanks to the 600 cherry trees that surround it. The castle built in 1583 by Toyotomi Hideyoshi is considered one of the most important historical attractions in Japan!

Osaka Osaka

If you love breathtaking views, the Umeda Sky Building will make you dream with its 360-degree view of the entire city. From its ultramodern observatory located 173 meters high, it is indeed possible to take breathtaking photos! In addition to Umeda you can devote yourself to shopping thanks to its spectacular shopping malls. Moreover, remaining in the theme, if you can not resist the shopping idea, you can go to Shinsaibashi. Shopping district par excellence, every tourist crosses the 600 meters of the Shinsaibashi Shopping Arcade with its numerous boutiques, retail stores, and luxurious department stores!


photo credits: gaijinpot.com

We said that Osaka is considered the "kitchen of Japan", for this reason, you should definitely visit Dotonbori. Glico Man (Glico is the name of the famous candy company that produces Pocky) will welcome you!

photo credits: favy-jp.com

This giant was installed in 1935 and has become the landmark of Dotonbori.
About 30 years later the mechanized crab of the Kani Doraku restaurant was built. This place serves all kinds of crab followed by Zuboraya and Kinryu Ramen, the most famous restaurants in the neighborhood.

Osaka Osaka

photo credits: 123rf.com

If you love museums, you cannot give up the Naniwa Rekihaku, the Osaka History Museum. Housed in a building with ultra-modern features, its specialty is that the visit to the museum starts from the tenth floor, the last one! From ancient Japan, the various floors dedicated to the various historical periods of the city are discovered in descent. Finally, we arrive at the first floor where there are the inevitable souvenir shops.

In the Edo period, Osaka was also the capital of Bunraku. This is a form of theatrical performance characterized by the use of puppets that entertained both the nobility and the population. Bunraku shows are generally held in January, April, June, July, August, and November in specific weeks. Please check the information on the National Bunraku Theater shows here: https://www.ntj.jac.go.jp/bunraku.html

photo credits: japantravel.com

And if after all of this you feel like having fun, a visit to the most beloved park in Japan is a must! We are talking about Universal Studios Japan (ユニーサルスタジオジャパン). The park is divided into 9 thematic areas: Hollywood, Universal Wonderland, The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, Amity Village, Waterworld, Jurassic Park, San Francisco, Minion Park and New York. For all information and details, please refer to the official website also available in English: https://www.usj.co.jp/e/

Osaka Osaka

photo credits: neverendingvoyage.com

Have we managed to intrigue you? Or have you already visited Osaka and fell in love with it? Tell us all your impressions! There is nothing more beautiful than memories to share a dream.


Journey through Kumamoto

In the Kyushu region stands Kumamoto (本市), surrounded by mountains and with its landscapes created by the volcanic activity of Mount Aso.

Kumamoto

photo credits: japantravel.com

When we think of this city, the immediate reference is that of the black bear with red cheeks: Kumamon (くまモン). A true symbol of the prefecture that has become its own mascot, Kumamon also helps promote tourism in Japan and abroad with the "Kumamon Square"! (official website in Japanese and English: https://www.kumamon-sq.jp/en/)

kumamon

photo credits: kyushuandtokyo.org

The origins

During the Nara period, Katou Kiyomasa was named daimyō in 1588 and built the impregnable Kumamoto castle around which the village grew. The Kiyomasa clan was succeeded by Hosokawa's. In 1877, former Satsuma samurai rebelled against the Meiji government with the Satsuma rebellion. The Castle of Kumamoto remained under siege for 53 days between drying out and fires, even the town was razed to the ground. A little curiosity, the facts of the Satsuma rebellion are narrated in the beautiful film "The last samurai".

The new political order was re-established in 1889, giving Kumamoto the role of an important economic and industrial centre of Kyushu. Thanks to this it obtained the title of "city designated by government ordinance" (政令指定都市) counting as many as 5 neighbourhoods within it. The districts of the city are Kita-Ku (北区) the northern district, Nishi-Ku (西区) the west district, Chūō-Ku (中央区) the city centre, Higashi-Ku (東区) the east district and Minami-Ku (南区) the southern district.
Unfortunately a violent earthquake struck the prefecture in 2016 causing enormous damage, but the great Japanese spirit did not allow its inhabitants to surrender and today Kumamoto is still shining.

