Coming of Age Day in Japan

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Photo by Derek A

The Coming of Age Day in Japan is celebrated on the second Monday of January and marks the transition of young Japanese who have reached the age of 20 into adulthood.

The ceremony is traditionally an opportunity for women to wear a traditional kimono called a Furisode (振袖). Due to the complexity of putting on the kimono, many women will visit a beauty salon to be dressed and have their hair styled for the occasion.

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Once dressed many families will visit the local ward office for the official ceremony and then after visit a shrine to celebrate and take photos.

At time it seemed like there were more photographers than women wearing kimonos.

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Many couples also choose to get married on this day and if you are lucky you can watch the traditional ceremony at a local shrine.

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With the declining birthrate in Japan there seems to be fewer young people every year but if you are in Japan in early January, Coming of Age Day (成人の日) is a great way to have fun and to see some young Japanese people in traditional clothing.

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Host of the Speak Up Asia podcast.

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