Kumamoto

photo credits: zingarate.com

Explore Kumamoto

During the 60s and 70s, the castle underwent a massive restoration returning to its former glory. An unmissable stop is the Suizen-Ji Jōju-en garden built in 1636 by Hosokawa Tadatoshi. This serves as a retreat for tea thanks to the pure water of the pond. Inside there is the sanctuary of Izumi where members of the Hosokawa family are kept, a Nōgaku-dō and a Noh theatre. The Kokin-Denju-no-Ma teahouse was originally in the Kyoto Imperial Palace, but was moved here in 1912. The garden was declared a historic site of scenic beauty by the national government.

Kumamoto

photo Credits: sygic.com

If you love museums, a must is the Kumamoto Prefectural Museum of Art. Just 500 meters from the castle, it houses several sections dedicated to modern Japanese, European and American art. In the museum, we find an area where the funerary objects found in the kofun (ancient burial mounds) and a last part dedicated to the finds belonging to the city are collected. Kumamoto is spectacular also thanks to its landscapes. In fact, one of the most magical places from which to enjoy breathtaking views of the entire prefecture is the Hanaokayama Koen park. Lake Ezu is located in the south of the city. This stretch of water is surrounded by an immense natural oasis in which to walk, fish, take a ride on the characteristic Japanese boats for hire, or do birdwatching. Staying with nature, it is interesting to visit the Kumamoto City Zoological Garden. Here we find 124 different species of animals, beautiful botanical gardens and a small funfair.

photo Credits: zoosinjapan.blogspot.com

There is a place that it is worth visiting: the Reigando cave (霊巌洞). Sacred and mysterious, this cave rises at the foot of Mount Kinpo. This place has achieved fame mainly because here the philosopher Musashi Miyamoto composed the treatise on martial arts "Go Rin No Sho" (The Book of Five Rings. But not only that, it is here that over the centuries, monks, poets and warriors they went to meditate.

Kumamoto

photo Credits: kumamoto-guide.jp

To reach Reigando it is necessary to cross the Zen Buddhist temple of Unganzenji. The path consists of a steep stone staircase to the sides of which 500 unique statues of the enlightened followers of Buddha unfold. At the end of the path opens the entrance to the cave that overlooks the forest. At the back of the cave is the four-faced goddess Iwato Kanon. It is said that the statue was mysteriously washed in the cave 1000 years ago after the ship that transported it sank.

Kumamoto

photo Credits: japanshoreexcursions.com

Spiritual and relaxing, Kumamoto can really give its visitors a lot and absolutely deserves to be visited and loved, like every city in Japan.


Shichi-Go-San / Seven-Five-Three

November 15th is the day of Shichi-Go-San (七五 三, 7-5-3). This festival celebrates the rite of passage for girls aged 3 and 7 and children aged 3 and 5. These numbers are considered particularly lucky, like all odd numbers.

Shichi-Go-San

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Shichi-Go-San is the culmination of three traditions developed in the Heian period. The celebration first started among the court nobles who celebrated the passage of their children to "average childhood". It was then adopted by the Samurai class to mark the important growth milestones.

Up to 3 years of age, a child will have shaved hair. After the age of 3, they would then be allowed to grow their hair a little longer. 5-year-old males could wear the hakama (袴, a traditional garment that resembles a wide skirt-pants up to the ankles and tied to the waist) for the first time, while the seven-year-old girls replaced the simple cords, used to tie their kimonos, with the traditional obi (帯, the traditional silk belt). After the Meiji period, this practice was also adopted by ordinary citizens, introducing the ritual visit to a Shinto shrine to remove evil spirits and wish their children a long and prosperous life.

Shichi-Go-San and the subtle changes in the modern era

Shichi-Go-San

photo credits: amu-zen.com

Like most Japanese traditions, Shichi-Go-San keeps the rituals of the Meiji period almost completely intact. The only aspect falling into disuse is the hair rule. Five-year-old boys and seven-year-old girls still wear colourful kimono for visits to shrines.
The three-year-old girls usually wear the hifu (a dress similar to a slightly padded waistcoat) along with their kimono. Some children wear clothes closer to western fashion. Today many photos are taken in this occasion.
A decorated envelope containing sweet Chitose ame (千歳飴) will be given to each boy and girl celebrating the Shichi-Go-San day. The name ‘Chitose ame’ means “the candy of a thousand years". It is wrapped in transparent edible rice paper and is shaped like a long thin stick. Traditionally red and white, it serves as a symbol of longevity.